Take advantage of staple ingredients in your pantry to make some of these delicious pantry recipes. See my tips for how to adapt them to make them work with what you have on hand.
Sometimes it's necessary to start cooking pantry recipes. Like when it's the week before pay day and you've run out of money or when you can't be bothered to go grocery shopping, or when there is a local or worldwide emergency and fresh food becomes hard to find or you can't get out to restock.
The fridge being bare is a scary concept, especially when you have a family to feed, so having some pantry recipes on hand that can be made with mostly shelf stable ingredients and longer lasting vegetables can really come in handy.
I always keep a well stocked pantry. I don't like grocery shopping so try to get away with going as infrequently as I can get away with. It's standing me in good stead now that the shop shelves are bare and line-ups are miles long.
Now in particular is a time to be creative with what you have available to you. It's a situation I didn't think I'd ever find myself in.
So to help you (and me) I've put together a collection of my existing recipes that are mostly made with shelf stable ingredients and longer lasting vegetables. I've also included some that aren't but that can be made that way with a few tweaks. I'll tell you exactly how when we get to them. I'll also let you know which recipes freeze well and make good leftovers.
To see the pantry recipes relevant to you, click the sections below to jump right there.
EASY WHOLEWHEAT BREAD
A basic loaf that is great for sandwiches and toasting. Made only with flour, yeast, salt, oil and water. Use all white flour instead of a combination of white and wholewheat, use any oil or vegan butter instead of olive oil (you can even omit the oil totally if you'll be eating the bread quickly and don't need it to stay nice and soft for a few days), and if you don't have instant/quick yeast use active yeast and deduct the amount of water you use to dissolve it in from the recipe. Freezes well for up to 3 months.
You can make 8 rolls instead of a loaf. They take 20 to 25 minutes to bake.
This recipe can also be used to make pizza or cinnamon rolls. Simply mix the dough, leave to double, then roll out the pizza dough, top and cook, or roll out for cinnamon rolls, fill and bake.
YEAST-FREE SPELT BREAD
A super easy, totally foolproof, quick yeast-free Spelt Bread that is ready from start to finish in a little over an hour. It’s rustic, full of nutty, hearty flavours and perfectly soft and fluffy inside! Freezes well for up to 3 months.
A super easy, soft, light and fluffy flatbread recipe that is really versatile and perfect for beginners to bread making. Reheat them in the oven on 350°F for about 4 minutes. They freeze well for up to 3 months and can be warmed straight from the freezer. Just put them straight on the oven shelf and cook on 350°F for about 7 minutes.
Use all purpose flour or bread flour or half all purpose and half whole wheat flour. If you are in the UK you need to use strong flour. Switch the coconut oil for the same amount of any other oil or vegan butter. The cornmeal is optional. Use any yeast. If you don't use quick/instant yeast and it needs activating first, use the water and sugar from the recipe and not extra. They freeze perfectly for up to 3 months. Defrost then warm in a hot oven or split them and toast.
SWEET POTATO BISCUITS
The only fresh items you need for these are sweet potatoes and vegan butter. If you don't have any butter left make a double batch of my vegan butter recipe. Be sure to do it the day before though so it has plenty of time to set up and get really cold. Can be frozen for up to 3 months either baked or unbaked. Reheat straight from the freezer or defrost first. Detailed instructions are given in the post.
NO KNEAD FOCACCIA BREAD
Super easy with basic ingredients. Freezes well if uncut.
NO KNEAD CINNAMON PULL APART BREAD
For those times when you need something sweet and decadent! This is so easy to make and all you need are store cupboard ingredients. If you don't have any vegan butter make my vegan butter recipe or take advantage of the oil-free alternative included which calls for aquafaba (liquid from canned chickpeas) instead. If you don't have maple syrup you can use ¼ cup of sugar and an extra ¼ of milk in the bread dough instead. And if you don't have milk, water will work in this recipe instead (in the bread dough and the glaze).
HOMEMADE PITA BREAD
These pitas use a mix of wholewheat and all purpose flour but all all purpose will work fine. Reheat them in the oven on 350°F for about 4 minutes. They freeze well for up to 3 months and can be reheated in the oven straight from frozen. Just place on the oven shelf and cook on 350° F for about 7 minutes.
VEGAN PUMPKIN BREAD
Made with canned pumpkin and other pantry ingredients. You can also use cooked sweet potato or butternut squash instead of the pumpkin. And if you don't have the dried fruit and seeds, leave them out. It works just as good without them. Change up the spices to work with what you've got. Just cinnamon is fine if you don't have the rest. Freezes well for up to 3 months.
HEALTHY OIL-FREE VEGAN BISCUITS
Super speedy & healthy Vegan Biscuits made with wholewheat flour, ground almonds & absolutely no oil. They can be baked up & ready in under 15 minutes! They freeze well for up to 3 months and can be reheated in the oven straight from the freezer, or defrosted first then warmed up.
All you need are oats and water and it's quick too!
A really quick and easy milk to make with no straining required!
VEGAN CREAM CHEESE
Easy to make in minutes in a food processor. The main ingredients are medium firm, firm or extra firm tofu and refined coconut oil plus some other store cupboard staples. Got those in your fridge and pantry and hopefully you'll be good to go!
VEGAN FETA CHEESE
The main ingredients are tofu, refined coconut oil and other pantry ingredients. Great for spreading and cubing and for melting into hot pasta for an easy dinner.
Made with store cupboard ingredients. If you don't have ground almonds you can blanch and grind whole almonds, or grind up some cashews instead. Freezes well for up to 3 months.
HEALTHY NO BAKE BARS
Made with canned chickpeas, oats, nuts or seeds and dates (the cheap kind from the baking aisle not Medjool dates), these no bake bars keep for ages in the fridge or freezer and are super healthy. The fudgy chocolate topping is lovely but can be easily omitted if you don't have any chocolate in the pantry.
HEALTHY CHOCOLATE SMOOTHIE
Got some bananas lurking in the freezer? If so, combine them with some leftover cooked sweet potato to make this great tasting smoothie. No sweet potato? Canned pumpkin or cooked butternut squash works too. If you don't have any plant-based milk, use a ¼ cup of oats/raw cashews and 1 cup of water instead. Just throw them in the blender with everything else.
SWEET POTATO SMOOTHIE
Another one for those of you with bananas in the freezer. Blend them with sweet potato, nut butter, milk and some spices. If you don't have all the spices just use the cinnamon. It's still good! And if you don't have sweet potato use canned pumpkin or cooked butternut squash instead. If you don't have any plant-based milk, use a ¼ cup of oats/raw cashews and 1 cup of water instead. Just throw them in the blender with everything else.
CHOCOLATE TAHINI PUMPKIN SMOOTHIE
A really simple smoothie made with canned pumpkin. Use cooked sweet potato or butternut squash instead and switch the tahini for any other nut or seed butter that you have. If you don't have any plant-based milk, use a ¼ cup of oats/raw cashews and 1 cup of water instead. Just throw them in the blender with everything else.
STRAWBERRY BAKED OATMEAL
Only without the strawberries! Unless you are lucky enough to have some that is. It's nice with no fruit at all, or you can add any berries you have (frozen or fresh), chopped apple, chopped pear or chocolate chips. Out of milk? Make my oat milk or cashew milk first. This keeps for up to 5 days in the fridge.
ALMOND HEMP GRANOLA
Great for breakfast or for snacking and extremely flexible. Switch the hemp seeds for sunflower or pumpkin seeds, the puffed rice for more oats, nuts or seeds, the cashew butter for any nut or seed butter, brown rice syrup for maple syrup or agave and the raisins for any other dried fruit or just leave them out. Keeps indefinitely in an airtight container.
GINGER CHOCOLATE OVERNIGHT OATS
As long as you keep the oat and milk ratio as it is, the rest of the ingredients are really flexible so just work with whatever you have. Include or omit the cocoa, chia seeds and ginger. Use a bit of sugar or agave syrup instead of maple syrup. Cinnamon instead of ginger. Add vanilla, use cold coffee in place of half of the milk, add mashed banana, nuts, seeds, frozen fruit/berries, chocolate chips, jam or nut/seed butter. Will keep for up to 5 days in the fridge.
Made with canned tomatoes, tofu and dried herbs and spices. The recipe calls for diced tomatoes but you can sub any kind. Crushed or passata are absolutely fine. Or if you have whole canned tomatoes just dice them up first. It's best with medium firm tofu but any firmness except silken tofu will work well too. Reheats perfectly and will keep for up to 4 days in the fridge.
VEGAN FRENCH TOAST
Got some stale bread that needs using up? Make Vegan French Toast. The only fresh ingredient you need is tofu. It's best with extra firm tofu but any other will do. If you're out of milk, make your own oat milk or cashew milk. Leftover batter will keep in the fridge for up to 3 days.
VEGAN ENGLISH PANCAKES
Simple to make with flour and just a few other basic ingredients. You need aquafaba from a can of chickpeas. Use the chickpeas to make something else, or put them in a freezer safe container and freeze for another time. They are fine when frozen as they are without liquid. Whilst traditionally these pancakes are served with fresh lemon and sugar, they are also great spread with jam or chocolate spread or with maple syrup. Leftover batter will keep in the fridge for up to 3 days. If it gets really thick add a few drops of milk and give it a quick whisk before using. Because they are so thin they are a bit difficult to freeze so I recommend cooking them fresh as needed.
Made with canned pumpkin or you can use cooked and pureed sweet potato or butternut squash. Got no milk? Make my oat milk or cashew milk. These pancakes freeze well and can be reheated in a microwave, skillet or toaster.
SPELT FLOUR PANCAKES
Simple pancakes made with spelt flour. If you don't have any ground flax use chia seeds instead or omit it and if you don't have fresh milk make some oat milk or cashew milk first. Pancakes freeze well and can be warmed up in a toaster, skillet or the microwave.
Soft, moist & fluffy Vegan Gingerbread Pancakes. Switch the spelt flour for all purpose, omit the molasses if you don't have any and make my oat milk or cashew milk if you don't have any milk. These pancakes freeze well and can be reheated in a microwave, skillet or toaster.
If you've got some silken tofu and firm, medium firm or extra firm tofu, you can have a crack at these scrambled eggs. If you don't have almond flour omit it, same with the kala namak and vegan butter.
DOUBLE CHOCOLATE PUMPKIN MUFFINS
Made with canned pumpkin, spelt flour, nut/seed butter and a few other pantry staples. Switch the spelt flour for all purpose or whole wheat, use whatever nut or seed butter you have and you can even use cooked and mashed butternut squash or sweet potato instead of the pumpkin. If you don't have pumpkin spice use a bit of cinnamon instead or omit it. They freeze well for up to 3 months.
CHERRY ALMOND GRANOLA BARS
Use any dried fruit or nuts you like and any nut or seed butter. If you don't have chia seeds use flax seeds (whole or ground) instead. They keep for weeks in the fridge and freeze well.
Ok, it might not look like it on first impressions but this soup is remarkably pantry friendly (minus the fresh toppings). Use chips instead of the crispy tortillas or skip them completely. It's still super yum without all the optional extras! Freezes well for up to 3 months.
The ultimate frugal soup recipe! Omit the celery and carrot if you don't have them. If you don't have milk make some of my cashew milk (do not use homemade oat milk). Top it with whatever you have or just eat it as it is.
Made with a bag of frozen peas and so delicious! Skip the mint unless you have some growing in the garden! Freezes well for up to 3 months.
INSTANT POT TOMATO SOUP
Designed for the Instant Pot but can also easily be made on the stove top. Made with canned tomatoes, spices and cashew nuts to make it creamy. Super simple and really delicious! Freezes well for up to 3 months.
INDIAN LENTIL SOUP
A tasty combination of yellow lentils and Indian spices. Omit the cilantro and kale if you don't have them. Freezes well for up to 3 months.
Super tasty Chili Soup that can be made quickly on the stove-top or more slowly in a slow cooker. Simple, comforting & delicious with only 8 ingredients (plus water & salt)! Omit the bell peppers and carrots if you don't have them. Freezes well for up to 3 months.
CAULIFLOWER HORSERADISH SOUP
Make it with frozen cauliflower if you don't have fresh and omit the horseradish sauce if you don't have any. just use a bit of extra seasoning or dried herbs instead. If you don't have any milk make a batch of my cashew milk.
CREAMY CARROT SOUP
Made with jut 4 ingredients plus some water. If you don't have any fresh ginger just omit it. Freezes well for up to 3 months.
CREAMY CURRY CHICKPEA SOUP
A really creamy, delicious, comforting soup with a potato and chickpea base. It's pretty flexible so if you don't have any of the veggies leave them out or sub something else or add more potatoes and chickpeas.
MUSHROOM FRIED RICE
Make fried rice with your leftover cooked and cooled rice. Any rice will work. And just about any veggie works well too. Even if all you have are some frozen peas. Some crumbled tofu added makes it a bit like egg-fried rice and adds extra protein. Leftovers reheat well in a sauté pan on the stovetop.
LENTIL SHEPHERD'S PIE
Turn some green or brown lentils and potatoes into a delicious and frugal meal. Omit the carrots if you don't have them. Maybe throw in some frozen peas or sweetcorn instead. If you don't have stock just use water and some extra seasoning, and for the mash omit the butter and milk if you don't have it. Beat the potatoes with an electric hand mixer to make them really fluffy instead. Reheats well and can be kept in the fridge for up to 5 days. Also freezes well either baked or unbaked.
RED LENTIL DAHL
A really simple recipe made with red lentils. Omit the fresh tomatoes if you don't have any and use curry powder or just garam masala if you don't have all the spices. No canned coconut milk? Make my homemade cashew milk and use that instead. Serve with naan, my flatbreads (the recipe is in the bread section), or over rice, quinoa or couscous. Keeps in the fridge for up to 5 days and can be frozen for up to 3 months.
This vital wheat gluten based vegan roast uses all pantry ingredients. If you don't have jarred artichokes use canned or just an extra cup of beans instead. Keeps for up to a week in the fridge and freezes well.
GREEN BEAN AND POTATO CURRY
Use frozen green beans instead of fresh (just add them straight from the freezer once it's almost ready and let them defrost in the sauce and heat through before serving), or use frozen peas instead. Keeps well in the fridge for 3 to 4 days and reheats well.
CURRIED CARROT FRITTERS
Made with carrots, chickpea flour and spices. Omit the fresh cilantro. They freeze well for up to 3 months and can be reheated from frozen on a baking tray in the oven.
FIVE SPICE TOFU WITH CHILI GINGER SAUCE
You need some firm or extra firm tofu but other than that it's made with mostly store cupboard stuff. If you don't have any Chinese five spice just omit it. It's still good without. No garlic? Use a bit of garlic powder instead.
ENCHILADA LENTIL TACOS
No tacos? Serve the lentil mixture in burritos or over rice. Omit the slaw if you don't have access to the ingredients.
Made with kidney beans, brown rice, canned adobo chilis and spices. Great for those who like a bit of heat!
EASY BUTTERNUT SQUASH CURRY
Squash lasts for months so they are a good veggie to stock up on. If you happen to have any kind (except spaghetti squash) you can make this store cupboard curry. Or use sweet potato instead of the squash. Use frozen spinach or just omit it and add some frozen peas instead.
These spicy & flavorful Indian style Keema Lentils are ridiculously easy to make. Cook in a pan for a speedy dinner or use a slow cooker. If you don't have the spices just the garam masala will do, or use some curry powder instead. Keeps for up to 5 days in the fridge and freezes well for up to 3 months.
BLACK BEANS AND RICE
Skip the green sauce part and the tomatoes and this recipe is a store cupboard gem using canned black beans. Keep well in the fridge for a few days and freezes well.
INSTANT POT BLACK BEANS
Cook tasty black beans in your Instant Pot in under 30 minutes with no soaking first. Can be kept in the fridge for up to 5 days and will freeze well for up to 3 months.
SLOW COOKER BLACK BEANS
Make tasty black beans from dried in your slow cooker. No soaking required. Can be kept in the fridge for up to 5 days and will freeze well for up to 3 months.
TOMATO PASTA BAKE
Made with any canned tomatoes or passata. Use panko crumbs instead of bread crumbs. If you don't have either of those to top it with, just make the sauce and serve it stirred through the cooked pasta without baking it. Can be kept in the fridge for 3 to 4 days and reheats well.
CURRIED CHICKPEA BURGERS
Everyone loves a good veggie burger! These are made using canned chickpeas, curry powder, peanut butter, chopped cashews, raisins, plus some store cupboard ingredients. Use any nut or seed butter, switch the cashews for any nut or seed, switch the raisins for golden raisins or sultanas or chopped dried apricots. Can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge and reheated in the oven. They also freeze well.
Omit the carrot rasher topping if you have no carrots. The sauce is made with raw cashews and other pantry ingredients. If you don't have any milk, just use water.
VEGAN BAKED BEANS
Made with dried beans and other pantry ingredients. If you don't have all the spices just work with what you've got. Serve over baked potatoes or toast or as a side. Beans will keep in the fridge for up to 5 days and reheat well. They freeze well for up to 3 months too.
EASY VEGAN CHEESE SAUCE
Made with silken or soft tofu. Blend it up and you're done. Serve over pasta for a really quick, cheap meal. Leftovers keep well in the fridge for a few days.
BLACK BEAN BURGERS
Really easy to make with canned black beans. If you don't have lime or cilantro just omit them. Leftovers keep in the fridge for a few days and can be reheated in the oven. They also freeze well cooked or uncooked.
MAC AND CHEESE BITES
Really simple to make and no cheese required! They keep in the fridge for up to 5 days.
WHITE BEAN ARTICHOKE BURGERS
Easy to make and they grill so you can get outside and cook your dinner if you want to! Can be kept in the fridge for up to 5 days and reheated in the oven. They also freeze well for up to 3 months.
CHEESECAKE TOPPED VEGAN BROWNIES
The gooiest brownies! The cheesecake topping can be omitted if you don't have the ingredients.
No fresh raspberries required! These are made with frozen raspberries. They freeze really well prior to being glazed.
OATMEAL CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE BARS
Main ingredients are oats and cashew butter. Switch the cashew butter for any other nut or seed butter.
Made with just 4 ingredients. Shredded coconut, sugar, canned coconut milk and cornstarch. The chocolate is optional.
CINNAMON ROLL IN A MUG
A really quick and easy individual cinnamon roll. Great for kids to make with some help. Must be eaten immediately.
VEGAN POPCORN WITH CARAMEL & CHOCOLATE
Super delicious popcorn made with pantry ingredient. Switch the tahini for any other nut butter and skip the chocolate if you don't have any. Store in an airtight container for a couple of weeks.
RAPBERRY WALNUT SQUARES
Made with raspberry jam but any flavor of jam will be good.
SALTED MAPLE PECAN FUDGE
Got a bag of coconut flour you haven't known what to do with? Now is it's time! Combine it with nut or seed butter and maple syrup to make this super easy fudge. The pecans can be replace with any other nut or dried fruit or chocolate chips. Freezes perfectly and lasts for ages in the fridge.
PINEAPPLE UPSIDE DOWN CUPCAKES
Made with oats, canned pineapple and shredded coconut plus a few other staple ingredients. Switch the coconut sugar for any brown sugar. They freeze really well and can be reheated in the oven.
CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE IN A MUG
For when you need a chocolate chip cookie fast! Needs to be eaten immediately.
SNICKERDOODLE MUG CAKE
Have dessert ready in minutes with my super quick & easy Snickerdoodle Mug Cake. It’s soft, fluffy & cinnamon-y & perfect for when you want something sweet fast! Needs to be eaten immediately.
FUDGY DOUBLE CHOCOLATE CHICKPEA COOKIES
The canned chickpeas make these rich, chocolatey cookies extra fudgy!
This simple but insanely delicious Snickerdoodle Hummus is full of all the cinnamon & cookie dough flavour of Snickerdoodles. Serve with whatever fruit you have for dipping or use pretzels or crackers. Keeps for up to 5 days in the fridge. Also freezes well.
Made with dates, nut butter, coconut milk, salt and vanilla. It's so simple. It's great served as a dip with apple slices! Keeps in the fridge for about 2 weeks.
CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES WITH CRANBERRIES AND ROSEMARY
If you don't have dried cranberries and rosemary just skip them and have regular choc chip cookies instead!
Made with spelt flour and other pantry staples. With their distinctive crunchy, crumbly texture & not too sweet almost nutty flavour, they make the perfect accompaniment to a cup of tea.
CHOCOLATE TAHINI CRUNCH BARS
A delicious mix of chocolate, tahini, oats and various mix-ins. Use any nut or seed butter you have in place of the tahini and any mix-ins you like. Just keep the quantities roughly the same. Store in the fridge. They keep well for weeks.
Don't forget your dogs. They need some treats too!
SWEET POTATO DOG TREATS
Made with just 3 ingredients. If you don't have sweet potatoes canned pumpkin makes a great sub. It's a little wetter though so you might need to throw in an extra handful of oats to make the dough roll-out-able! They keep for weeks in an airtight container.
PEANUT BUTTER BANANA DOG TREATS
Get some tails wagging with these healthy 3 ingredient Banana Peanut Butter Dog Treats. Full of peanut buttery goodness and officially taste tested & approved by Chester! If you don't have fresh banana a defrosted frozen one works, or cooked and pureed sweet potato or canned pumpkin. They keep for weeks in an airtight container.
I hope this post full of pantry meals helps you to put a comforting, filling and super delicious dinner that you actually really love on the table for your family with as little stress as possible.
Remember, you got this!
If you have found this recipe collection useful then you might also enjoy another recent one which focuses on Cheap Vegan Meals.
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