In a fast-paced world, having pantry and fridge staples is essential. Primarily, it allows you to prepare for the weeks-long consumption and budget for your food. Second, it saves you the trouble of going back and forth to your local grocery store to buy what you need for your cooking.
Suppose you’re the one who does grocery runs or the one who does the cooking chores. In that case, you may identify the goods your pantry and fridge should have. That way, you could keep balanced food choices and plan out early to purchase what’s essential. For that purpose, here’s an article to guide you. So, read on!
Meat is an excellent source of protein, among other health benefits. Because of this, it’s one of the kitchen essentials your fridge and pantry should have. For this purpose, you may keep various types of meat, including fresh cuts and processed ones. The following are some of the meats you could consider storing in your pantries and cold storage:
- Beef Jerky
Keeping quality beef jerky in your pantry is suitable for quick snacks or meals. Generally, these products come in different flavours and sizes. Since they’re cured and processed, they may have the most extended shelf life among the meats.
- Bacon, Hotdogs, And Sausages
Whether you need these meats for cooking or as standalone dishes, having bacon and sausages in your fridge is ideal as it helps in the quick preparation of meals. For high-end freezers, you may keep the bacon and sausages for up to two months. For typical fridges, you can only store them for five to seven days.
- Ground Meats
These include ground beef, pork, and chicken. You may store well-packed ground meats for up to 3 months and only up to two days if you have already opened them.
- Fresh Meats
These include steaks, chops of beef, pork, veal, and lamb roasts. You could keep them in your cold storage for three to five days in generic fridges and up to four to twelve months and high-end freezers.
You may store unopened and canned hams for up to two months, cured hams for up to four months, and cooked ham from 1 to 4 weeks, depending on their curing process and sealing method.
In deciding on what meat you should keep in your pantry and fridge, you may think of the length of the consumption. Since most meat products will expire within two months, you may need to limit buying these items to what you could consume in two to four weeks. Yet, for meats with long expiration dates, you could buy them in large quantities, such as bulk beef jerky wholesale and similar ways.
Apart from enhancing the flavours of dishes, condiments improve their texture. If you want to have ideas of what condiments to stock, here are some of them:
- Asian fish sauce
- Worcestershire sauce
- Hot sauce
- Oyster Sauce
- Soy Sauce
- Jam, Jelly, And Salsa
Generally, you need to keep various types of sugar in your pantry. The common types are table sugar used in your daily beverages and the confectioner’s sugar for baking purposes. Apart from these items, you may also have sugar substitutes in your pantries, especially if some people in your house need to reduce their sugar intake.
Some of the sugar substitutes you may choose from are the following:
- maple syrup
- fruit juices
4. Rice And Grains
Rice and grains are good sources of fibre, vitamins, and minerals. They generally provide the quick energy boost necessary to keep your day going. In choosing a rice variety, you may consider long-grain rice types as they’re believed to reduce cholesterol levels. Similarly, brown rice varieties are known to reduce the risks of heart disease.
Apart from rice, you may consider keeping the following grains:
- Whole wheat
In storing rice and grain, you may keep them in airtight containers. If packed, you can keep them as they are. Otherwise, put them inside your fridge but ensure that they’re free from moisture.
5. Canned Goods
Canned goods could be the most convenient to stock and stack because of their sizes and shapes. Aside from these, they have better shelf life than many pantry and fridge staples. On top of these, they can provide the necessary nutrients you need.
For the canned goods you may store, here are the common ones you could select from:
- Red peppers
- Tomato paste
- Chicken broth
6. Spices And Herbs
Spices and herbs add flavours and twist to any dish. Also, they’re known to be good sources of antioxidants, reducing risks of cancer and heart diseases. Some of the traditional spices and herbs you may stock in your pantry are the following:
- Bay leaves
- Chilli powder
- Curry powder
- Granulated garlic
- Ground cinnamon
- Ground ginger
- Sesame seeds
7. Fruits And Veggies
Fruits and vegetables are considered the best sources of vitamins and minerals. That said, having them in your kitchen is important. In choosing what to store in your pantry and cold storage, you may consider the ones that could last the longest, such as potatoes, squash, apples, and citrus. These items generally last up to 3 months.
However, you may also try to store even the ones that’d perish more quickly as long as you pick the fresh fruits and vegetables. Refrain from buying the ripe ones. If you have purchased items showing signs of ripening or decay, you may place them in sealed plastic bags to slow it down.
8. Dairy And Eggs
To keep your meals balanced with protein, calcium, and zinc, you may consider stashing dairy products and eggs. You may need to pick clean and uncracked shells to keep eggs. For dairy products, such as butter, milk, yogurt, and cheese, select those free from sediments and aren’t off-coloured.
Final Thoughts Now that you have some ideas about your shopping list, you could start finalizing your inventory according to your immediate needs. Also, you may consider your preference—quick meals or well-prepared dishes. You may check the shelf life of your products and the sizes of your pantries and fridges. Furthermore, you could think about the number of people who’d consume the food items you’ve listed.