What's on Permanent Rotation in my Pantry

It’s been damn near a week since your last grocery run and you’re in that situation that we all know and hate: What the f%#& am I making for dinner?

It’s a question I know all too well myself, but I still somehow find a way to whip up something amazing for dinner, often leaving my friends and followers asking me "how?" What’s my secret, you ask? I keep my pantry stocked with staple essentials, and I’ll stand by this until the day I die.

Here are my MVP pantry items that you might also want to start stocking up on for those days when your refrigerator basically has nothing but condiments and a sad looking bunch of greens.

Bob's Red Mill Polenta

I try and tell myself that eating polenta is so much healthier than pasta... until I decide I want to add mascarpone into the cooking process. Yet, that's the best part about polenta, right? If you want to cook it in stock and pair it with sautéed chard and a perfectly seasoned steak for a healthy meal, you can... or you can add hella' butter, sweet Italian cheese, throw in mushrooms and grated parm and have a decadent meal while watching Queer Eye and no one has to know.

Bob's Red Mill Polenta

Trader Joe's Free Range Chicken Broth/Stock

These days, grocery stores throw “broth” and “stock” around like they're the same thing and since they aren't, I just tested the waters until I found what I liked. If you need to make soup, sauces, savory quinoa or rice dishes, chicken stocks are perfect for adding depth, flavor, and additional nutrients. Kirkland Signature Chicken Stock also has great ingredients. 

MaraNatha's Organic Almond Butter

Unlike peanut butter (high in mold and can irritate the gut), during my detox periods, I can still eat almonds (they are more alkaline than other nuts). When making curries, sauces, salad dressings or just pairing with my favorite granny smith apple, almond butter is my best pantry friend.

Made in Nature Coconut Chips

I always need some sort of snack. A mindless, snatch-out-of-the-pantry, kind of snack. While I definitely prefer regular chips, these are guiltless and have great flavor which usually satisfies most of my cravings. Big fan of the espresso coconut chips.

Nature's Path Gluten-Free Oats

Whether you're a responsible adult and can make your overnight oats, or you forgot and need to whip breakfast up in five minutes, raw oats are the best. Filling, easily manipulated and basically just the perfect base for a healthy and fast morning meal. Throw in tons of cinnamon and chopped apples for an apple pie kinda morning.

Nature's Path Organic Gluten Free Oats

Bianco DiNapoli Organic Crushed Tomatoes

Red sauce is always a winner, especially when you make it from scratch. Throw it over a protein, squashes, pasta, rice, or really anything (fight me on it). Canned tomatoes will save you when you literally have nothing left in the house except a few garlic cloves and half an onion. Of course, you still have to add your dry spices and some sort of grain to absorb the yumminess, but you can never go wrong with a good red sauce.

Sardines

Dude... sometimes you're just desperate for protein and there they are, swimming in olive oil in a can in your pantry and you're saved. If you wanna be extra fancy though, throw them in garlic oil with chopped parsley and chili flakes and just dunk bread into it all evening. They also come in handy when you’re trying to coax kittens out of hard to reach places in your apartment complex, so to say they’re a necessity in your pantry is an understatement.

Chickpeas

Need hummus? Chickpeas. Need soup? Chickpeas. Need a crispy snack? Chickpeas. Need a frothy cocktail? Chickpea juice (trust me on this one). They are so versatile and are a great source of vegan protein. Keep the chickpea runoff (aquafaba) to shake in your cocktails or to whip up for an egg white substitute.

Saluti.