The Most Important Pantry Staples to Stock Up on

Has recent events left you feeling a bit more fretful about what you keep in your pantry. If so this list of pantry staples to stock up on might just be what you need! This list being full of food to keep in the pantry for emergencies and all of the food to keep on hand for just in case.

The pantry is the best place to prepare for the unknown as it is where all of the longest lasting foods live.

Whether that be canned goods or dried goods it is the best place to give yourself some peace of mind. Knowing that if another emergency were to ever come up you would be prepared this time.

Emergency or not it is just good common sense to always keep a bit extra on hand. Whether that be because of bad weather, unplanned health problems or because of some kind of food shortage. Being prepared is always a good thing.

So, if you want to get some ideas about what pantry staples to stock up on then keep reading! Because here is a list of food to keep on hand for those unplanned instances.

Pantry Staples to Stock Up on 

When we start to look at food to keep in the pantry in really boils down to a few simple rules to keep in mind.

Only stock up on hearty items that are either dried or preserved in some other way to help their shelf life. And don’t just stock up on something because everyone else is or you feel like you should.

If you never eat beans don’t buy them just because they’re there. If you only like canned tomatoes don’t stock up on all kinds of canned veggies.

Doing so only leads to waste and will fill up your pantry with nonessential items that may never actually get eaten.

Stock up on only the food items that you and your family enjoy and regularly find yourself gravitating towards!

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Canned or Dried Beans

Probably the most straight forward pantry staples to stock up on is the ever-resourceful bean. 

You have a lot of options here as you can decide between either dried or canned beans depending on what you prefer to cook. Personally, I rarely eat beans so buying a bag of dried beans just wouldn’t be logical for me.

Beans are great to have on hand as a protein source that requires little cooking and can be added to a variety of meals.

You could even keep mild tasting beans on hand such as black beans. Using them in desserts like black bean brownies!

The Minimalist Baker has a wonderful Vegan Black Bean Brownies recipe that you could try out!

Dried Peas

Peas don’t get nearly enough credit in my opinion because they are so nutritionally packed!

Peas are very high in protein almost as much as many types of beans! They are delicious in split pea soup and can be added to a variety of meals.

From curries to soups to casseroles.

If you like peas, then you should definitely keep a bag on hand!

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Pasta and Rice

Pasta and rice are the backbone to a good stocked pantry of food to keep on hand. They are dense and filling not to mention very satisfying.

As a rule, I don’t like to avoid plain pasta or white rice for health reasons but if that is a concern to you there are a lot of options out there.

You could buy bean or whole grain pasta and brown rice. All being slightly healthier options plus they are higher in fiber which we could all benefit from.

With pasta and rice on hand you’ll never find yourself at a loss for what to eat. Whether that be a classic bowl of tomato-y pasta or a fancy alfredo casserole. Or refried rice or risotto!

The options are endless which is what makes these two pantry staples to stock up on such good options!

pantry staples to stock up on

Canned Vegetables

Another excellent pantry staple is canned vegetables. And not the gross slimy kind that we all had to eat as kids!

Make sure you stock up on good canned vegetables staying away from options like canned potato because that never goes well!

Canned corn, green beans, tomatoes, sweet potatoes and carrots are all good options. Being properly preserved without completely disregarding flavor and texture.

With canned vegetables you can rest easy in knowing that you will always have some veggies on hand to fill up meals. Using them as nutritious sides or incorporated into dishes.

Such as shepherd’s pie, casseroles, vegetable soups and chowders and the list goes on!

Canned Broth and Broth Cubes

Don’t forget to stock up on some flavorful broth to spice up those stews and soups! 

Whether you prefer canned broth or broth cubes is up to you. I prefer broth cubes as they produce less waste, but they also don’t last as long so it depends on what you think is best.

Having plenty of stock on hand makes sure that even if you only have ingredients for yet another soup. You won’t have to give up on flavor as a bit of stock can make a world of difference.


Oatmeal is another one of those pantry staple to stock up on as it is such a versatile ingredient!

Whether you want hot oatmeal for breakfast or savory oatmeal for lunch. Or you have some dessert recipes that include oatmeal or some tasty oatmeal cookies.

Oatmeal is one of those ingredients to keep on hand. 

I don’t even like oatmeal that much, but I keep it on hand to include in smoothies and to add in the place of breadcrumbs as a binder. For foods like veggie meat balls and patties.

I like to always keep some Quaker oats on hand for whenever I might need them. Their a best selling brand and are oh so versatile!

Canned Tomatoes and Jarred Sauce

Maybe this is just personal opinion speaking but don’t think that you can have a properly stocked pantry without canned tomatoes and sauces!

They are just so useful I couldn’t live without them. And my meals would be much less tasty without them as an ingredient.

It’s a good idea to always keep a few cans of tomatoes on hand you can even buy ones that already have flavors incorporated! As well as tomato sauces and pasta sauces both being very versatile and a good edition to any meal.

You can spice them up by making pizza and marinara sauces and adding to soups for a heartier meal.

Condiments and Seasonings

Now we can’t forget the condiments, can we?

This is a very personal pantry item to stock up on as we will all prefer different condiments and food additives.

I like to keep sundried tomatoes, soy sauce and barbecue sauce on hand just in case but your list might look very much different.

It just depends on what you find yourself regularly reaching for as well as what flavors you most prefer.

I always have to have this nutritional yeast on hand in order to sprinkle it over anything and everything for some cheesy flavor!

Tea and Coffee

You don’t want to leave out the tea and coffee as for many of us those are considered to be essentials!

Make sure to always keep a few bags of your favorite coffee on hand or an extra box of your favorite tea.

I like to have this black tea around at all times for those days where you just ned a hot cup of something.

You won’t regret having those items on hand for those unplanned circumstances.


Popcorn is one of those excellent kinds of food to keep in the pantry at all times. It is a versatile snack and can be made to be either salty or sweet.

You could even get extra creative and make popcorn balls or bars!

Having popcorn on hand is especially useful for when you have children as it provides an easy and healthy snack.


Curating a healthy and fully stocked pantry doesn’t have to be one of those stressful tasks that we all put off.

With just a little forethought and planning it is a rather easy task to do to ensure that your family will always have plenty of food on hand.

We never know what might happen and if the last few months have taught us anything, I think it is to be more prepared for the future.

What are some of the kinds of food to keep on hand that you never go without? Any suggestions besides what has been included in this list?

Any strange foods that you like to keep in your pantry? Do tell!

Do you have any of these ingredients in your pantry right now or are they on your list?

Don’t forget to purchase some of these hassle free Quaker oats and nutritional yeast to add some diversity to your meals!


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