I have a lot more DIY and decor posts on the way as Pedro and I finish furnishing our fist home. The first spaces we have completed are also the smallest—the pantry and fridge.
Grocery shopping and cooking is a big deal for us, since I am now vegetarian and transitioning into a vegan and plant based lifestyle.
Because we have a fairly large pantry, we have the luxury of storing a lot of food. A lot of people plan a menu and then shop for those ingredients. I kind of do the opposite, where I like to shop for ingredients and choose recipes later. So our pantry is essentially stocked like a mini grocery store.
You too can have a food storage this beautiful with just baskets, canisters, and an obsession with organization.
Disclaimer: I am learning more about the different ingredients in foods that come from animals, besides the obvious milk and eggs. I'm not perfect, but I'm doing my best to start buying products that fit a plant based lifestyle. Also, my father is living with us, and he eats what we cook, but also buys his own meat and snacks that you may notice.
Our pantry is in the hallway adjacent to our washer and dryer, hence the laundry supplies. Wire baskets are from Walmart.
I've never been much of a cereal person, but I've taken it up recently as an afternoon snack to add a little bit more protein to my day. My favorite is Kashi's Chocolate Crunch.
Most of the containers we have are from the brand OXO. We got our first set among our wedding gifts, and I have been adding to our collection since. We also have a few from Walmart's brand that are similar enough. If I'm being honest, having canisters like these are definitely more about beauty than function, but boy, are they beautiful. Having an eye-pleasing pantry makes me feel more at peace and makes cooking healthy meals at home more fun.
The vintage labels were inspired by Claire Marshall's makeup collection video. After a literal year of telling myself it was unnecessary and I didn't need it, I got my embossing label maker from Office Depot.
This is the breakfast area. We have a container of plain oats for baking, brown sugar, non-dairy chocolate chips, and some vegan pancake mixes. Then we keep individual packets of oatmeal and a bag of granola in the next basket. And almond butter, peanut butter, sunflower seeds, popcorn butter for my air popper, and cashews in the next. Cashews are in so many vegan dishes, like this cheesecake recipe that I love.
On the bottom shelf we keep enough cans of food to get us through a minor hurricane. We pretty much have every type of bean and every type of canned tomato that you can buy. I like to be prepared in case I see a recipe that I want to try or I find myself cooking for a group of people, also hurricanes.
You may notice some non-vegetarian items. Tucked in the corner are my dad's cans of tuna. Chicken flavored ramen is vegetarian (or vegan?) if you don't use the flavor packet. Chicken is my family's favorite flavor of noodles, so this is like a compromise.
On the floor, I have plastic baskets from the dollar store filled with snacks, pastas (Ronzoni Garden Delight is our favorite brand), dog food and treats, and extra laundry supplies.
Welcome to my fridge, where you can find further evidence of my basket addiction. I got these at Big Lots. In here we keep individual items that would otherwise be floating around. Right now they are holding yogurts and applesauce. Sometimes we keep those individual cups of hummus in here too.
Pedro packs a yogurt every morning for breakfast, and since we are transitioning to a dairy free life, he has been exploring new options. These are made of coconut milk and soy.
Okay, you caught me. I have even more baskets on the next shelf, but these were a wedding gift. The OXO collection at the Container Store is pricey, but these Greensaver Produce Keepers are awesome because they prolong the life of your produce with a carbon filter in the lid. My only complaint is that keeping up with replacing the filters is really expensive, and washing these baskets is a pain. But overall, they are faves. You should get married so you can get some.
This week we have a bundle of spinach, baby carrots, and strawberries.
We keep breads, buns, and tortillas in the fridge because it helps to prolong their life and keep them off the counter. We are using this dairy free butter right now, but once we run out, I am hoping to replace it with one that is 100% vegan.
We use vegetable broth for boiling lentils and quinoa; it helps make them more flavorful.
We always have bell peppers. We sometimes have avocado, cucumbers, and zucchini. If I purchase any of these and forget to eat them before they go bad, the next week I am "grounded". This week I am grounded from avocados.
Notice the OXO Greensaver Crisper Insert that we found on sale a our local Marshall's.
In the crisper we also have celery, lemons, and limes. I bought these mesh bags for grocery shopping so that I don't have to bring produce home in a plastic bag that I will immediately throw away. It just seemed super wasteful. Having these produce bags also encourages me to fill them up, so we buy more produce and snack healthier.
We make veggie burgers and stir-fry's a lot, so we keep every necessary condiment.
By the way, I started working on this post when I came home from our weekly grocery trip, so I had thrown away all leftovers to start fresh for the upcoming week. Realistically you would also see our dinner leftovers in the fridge that we take to work.
THE FRUIT BASKET
Here is a bonus look at the fruits we came home with in our haul. When I come home from work, I am always craving chocolate, so it is helpful to have healthy snacks readily available.
What produce and groceries do you always keep on hand? Are you a menu planner?
Since changing my diet, food has become such an important part of my life, so let's talk!