In addition to long storage foods, staple foods and bulk foods in my pantry, I made a list of some pantry items to make easy, quick meals that I could have on hand in my pantry at all times. I guess you could call this my ultra-convenience section of the pantry. These meals are ones that are so easy to make…the kids could make them if need be. It’s a good idea to have some easy pantry items on hand.
Here are some quick meals for the pantry (freezer) that I jotted down:
- Black bean burritos: freeze tortillas, freeze cheese, canned black beans
- Spaghetti: pasta noodles, Pasta Sauce
- Tuna Melts: canned tuna, frozen hamburger buns or bread, frozen cheese
- Chili: variety of canned beans, canned tomatoes, canned corn, frozen cheese
- Tomato soup / sandwiches: canned tomato juice, canned milk, parsley flakes, frozen bread for tuna melts or grilled cheese.
- Peanut butter / Almond butter and jelly sandwiches
- Soup additions: wide variety of veggies that can be added to a crock-pot of meat and broth for soup or chicken broth.
- Other conveniences like cereal, bagels, granola are great for busy Sunday mornings.
- Quiche: since we have a ton of eggs around, quiche is a favorite. I keep spinach around so I can make quiche quickly.
I made a quick meal list, calculated the ingredients for each meal and multiplied it how ever many times I wanted. I was thinking that I should come up with some system to restock my “convenience” pantry meals each month in a way that would net me some overage at each month to roll over for the next month. So I would never actually deplete the pantry at the end of the month requiring me to have to re-buy it all over again.
The problem with easy convenient meals on hand is that most families find that they eat through the easy meals and are left with staples they can’t figure out how to make anything out of.
This where a meal plan comes in handy. Also, if you have once a month cooking type freezer meals that helps with convenience. Meal plan from scratch meals that you make regularly so that you use your bulk, staple food stock.
Don’t eat your convenience food pantry up–that’s my motto!