Why You Should Always Have Boxed Stock In Your Pantry

Peanut butter, pasta, sugar, and flour are a few staples that nearly everyone has in their kitchen cabinets — from the home chef to the recent college grad just starting out in an apartment. But what should you keep on your shelves to have a more complete pantry in order to increase the kind of foods you can make, as well as to improve them? Two great reasons to have a well-stocked pantry, according to Foodal, is that it will help you to eat healthier and will make preparing meals easier. 

Before you start to add items to your pantry, The New York Times advises that it's important to start by looking through what's already in there and getting rid of the items that you haven't touched in a year or that are no longer good. The outlet says it's better to use your eyes and nose to determine what still looks good and smells fine rather than the expiration dates or best-by dates because items are often good beyond those dates. Once you have the pantry prepped, Allrecipes says to figure out an organizational plan so it's easy to keep the pantry stocked and orderly.

Stock your pantry with stock

Make sure to stock your pantry with chicken, vegetable, or beef stock, per The New York Times. Boxed chicken or vegetable stock tastes better than the canned versions, per the article. Stock is a versatile ingredient that can be used as the base for soups, sauces, stews, and more, according to Wise Bread. Simply swap stock for water when making white rice, risotto, couscous, and polenta. Flavorful stock can also be used in traditional comfort food recipes by simply using it in place of another ingredient, per Wise Bread, such as mashed potatoes, chicken dumplings, bread pudding, and stuffing.

Other items that should be part of your pantry's inventory also benefit from your keeping stock on the shelves. Food Storage Moms says a well-stocked pantry should include dried goods, such as pasta, rice, beans, and lentils, which are great items to have at the ready for an easy weeknight meal. Instead of using water to cook the pasta, rice, or beans, use vegetable or chicken stock instead to increase the dish's flavor. And if you only use part of the box of stock, save the rest in the refrigerator until you can use it in another recipe.

So next time you find yourself in the soup aisle at the grocery store, grab a few boxes of different stocks, and you'll know you're well prepared for your cooking endeavors.