How many of these have you got lying about in your cupboard? You should always aim to have a good stock of the following for those times when you’re out of food or needing to whip up a quick meal.
We’d consider these the essentials but of course, there are so many more that might come in handy so let us know what you can’t live without!
1. Tinned Tomatoes
Tomatoes are the base of so many dishes. Chilli con carne, soup, spaghetti pomodoro, bolognese… Having plenty in stock is a sure fire way of being able to create a healthy, hearty meal at the click of your fingers.
2. Canned Tuna
Tuna or other tinned fish can be a total saviour when you want to add some protein to a meal. Most fish, meat and cheese doesn’t keep that long and needs to be refrigerated, so tuna can get you out of a pickle any time.
3. Coconut Milk
This forms a base to many asian meals. Curries, tropical drinks, stews and hotpots can all be lifted with some coconut milk. It can be an expensive ingredient so if you buy in bulk and store it at home, you can save the pennies in the long run.
4. A Few Varieties of Beans
Cannellini, borlotti, butter and kidney beans are all super useful to keep on the shelf. Add them to slow cooks, salads or your lunchbox to get some added nutrients and fill yourself up.
5. Tomato Ketchup
What would we do without the red sauce? Everyone needs to have some of this lying around. And mayonnaise, salad cream and brown sauce if they take your fancy too.
Got people coming round? With a sneaky can of chickpeas you can whip up some Hummus in approximately 15 minutes. Like beans, they’re an insanely useful thing to have around because they’re so versatile.
7. Preserves & Honey
A quick piece of toast? A dollop in a bowl of yogurt? Honey, jams and marmalades are wicked for breakfast or for satisfying a sweet tooth craving.
8. Pickled & Jarred Veg
Gherkins, olives, peppers galore. There are loads of jarred vegetables you can purchase at a supermarket. Choose your favourites and keep some in stock.
9. Tinned Fruit
Same as above- but for fruit! Tinned peaches, pineapple rings and pear are a delicious quick dessert with a dollop of cream. They can also be used in crumbles, cobblers and cake. Spontaneous baking spree anyone?
Lack of fresh veg is often a problem when you’re cooking from your store cupboard. If you have sweetcorn in the freezer, or in a tin, you’ll always have one of your 5 a day to hand.
If you couple this list with some of our others on spices, herbs and cupboard ingredients, you should honestly be able to create a dinner without heading to the shops! Get stocking. Get winning.