staples of my plant based pantry

staples of my vegan pantry

as a vegan momma of (almost) two who loves to cook, keeping a well stocked plant based pantry is a must. there are just a few ingredients that i have to have on hand at all times! they make dinners easy to throw together and textures like 'creamy, cheesy and meaty' oh-so-possible.

>> not sure what we eat? check out the plant based recipes library and years of 'dinner ideas' posts that share what we eat each week. want to dive in a little deeper? you can read more about my vegan pregnancy, why becoming vegan is the best thing i ever did, how i make it easy, my tips for traveling vegan, and advice on grocery shopping.

my top 10 vegan pantry must haves:

raw cashews. raw cashews are a vegan's best friend. i use them to make everything creamy - from pasta sauce to soup! they have a very mild flavor (not very nutty at all), and are really easy to use.

>> to make cashew cream: soak the cashews overnight, then drain and rinse. add enough fresh water to just barely cover the nuts and blend in a food processor. now, let all the things be creamy!

nutritional yeast. we use this every day, and if you haven't yet, you must try it! nutritional yeast is packed with nutrition, particularly B-vitamins (like B12), folic acid, selenium, zinc, and protein. we primarily use it for it's rich flavor though, which can be described as cheesy, nutty and savory. we add it to grits, soups, sauces, gravies, and just about any other dish we want to amp of the flavor of!

chickpeas. chickpeas in particular are another 'bean' staple in our pantry. i make homemade hummus several times a week, and this is by far the most delicious (and affordable!) way to do it. my staple recipe is: 1 can chickpeas, 2 tbs tahini, 2 tbs olive oil, 1 tbs lemon juice, 2 garlic cloves and salt to taste. from there, you can start experimenting with fresh herbs, olives, sriracha and more!

coconut milk. another great way to make things creamy is by using coconut milk. i love to use them in both deserts and savory dishes like curries and soups. i have to admit, i indulge in the full fat variety for the ultimate creamy experience!

flax seeds. flax seeds are an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids, so we add them anywhere we can. but our favorite way to use them is as an egg replacer for cookies and baked goods (here's the recipe)!

plant based proteins: of course, we keep a stock of plant based proteins. we try to limit the amount of soy we eat, so we only stick to whole food soy sources like tempeh and tofu. we also love to occasional indulge in some specialty items like field roast apple sage sausage and no evil foods prepper seitan.

beans. beans are always on hand (both canned and dried) so i can add them to just about any dish we're making. they're a great way to add protein and one of bear's personal favorites! some of our favorites are adzuki beans, white canneli beans, garbanzo beans, black beans and kidney beans.

grains. we love to experiment with different grains. i use them for stir fries, sides and additions to meals like soup and burritos. our favorites are quinoa, kamut, pearled barley, amaranth and millet.

nuts. in addition to cashews, we sprinkle nuts on just about everything. i love to top our meals with pecan parmesan, taosted almonds and chopped walnuts.

almond milk. finally, almond milk is our go-to dairy free milk. it's delicious, nutritious and works well for both savory and sweet cooking.

what are are a few of your favorite plant based pantry staples?

  • Share this post

Enjoy reading?
sign up below to get regular updates

Leave a note

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

  • Hi Bonnie, I’m so inspired to try the vegan lifestyle! Quick question: Do you just buy the canned coconut milk? I would really like to try using more coconut milk, but not sure if canned is the way to go, or is their another option? Thanks for all your resources!

  • Great post! I am interested in following a vegan diet (for so many reasons) and I always love your posts on the topic. I wish I had a little more discipline though, because I seem to fall off of a plant based diet any time I get stressed out, which I’m sure only adds to my stress! You’re posts are always inspiring to me though! Thanks!

    • thanks camille! i know you can do it! instead of cheating when you’re stressed out, may try rewarding yourself with a delicious vegan treat, or visit to a vegan restaurant?

  • Your pantry looks amazing Bonnie! Ours features various nuts, seeds (including chia, sesame, sunflower, pumpkin), LSA, red split lentils for dahl, various beans and grains etc. We are no longer vegan but were for a while (when I was expected our 6th child).

  • Hi Bonnie!

    This is such a helpful and interesting post. Thank you! I’m a vegetarian, but not a very good one (I can’t cook!), who’s trying to give up dairy.

    Going to go read the posts you’ve linked to now. Do you have any book recommendations for a wannabe vegan who doesn’t even know the first thing about cooking? I’ve been trying to find a beginners book with really simple, staple recipes :)

    Thanks again! X

  • Thank you for this post. My 15 year old daughter wants to be a vegan and I am embarking on new territory. This is a great summary and starting place for us and it might be a life changer for our family. Of course the pantry is very inspirational too, what a beautiful presentation. Does it always look like that??? Where do you shop for your staples?

    • hey jennifer! i was a little older when i told my parents, but i know how hard change can be for family! have you seen forks over knives? might be a good family watch! :)

      i do try to keep this particular pantry organized, but i also keep canned goods and other items in another (closed-door) pantry. :) we shop at our local health food store and the farmers market, and also subscribe to our local CSA farm!

  • Hey Bonnie,
    This is very inspirational!! I became vegan 3 1/2 years ago after reading your blog and doing lots of research too! Since then I have had a vegan wedding, (mostly vegan) pregnancy, and now breastfeeding my son! If I stay on top of cooking and eating at home, my husband and I feel so healthy. We live on a farm and have started to eat eggs from our chickens, but I still find myself baking with vegan alternatives because I am so used to it! lol Would love if you would continue to post more recipes!! I LOVE cooking, but postpartum has left me hungry and uninspired!

    Thanks! Katelyn

    • thanks katelyn! i will definitely try to post more recipes! i send one out each month to the roost tribe, and often times don’t get around to doing any more (i need to, though!). xo