It’s 5:30 pm and you’re staring into the endless abyss of your refrigerator, wondering what in the world you can put together for an acceptable dinner. Even if you’ve dutifully grocery shopped and planned meals, it may all fall apart in the reality of daily life.
Thankfully, you can avoid these woes forever by learning a few tried and true tricks. Keep a few essential ingredients on hand, and you can whip up a quick and healthy meal with confidence — no matter how hectic your day has been up until dinnertime.
Most people think of tortillas as the staple of tacos and burritos, but this crowd-pleasing ingredient can be used for endless creative meal ideas. Pair with peanut butter and banana for a tasty roll-up, or sprinkle with red sauce and mozzarella for an easy thin-crust pizza.
2. Canned Chickpeas
Don’t have time to cook meat? Or maybe you’ve set a goal to go vegetarian a few times a week? If so, canned chickpeas are the perfect way to add protein to a salad, pasta, or soup.
3. Frozen Fruit
When all else fails, a frozen fruit smoothie is a great convenient dinner option. You’ll get your fill of vitamins and can quickly move on without dirtying the whole kitchen.
4. Frozen Vegetables
Frozen vegetables are just as healthy as fresh produce, and you don’t have to worry about eating them on a timeline. Toss frozen peas into fried rice or pasta dish, or add frozen broccoli to your favorite stir fry.
5. Almond Milk
While we love traditional cow’s milk, you only have a short window of time to enjoy its creamy delights. In contrast, some almond milk can be stored in the pantry and ready for use any time you need to add milk to a smoothie, soup, or for a quick bowl of cereal.
6. Olive Oil
Every meal can be made better with a quick drizzle of olive oil. Use this oil to sautee your meal, as a finishing touch to pasta, or as the base for a homemade salad dressing.
Rice is a pantry essential that can be used in hundreds of ways. Bulk up a simple grilled meat with rice pilaf, or add it to soups and salads when you don’t want to worry about making a side dish.
8. Canned Tomatoes
Fresh tomatoes lend a juicy, acidic touch to many meals, but unfortunately you can only get good quality tomatoes a few weeks out of the year. Turn to canned tomatoes as a decent alternative, and add them to soups, casseroles, and pastas in any season.
9. Parmesan Cheese
Even a piece of toast or simple pasta can be made luxurious with a touch of good quality cheese. Keep a wedge of parmesan cheese on hand to boost the flavor in just about any dish.
Ah, the humble egg. No other ingredients makes for such a complete stand-alone meal. Fry them up, make an omelet, or use them as a binder in your favorite baked good. Eggs are one ingredient you should never be without.
11. Herbs and Spices
Salt and pepper can only go so far to jazz up a meal. Fresh herbs and spices basil, cilantro, and mint can really take a simple meal from good to indulgent. If you don’t want to keep buying fresh herbs every few days, try growing some in a small jar on the countertop.
Citrus is another essential component of a full-bodied meal. Add a splash of lemon or lime to salad dressing, meat marinade, or as a finishing touch to a salad. You’ll love the brightness it adds to the flavor.
Stock Up With All Seasons Grocery
Are you headed to a Park City vacation home? If so, allow All Seasons Grocery to get you stocked with all of these kitchen essentials. All Seasons Grocery offers grocery delivery service in Park City and the surrounding areas, so you can enjoy your vacation to the fullest, without wasting time wandering the aisles of an unfamiliar grocery store. Order your groceries now and have them waiting for you when you arrive in Park City!