How to Stock a Basic Food Pantry

Keep these key ingredients on hand and you’ll always be minutes away from simple, wholesome meals.

Bottles and jars filled with oils, sweeteners, nuts

Professional chefs know better than to reinvent the wheel every time they step up to the stove. Experience has given them a host of reliable methods, tried-and-true ingredients, and favorite flavor combinations to make throwing a meal together easy.

This can be the case for you, too. By keeping certain key foods on hand, you’ll have a larder to draw from to cook something simple, healthy, and tasty the next time you’re not sure what to make for dinner.

This pantry list is a starting point for you to build confidence in the kitchen, followed with recipes created from the cache of essential ingredients.

After you’ve experimented enough, you’ll learn what works best for your tastes: Perhaps you prefer sesame oil to avocado oil, or rosemary over thyme. With the necessary basics on hand, you’ll be that much closer to creating something effortless, nutritious, and original that’s also pleasing to your palate.

The Basic Pantry

is a Minneapolis-based recipe developer. She is the author of Great Bowls of Food.

Photos: Andrea DAgosto; Prop Styling: Alicia Buszczak; Food Stylist: Paul Jackman

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