Pantry Staple Recipes to Help You During Coronavirus (COVID-19)
We’ve put together more than 30 recipes that use ingredients that are commonly kept in the pantry, freezer, and fridge to help you through your Coronavirus quarantine menu planning. Plus, we’ve added some tips on how to easily swap ingredients with what you have on hand so you can avoid a trip to the grocery store.
How are you holding up? COVID-19 has sure turned the world as we know it upside down. Social distancing and social isolation have become our new reality. In fact, our current realities are much different today than two weeks ago and may look much different in weeks to come. In the words of Tom Hanks when he was diagnosed with Coronavirus, “Not much more to it than a one-day-at-a-time approach, no?”
We are all trying to navigate this new world and doing the best we can. Part of that means cooking all of our meals at home and visiting the grocery store less frequently to help prevent the spread of Coronavirus.
As a nurse turned chef, it's always been important for me to share healthy recipes. Now that we are stocking our “pandemic pantries” we wanted to help you with your menu planning so you can enjoy cooking your way through this quarantine.
We've pulled together over 30 pantry staple recipes that use ingredients that are commonly kept in the pantry, freezer, and fridge. These recipes are easy to make with simple ingredients. Our roundup includes recipe ideas for every meal so you have a variety of options to choose from.
You'll also find suggestions on how to change things up a bit and make substitutions. The great thing about cooking is that there are so many options to whip something together with what you have on hand or can easily access.
We hope this pantry staple recipe roundup helps you during the COVID-19 pandemic and makes your menu planning a little easier!
Breakfast recipes for self-isolation
Chia Seed Pudding (pictured)
The canned coconut milk can be substituted with almond, cashew, or regular dairy milk.
Bacon or sausages can be used in place of the chorizo.
Pecans can be used in place of the walnuts and frozen bananas work well.
Try peanut butter instead of almond butter. And steel-cut oat or quick oats will also work.
Lunch Recipes to make when social distancing
The Best Chicken Salad Recipe (pictured)
Chicken thighs can be used instead of breasts. Or even canned chicken, in a pinch. Pecans and cashews make good substitues for the almonds. Grated carrots or chopped cabbage can be used in place of celery.
Regular flour can replace the tapioca starch. Other spices that work well with this recipe are Italian seasoning, parmesan cheese, or chili powder. Chicken breasts can be used in place of the chicken thighs.
You can swap the homemade dressing for your favorite store-bought one.
Instead of cashews, use ¾ cup of cashew butter. Or for a different spin, try almond butter.
Dinner Recipes from your pandemic pantry
Deliciously Rich Lentil Bolognese (pictured)
Serve this with any type of pasta. Instead of brown lentils, try green. Or use canned lentils, omit the water, and reduce the cooking time.
Use whatever veggies you have in your fridge. Try chicken breasts instead of thighs.
Chicken breasts also work in this recipe. Tomato sauce can be used in place of crushed tomatoes. Almond butter makes a nice change from peanut butter.
If you don't have all the spices, omit the ones you're missing. Whole chicken freezes very well. If there are some at your grocery store, grab an extra for your freezer. Wrap it tightly in plastic wrap before putting into a bag in your freezer.
Onions add sweetness if you're out of apples. And sausages make a good sub for the bacon.
Boneless thighs work here, too. Simply reduce the cooking time to 10 minutes.
The sauce in this recipe is tasty with chicken, too!
Swap the tofu for chicken. Or sieten, to keep this vegetarian. And use whichever vegetables you have in your fridge.
Use whatever type of canned tomatoes that you have in your pantry. You can swap for boneless chicken breasts and reduce the cooking time to 25 minutes.
Use the type of pasta and canned tomatoes that you have on hand. Kale (a good hardy green for stocking your pandemic fridge) can be used instead of spinach.
White rice or cooked pasta can be used in place of the brown rice. Try using ¾ cup of cashew butter or almond butter mixed with the water instead of cahsews.
Simple Side Dishes for your meals during Coronavirus
Best Roasted Broccoli (pictured)
Can also be made with cauliflower.
If you don't have nutritional yeast in your pantry, try using parmesan cheese instead. The same spices would be tasty on broccoli, too!
Bottled lemon juice will work in a pinch!
Maple syrup, or even some brown sugar or coconut sugar, can be used in place of honey. Sweet potatoes are also delicious made this way!
These pretty potatoes can be made with larger potatoes, simply increase the baking time to about 1 hour.
A few recipes to make COVID-19 Quarantine a little easier
Healthy Trail Mix Protein Bites (pictured)
Use whatever nuts, seeds, and chocolate that you have on hand!
These sauces will make your meals so much more enjoyable.
Try making these with fresh or frozen raspberries, strawberries, blackberries, or a mix of berries.
Use the nuts and dried fruit that you have in your pantry. Omit the quinoa, if needed
Try these with regular potatoes. Or go traditional with tortilla chips.