5 Simple Pantry Dinners

Reach into your pantry for these quick, simple, and delicious weeknight dinners. We're using pasta, rice, canned tuna, jarred tomato sauce, and corn for popping!

March Meal Plan Week 5

Do you have certain pantry staples that you can’t live without? I always keep a variety of rice—short, medium, and long grain—and dried pastas on my shelves. I love Calrose medium-grain rice, and angel hair and fusilli pasta are family favorites.

Other must-have staples for my family? We always have corn for popping, canned olives, oil-packed tuna, pizza sauce, and canned tomatoes on hand for when we need an easy dinner and snacks. A well-stocked pantry lends to endless options when it comes to weeknight dinners.

I'm solving this week’s dinner dilemma by leaning on my pantry to my advantage. Below you'll find pantry-friendly crowd-pleasing meals to add to the rotation. Enjoy!

  • Chicken Scampi with Angel Hair Pasta

    Chicken Scampi with Angel Hair Pasta
    Aaron Hutcherson

    Pantry staples reign in this easy weeknight dinner. Angel hair pasta cooks in a mere 3 minutes, so make sure all the ingredients are prepped before beginning the recipe. Always check the pasta box for suggested cook times! Double the recipe to use a full pound of pasta.

  • Veggie Pizza

    Veggie-lovers pizza sliced.

    Simply Recipes / Sally Vargas

    Pizza toppings can always be found in my pantry. This recipe relies on staples like canned artichokes, pizza sauce, and olives. Bake it on a hot pizza stone for the crispiest crust.

  • Mediterranean Tuna Pasta

    Mediterranean Tuna Pasta
    Elise Bauer

    Go beyond tuna sandwiches and keep canned tuna in the pantry for easy weeknight dinners. This dish uses fusilli, a corkscrew-shaped pasta, for the cheese, tuna, and olives to snuggle with. Look for good-quality tuna packed in olive oil for the most flavor. Pack up leftovers for lunch the next day.

  • Pork Stir Fry With Green Onion

    Pork stir fry over white rice.
    Elise Bauer

    This 8-ingredient stir fry takes 30 minutes to throw together. If you'd like, add thinly sliced cabbage, bell peppers, mushrooms, or other quick cooking vegetables you have on hand. Serve it over medium-grain rice. I often cook rice in the Instant Pot, but the stovetop works perfectly fine too. 

    Continue to 5 of 6 below.
  • Instant Pot Porcupine Meatballs

    Porcupine meatballs in while bowl.
    Coco Morante

    Rice is unexpected and kind of fun in these beef meatballs. Serve them with a side of green beans with almonds and thyme.

  • Kettle Corn

    Side view of easy kettle corn in a teal bowl.

    Simply Recipes / Alison Bickel

    My family knows they can count on popcorn as a quick and easy treat. I always stock kernels in the pantry and pull them out whenever I can. This easy kettle corn can be made in just 5 minutes! Plus, it tastes WAY better than the microwavable kind. Give it a try!