Essentials for a Well Stocked Pantry

Essentials for a Well Stocked Pantry

At our house, it’s a 30-minute drive to the grocery store, even further if we are making a late-night run. Living in a small town, the streets close up by nine o’clock, so if we get a late-night snack attack, we’re stuck with what we have on hand. So having a well-stocked pantry is a must.

We have a huge corner cupboard with two lazy-Susan shelves and they are packed. We also added another cabinet to be sure we have any essentials at our fingertips. You never know when you might want to make sugar cookies, or a homemade pasta sauce, so it’s smart to have the ingredients available. Especially when you can’t make a quick trip to the store, or have your groceries delivered.

How bad would it be if you had last minute guests and you had no staples to whip up a quick meal? Not that we have last minute company a lot, but you might. 

It’s important to know what your needs are. Do you like a PB&J for a snack? Does your spouse like spicy Thai noodles? What about your kids?

Having a well-stocked pantry can make everyone in the family happier.

Below is a list of essentials I know my family uses on a regular basis, so I’m sharing my list with you.

When you’re adding items to your shopping cart, you’ll know what you can and can’t live without.

And let me make a suggestion here: Keep a laminated checklist of the items in your pantry. When you’re running low, make a checkmark and grab it next time you go grocery shopping. This way your pantry will never be low on ingredients.



  • Kosher salt
  • Fine salt
  • Black peppercorns
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Vegetable oil
  • Vinegar
    • Red wine
    • Balsamic
    • Sherry
    • Rice





  • Flour
    • Whole wheat
    • Self-rising
    • All purpose
  • Baking soda
  • Baking powder
  • Cream of tartar
  • Cocoa powder
  • Chocolate: chips or bar
  • Evaporated milk
  • Pure vanilla extract
  • Granulated sugar
  • Confectioners’ sugar
  • Brown sugar
  • Maple syrup
  • Honey
  • Agave syrup
  • Coffee
  • Tea
  • Rice
    • White
    • Long grain
    • Brown
    • Wild
  • Grains:
    • bulgur
    • quinoa
    • couscous
  • Pasta:
    • Spaghetti
    • Fettucine
    • Whole grain
    • Risotto
    • Rotini
  • Corn meal
  • Breadcrumbs:
    • Italian
    • Panko
  • Snacks
  • Cereals
  • Tortillas
  • Pretzels
  • Marshmallows
  • Popcorn kernels
  • Dried fruit
  • Seeds
  • Peanut butter or nut butter
  • Applesauce
  • Old-fashioned rolled oats
  • Chicken broth
  • Beans, canned
  • Olives
  • Capers
  • Chiles
  • Salsa
  • Tomatoes, canned
  • Tomato paste
  • Roasted red peppers, canned
  • Tuna
  • Anchovy fillets or paste
  • Basil
  • Bay leaves
  • Cajun seasoning
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Chili powder
  • Crushed red pepper
  • Curry powder
  • Fennel or dill seed
  • Granulated garlic
  • Ground cinnamon
  • Ground cloves
  • Ground cumin
  • Ground ginger
  • Ground nutmeg
  • Oregano
  • Paprika
  • Rosemary
  • Turmeric
  • Sesame seeds
  • Thyme
  • Whole nutmeg
  • Jelly/jam/preserves
  • Ketchup
  • Mayonnaise
  • Mustard: Dijon or whole grain
  • Pickles
  • Hot sauce
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • Soy sauce
  • Peanut oil
  • Asian fish sauce
  • Toasted sesame oil
  • Cooking sherry
  • Marsala wine


Is there anything that you have as a must in your pantry? Comment and I’ll add it to the list.


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