18 easy meals you can make with pantry staples
by Gael Myers, Accredited Practising Dietitian
- March 27, 2020
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- Healthy eating
- Fruit and Vegetables
- Budget Friendly
- Main Meal
- Recipe Ideas
We’ve pulled together our best and most versatile recipes made from (mostly) pantry and freezer staples to keep your tummy filled and your body healthy. We’ve also got ideas for simple swaps to help you use the food you have on hand and avoid an extra trip to the shops.
Frozen fruit makes the perfect base for a tasty breakfast smoothie.
Savvy swaps: Use long-life milk, swap fresh passionfruit for tinned and use whatever frozen fruit you have available.
Regular ol’ tinned baked beans can be high in salt, so we love this easy homemade version.
Savvy swaps: Swap fresh parsley for dried herbs. If you’re out of tinned beans reach for a cup of dried beans that have been soaked and cooked instead.
A warm bowl of porridge is the ultimate in comfort food.
Savvy swaps: Leave out the orange rind, use long-life milk and replace apple with a tinned fruit of your choice.
This versatile chia pudding looks good and tastes even better.
Savvy swaps: Use your favourite long-life milk and frozen berries in place of fresh.
Out of bread? No worries!
Savvy swaps: Make a batch of this super easy damper in the morning and enjoy the smell of freshly baked bread floating through the house all day.
Creamy and sweet, this pudding is a real breakfast treat!
Savvy swaps: Top with tinned peaches in place of grated apple and replace fresh milk with long-life.
With a prep time of only 5 minutes, you’ll be kicking yourself that you didn’t discover this wholesome family dinner sooner.
Savvy swaps: Tinned peas can be used instead of frozen, and add a sprinkle of cheese or sweet chilli sauce to switch up the flavour.
Spice it up with dried chilli or keep it mild for the kids – whatever your spice level this dish will be a hit.
Savvy swaps: This recipe is the perfect base dish to throw in whatever fresh, canned or frozen vegies you have available.
A fresh twist on the classic stuffed spud.
Savvy swaps: Try with couscous or rice if quinoa isn’t your thing. If you don’t have feta available, try sundried tomatoes for a pop of flavour.
This fast vegie spaghetti is on high rotation at our house! The sauce is also great on toast or baked potatoes.
Savvy swaps: If your stocks of fresh vegies are running
Throw the ingredients together in 5 minutes and let the simmer do the rest of the work.
Savvy swaps: Throw in some barley, couscous or pasta to make this soup even heartier.
This creamy pasta uses a great trick to make the sauce in the same pot as the pasta. Win!
Savvy swaps: Use long life milk and dried herbs and try with canned salmon or even cooked chicken.
A colourful curry with a creamy tomato and coconut sauce.
Savvy swaps: Tinned (or dried and cooked) chickpeas can be used instead of potatoes or cauliflower.
This salad is super convenient and super tasty. Take the basic principles (couscous + canned fish + vegies) and make it work for you!
Savvy swaps: Try lemon or sweet chilli flavoured tuna instead of fresh lemon, or go for long-life lemon juice.
A delicious Creole seafood and rice dish that tastes fancier than it is.
Savvy swaps: Swap celery and capsicum with frozen peas and corn. Frozen prawns, mussels, squid or fish all work a treat.
These yummy falafel-inspired patties are great as a snack, in a wrap or as a vegie burger.
Savvy swaps: Extra peas and corn or other tinned or frozen vegetable can be used in place of grated vegies.
This simple scone dough is fun to make and you can get creative with your toppings.
Savvy swaps: Use long-life milk and cheese from the freezer. Salsa, pizza sauce, tinned mushrooms, tinned pineapple and olives are some of our favourite toppings.
An easy apple-filled pudding with a fruity crust and spiced cinnamon custard.
Savvy swaps: Use long-life milk (or UHT custard). Hot cross buns would also be a good swap for fruit bread. Both keep well in the freezer!