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7 Essential Food Items and Ingredients to Keep in Your Vegan Pantry

Keeping your kitchen pantry stocked with essential vegan food items means you’ll never run short of ingredients or goodies for your whole food, plant-based diet! Having basic vegan ingredients allows you to prepare and enjoy delicious meals whenever you want to. Additional food items could include specially prepared vegan snacks, gluten-free dips and frozen berries. But keep reading to find out what essential food items and ingredients you should always keep in your vegan pantry, so you can get creative with this meal plan now and then.

7 Essential Food Items and Ingredients to Keep in Your Vegan Pantry

1. Dried Fruit

Dried fruits can be added to homemade muesli or used to sweeten up your morning oats. They’re perfect for adding to your lunch box or for satisfying a sweet tooth in the late afternoon when the cravings creep in!

Dried fruit is nutritious and rich in fibre and antioxidants. They’re loaded with minerals and vitamins and are a healthy snack alternative for a plant-based diet.

The following dried fruits will keep very long in your vegan pantry:

  • Mango slices
  • Coconut flakes
  • Currants
  • Cranberries
  • Goji berries
  • Raisins
  • Prunes

What to pick? Adding dates to smoothies gives a dash of exotic sweetness while dried apricots are delicious for a tangy taste. Buy according to your taste preferences.

2. Flours

Keeping a packet of flour in your pantry is essential if you enjoy baking. Whipping up vegan pancakes for breakfast or baking your own loaf of bread is simple when you have almond or buckwheat flour always on hand.

Other flours to keep in your kitchen pantry include:

  • Chickpea flour
  • Cornmeal
  • Polenta
  • Wholewheat pastry flour
  • Spelt flour

Gluten-free brands are freely available these days and worth the cost. Picking organic flours is better for a healthier lifestyle.

3. Grains

Grains are excellent fillers that can be added to any meal. Gluten-free grains are excellent for vegans who battle coeliac disease. They’re a great source of fibre too and essential for a healthy gut.

Having ingredients such as oatmeal and rolled oats lets you whip up a hearty breakfast while wild rice or millet is a tasty addition to your lunch or dinner. Gluten-free basmati or jasmine rice turns a vegetarian curry into a delectable and satisfying dish.

Other useful and healthy grains to try include:

  • Amaranth
  • Barley
  • Black rice
  • Brown rice
  • Bulgar wheat
  • Quinoa

4. Legumes

Legumes are an ideal source of proteins for vegans and keeping them in your pantry means you’ll never run short of an essential ingredient for many plant-based recipes.

This versatile ingredient is inexpensive and can be used to make a tasty hummus, vegan burgers and lentil wraps. They can be added to pasta dishes, soups and curries.

The list of legumes is long and you can try all or any of the following in your pantry:

  • Lentils
  • Split and whole peas
  • Black beans
  • Kidney beans
  • Tempeh
  • Chickpeas
  • White beans
  • Pinto beans

Legumes are easy to find in most local supermarkets and specialised vegan stores.

5. Nuts and Seeds

What would a vegan pantry be without nuts and seeds? Excellent as toppers and snacks as well as for baking, nuts and seeds are a must-have in every vegan’s kitchen cupboard.

Tip: storing them in sealed glass containers in the refrigerator keeps them fresher for longer.

Make sure you keep a stock of the following in your kitchen:

  • Cashew nuts
  • Almonds
  • Walnuts
  • Pecans
  • Pistachios
  • Macadamia nuts
  • Chia seeds
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Flaxseeds

This list isn’t conclusive and if you can’t find a wide variety of nuts and seeds in your local supermarket, head on over to a health store.

6. Spices, Oils and Vinegars

Keeping a selection of spices, oils and vinegars in your kitchen pantry makes it easier to whip up a sauce, tasty meal or salad dressing—no need to leave home to shop for one. Spices instantly uplift any vegetarian dish and so do fresh herbs. Growing them on a sunny windowsill or in your garden will give you instant access to an essential vegan ingredient!

Furthermore, keeping a bottle or two of extra virgin olive oil, avocado oil or coconut oil won’t go to waste. Different kinds of vinegar such as apple cider or balsamic add a tangy zest to recipes that call for this ingredient.

7. Vegan Snacks and Slices

Keeping healthy plant-based treats made by vegan specialty stores in your pantry ensures you always have a go-to when you have little time but need something delicious to nibble on. Adding vegan slices to your lunch box, picnic or as a dessert after a meal is a wonderful way to treat yourself.

Having a stock of vegan treats in your pantry is also a great lifesaver for those days when you have surprise visitors!

Final Thoughts

Stocking vegan pantries with pasta, canned goods and condiments plus keeping frozen fruit and vegetables in your refrigerator is essential too. Use our list of ingredients and food items to compile your next shopping list and rest assured your vegan pantry is well-stocked for any occasion!

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