The last year and some months has called greater attention to staying prepared for the unexpected. Padding our pantries to avoid ever finding ourselves without a needed ingredient is a practice that many committed to more seriously and as a standard unlike at any time in recent memory.
Having keto condiments, jams, crackers and beef jerky on your shelves, along with cream and fresh fruits and veggies in your fridge, can go a long way in making masterful low-carb meals exclusively using ingredients you already have at home.
Whether you want to broaden your creativity with a new culinary keto challenge or find yourself needing to make meals from what's in your pantry or fridge because you're living through a blackout or snowed in, there are loads of recipes to try, love, and continue to make even when power returns and the inches of snow have melted.
What are keto pantry staples?
Some ingredients are synonymous with the ketogenic diet: butter, bacon, and MCT oil come to mind immediately. But keto pantry and refrigerator staples refer to your chilled, canned, dehydrated, freeze-dried, frozen, and otherwise preserved foods you maintain in heavy rotation in your home.
Foods like canned meats and vegetables, and shelf-stable fats and oils are essential items to keep in stock to ensure you always have the foods needed to make meals without having to venture out to the store. And we’ll share some recipes to help you use up what you have on-hand while exploring new and tasty recipe ideas.
What Keto Staples do I need in my pantry?
The items kept in your home are as much a matter of preference as they are a necessity, but some keto fare appears in most any low-carb dieter's kitchens.
Here's a list of the usual suspects used to create the most delicious weight-loss promoting foods you've likely encountered:
Common Keto Pantry Staples
Nuts and Seeds
Nuts and seeds are fantastic foods to stockpile when following a keto diet as certain varieties are full of heart-healthy fats and muscle-building protein that make for great snacks, butter, and keto trail mix add-ins.
Please stick to the following nuts and seeds to keep carbs in check while benefiting from their brain-boosting nutrients and ideal keto macros:
- Brazil Nuts
- Macadamia Nuts
- Pili Nuts
- Cashews (in limited amounts)
- Chia Seeds
- Hemp Seeds
- Sunflower Seeds
Nut and Seed Butter
Pile varieties of nut and seed butter sky-high in your pantry for delicious and filling options to make keto-friendly PB&Js, or load onto crunchy homemade or store-bought keto crackers, for a quick and easy low-carb snack that takes mere moments to make.
- Shredded unsweetened coconut
- Liquid stevia
- Keto protein powder (Keto Shake)
- Carton keto-friendly milks (e.g., unsweetened almond, macadamia nut, coconut milk, etc.)
Keto Baking Flours/Powders
- Almond Flour
- Coconut Flour
- Lupini Flour
- Baking Powder
- Baking Soda
- Xanthan Gum
- Psyllium Husks
Access to tasty sugar replacements is essential on keto. However, avoiding carbs and simple sugars doesn't mean losing your love of desserts, confections, and other sweets. You only need alternative ingredients to create treats that won't compromise ketosis.
Here are some excellent sugar-free, sweetener alternatives to consider while following a low-carb, high-fat diet:
- Sugar-Free Syrup: Lakanto, Sukrin, Pyure, et al.)
- Granulated Sweetener: Swerve, SoNourished, King Arthur Sugar Alternative, People's Keto Allulose Sweetener, et al.)
- Brown Sugar Alternative: Swerve, Lakanto Golden, Sukrin Gold, et al.)
- Powdered Sugar Substitute: Lakanto Powdered, Swerve, Madhava Natural Sweeteners (Clean & Simple)—Simple Zero Calorie
Keto Recipes made with Kitchen Staples
Now that we've covered some everyday keto-friendly staples, you likely have well-stocked. Here's what to do with those delicious ingredients, especially on days when getting out to the supermarket isn't an option:
1 - Overnight chia pudding is the perfect pantry breakfast to set up in the evening and enjoy as you start the following day. Soak two tablespoons of chia seeds in a half cup of unsweetened coconut, almond, soy, or any other keto-friendly milk you prefer, for at least eight hours and you’re all set.
A chia pudding is packed with omega-3 fatty acids, provides a complete source of protein, and serves as the ideal base to create an endless variety of pudding concoctions—from a berry blast to a dessert-like peanut butter and chocolate chip creation.
- 2 - Making our Konscious Keto Strawberry Chia Smoothie recipe is a breeze, and you can whip it up in seconds with little more than a hearty scoop of our creamy Konscious Keto Strawberry Shake, your choice of milk, and a handful of ice.
3 - Pancake & Waffle Mix: Storing keto-friendly pancake and waffle mixes like those by Birch Benders or Keto and Co. is an excellent way to go from craving to eating in minutes.
Plus, keeping your pantry shelves lined with some of the sugar-free syrup options we've mentioned, or experimenting with making some with the aid of common ingredients like xanthan gum, will ensure that fluffy stacks of cakes doused in syrup are bountiful for breakfast.
Try our Strawberry Ricotta Pancakes, made with almond flour for an indulgent breakfast treat!
- 4 - No-Bake Chocolate "Oat" Bars are a fantastic recipe for anyone on the go or working from home needing easy meal prep foods to stay on track throughout the week. Plus, you can break the bars into shards or chips to eat as a keto-friendly cereal paired with whichever shelf-stable keto milk you have available.
- 5 - Grilled cheese is always a comforting and satisfying option, and you can make it with ingredients housed in your pantry or refrigerator. Storing cheese and butter in your pantry, along with bread mixes and a variety of flours, makes it easy to whip up this classic on a whim.
- 6 - Canning your favorite soups or grabbing extra cans and pouches, like the keto-friendly line made by Kettle & Fire, is an excellent heat-and-eat option to take from shelf to brimming warm bowl in minutes.
- 7 - Combining flavored lean proteins like tuna, salmon, or chicken stored in pouches can make everything from a creamy chilled salad to some seared savory cakes you can easily pair with tartar sauce or another dressing you have handy in the fridge.
- 8 - Salads are a fabulous way to finish your buttery heads of lettuce and delicate microgreens before they wilt. Plus, adding grape tomatoes, cucumbers, olives, and other produce on-hand in your fridge or pantry provides the perfect opportunity to rotate through your food supply.
- 9 - Pair green beans, sugar-free cream of mushroom soup, and fried onions to create a savory and decadent keto casserole.
- 10 - Broccoli and cheese soup is the perfect selection to prepare ahead and enjoy with a hearty side salad drizzled with a fatty and filling sugar-free dressing.
- 11 - Warm Me Up Slow Cooker Chili is the perfect recipe to brew in your InstantPot using the meat and veggies available in your fridge and pantry. Feel free to swap in alternative items if you're missing an ingredient suggested in our original recipe.
- 12 - Keto bowls are another great approach to use the foods you have on hand to create flavorful taco bowls, Cobb salad bowls, or a Greek salad bowl—perfect for any meal of the day.
- 13 - Gather the kiddos and bake a batch of keto-friendly cookies with the staple baking items noted above that are present in virtually every keto foodie's kitchen.
14 - Butter, cream cheese, and heavy cream are present in almost every keto dieter's arsenal; even if you're eating a plant-based keto diet, there are alternatives.
Use your staples to make keto cheesecake fat bombs to enjoy at the end—or beginning—of your main meal; they're a satisfying treat.
- 15 - Keeping canisters of Konscious Keto Creamy Chocolate shake around is the ideal ingredient to tap to bake a delicious batch of rich, chocolatey keto brownies. Plus, our shake is shelf-stable and perfect for stockpiling to avoid ever running out.
- 16 - If you have almond milk, almond flour, and eggs, you're off to a great headstart to having everything needed to make a bunch of apple cider keto donuts—perfect to pair with a wafting cup of hot chocolate this chilly fall season.
- 17 - Moon Cheese is an excellent snack to have handy at home to pop solo to crush a potato chip craving or use as low-carb bread crumbs. Use the breading to coat fish filets of your choice and fry to golden perfection.
- 18 - Jerky is a fantastic snack that packs loads of punch but doesn't require much room to store, so you can stock up on plenty of flavors without overcrowding your pantry shelves. Sear cubed jerky with eggs for a quick and easy keto breakfast scramble.
- 19 - Catalina Crunch and other companies produce cookies and other sweet treats that are perfect for keeping around in abundance to enjoy a lovely selection to avoid reaching for the sugar-filled fare throughout the week. Plus, the line offers a variety of cereal options perfect to use in a homemade keto trail mix blend.
- 20 - Plus, products like Smart Sweets gummy snacks are an excellent sweet option to keep in your arsenal to crush random sugar cravings with ease. These candies are amazing on their own or you can use them to create a colorful keto ice cream sundae.
Many staple ingredients and store-bought snacks are fabulous tools to use to add variety and increased security to our food supply. But, hey, no one wants to experience an itch to bake some brownies only to realize they're completely out of baking chocolate chips or fresh eggs.
Over time you'll notice commonly-used ingredients, called for repeatedly in many keto recipes. Take some time to analyze your grocery lists and online food purchases to determine which items you use most and buy extras when they're at the best price to maximize your budget.
Inclement weather, feeling less than stellar, or having many tasks to do at home can all make food shopping a lesser priority on our to-do list, and that's OK. Instead, buy a little extra each time you shop to ensure you have back-ups of your most commonly-used items, and you'll enjoy the flexibility and convenience of shopping from your home-based culinary coffers whenever the need arises.