70+ Essential Vegan Staple Foods For Your Pantry

Written by: Merilin Vrachovska


Time to read 6 min

What are the vegan pantry staples you need to create delicious and nutritious plant-based meals?

In this article, you will find a vast list of ALL pantry staples you need on a vegan diet.

Let’s jump right in.

70+ Essential Vegan Pantry Staples

1. Legumes

legumes for your pantry

Legumes are an excellent pantry staple because of a couple of reasons.

They are high in protein, extremely versatile, and tasty.

You can consume them for any meal of the day and eat them both warm or cold.

There are so many delicious dishes with beans, lentils, or chickpeas; you can even create brownies and desserts with them!

Best of all, you have an enormous amount of different types of legumes to choose from:

  • Beans: Kidney bean, pinto bean, black bean, butter beans, mung beans, azuki bean, etc.
  • Peas: Yellow split peas, green peas, etc.
  • Lentils: Green lentils, red lentils, black lentils, etc.
  • Other legumes: Soybeans, chickpeas, fava beans, etc.

Benefits Of Legumes:

  • They contain antioxidants that help prevent cell damage and fight disease and aging.
  • The fiber and other nutrients benefit the digestive system and may help avoid digestive cancers.
  • Something else

2. Whole Grains

Whole grains are another group of healthy vegan pantry staples.

Unlike refined grains, whole grains contain the entire grain, including the bran and germ, which are a rich source of fiber.

Most refined grains are highly processed foods that have been stripped of their original nutrient content and fiber.

Fiber is essential for our health because it can help improve blood cholesterol levels and lower your risk of heart disease, stroke, and obesity.

Whole grains are also packed with nutrients, including protein, fiber, B vitamins, antioxidants, and trace minerals (iron, zinc, copper, and magnesium).

Some tremendous vegan pantry staples of whole grains include:

  • Whole grain pasta
  • Barley
  • Buckwheat
  • Corn
  • Bulgur
  • Oats
  • Millet
  • Amarant
  • Quinoa
  • Brown Rice
  • Rye / Spelt Bread
  • Wild Rice
  • Flour alternatives - coconut, chickpea, corn, rice, quinoa, buckwheat, oat, etc.

Benefits Of Whole Grains:

3. Nuts & Seeds

seeds and nuts for pantry

Nuts and seeds are versatile, super healthy, and good sources of protein, healthy fats, fibers, vitamins, and minerals. 

You can use them in so many different ways and add them to:

  • Your morning oats for some crunch
  • A smoothie for additional protein
  • Add them to steamed veggies or stir-fry
  • A salad for extra crunch and protein
  • Create delicious nutty desserts
  • Create delicious dressings

Here’s a list of nuts & seeds for your pantry:

  • Almonds
  • Cashews
  • Walnuts
  • Hazelnuts
  • Pistachios
  • Macadamia
  • Peanuts

If you are looking for nut-free options, consider the following seeds:

  • Hemp seeds
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Sesame seeds
  • Chia seeds
  • Flax seeds
  • Poppy seeds

Benefits Of Nuts & Seeds:

  • Everyday consumption of nuts and seeds can lower the risk of - high blood pressure, high cholesterol, abdominal fat, cancer, heart disease, and lung disease.

4. Essential Pantry Snacks

June Snack Box

The following snack ideas are great choices for stocking up your vegan pantry, and always having a healthy, vegan snack on hand:

  • Breakfast oatmeal - Oatmeal is another essential staple of any vegan pantry. They are so versatile, delicious, cheap, and filling! You can try out the Unsweetened Instant Oatmeal from Bakery On Main and have a healthy and yummy breakfast.

  • Chocolate - Endangered Species makes amazing chocolate with coconut & almond, and it is a perfect sweet staple to satisfy any cravings in the best possible way!

5. Vegan Protein Alternatives

tofu protein

Vegan pantry protein staples are a healthy option that is much higher in fiber and doesn’t contain saturated fat and cholesterol.

Some fantastic pantry staples for vegan protein include:

  • Tofu or tempeh - Both are made of soybeans, a whole protein source. This means they provide your body with all the essential amino acids it needs. The protein varies - usually between 13-20g per 3.5 ounces (100g). Both can be used in soups, stews, curries, chili, burgers, etc.

  • Soy chunks - Soy chunks are made of dehydrated soy flour. They are a superb vegan protein alternative since they have the same protein content as meat and a very similar chewy texture.

  • Seitan - Seitan is one of the richest sources of plant-based protein. It is also called wheat meat or wheat gluten, containing about 25 grams of protein per 3.5 ounces (100 grams).

  • Plant-based protein powder - Plant-based proteins are generally low in calories and fat and higher in fiber, antioxidants, vitamins, nutrients, and omega-3 fatty acids.

Benefits Of Vegan Protein:

  • Complete sources of protein
  • Increased intake of fiber
  • Improves digestion
  • It helps to maintain a healthy weight
  • Lower risk of cardiovascular disease and some types of cancers
  • Free of saturated fat and cholesterol
  • Free of added hormones & antibiotics

6. Spices and Herbs

herbs and spices for pantry

Spices are another must-have staple for a couple of reasons.

They posse antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antitumorigenic, anticarcinogenic, and glucose- and cholesterol-lowering properties.

Moreover, spices have a long shelf life and are an affordable option than buying bundles of fresh herbs every week.

There can be hundreds of different spices and spice blends available, but the following ones are essential and will help you to make even simple dishes to taste amazing:

  • Sea Salt
  • Black Pepper
  • Red Pepper Flakes
  • Paprika
  • Parsley
  • Oregano
  • Thyme
  • Rosemary
  • Basil
  • Sage
  • Cumin
  • Garlic Powder
  • Onion Powder
  • Ground Cinnamon
  • Nutmeg
  • Ground Cloves
  • Ginger Powder

Benefits Of Spices:

8. Other Vegan Staples

When going vegan, you might find new unique ingredients and products you never heard of before, such as nutritional yeast, coconut sugar, seitan, cashew cheese, etc. 

For further reading on how to overhaul your pantry, check out this Pantry Essentials Guide for more tips.

The following ingredients may not be something you use if you are new to veganism, but you will quickly realize that some of them will become your pantry staples:

  • Nutritional Yeast - It has a cheesy flavor and can also be sprinkled on many different dishes.

  • Plant-Based Milk - Non-dairy milk for all-purpose use in cooking, baking, smoothies, and coffee & tea. You can pick whichever you enjoy the most.

  • Cacao Powder - Ideal to have on hand for homemade hot chocolate, cakes, and desserts.

  • Coconut or Soy Cream - A vegan alternative to sour cream for various dishes.

  • Veggie Broth - Anytime a recipe calls for water, you can use veggie broth, enhancing the whole meal’s flavor.

  • Tomato Cans - Whole, diced, crushed tomatoes in your pantry are another essential thing to quickly create healthy, delicious meals.

  • Dates & Dried Fruit - They can be a healthy sweet snack, or you can use them as toppings in sweet or savory food to make recipes like bliss balls, homemade granola, etc.

  • Coconut Sugar, Agave, or Maple Syrup - Ideal sweeteners to add to your coffee, pour-over vegan pancakes or oatmeal, or make various desserts.

  • Nut Butter - If you aren’t a huge fan of nuts or have a more challenging time incorporating them into your diet, you can enjoy nut butter a bit more.


There you have it, friends - more than 70 vegan pantry staples you can stock up on and always have various ingredients to create delicious, hearty, and healthy meals.

Did I miss some vegan pantry staples you always have on hand? Tell us in the comments below!

Merilin Vrachovska

Merilin is a 25-year-old imperfect zero waste advocate, passionate about sustainability, veganism, and living harmoniously with nature. In her free time, she loves developing recipes for healthy & vegan sweets, traveling, and practicing yoga.

If you want to explore new vegan pantry staples, consider trying a Discovery Snack Box by Vegancuts!

Vegancuts curates monthly premium-quality Discovery Snack Boxes – include carefully selected products and brands that are always 100% vegan.

From vegan mac and cheese and delicious vegan chocolate to avocado chips, hummus crackers, and superfood smoothies.

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