27 Innovative Recipes With Pantry Staples
Don’t have access to fresh greens and foods that are perishable and have a low shelf-life? Here are 27 delicious recipe ideas using pantry staples.
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By definition, pantry staples have a long shelf life. These include a whole list of flours, sugar, pulses, and legumes, and types of rice too. While the entire world is going through a period of acute crisis and we really need to focus on minimum wastage of food and maximum utilization of leftovers, using more staples from the pantry is the need of the hour. Here’s a list of innovative dishes you could make you could make using ingredients that are usually always available in our kitchens. For your convenience, we have categorized these 27 recipes ideas under Snacks, Main course and Dessert.
Table of Contents
Indian Snack Recipes With Pantry Staples
1. Eggless Whole Wheat pancakes
With the goodness of whole wheat, milk, butter, and sugar, these pancakes are ideal for kids’ breakfast. They turn out super fluffy and since no maida is added, just a tiny amount of baking powder gives it the airiness. Followed by a generous topping of honey on the pancakes, which makes it a good way to start your day and a side of fruits to add to your fiber and vitamin C intake, this recipe is pretty simple to put together in minutes.
2. Daliya Pulao
Convenient to make and a one pot meal for the whole family, Daliya Pulao is a wholesome, nutritious and easy to digest meal made with broken wheat (daliya), mixed seasonal vegetables, different kinds of spices and ginger garlic paste, all pressure cooked to perfection. Serve it with boondi raita or plain yogurt and it becomes a better option than the regular rice based pulao. Whole wheat is high in fibre and so are the vegetables, along with the vitamins and a good source of overall energy. Spices like cumin, turmeric, red chilli powder, garam masala are good for overall immunity and packed with loads of flavour. Add a dash of lemon juice to cut through the masalas and a bit of summery tanginess to the recipe.
3. Misal Pav
A popular Maharashtran street food, Misal Pav consists of sprouts cooked with ginger garlic paste, cumin powder, garam masala, coriander powder, red chilli powder, mustard seeds, garnished with onions, tomatoes, farsan (fried savory mixture), lemon juice and served with pav. This dish being so versatile, makes for a wholesome snack and can also be served as lunch or dinner. With sprouts as the main hero of this recipe, the dish is loaded with protein and balanced with right amount of carbs and the ‘chatpata’ flavor leaves you asking for more.
4. Rajma Galouti kebab
Rajma curry is one of the most commonly cooked dishes across North India. It’s a dish of pure indulgence and here’s a clever way of reusing this dish if you are struggling with leftovers – make kebabs, simple enough? All you need to do is strain rajma from its curry (use the curry for another dish) Once you have dry rajma separated, pulse it in the grinder with some broken bread pieces, chopped coriander, red chilli powder and salt. Once it is thick and perfectly ground (not pasty), mix it with boiled, mashed potatoes, chopped onions and chat masala. Make tikkis out of it and shallow fry. A perfect evening snack or a veg burger option for the family.
5. Poha cheese balls
Kids love cheese balls and this dish comes with an interesting twist to the popular recipe. The filling consists of all things healthy- soaked & drained poha, boiled mashed potatoes, finely chopped vegetables like carrots, bell pepper and onions, flavoured with ginger garlic paste, seasoned with salt, black pepper and cumin powder. After mixing these ingredients and making bite size balls from them, stuff in a small cube of cheese and shape them back into small balls. Once done, they go into hot oil for frying & come out crispy on the outside & gooey on the inside.
6. Masala Bread
This simple, quick and yummy snack is made with bread, tomato onion and ginger garlic paste. Pav bhaji masala along with garam masala, cumin, salt, chilli powder and kasuri methi come together to pack a bomb of flavour, finished with chopped onions, fresh coriander leaves and an adequate sprinkle of chaat masala as a garnish. This dish is apt for an evening snack that can be made with whatever bread you have in your pantry. And can be enjoyed by any age group of the family.
7. Tandoori hummus
One of the most loved dips that is equally enjoyed as a spread too, hummus is a Mediterranean dish that is rich in plant based protein. It is also rich in vitamins and antioxidants. A mix of tahini, with sautéed onions, boiled chickpeas tandoori masala, chopped red chilli, garlic, salt, black pepper, lemon juice blended together gives this Hummus is an interesting twist with the tandoori flavours and promises to satisfy the Indian taste buds.
8. Oats spread
Who said Oats are only meant to be enjoyed with milk as breakfast. Here’s a spread you can slather on your toast and make a super healthy variation to your sandwich spread. Saute chopped garlic in olive oil and roast oats along with it. Add water to soften the oats and cook with Italian herbs, salt, pepper, soaked mixed nuts (almond/ cashew nut/ seeds). Once cooked, blend into a smooth consistency by adding little bit of milk to see how thick or thin would you like the spread to be. Excellent source of calcium and fatty acids, this spread is an interesting idea to consume oats for breakfast or a mid-meal snack.
9. Leftover Roti upma
Leftover chappatis are a common sight and a pet peeve for most of us. With simple ingredients and a quick dash of flavour, here’s a recipe that lets you reuse your leftover chappatis the next morning for breakfast. In a heated pan, add oil, mustard seeds, cumin seeds, urad dal, chana dal, curry leaves, red chillies and saute. Add in onions, tomatoes and green chillies and mix well, add salt and cook well. Put in roughly chopped rotis, pour some water and let it cook. Garnish and serve.
10. Arbi Paratha
It’s not every day that putting together a wholesome meal seems like an easy option. Sometimes a paratha filled with vegetable makes it a complete meal and a total time-saver. Arbi paratha is rich in vitamins and carbs and when served with plain yogurt or raita, it adds to your calcium and protein intake too. Arbi (peeled & boiled) is cooked the traditional way in mustard oil with carom seeds, heeng, ginger garlic paste, red chilli powder, garam masala, amchur powder, cumin powder and salt. Once cooked and mashed, its ready to be used as a filling for the parathas and can be relished with any pickle too.
11. Mixed Dal Handvo
Handvo, is a traditional Gujarati savory cake made from rice, lentils and mixed vegetables. A fermented batter is prepared by grinding soaked rice, chana dal, toor dal and urad dal with yogurt and left to ferment for 8-10 hours. Mixed vegetables like lauki, carrot, green peas, fresh coriander, green chilly ginger paste and seasoned with sugar, kashmiri red chilli powder, haldi powder, salt and baking soda, added to the fermented batter. After mixing all the ingredients, bake the handvo in an oven and temper with heeng, mustard seeds, jeera, sesame seeds and curry leaves cooked in hot oil. Serve with green chutney
12. Sabudana khichdi
A popular dish that is gluten-free, a great alternative to wheat, is light on the stomach, easy to digest, provides energy and one of the most popular fasting recipes for everyone. Wash and soak sabudana grains until they are separate and moist. Heat ghee in a pan, roast peanuts until red and remove. Add curry leaves, cumin seeds and chopped green chillies, followed by boiled potato cubes, sabudana, roasted peanuts and salt. Garnish with fresh coriander leaves and a dash of lime juice. Perfect for breakfast time or evening snack time.
13. Besan Sooji dosa
A simple dosa recipe that contains all your pantry staples, if you end up running out of dosa batter or are in the mood to just experiment with a slightly different and more nutritious version of Dosa. Besan makes this recipe rich in protein, vitamins and minerals and sooji balances it with carbs and energy. Mix equal amounts of sooji and besan with salt, baking soda, buttermilk to make dosa batter. You can keep the fillings versatile according to availability. Whether it’s a mix veg filling of bell peppers, beans, carrots, tomatoes, potatoes, green chillies, seasoned with salt and garam masala, or the traditional potato filling with a tempering of mustard seeds, curry leaves and chana dal, this recipe gives you the freedom to play with. A filling and satisfying option for lunch or dinner and can also be made into uttapam and enjoyed with coconut chutney.
14. Dry fruit paratha
Dry fruits like almonds, cashews, pistachios are a rich source of healthy fats, omegas, protein, vitamins and minerals and help you keep a good immune system. This paratha recipe is made with a mix of any powdered dry fruits that you may have in your pantry. Fill the rolled out paratha dough with the dry fruits mixture, followed by fried onion, salt, red chili flakes and coriander leaves. Cover with another rolled out paratha and join them together (like you make a 2 layer paratha with filling inside.) Once ready, serve with raita, pickle, chutney or any side dish that you may fancy.
15. Moong dal mangodi
A Rajasthani dish where moong dal is soaked overnight, grinded and then these delicious mangodis are cooked. The curry for this dish can be made with either tomatoes and onions or the simple curd curry. Moong dal for Mangodi is soaked overnight and grinded to a fine paste next morning. Drop small spoonfuls of the batter in hot oil and fry to golden brown color. Once curry is ready, soak the prepared mangodi in hot salty water. After 15 minutes squeeze the mangodis for removing excess water and add them to curry. Let it cook for another 3-4 minutes. Garnish with garam masala and fresh coriander leaves.
16. Papad ki sabji
A traditional Marwadi dish prepared with ingredients that are easily available in most Indian kitchens. The recipe mainly consists of fresh yogurt and spices hence it is prepared without any vegetables. Use of raw papad in this recipe is highly recommended than roasted papad. Spices include to make this dish include mustard, jeera, heeng, curry leaves, haldi powder, chilli powder, coriander powder and ginger garlic green chilli paste. To this add a finely chopped onion, once brown, add water and whisked curd to the spice mixture. After stirring on low flame add broken pieces of papad followed by salt. Mix well. Lastly add garam masala, kasuri methi and fresh coriander. Serve with chappatis.
17. Kala chana nimona
Nimona is a popular dish in UP/ Bihar and is made by coarsely grinding the star ingredient of the curry. Common versions include hare chaney ka nimona and matar ka nimona. For this dish, soak kala chana overnight and coarsely grind it next morning and keep aside. Add the following spices to a hot pan- cumin seeds, bay leaves, onions, cardamoms, cinnamon stick and green chilies. Sauté until light brown. Add cubed potatoes, ginger garlic paste and fry, later add ground chana and continue cooking. Add rest of the spices (coriander powder, cumin powder, chili powder, salt, turmeric) and tomatoes and again cook for some more time till potatoes are done. To complete, add a tadka of desi ghee and cumin seeds to the dish. The consistency of nimona is soupy and rich and pairs well with rice or chappatis.
18. Dhokla curry
This curry is unique as it takes the regular dhokla to the next level, as mostly takes everyone by surprise. Dhokla being spongy in nature absorbs the masalas from the curry very well and also the juices of the curry are soaked up by the dhokla too, making the curry thick and sumptuous.
For the process, prepare dhokla through a premix or with fresh ingredients. To proceed with the curry, heat oil and let cumin seeds splutter, add bay leaf, cinnamon, cloves and black pepper. Add onions, ginger garlic paste, chopped tomato and some sugar and cook. Now add red chilli powder, turmeric powder, cumin powder and coriander powder and cook till masala is done. Grind this masala (without the bay leaf) into a paste. The paste goes back into the pan and add buttermilk and water. Cook for sometime and add dhokla pieces to it.
To garnish, add kasoori methi and enjoy this delicious dish with plain parathas.
19. Kadhi khichdi
The best part of this dish is that its 100% comfort food and a one pot meal with the goodness of rice, lentils and vegetables drizzled with a yogurt based curry. It can be further enjoyed as a delicious dinner along with roasted papad. The process is simple and involves staples from your pantry.
To make khichdi, heat ghee in a pot, add cumin seeds, minced onion and fry. Season with salt and turmeric powder. Add a few cups of any mixed vegetables (potatoes, peas, carrots, cauliflower, green beans, spinach, tomatoes, etc.) Add (previously soaked) rice and lentils (combination of red and yellow split lentils) Add water and simmer until done.
For kadhi- mix plain yogurt and water, add besan, sugar and salt in a bowl and whisk together. Heat oil for tempering and add curry leaves, minced ginger, red chillies, mustard and cumin seeds. Once the tempering is sizzling, add the yogurt mixture and bring to boil. Simmer it and stir constantly until besan is cooked. Pour over khichdi or keep as a side dish and enjoy.
20. Honey Chilli potatoes
A favourite Indo Chinese dish for all age groups. Batter fried potato fingers that are super crispy and coated with sweet- spicy sauce make a delicious side dish for lunch or dinner time.
Peel and cut potatoes into fingers. Coat them in a mixture of corn flour, maida, salt, chilli powder and garlic paste. Deep fry them once and let cool. It is advisable to fry them again so they do not lose their crispiness. For this, mix maida and cornflour in water, dip the fried potato fingers in it and re fry. The last step is to coat them in a sesame honey chilli sauce (oil, finely chopped garlic, red chilli flakes, white sesame seeds, vinegar, soy sauce, tomato ketchup, honey, red chilli paste, corn flour, chopped spring onions) that adds an extra layer of texture and is sweet and spicy.
21. Dal Pizza
Soak rice and mixed dals (toor dal, urad dal, chana dal, moong dal, red masoor dal) together for a few hours and grind these together with salt and garlic and some water.
In a heated pan, smear some oil and pour the mixture in a small round shape. Once cooked, flip over and cook again. Once done, smear some pizza sauce or tomato ketchup on it and add your favourite seasonings on top- chopped tomatoes/ corn/ onion/ bell pepper/ mushrooms/ olives etc. along with grated cheese and pasta seasonings. Bake in oven and serve hot.
21. Sabudana laddoo
A gluten free dessert that is extremely easy to make and tastes delicious too. While being light on the tummy, it is high on carbohydrates and energy, thus making it a wonderful option to eat during fasting or otherwise. Made with finely ground sabudana, roasted in desi ghee and added with desiccated coconut, crumbled mawa, ground nuts, superfine sugar and a dash of milk, these laddoos are super gooey and instantly melt in your mouth. Store in airtight container and they will last for almost 2 weeks.
22. Makhana halwa
Makhana Is rich in calcium, protein, carbohydrates, phosphorous, iron, thiamine and zinc and because of its neutral taste, Makhanas are one of the most versatile ingredients that can be eaten as a savoury snack or added to desserts or even used in a curry. This recipe is a unique variation to the usual halwa recipes.
Grind makhanas to a powdery consistency, almost like flour. Dry roast the flour in a pan until golden brown. Keep aside. Add ghee to the same pan and add the flour, sugar and water and cook till sugar dissolves. Add chopped mixed nuts and remove from flame. Let it cool and serve.
Also Read: Cooking 101: Guide To Gluten-Free Flours
23. Almond Jaggery toffee
With just 4 ingredients from the pantry, this dessert snack is not just a quick one to make but also healthy and the perfect way to satisfy sweet cravings. Sugar (in this recipe sugar has been substituted with jaggery) has the tendency to uplift our moods and almond adds to the overall benefits by providing vitamin E, calcium, magnesium, potassium protein and essential fibre to our diet.
For the recipe – dry roast almonds and keep aside. Cook jaggery with water and keep stirring until it dissolves well in water and starts thickening. At this moment add butter and mix well. Once Jaggery is turning into a thick sauce, start dipping almonds one by one so the jaggery sauce gets coated nicely and evenly on them. Transfer to a butter paper (one at a time). As the jaggery crystallizes, it turns into a caramelised sticky jaggery toffee over the crunchy almonds. Enjoy!
24. Healthy Bournvita Raisins Muffins
Every kid loves bournvita and muffins. This recipe brings these 2 favourites together to make any kid happy during this time of forced holidays.
To prepare – Whisk the eggs until light and frothy. Add oil and continue whisking until combined, put sugar (or jaggery), vanilla essence and continue whisking. In a separate bowl, sift in flour, bournvita, baking powder, salt, and lastly add raisins. Gently fold in the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, do not overmix. Add milk very gradually so as to not have too much liquid into the batter. Put into greased moulds and bake at 180 degrees for 15 min or until a skewer comes out clean when inserted into the center. Once the muffins have cooled, let the fun begin!
Also Read: Best Health Drinks in India – Mishry Reviews
25. Suji Banana and Raisins Cake
This cake recipe is innovative, healthy and fun at the same time. It is sweetened with banana, dates and raisins. And to add moisture to the cake, the quantity of oil has been kept to bare minimum and it’s substituted with banana and yoghurt.
Start with mashing bananas, add oil, yogurt, finely chopped dates, vanilla essence and whisk well. Keep aside. In a separate bowl mix suji, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Gently fold the dry ingredients into wet ones. Do not over combine. Add the raisins now and mix gently. Pour the batter in a greased baking pan and sprinkle cardamom powder on top. Bake this cake for 20 minutes on 180 degrees or until the knife test shows it is done. Once cool, de-mould and cut into cubes and serve with hot cup of tea or coffee in the evening.
27. Cereal and Jaggery laddoos
This interesting recipe kills 2 birds with one stone. 1. It is a perfect dessert option when the craving for something sweet at night. 2. If taken with a glass of milk, it’s a complete breakfast for kids and adults alike. With the nutrition of oats, nuts, ghee, and jaggery- it’s bound to be a winner in every household.
Dry roast muesli and then grind it coarsely. Heat jaggery in a pan and let it melt. Now add muesli, jaggery, cinnamon powder, almond powder, cashew powder and ghee in a separate bowl and mix together. Once it starts binding, Rub some ghee in your hands and start making small balls/ladoos out of it. Now roll the laddoos in desiccated coconut (if available) and serve.