Woman placing a jar on a shelf | Stocking the pantry

Stocking The Pantry For From Scratch Cooking

Stocking the pantry is one of the best decisions you can make when it comes to cooking from scratch. But just what should you be stocking in your pantry? What foods will bring wholesome, nutritious ingredients that will nurture your family? Stocking a pantry can feel very overwhelming- but I promise it doesn’t have to be. And you can do it with many homemade items that you can later turn into amazing meals. You don’t have to choose between convenience and wholesome, or even easy and nutritious.

What Should Be Stocked In A Pantry?

A well-stocked pantry is a beautiful thing! So before we go any further let’s talk about what you should be stocking the pantry with. This isn’t a list of everything you may need in your pantry to get you started. You’ll want to customize it to your personal preferences and diet. However many of these things are staples that we keep on hand in our own pantry for from-scratch cooking.

Shelves of canned food | Stocking a pantry

Stocking The Pantry With Baking Staples:

Depending on your diet, and likes/dislikes this list will change but here are some basic baking staples to consider when stocking the pantry.

  • Baking Powder
  • Baking Soda
  • Sugar
  • Flour *if you are looking at stocking your pantry for a long period, consider wheat berries. These have a longer shelf life.
  • Yeast
  • Vanilla
  • Cocoa Powder
  • Nuts
  • Chocolate Chips
  • Honey
  • Powdered Sugar
  • Cream Of Tartar

Stocking The Pantry With Preferred Spice:

Spices make an ordinary dish extraordinary- so having a well-stocked spice section in your pantry is a great way to be prepared. Everyone has their own preferences, but you can’t go wrong with these seasonings being available to you.

  • salt
  • pepper
  • oregano
  • basil
  • bay leaves
  • thyme
  • dried parsley
  • crushed red pepper
  • cayenne pepper
  • paprika
  • chili powder
  • cumin
  • nutmeg
  • allspice
  • ground cloves
  • cinnamon
  • garlic powder
  • onion powder
  • ground ginger

Stocking The Pantry With Oils & Fats:

You can choose to have just one type of oil or fat in your pantry but I like to have a few options. Do your own research for what you’d like to use but these are a few options we keep on hand when stocking the pantry.

  • Olive Oil
  • Avocado Oil
  • Coconut Oil
  • Lard

Stocking The Pantry With Canned Goods, and Broths:

This section is another place that you can easily fill with homemade goodies, such as homemade broth which is so easy to make. It’s also really important because a lot of meals can be born out of these items.

  • Chicken Broth or Stock
  • Beef Broth or Stock
  • Vegetable Broth
  • Canned Veggies (of your choice)
  • Tomato Sauce & Paste

Stocking The Pantry With Grains, Pasta, and Legumes:

When you are stocking the pantry it’s important to have the basics for meals (not just random things you will never eat), choose things that you regularly eat and keep a supply of them in your pantry ready to go. This is another section where you can make staples from scratch or purchase them from the store. Things like pasta are really easy to make, while items like rice you’ll need to buy.

  • rice
  • quinoa
  • couscous
  • freekah
  • rolled and steel cut oats
  • granola
  • pre-mixed meusli (and traditional types of breakfast cereal)
  • wheat berries *these are ground into flour and have a longer shelf life.

Your Favorite Pasta Such As:

  • spaghetti
  • linguini
  • angel hair
  • fettuccini
  • rigatoni
  • Ziti
  • bowtie
  • shells

Legumes like:

  • dried beans (black, navy, pinto, kidney, red)
  • split peas
  • lentils 

Stocking The Pantry With Healthy Snacks:

Snacks are another great way to stock your pantry with healthy goodies or at the very least healthier alternatives to keep you from needing to purchase junk food- check down below for some homemade snack recipes. Store-bought snacks are loaded with lousy ingredients so this is a great opportunity to plan ahead for stocking your pantry with things that will nurture your body- or at least be better for you.

Stocking The Pantry With Refrigerated Basics:

These items are perishable and will need to be consumed rather quickly, or stored in a freezer (if applicable) until you are ready to use them. Despite they won’t last as long they are an important option when stocking the pantry. If you don’t have chickens yourself, reach out to local farms or even backyard chicken keepers for fresh eggs. Fresh milk and cream is another great one to source from your local farms. The same for bacon or sausage.

  • eggs
  • milk
  • cream
  • sausage / bacon
  • butter
  • sauces and condiments
  • orange juice or your favorite juice

Stocking The Pantry With Fruits & Vegetables

Fresh fruits and vegetables are a great way to add diversity and integrate seasonal eating into your pantry. For us, this section is supplied from our garden and orchard, but you can fill this part of your pantry from local farms or homesteads or even a stop at the grocery store.

  • In season fruits and berries
  • Fresh vegetables that are in season *this is where having a garden is super handy
  • Onions
  • Potatoes / Sweet Potatoes
  • Garlic

Stocking A Pantry From Scratch

Having a well-stocked pantry is a vital part of cooking from scratch meals, but stocking the pantry with homemade staples for those delicious meals is easier (and tastier) than you think! And free of all those ingredients you can’t pronounce. Making your own condiments, dressings or even broth is a great way to cut those ingredients that are horrible for your health, or even if you have allergies you can ensure that none of those are in your pantry.

Farmhouse Kitchen Cooking

How Do You Keep A Pantry Stocked?

Keeping your pantry stocked is simple, as you begin to reach the end of the things you have stocked in your panty simply replace it when you are at the store next. This ensures that you have exactly what you need when you are cooking and are never left without what you need to make an amazing from-scratch meal.

How Do You Stock A Pantry For A Year?

Stocking a pantry for a year can feel like a monumental task, but it’s absolutely worth it. Especially if you are a homesteader, or live in a place where getting into town can be impossible due to weather -like where we live. If we get to much rain we are stuck until the water goes down, so having a well-stocked pantry with all the necessities for meals is super handy. It also gives you the opportunity to stock your pantry with delicious from scratch items. If anything the last few years have shown us just how handy it is to have a pantry to fall back on so how exactly do you stock a pantry for a year?

First off, only stock up on things you and your family will actually eat and enjoy. Canning is a great way to stock up your pantry for a year. As well as buying canned goods a few at a time or even a box at a time. This will slowly build up your stock until have stocked your pantry for a year.

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Prioritize what you eat and enjoy but make sure you add variety to it. Focus on shelf-stable items such as canned goods. or dried food that will last. When you are shopping for items you eat daily or weekly pick up 2 or 3 instead of just one, and then instead of using those when the first box is gone buy 2 or 3 more. This is a quick and easy way to begin stocking a pantry for a year. Another way is to but 5 canned goods every time you are at the store. You do not have to stock your pantry all at once, you can do it in managable steps so it’s not overwhelming.

Growing a garden, preserving what you harvest through freezing, canning, drying, and even freeze drying are all ways that you can also time honored ways to stock your pantry and wonderful skills to have. We use many of these methods to stock our own pantry.

Work through your pantry’s oldest stock first and replace it as you go to keep your pantry well stocked.