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  • Andrea

Kitchen Skills: What every CSA member should have in their pantry

When joining a CSA, you might have a little anxiety over the fact that you're giving up some control of your weekly menu plan. It can be overwhelming at first to try to figure out what to cook with all your new ingredients but if you have a pantry stocked with some tried and true staples then you have no reason to fear.

Truthfully, I'm a pretty lazy cook... and cleaner for that matter. The less fuss and dishes the better. Single pan meals are a god send (think stir frys, curries, and stews). I found that once I had a general recipe down that I could tweak it depending on what produce I had available that week. It made life so much easier!

Granted, I still forget to thaw my protein until about five minutes before I want to eat but the rest of the meal comes together in a snap. Which is good, because when I'm hungry patience isn't really my thing...

I'll go into how exactly I use these items in my meals in the next post but here's a starter list so you can begin to take inventory and prep for your upcoming produce shares:

Dry Goods:

Rice: my new favorite is Basmati, it cooks up way faster than traditional white rice

Quinoa: also a quick cooker

Potatoes: sorry we don't grow these just yet, but if anyone has a local source let me know!

Onions: we do grow green onions but the full fledged bulbs are something I grow in my personal garden


Bread Crumbs


Pasta: Trader Joe's red lentil pasta is the

Dried beans and lentils: I've taken to soaking and cooking my own, it takes a bit more forethought but the cost savings is significant



Olive Oil: my go to for salad dressings. Buy AZ local here, sooooo good.

Sunflower Oil: great for higher heat cooking

Coconut Oil


Vinegar: Versatile in marinades, dressings and stir fry. The kick of acid makes a big difference.

Rice Vinegar

Apple Cider Vinegar

Balsamic Vinegar







Trader Joe's Everything But The Bagel





Soy Sauce

Chili Garlic Sauce

Curry Paste

Tomato Paste

Coconut Milk

Tahini: homemade hummus is super easy and a great way to use up your carrots

Peanut Butter



Fresh Citrus

If you're looking at this list and thinking, yikes that's expensive, just start by buying a little each grocery trip. While I do tend to go through these ingredients pretty quickly, they do all last a long time even if I don't. Plus, once you taste your amazing new meals you won't want to spend as much eating out!

Which of these ingredients can you not live without?

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