Community Healthcare Network

Wellness / Nutrition

Stocking A Smart Pantry

Having a well-stocked pantry can give you a sense of calm and control when the world around you feels uncertain. It will also help you create tasty comforting meals for you and your loved ones during your extended time at home.

When preparing your pantry for social distancing, buy items you eat regularly. Keep these tips in mind and remember, try not to panic buy.

  • Grains and pastas: brown rice, quinoa, barley, dry pasta (long like spaghetti and short like penne), bread crumbs, crackers, hot cereal
  • Condiments and Sauces: vinegars (balsamic, white, red), mustard (yellow or Dijon), mayonnaise, ketchup, hot sauce, salsa, soy sauce, broths for soup, extra-virgin olive oil, neutral cooking oil (such as canola or grapeseed), tomato sauce, tomato paste
  • Cans and jars: beans (white, black, chickpeas), dry lentils, polenta beanscanned fish like tuna, sardines and salmon, jams, olives, pickles
  • Spices and dried herbs: Kosher salt, black pepper, red-pepper flakes, ground cayenne, curry powder, bay leaves, sweet paprika, ground cinnamon, ground cumin, garlic powder, onion powder, thyme, basil, oregano
  • Nuts, Nut butters and dried fruits: walnuts, almonds, peanuts, peanut butter
  • Sweeteners: Honey, maple syrup, granulated sugar
  • Dairy:  milk and hard cheeses like parmesan. Eggs last long in the fridge and butter can be stored in the freezer.
  • Freezer: chicken, red meats, fish, shrimp, sliced bread (for toast), fruits and veggies. You can use fruit in smoothies and veggies in soups, stir-fries and stews.
  • Root Veggies: garlic, onionspotatoes, sweet potatoes, beets, carrots, parsnips, turnips, radishes which all last long in the fridge.
  • Other needed items: coffee, tea, pet food, toilet paper, personal grooming like shampoo, and cleaning supplies.


It is nice to have a couple of treats in your pantry as well! Think about keeping some microwaveable popcorn on hand or cookie dough in the freezer for when you’re craving something sweet.

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