This post is sponsored by Family Dollar.
When we started to meal plan, I noticed that things went smoothly - and our budget stayed intact; once I figured out our simple pantry staples. There are so many things that families need to have in their home to make delicious meals, but it's those simple pantry staples that make sure we can create amazing and easy meals any night of the week.
Lately, I've been very diligent about keeping our pantry staples available in our home. It's making life so much easier to actually have on hand the items needed for a favorite recipe. Not having chicken broth in the house when it's a key ingredient is no fun, y'all. I've also tried to save time by finding these items in stores I frequent weekly, like Family Dollar. Each of these items are staples for our family for different reasons, but I'm sure some of them will sound familiar to you and your family.
Flour and Sugar
I love to bake for my family at least once a week. For meal prep, I tend to bake a double batch of a treat or breakfast item, and make enough to last a whole week. Triple batch of pancakes? No problem. I need to make sure I have enough flour and sugar on hand to make these goodies, though. So, when I see them at an awesome price, I take that as a sign to always keep them on hand. I keep the flour in the fridge to keep it fresh (and away from critters), and I actually freeze my sugar! If I have room to freeze the flour and sugar, I do it.
Fun fact about our family: we don't eat cereal for breakfast. We like to have heartier things for the first meal of the day, but we can totally get down on a bowl of cereal for snack time. I also love to use it to make cereal bars, or add a cup or two to our homemade granola bars. Honey Nut Toasted Oats is one of our favorite cereals to snack on, and I love when I find it at a great price.
Pasta and Rice
I feel like this is one of those pantry staples that all families keep on hand. Pasta and rice can make a meal, and even stretch it if you are on a tight budget. Here's a money saving tip for pasta: look for the 1 pound bags. If you can get a 1 pound bag of pasta for a dollar or under, you're getting a great deal. We love the elbow macaroni at Family Dollar.
Canned Soups and Broth
While I love to make my own soups, I do invest in canned "creamed of" soups and my favorite broths. Creamed soups are a pantry staple for us because they are the main ingredient in many of our favorite casseroles. I love to have broth on hand to make quick soups on cold days. I love that when I go to Family Dollar I'll find the Family Gourmet line, as well as my favorite name brand items. I can shop for both at the same time, and get the best deals on items that help me make easy meals.
This may be a very specific pantry staple, but our family always has these on hand for quick meals. Remember how I mentioned casseroles above? Use these potato puffs with cream of mushroom soup, chicken broth, some frozen veggies, and browned ground meat; you can have a super delicious hamburger casserole! This is yet another easy side dish or ingredient that we need in our freezer at all times.
To make my pantry staple shopping experience even better, I make sure to use Smart Coupons for instant Family Dollar savings. I love that I can have the savings texted to me while I’m right in the store!
What are your simple pantry staples that you have on hand at all times?