Organic Bound

Can You Eat Better by Eating Through?

February 2014

While our California winter has been mild, we’ve been thinking about our friends elsewhere in country who’ve been enduring some pretty bad storms — the kind that makes beautiful snowy photos (and driving very difficult).

If you couldn’t go shopping, could you create meals with what’s already in your kitchen?

“Eating through the pantry” (as our friend Sara at Go Gingham calls it) can help you through times when you can’t get to the store; it can also be a useful strategy for clearing out your cupboards regularly and reducing the amount of food (and money) wasted when food goes bad before you can eat it. 

  • Canned or dry beans plus rice, quinoa or other grains cooked in broth make a great base for leftover veggies.
  • Got eggs? Frittatas are a flexible, even elegant way to pull together odds and ends, and they’re delicious hot or at room temperature.
  • Make an ordinary ham & cheese sandwich special by spreading some Dijon mustard or mayo on the outside of bread (or an English muffin) and grilling it till the cheese is melty and delectable. 
  • Get help from sites like, where you can search recipes for the specific ingredient(s) you have on hand.

When the weather’s better and there’s plenty of room in your cupboards, restock with versatile basics that will let — even encourage — you to eat through anytime. This pantry essentials guide by Chef Jamie Oliver is a great place to start! 

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