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Pantry Staples – Stock Up or Not To Stock Up

Tip of the Day

Awhile back, Warren and I got into a discussion about pantry staples. His opinion was that sparse was better… just go out and get what you need when you need it. I said that … that attitude was from someone that did not do the majority of the grocery shopping or cooking. The last thing I want to do is run out and waste time at the store just before dinner.

I am a firm believer in the well stocked pantry. First, from a time saving perspective… one trip a week to the grocery store is fine for me. Secondly, I do believe in meal planning… many items you need for a recipe do not use up the entire package and unless you want to waste it… you really need to plan to use it in another dish soon after opening. … and thirdly, and probably the most important reason for stocking up… is taking advantage of sales…. discounts do add up… especially on food items you would normally use anyway.

Now that I have pointed out the finer points of why pantry staples are a good thing…. the question is… what items fall under the “staples” list. For the most part… pantry staples are an individual thing… meal ingredients that “throw together” quickly on those nights that are unplanned… as well as, those items frequently used.

Whatever is on your list… I believe pantry staples are a wise investment in time and money, as long as thought has gone into choosing them and they’re used in a timely manner.

Let me hear your thoughts on the subject. Do you stock up?


Aimee August 19, 2009 at 10:28 PM  

Do I ever. Actually, my staples come in two varieties: true staples, like rice, beans, and pasta, and what you might call "staple condiments." These are things like tabasco, soy sauce, ginger, etc, that I use a lot in cooking. In the first category, I have a 25 pound sack of white rice and a 10 pound sack of brown, 6 or 8 packages of various shaped pasta, a twelve pack of tuna, plenty of canned tomato products, jug of olive oil, five or six kinds of dried beans including lentils and split peas, a sack of potatoes, a sack of onions, several heads of garlic.... and so on. Let's not talk about the chest freezer. In the second category, I try to always have on hand ketchup, mayonnaise and mustard, of course, and soy sauce, fish sauce, thai curry paste, siracha, fermented black bean paste, coconut milk, fancy oils like sesame and walnut, tahini, dried chiles of several kinds, chilpotles in adobo, anchovies, capers, black olives, pepperoncinis, two or three kinds of vinegar. There's probably more but it makes me tired thinking about cleaning out my cabinets.

Linda August 20, 2009 at 9:56 AM  

I stock up too so I agree 100% with you! Thanks for your list... you have a few things on there that I don't and I think I will add to mine ...one of them is dried beans... for some reason I tend to buy them as I need them... but you're right... it should be a pantry staple... you can always throw together a meal with beans.

Buffie August 21, 2009 at 11:35 AM  

I definitely belive in a well stocked pantry. We stock up on anything we use regularly that has a long shelf life. As a result there is always an abundance of food in our house. Well, except for right now because we're preparing to move so we're using up my stockpile. Soon I'll have to start stocking up all over again. Sigh!


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