my pantry

Ok, well here it is. my pantry. Don't be shocked by how little food there appears to be in here. It's just that I don't buy many prepared foods, few canned goods at all. I make my beans and rice from scratch and pair those with fresh produce. So I really just keep beans, lentils, rice, pasta and lots of vinegars and oils and nuts. I've had people ask me where I keep my food while they are standing in the pantry. So anyways this little room was a nightmare when we got the house. It is much better now. Lots of beadboard and white paint. The only thing that remains of the original is the pull chain for the light.

So the real point of this post is to tell you about the simple substitutions that I use in my everyday cooking. These ingredients are amazing and make vegan cooking so, so easy.

I use nutritional yeast as a substitute for cheese. By mixing it with nuts in the food processor it makes a delicious topping for pastas, pizza, chili and soups. You can sprinkle it directly onto popcorn and it has a yummy parmesan taste to it. Egg Replacer is great in baked goods. Earth Balance margarine, probably the best margarine ever made. It is so creamy and delicious w/o the heavy fatty taste of real butter. Veganaise, I love this mayonnaise. I use it everyday for sandwiches and salad dressings. I also included agave syrup which I use daily instead of regular sugar. It has a really low glycemic index rating. One other thing I do daily is instead of discarding the peelings and ends of my veggies, I collect them in a bag throughout the week. Then I'll just pop them into a soup pot with cold water and seasonings and cook them for about an hour. I let it cool then strain the broth into containers so that I don't have to buy prepared vegetable stock. It keeps the waste down and saves money.

I post my weekly menus more for inspiration than anything. I spent quite a few years as a professional chef so lots of my recipes are in my head or are a combination of 2 or more recipes. There are so many good cookbooks and websites out there. I will try to start writing things down as I make them, cooking times, temperatures, etc. But again, if you see something that sounds good, just pop over to vegetarian times and they will most likely have the recipe or something like it. I hope this was useful to you. Happy cooking!


  1. Hi Janet, You should share your pantry on "the perfect pantry" blog. She shows other peoples pantry's at the end of each week and it is so interesting. Not to mention the fact that Lydia is an amazing cook and has the most diverse pantry of spices and staples I have ever seen. Its alot of fun and I think people would be very interested in a Vegan point of view! best~*~kelley

  2. Such a change in that pantry! It looks so fresh and pretty. I wish I had storage space like that in my house. Thanks for your comment Janet re the Sarah Lamb paintings. I think they are very expensive and unfortunately way beyond my budget! It's nice to admire them though.


  3. Love your pantry.

    Oh dear, mine is paltry knowing about yours.

    Thanks for the vegan tips. Not vegan but will use your tips. Less & less meat all the time.

    Garden & Be Well, XO Tara

  4. Now I understand Janet... you were... and are.. a professional chef!!! this is why you post all that very organized menus!!
    I love, love , love your pantry and love the before and after pictures, a great makeover, a very wonderful one.
    María Cecilia

  5. Love that orgnic agave from Trader Joe! Your pantry is beautiful...such a wonderful little space (well compared to my pantry, it's a big space)! Good for you for eating so healthy!! I'm with you...

    :) T

  6. LOVE your pantry Janet! I've always wanted a walk-in pantry! The white bead board is beautiful - and what a luxury to have a window! We use the Earth Balance and Veganaise too, both are yummy. xoTrina

  7. Love your well organized pretty pantry Janet!!
    Would love to hear more about your prof chef days.. do you still do that? At a restaurant or private chef? Were you a vegan chef? How long have you been a vegan? Too many questions? Sorry!!! Just so interesting!

  8. Beautiful! I just love the white paired with wicker baskets/floor boards. Very inspiring. I also love your menus! I'll be wandering back.

  9. I can't imagine eating like that all the time...I try to be good and eat alot of fresh things and I do cook scratch, but I have to also have my candy, crackers, chips and popcorn...Thanks for sharing your pantry with us it is a 5* if I have ever seen one!

  10. HI, Janet, what a beautiful pantry! I would love to have a space like that. Mine is tiny.

    Thank you SO much for dropping by, I hope you will come back & visit again. I'm always up to some fun things over there.

  11. Janet,
    I'm not a vegan but I'm allergic to eggs so I was interested in this post. I've used the egg replacer for a few things successfully and I think Veganaise tastes amazingly close to the real thing. I was wondering if you have any good cake recipes using the egg replacer. Whole Foods here in Cambridge carries a vegan Carrot Cake with tofu cream cheese frosting that's amazing but the vegan chocolate cakes are alway a BIG disappointment. I might try some of your other recipes as well. I love my meat but some of them sound great...steve

  12. One more thing, I forgot to mention how much I like your mix of wood, black, and white. The bamboo shelf is just the right touch next to the black (or is really dark wood? no matter) table.


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