Simple Ways to Keep a Well-Stocked Kitchen

mommeal time

As you probably already know, one of the greatest money savers is cooking at home. Although, sometimes this might be hard for you to believe, especially when you open up your cookbooks and see recipes that require well over 20 ingredients. But, did you know that you can prepare tasty, simple foods at home easily and quickly and with minimal cost involved?

Oftentimes, people do not keep a well-stocked kitchen so they tend to buy a lot of ingredients all at once. When this happens, the idea of cooking at home comes off as being incredibly expensive. As long as you keep a well-stocked kitchen full of main cooking essentials, your meals will be easier to cook and also less expensive over time.

Below you will find a shopping list for the bare-bone kitchen essentials. Basically, if you have these in your kitchen, you should be well-prepared to produce many dishes. By having these on-hand, your shopping will be reduced to buying perishables, including meats, cheeses and fruits.


  • All-purpose flour
  • Baking powder
  • Baking soda
  • Brown sugar
  • Cornmeal
  • Cornstarch
  • Vanilla
  • White sugar
  • Yeast

Herbs and Spices

  • Basil
  • Black pepper
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Cinnamon
  • Garlic
  • Nutmeg
  • Oregano
  • Rosemary
  • Sage
  • Salt
  • Tarragon
  • Thyme

Oils, Stocks, Condiments

  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Beef stock
  • Chicken stock
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Mustard (Dijon preferably)
  • Olive oil
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Red wine
  • Red wine vinegar
  • Sherry
  • Soy sauce
  • Tomato paste
  • Vegetable oil
  • Vinegar
  • White wine

Additional Items

  • Butter
  • Canned beans
  • Frozen vegetables
  • Garlic
  • Lemons
  • Milk
  • Onions
  • Pasta
  • Rice

As long as you make sure to keep many or all of these items in your kitchen, this list will definitely help you create a variety of great dishes at home for a minimal cost. Many of the items listed above also last for a long time which means fewer trips to the store.

What do you usually keep in your cupboards, pantries and refrigerators that serve as essential cooking ingredients?

Jen Tilley has an insatiable appetite for all things related to baking and cooking. She is the author, photographer and recipe developer on How To: Simplify, a blog that shares tips, tricks and recipes to simplify life in the kitchen. She enjoys sharing recipes that require very few ingredients and only a small amount of prep and cook time, all of which make time spent in the kitchen simple and enjoyable. Find her online at How To: Simplify and @HowToSimplify.

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