Day 3: What’s in Your Pantry?

Before I make a meal plan for the $500 month, I’m going to inventory everything we have. EVERYTHING. (I will attempt to sprinkle in humor, so it won’t be as boring as reading the list of everything in someone’s pantry–since that is what it is.)

First, I have to say two things.

  1. Oh how the mighty have fallen.Β  I am being totally honest and telling you every single food item that is currently in our house. I have admitted the fact that we have kind of, um, strayed from some of our real food principles, but if you haven’t believed me, this inventory will prove it. If you have strong criticism or judgment to offer in the comments, I invite you to do so right after you type out YOUR entire food inventory. πŸ˜‰
  2. $500 is probably too high. Taking a comprehensive inventory helped me to realize how stinkin’ much food we ALREADY have. This list is RIDICULOUSLY long in an embarrassing way.Β  I now realize that if we simply eat all THIS food, we might not even need all of the $500. Hopefully, we can spend less.

Oh wait, one more thing.

3. As you read, feel free to think of lots of great recipes that I can make using these ingredients. Then leave them in the comments. πŸ™‚

Yes, I totally did move all the organic cans to the front for this picture. πŸ™‚


13 bananas

16 clementines

10 oz blueberries

9 7 lemons (used 2 at dinner)

8 oz. champagne grapes

1 tangelo

5 lbs. organic carrots

1 lb organic baby carrots

stalk celery

Half purple onion

Half broccoli crown

4 oz organic baby spinach (used at dinner)

10 8 small cucumbers (used at dinner)

3 2 organic hearts of romaine (used at dinner)

bunch cilantro

7 4 organic Green onions (dinner)

1 bulb garlic

8 onions

Garden Produce

Green beans, approx 5-6 daily.

Cherry tomatoes, 1-2 daily lately.

Small carrots, when needed

Basil, rosemary, parsley, thyme, and chives in abundance.


1/2 bottle apple juice

2 eggs

1 oz heavy whipping cream

1 qt whole milk

4 oz. lowfat cottage cheese Β  Addie has since put this in her lunch for tomorrow.

16 Homemade Lara Bars

1 oz tahini

3 sticks butter

1 block cream cheese

2 bars dark chocolate

Maple Syrup

Organic Ketchup

Dry Yeast

Vital Wheat Gluten


Ikea lingonberry preserves

Blackberry all fruit spread (no sugar)

1/2 bottle sangria

Soy sauce

Sesame oil

4 kinds mustard


Lime seltzer

3 kinds wing sauce (for my hubby)

Natural Peanut Butter (no sugar)


Curry Paste

1 qt chocolate milk (For after my husband’s workouts, but once this is gone, I promise I’m going to make this natural chocolate sauce.)

Regular pancake syrup (A friend cleaned out her fridge for a move and gave this to us. That’s my story and I’m stickin’ to it)

Blueberry syrup (Um, something about ALDI and blueberries and weakness.)

Meat and Cheese Drawer

1 lb bacon (This is the cured normal kind because I have tried and HATED the natural uncured kind. No amount of horror stories can scare me off normal bacon again.)

12 oz. Jalapeno Palmetto Cheese (Praise Jesus for this stuff)

7 slices HT deli turkey

1 lb block mozzarella

3 slices provolone

8 oz. baby swiss slices (Okay, just to clarify, we hardly ever have deli meat and cheese, but HT had Buy 2, get 3 free and so . . . . I was weak.)

6 oz. habanero cheddar

4 oz block Parmesan Reggiano

1 oz. feta (used in dinner)

2 oz blue cheese (Just randomly, how do you know when blue cheese is TOO old, considering it is pretty much edible mold?)


3 ice pops

1 ice cream bar

pint homemade peach sauce

bag frozen cranberries

small bag Ghiradelli chocolate chips

small bag butterscotch chips

Organic Corn meal

1 1/2 lbs Organic Brown Rice

Bread crusts I’ve saved for crumbs

Veggie scraps I’ve saved for soups

8 oz Hormel Natural Choice Turkey (I really feel okay about this kind. The label seems pretty innocuous–except for “natural flavoring.” What is that?)

8 oz. Hormel Natural Choice Ham

1 lb organic chicken wings

2 lbs bacon (Again, it is normal kind. It doesn’t scare me.)

loaf Arnold bread (No HFCS)

18 oz Rockport lobster bisque (Friend cleaning out freezer again. Can you say no to “bisque”?)

1/3 bag Simply Smart Perdue Chicken nuggets

3.31 lbs Split chicken breasts

1 lb pork breakfast sausage (grass fed from Farmers Market)

1 cup sliced cooked steak (grass fed from FM)

Miscellaneous unlabeled rice mystery leftover

Steamfresh Brussel sprouts

cup frozen Stonyfield organic plain whole yogurt (starter for next homemade yogurt)

3 frozen whole wheat pancakes

TJs Peruvian Chimichurri Rice (given by a friend)

Frozen Homemade Spaghetti Meat sauce (with grass fed beef)

1. 25 lbs mild Italian pork sausage

Frozen cooked black eyed peas

2 c. slices green pepper

1 lb frozen corn

handful frozen peas (no idea how this happened. Waste not. Want not, right?)

2 lbs frozen broccoli

9 oz frozen spinach

1 qt turkey stock

2 c. chicken stock (used in dinner)

2 dozen frozen bananas (for smoothies)

1 quart mint chocolate chip Edys (Might be gone here pretty soon)

2 bags Nestle dark chocolate chips

1 bag Nestle semi sweet chocolate chips (My mom tells me that Nestle chips are the best and I believe her because she is always right.)

3 cups frozen strawberries

1 1/2 cups Andes mint chips

1/2 c. brownie crumbs (It seemed like these would come in handy for something.)

2 loaves Nature’s Own Whole Wheat Bread (No HFCS)

1 lb cooked cocktail shrimp

1 lb salmon fillets (used for dinner)

5 bags organic mixed vegetables

1 bag organic corn

Pantry & Cupboards

4.5 boxes Cheerios (This is our “exception” cereal. Otherwise, I only do oatmeal, homemade granola, or shredded wheat)

2.5Β  boxes shredded wheat

1 box Triscuits

2 boxes Green Tea

2 lbs Organic HT popcorn

48 oz organic honey

2 bottles Budweiser wing sauce

Texas Pete

2 bottles soy sauce

27 ox Welch’s Natural Grape Jelly (No HFCS)

1 pkg Ramen Noodles (These are for sickness when Addie demands them and nothing else will do.)

3 cans cooking spray (I had gotten rid of all of these and then I somehow was given several from friends moving, etc. Oh well, they are durn convenient.)

1.5 jars Skippy Natural

2 Jars All fruit jams (No sweeteners)

Jar Duke’s Mayo

26 oz Morton Salt

22 oz. Sea Salt

4 oz. Tabasco

17 oz. Grade A Aldi Maple Syrup

1 box graham crackers (S’mores that didn’t happen)

1/2 box prunes (Learned these can also go in the Lara bars)

4.5 lbs raisins

5 serving size applesauce (unsweetened)

8 oz. Wasa Fiber crackers

22 oz. Emerald almonds

28 oz Craisins

16 oz. dry red kidney beans

16 oz. dry organic chili mix beans

2 35 oz. cans crushed tomatoes

2 29 oz. cans tomato sauce

1 small can tuna

2 1 15 oz. can black beans (one at dinner)

2 15 oz. cans garbanzo beans (one is organic)

1 can Baked beans (no HFCS but lots of other pure evil)

1 can Chili beans

1 can organic butternut squash soup

3 10 oz can rotel

14 oz. can cream corn

15 oz. can kidney beans

2 15 oz can corn

15 oz can pinto beans

4 6 oz cans tomato paste (3 of 4 are organic)

3 cans pumpkin puree (1 of 3 are organic)

12 oz can evaporated milk

14 oz can light coconut milk

18.8 oz can Campbell’s Old Fashioned Vegetable Beef Soup (Holy Old Fashioned Bat-man. That label scares the willies out of me. There was nary an ingredient that I recognized.)

1.5 c. flaxseed

2 c. white sugar

2.5 c. sliced almonds

2 c. unsweetened shredded coconut

2 c. oat bran

8 c. walnuts

16 oz. raw sunflower seeds

2.5 cups old cookies (I tell myself I’m saving these in case I need to make a crumb crust.)

8-10. c white flour

4-5 c. basmati rice

2 jars Bertolli pasta sauce (I got these for a babysitter to make dinner if necessary.)

1 pkg onion soup mix (Full of dreaded things. I’m sure.)

Box Regular Fettuccini

Box Whole Grain Thin Spaghetti

Box Pipette Pasta

1/2 box Shell Pasta

1 box Junior Mints (I KNOW!! What were THOSE doing up there!? I took care of it.)

32 oz. organic chicken broth

1/2 c. quick oats

1/2 box cream of wheat

10 boxes partly full herb, green, and black teas (Some organic. Some not.)

2 boxes iced teas

2 cups organic yellow grits

5 pkgs Kool Aid (I don’t know anything about this. Don’t look at me. Ask their father.)

15 packages Swiss Miss Cocoa (Um . . . I, um . . .*shrug* Snow day???)

1/2 loafΒ  5 ingredient bread Whole Wheat Bread from Farmers Market Nova’s

6 oz. organic honey

5 lbs Amish Rainbow Popcorn (We have a bit of a popcorn addiction/connoisseur thing going on.)

5 c organic steel cut oats

1/2 c. brown sugar

8 lbs white whole wheat flour

8 c. powdered sugar (No idea why we have this. I’m thinking birthday cake frosting or something.)

Balsamic Vinegar

Canola Oil

20 Minute Maid 100% juice boxes

4 partially full bottles of extra virgin olive oil (2 organic. 2 not. Idiocy can be the only explanation for 4 opened bottles.)

1/2 bottle rice vinegar

1/2 bottle red wine vinegar

Marsala cooking wine

6 oz. instant mashed potato flakes (expired two years ago, but I think I was saving this for sourdough starter or some such. Now that seems like a gross idea.)

2 lbs coarse kosher salt

Bag of Evil (Food coloring, cookie icing, sprinkles, white chocolate bark, sweetened coconut, marshmallows.Β  I’m not kidding when I tell you that I bagged all this up and stuffed it out of sight, but did not get rid of it.Β  Is this stupid inventory suppose to contain spiritual lessons? I hope not.)

2 boxes strawberry instant jello (When the ProvidinaTOR gets sick, he demands jello. Real food or no, what the man wants, he gets.)

Jar Chicken bouillon

Jar Organic Vegetable Bouillon

Organic All Vegetable Shortening

1/2 c. coconut oil (How did I get this LOW!?! I’m not sure I can swing a Vitacost order in the $500 month. Rats. Olive oil and butter may have to suffice for this month.)

TONS of spices and seasonings and salts. (I’m not typing them out, seeing as how I’m trying to keep this list so short and all. *Ahem*)

1/2 c. Nestle cocoa

Baking soda

Baking powder


Blackstrap Molasses

Bottle Peppermint Schnaps

2 bottles Merlot

1 bottle Shiraz

1 bottle Chardonnay

Bottle Captain Morgan

2.5 lbs various coffees

1 lb decaf coffee

2 cup white vinegar

16 0z. apple cider vinegar


Hooray! I’m done. That took forever, but I must say that I feel VERY well stocked and will probably just print this sucker off and cross things off as I go.Β  Other than produce, milk, and eggs, I hardly see anything we’ll need. Tomorrow I’ll post some of what we’ve BEEN eating and maybe a meal plan. Can you think of any meal suggestions for me? Have you ever done a FULL pantry inventory? Most importantly, what does your stockpile say about you?


17 thoughts on “Day 3: What’s in Your Pantry?

  1. I know there is a website where you can type in what you have and it will find you a recipe, but I can’t find it!! Sorry!

    I do know thank to a Dr, Oz show and Jamie Oliver “Natural Ingredients” as in sprinkles and flavorings are bugs, hair and the expressed anal glands of a beaver! No joke! (I am wondering who grabbed the Beaver and thought HEY! Lets use this!) The guy was on Dr. Oz and is wanting to get true ingredient labels on all products etc. can’t remember his name though. Jamie Oliver has made my daughter a vegetarian fro about 2 years now. Our food is gross but it taste soo good!

    1. It is, which I use ALL the time. I love it. Yes, I’ve heard of the beaver anal gland thing too. Very strange. Although, this is coming from a woman who squirted breastmilk in her kids eyes to clear up eye infections, so I guess I’m not as bothered as I should be by the anal gland thing. So I guess the natural flavorings could be just about anything, but since this is the lunchmeat that I can actually afford, I’m going to tell myself the natural flavoring is something more awesome like . . . um, meat flavor? Yes, that sounds good.

  2. I think your list looks surprisingly a lot like mine would, except I have the dreaded Hamburger Helper to get rid of. I am using up the boxes I have (waste not) before making the real food mix recipe I have. Inventorying mine would take days as we buy a quarter side of beef and this year got it earlier than usual because the farmer is culling the herd due to high corn prices so I still have a lot left from last years’ and then a full one from this year. I also only shop once a month and it happened last week, so we are stocked full, full, full right now. Also due to childhood memories of empty cabinets and food pantries when my dad was laid off, I have a little bit of a stockpiling(read “hoarding”) problem related to fears of not having food available. I rationalize this craziness with the fact we live 40 minutes from town and would hate to drive that far to get an ingredient we need for dinner. πŸ™‚

  3. I laughed at loud at this. You are fantastic and funny and honest and say what most should or want to say. NOBODY is perfect. If anybody judges you for what you put into your pantry and/or body they are spending too much time focusing on lives other than their own (and probably have a personal shopper, personal chef and endless budget for “perfect” food) Own It Katrina…no excuses. No disclaimers. Keep it coming!

    1. Would you like to hang out together sometime? I think all this shameless flattery could do wonders for my self-esteem. πŸ™‚

  4. How about chicken pie? Or chicken gravy on rice? I can share the recipe if you want. It’s rather time consuming, but really yummy. And, you can get 4 pies from less than 3 lbs. of whole or split chicken breasts. It does take butter though, which I didn’t see on your list. FYI, I always get my butter at Costco, seems to be better priced there than anywhere else, ever.

    It would be hard to find much of anything organic in my kitchen, but we are well stocked on many things. I think it would be a good exercise for me to take stock of what we have and try not to buy much new until we use up what we have. I have a hard time turning down great deals when I find things I could stock up on…

  5. Thanks for your post! You inspired me to take stock of my pantry. I did a meal plan off what we have in stock and got 6 meals! Thanks again!!

  6. I’m pretty sure I gave you most of the bad stuff on that list (including the Jr. Mints, which aggravated my pregnancy indigestion, and oodles of packages of cocoa, which I was given by neighbors when THEY moved). At least you resisted my Hamburger Helper and had me give it to the single guy downstairs! I remember you took a lot of stuff just because you knew the rest of the family would like it, so I’m proud of you for having “bad” food items for that reason. πŸ™‚ Good mom, good wife.
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  7. You have pretty much all of the ingredients necessary for my recipe for Chicken Tortilla Soup. I usually make it in the crockpot, but it works on the stove too. My recipe changes based on what I have on hand, but the basics are:

    Black beans
    Garbanzo beans
    Lots of ‘Mexican’ spices
    Fresh cilantro
    Any other veggies you want to throw in
    Chicken stock or water to expand the soup

    Just let it simmer til everything smells heavenly, and serve it over tortilla chips and grated cheese. Nutritious, delicious, and super easy!

    1. Do you put the cilantro in with it while cooking or add it at the end? As for the spinach, do you use fresh or frozen and how much would you say you use? Sounds great!

      1. I usually add the cilantro towards the end… it can get kinda soggy if you put it in at the beginning. As for spinach, I have used canned, frozen, or fresh. If it’s canned, I put in one can. If it’s fresh, as much as I can cram in the crockpot! I also use lots of spicy specialty salsas, but I like mine really hot & spicy. (I’m a Texan) Everything else, I just kinda throw in what I have. It’s always a little different, but it’s always awesome! Sometimes I use fresh tomatillos in the soup. My best friend brings avocados to put in when serving. A little sour cream makes a great garnish.

  8. I think you are too hard on yourself. I wish I could stay on a budget but I can’t get out of the grocery store without spending 100 dollars to save my soul. I use a lot of maple syrup and it goes so darn fast. I am thinking about ordering it from I can get 6 bottles for 83.00 and its 20.00 a bottle at Krogers- saving me a little over 30.00. My brain does not do math well. It is getting baking time for the holidays so it would come in handy to have it all here. Either that or go back to sugar. lol


    1. Do you have ALDI? Aldi maple syrup is the cheapest that I’ve found. When I see it there, I stock up. πŸ™‚ I have almost depleted my supply from last winter, so when I see it in the store again, I’ll probably get a half dozen bottles or so. πŸ™‚

      1. Yes, someone else told me it was cheaper at ALDI’s. Yes we have one here in Macon, Ga but I have never seen it there. I don’t go every week though. I will start going by more often. There is one close to where I work so I don’t have an excuse. lol

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