11 Foods You Should Always Keep in Your Kitchen

October 27, 2023


Milk is a kitchen staple that deserves a permanent place in your fridge. Its versatility is unmatched. It’s often the key ingredient in baked goods like cakes and muffins, and the base for comforting hot cocoa. Milk is a must-have for both nutrients and flavor in your kitchen. Milk is an excellent source of calcium, which is essential for maintaining strong and healthy bones. Adequate calcium intake can help prevent osteoporosis and fractures.


Eggs are the G.O.A.T of kitchen foods. Omelets, scrambled eggs, and egg cups are just the beginning. In baking, eggs serve as binders, helping to create structure and texture in cakes, cookies, and more. They can also be transformed into satisfying dinner dishes, such as stir-fries and frittatas. Eggs are packed with essential nutrients, including vitamin B12, vitamin B6, choline, and selenium. They contribute to overall health and well-being.


Bread is a staple. It’s versatile and satisfying. From classic PB&Js to grilled cheese sandwiches, bread is a reliable for as a quick and satisfying source of carbs, it’s a go-to option for making simple meals feel substantial. Some breads, particularly those made from enriched flours, are a source of folate. Folate is crucial for cell division and is particularly important for pregnant individuals.


From its starring role in mac ‘n’ cheese to its supporting part in sandwiches and salads, cheese adds a creamy and salty dimension to countless dishes. It’s the “not so” secret ingredient that can elevate even the simplest recipes. Cheese offers a variety of flavors and textures to explore, making it a must-have for any kitchen. Like milk, cheese is rich in calcium, which supports bone health and can help reduce the risk of osteoporosis.


Potatoes are the overlooked hero of vegetables. They’re a reliable source of carbohydrates and can be prepared in numerous ways. Whether you’re mashing them into creamy goodness, air-frying them to crispy perfection, or simply tossing them in the microwave, potatoes are a fundamental and adaptable. When consumed with the skin, potatoes provide dietary fiber and vitamin C, which supports digestive health and the immune system.


The ultimate comfort food. Its quick cooking time and ability to soak up a range of sauces make it a go-to for busy weeknights. Whether you prefer classic spaghetti with marinara or more adventurous dishes like carbonara, pasta offers endless possibilities. With its shelf-stable nature, it’s a handy pantry item for whipping up satisfying meals when you’re short on time. Pasta is naturally low in sodium and cholesterol, making it a heart-healthy choice when paired with low-sodium sauces and ingredients.

Frozen Fruit

Frozen fruit is a lifesaver for any time of the year. Whether you’re blending up a smoothie or making a fruit compote for desserts, frozen fruit brings the flavors of summer to your kitchen year-round. The added benefit is that it minimizes food waste, as you can keep it on hand and use it as needed. Frozen fruits are often picked and frozen at their peak ripeness. They are a great source of essential vitamins and antioxidants.

Salad Kit

Salad kits are the ultimate convenience food. They come pre-packaged with fresh, pre-washed greens and often include extras like salad dressings, croutons, and cheese. These kits are a time-saver, making it easy to whip up a flavorful salad without the hassle of washing, chopping, and assembling all the ingredients. They’re perfect for busy days when you want a salad without the fuss. Salad kits typically include a variety of fresh vegetables that are high in essential vitamins, minerals, and fiber.

Canned Beans

Canned beans are a kitchen staple that can transform simple recipes into hearty, protein-packed meals. Whether you’re making a chili, a quick bean salad, or adding them to soups, canned beans offer convenience without sacrificing nutrition. They’re a versatile source of plant-based protein and fiber that can be stored in your pantry for months, ready to lend their delicious creaminess and texture to your meals. Canned beans, such as black beans, kidney beans, and chickpeas, are rich in both protein and fiber. They support digestion and managing blood sugar levels.

Peanut Butter

Peanut butter. Need I say more? Beyond the classic PB&J, peanut butter can be used in both sweet and savory dishes. It’s a protein-rich addition to smoothies, a key ingredient in energy bites, and a versatile component in savory sauces and marinades. With its rich, nutty flavor and creamy texture, peanut butter is a tasty way to add depth and nutrition. Peanut butter contains both monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which are heart-healthy fats that can help reduce the risk of heart disease.


Oatmeal is a versatile and nutritious food item that can be a valuable addition to your kitchen. It’s a good source of fiber, providing a feeling of fullness and sustained energy throughout the morning. It’s customizable to suit your taste and dietary preferences. You can add a variety of toppings such as fruits, nuts, honey, or even savory ingredients like eggs and nori. Oats contain beta-glucans, a type of soluble fiber that can help lower cholesterol levels, reducing the risk of heart disease.

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I'm Krystal Dunham, and I'm so happy you're here! I'm always on the hunt for the best chocolate chip cookie recipe! So that would make me not your "typical" dietitian. Here you'll find non-diet-y recipes and intuitive eating resources so that you can reclaim your joy around food and nutrition, you in? Learn more about me.

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