IMG 7462 300x300 - My Must-Have Kitchen Staples

A peek in my fridge

Hey guys, hope you liked yesterday’s recipe post. You still have a few days to enter the Redpack giveaway!

The other night as I was going down the list of potential dinner options based on the ingredients I had on hand, it really showed me a lot about my style of cooking. When it comes to food, for a lot of us, there are the things we like and the things that we would feel seriously disoriented without. I love how individual it is, too—it’s like the culinary version of a desert island playlist.

When I was first learning to cook for myself as an undergrad, I had very few basics in my kitchen, relying heavily on instant oatmeal, canned soup, and popcorn. A real turning point for me, though, came in grad school, when I first read Mark Bittman’s Food Matters.

I had always suspected that healthy food could be tasty and uncomplicated, and here was a guy with the experience and vocabulary to prove it. I especially loved the chapter on how to build a well-stocked pantry to make everyday meal prep easy. Most of it even fit into my student budget. It was the beginning of a beautiful habit.

Though I go through phases, here are the five basics I always seem to rely on:

  • Olive Oil
  • Lemons
  • Oats
  • Red Lentils
  • Cinnamon

Honorable Mentions:

  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Cocoa powder
  • Shallots
  • Garlic
  • Peanut butter

If perishables were included in the lineup, I’d add Greek yogurt, eggs, ground flax, and kale. Oh, and white miso. And tahini. And Grade B maple syrup. And…

What are your kitchen staples? 

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