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Nutrition

Your Comprehensive Pantry Guide to going Plant-Based

So, you want to start eating a WFPB diet, but every single recipe that you pull up, you don’t have any of the ingredients for it. I’ve heard all of the funny questions: What’s ‘nutritional yeast’ and why is it in my pasta sauce? Why do I need so many gosh dang beans? Where do I buy turmeric?
A lot of times, this can be a weakness of success for people who want to attempt a Plant-Based diet. It can be overwhelming, looking for recipes that are ‘easy’ but not having any of the ingredients that you need for them. A friend had me create this for them because they wanted to go plant-based, so I basically sifted through my most used recipes and the things that occurred the most and created the list below. My biggest tip would be to buy in bulk – these things really don’t go bad, and buying bulk is cheap and sustainable. In Cambridge, there is a store called “Cambridge Naturals”, and they allow me to bring my own bulk containers in and fill them up – eliminating all packaging. I usually try and use all of my bulk items up by getting creative before I go back to the store. I really only go to the store to buy the produce I need to fill in the rest of the recipes – and this also keeps my weekly grocery trips super cheap. I hardly ever have to venture to the aisles and can stay on the outer edge!

My favorite part about stocking a pantry in the springtime – is that CSA & fresh vegetable garden season is coming super fast! Once my pantry is stocked with the list below, I don’t need to go to the grocery store…EVER. I just get a CSA box from a local farm, go to farmers markets, or grow my own! It’s awesome and super affordable – so, if you can find a local farm near you or an awesome farmers market and stock your pantry you will save so much money AND store trips!

As a bonus, I have included two of my favorite go to pantry meals: Grapefruit Tahini Salad and Rice and Beans on my blog. The Salad is using most pantry ingredients with a few produce items – and the Rice and Beans can be made with items almost entirely sourced from pantry and freezer items. Both are totally customizable to everyones flavor profile and extremely inexpensive.

SPICES & SEASONINGS

  • Cumin
  • Chili Powder
  • Black Pepper
  • Cinnamon
  • Dried Basil
  • Dried Rosemary
  • Dried Thyme (or fresh! But it goes bad)
  • Dried Oregano
  • Dried Parsley
  • Curry Powder
  • Red Pepper Flakes
  • Turmeric
  • Nutritional Yeast

NUTS & SEEDS – go for raw or unsalted or both! You can always roast yourself – and use them in recipes.

  • Chia Seeds
  • Flax Seeds
  • Hemp Seeds
  • Raw Cashews (Unsalted)
  • Raw Peanuts (Unsalted)
  • Walnuts
  • Hazelnuts
  • Almonds
  • Pecans
  • Sesame Seeds
  • Pumpkin Seeds (Unsalted)
  • Sunflower Seeds (Unsalted)

SAUCES/DRESSINGS

  • Plain Balsamic Vinegar
  • Plain white wine Vinegar
  • Rice Vinegar
  • Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Siracha
  • Sesame Oil
  • Braggs Coconut Aminos
  • Low Sodium Soy Sauce or Low Sodium Tamari
  • Dijon Mustard
  • Asian Chilli Garlic Sauce
  • Maple Syrup
  • Coconut Sugar
  • Tahini
  • Minced ginger

GRAINS/BEANS/LEGUMES

  • Dried or Canned Beans of Any sort: Black Beans, pinto beans, butter beans, lima beans, kidney beans, other beans.
  • Garbanzo Beans Dried or Canned (same thing as ChickPeas)
  • Rice of any kind – Black rice, white rice, brown rice, red rice, wild rice
  • Other grains like quinoa, farro, barley, buckwheat, couscous, rye etc.
  • Lentils of choice – I like Red and Green
  • Breakfast Grains: Rolled Oats, Steel Cut Oats
  • Flours
  • Pastas – I’m pretty basic when it comes to pastas, but love edamame pastas and lentil pastas. I get a lot of asian pastas because It is my fave cuisine to make.

FROZEN ITEMS (for emergencies and smoothie bowls!)

  • Frozen Veggies (Spinach, Broccoli, Brussels, Cauliflower Rice)
  • Frozen Fruits (Mixed Berries, Mango, Pineapple…etc.)
  • Frozen Legumes (Shelled Edamame, Peas, Corn)

OTHER THINGS YOU WILL USE A-LOT

  • Lots of Low Sodium Vegetable Broth
  • Tomato paste
  • Unsweetened Plant-Based Milk of some sort (I like to keep a few in my pantry in case I run out – or you can make your own with nuts and seeds to save money and packaging).
  • Cans of diced and crushed tomatoes – no salt added