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  • Writer's pictureJames Howe

10 Essential things you should keep in your pantry



Forgot to nip to the shop or surprise visitors, with the right ingredients on hand you can easily throw together a last minute dinner. If you’re just starting to build your pantry, you certainly don’t have to go buy all this at once, rather slowly build up over time.

10 Essential things you should keep in your pantry
10 Essential things you should keep in your pantry

10 Essential things you should keep in your pantry

10. Rapeseed Oil


10 Essential things you should keep in your pantry
Rapeseed oil

For frying and sautéing, a good neutral oil with a high smoke point is important to have on hand. It also doubles up as a great oil for salad dressings and marinades. Why by multiple types of oil when 1 does the trick?



 

9. Flour

10 Essential things you should keep in your pantry
Flour

At the very least, you should have plain flour in your kitchen at all times. Self raising is also handy to have around. While speciality are handy for things like pasta to get the best results, is it possible to make these things without them? abso-damn-lutely.




 

8. Granulated sugar


10 Essential things you should keep in your pantry
Sugar

Plain white granulated sugar is essential if you do any amount of baking. Too many times I’ve run out of sugar and it has completely thwarted my weekend baking plans. I’ve learned to stock up. If you have the space, a nice muscovado or dark brown sugar is a flavorful addition.




 

7. Cornflour


10 Essential things you should keep in your pantry
Cornflour

Cornflour is often used in baking, but also for thickening soups and sauces. I like the kind that comes in canisters as it’s easier to store and measure without making a massive mess. Tapioca starch or potato starch are good substitutions.








 

6. Stock Cubes

10 Essential things you should keep in your pantry
Stock cube

I always try to keep a box of chicken, beef & vegetable stock on hand. I prefer low-sodium versions since then I can control my own salt in recipes.




 

5. Salt

10 Essential things you should keep in your pantry
Salt

Salt might be the most important ingredient in all cooking and baking. At the very least, have a solid supply of kosher salt (I like Diamond Crystal brand kosher salt) on hand, which can be used for seasoning, brining and baking, and doesn’t have any anti-caking agents like other brands.


Keep a salt cellar full of this next to the stove as you cook for easy pinch-by-pinch seasoning.


 

4. Pepper

10 Essential things you should keep in your pantry
Pepper

Unlike salts, black pepper is pretty much the same across the board. I prefer freshly ground, so I buy big bags of whole peppercorns






 

3. Honey

10 Essential things you should keep in your pantry
Honey

Did you know that honey never expires? Even if it crystalizes, just microwave it for a few seconds to bring it back to life. I try to avoid the super cheap honey since they all seem to have the same fake flavour.




 

2. Tomato Paste

10 Essential things you should keep in your pantry
Tomato puree

Tomato paste is a great foundation for many sauces and stews, even if the final product isn’t overly tomato-y. I love the tubes of tomato paste that are available now, because they are easy to portion out a tablespoon or two. But a few cans are helpful too for sauces and recipes that require large quantities. If you have leftover tomato paste, it freezes beautifully.


 

1. Pasta & Rice

10 Essential things you should keep in your pantry
Rice & pasta

Cheating but its impossible to seperate. These 2 are the absolute kings of the pantry. They adapt to almost everything. For those nights when you just want a fast dinner, it’s always a good idea to keep a few bags on hand.




 

Final Thoughts

So that's 10 essential things you should keep in your pantry. Keep these items well stocked and you will always be able to whip up an emergency meal at a moments notice.

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