Shopping Cart Basics

Shopping Cart Basics

Alexandra McCray

1. Bread

Bread should always be in your kitchen because if you have nothing else to eat or cooking really just isn’t your forte, at least you can make yourself toast for breakfast and throw something together to put in a sandwich for lunch or dinner.

2. Frozen Vegetables 

Frozen vegetables are great because you don’t have to worry about them going bad like you do with fresh vegetables. They’re also a better choice than pre-made frozen dinners, and can be added to any meal to instantly make it healthier and heartier. Most of the time you don’t even have to defrost them when you’re ready to add them to a dish; you can usually just go ahead and throw them into whatever recipe you’re making.

3. Olive Oil/Vegetable Oil

Oils are one of those things that are so essential, you often just assume they’re already in your pantry and it’s a real pain if they’re not. They are essential for nearly all types of meals and baking. Oils can also replace butter in recipes which is great for students living in dorms that might have limited fridge space.

4. Pasta

Plain-boxed pasta is inexpensive and great to have stored away because you can turn it into soup, pasta salad, macaroni and cheese, casserole, the list goes on and on. You can also make any type of pasta your heart desires.

5. Rice

Rice, just like pasta, can be added to any recipe. Rice can be a great side to make recipes more complete, or can be the focal point of a recipe. If you want a healthier option you could always grab a brown rice.

6. Chicken

Most students tend to load up their pantries with carbs like easy mac, ramen and chips, but it’s important to keep your basics well rounded, too. Chicken is one of the most inexpensive sources of protein you can buy. It also comes in a variety of forms (even canned), to suit your cooking expertise, convenience and living situation.

7. Spices

Spices are not to be overlooked because they are the difference between bland food that will be quickly be thrown in the trash and food that will thoroughly impress your friends. A few basics you could grab could include basil, oregano, garlic powder, cinnamon, or nutmeg.

8. Canned Tomatoes

Canned food can be iffy and strange, but have no fear of canned tomatoes. They have far more uses than you would initially expect. You can use canned tomatoes to make your own signature pasta sauce, custom salsa, pizza sauce, soup, or add them to tacos. Plus all the hard work of buying them individually, cleaning, dicing, cooking and seasoning them is already done for you.

9. Eggs

Eggs are always handy because they can be used in recipes for breakfast, lunch and dinner. You can also get creative with them and make basic recipes just around eggs.

10. Milk

Milk, like eggs, is just handy to have around because you never know when you’ll need it for a recipe, or just to make yourself some cereal really fast in the morning.