So it’s been a long day at work and as soon as you walk in the door you’ve got the dog jumping on you, the kids are running to you, and maybe a significant other is waiting on you to get home to make all the decisions. Don’t you just dread the feeling you get when you have minutes to spare before dinner and before you can even take off your coat the entire house is asking, “What’s for dinner?” It’s helpful to have some staples on-hand that will enable you to put together a healthy meal quickly.
What you should have in the pantry:
· A variety of pastas: linguine, penne, rotini, wide noodles, or spaghetti
· Rice: white or brown
· Canned tomatoes: whole, crushed, diced are excellent for homemade sauces!
· Beans: kidney, black, and pinto
· Bag of potatoes: Make fried chips to mashed potatoes!
· Olive oils, vinegars: apple cider, balsamic, red wine
· Brown sugar: actually useful in many things
· Corn meal
· Beef stock
· Chicken stock
· Lemon juice
· Soy sauce
· Hot sauce: be bold! Get Siracha!
To spice things up you should have:
· Black pepper
· Cayenne pepper
· Adobo by Goya (Spanish all-purpose seasoning)
· Sazon by Goya (Spanish all-purpose seasoning)
· Mojo by Goya (Spanish all-purpose marinade and great for meats and seafood)
Keepin it fresh Refrigerator or Freezer items:
· Meat: Lean chicken breast, ground beef or turkey
· Seafood: Salmon, tilapia, and shrimp (Try the individually packaged bags. These are just as fresh as getting them from the seafood counter and it makes it easy to cook what you need)
· Fresh vegetables: Bagged salad greens, bagged chopped vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower), baby carrots, celery sticks, snap peas, tomatoes and mini tomatoes, green pepper, onion
· Condiments: Salsa, salad dressing, low-fat or non-fat mayonnaise, mustard, ketchup, barbecue sauce, teriyaki sauce or other stir-fry sauce
The Bottom Line
Now you know what the heck to shop for; the key things to have on deck in your kitchen. With these items, you can throw together a miracle meal that your family is much more likely to enjoy than eating out. And coming soon we’ll talk about some recipes using these staples so you can feed the dog, kids, and your boo and still have time to catch up on your social networks, catch your favorite show, all with the perfect glass of wine before you call it a night. (We’ll be getting creative, the possibilities are endless.