Pantry Shelves Go Vegan – A Beginner Vegans Food List

knightsBefore I begin, I just need to reassure you that I won’t send you on a quixotic quest to find an endless list of exotic sounding items. Stocking your pantry with vegan products is quite easy nowadays, and I wouldn’t worry too much about pricing either. Chances are that you already have several items that are vegan without even realizing it.

So, you can put your shield and armor away, and perhaps you could take notes on what you already have, so there won’t be much need to run to the store to stock up. With that being said, of course there will be some products that have never met your shelves and that you will have to get for a speedy introduction to your pantry.

Let’s start with the plant-based stuff that I am presuming you may or may not have. After all, vegan food means that it is plant-based, and even the most hardened meat eater has to buy some plant-based food once in a while. Eat your vegetables, like mommy always said 😉

Vegan Items That May Have Made it to Your Pantry Shelves Before

Well, let’s see. Have you ever bought any of the following? If not, they are sold in almost any store.

  • almonds
  • cashew nuts
  • peanuts
  • pecan nutsnuts
  • pine nuts
  • macademia nuts
  • pistachios
  • cranberries
  • strawberries
  • raspberries
  • soy
  • quinoa
  • rice
  • peanutbutter
  • fruits and vegetables (yes, well, that goes into the fridge, not the pantry 😉 )
  • Ritz crackers
  • avocado oil, coconut oil, grape seed oil
  • soy sauce
  • ketchup (preferably with the least amount of ingredients and no sugar)
  • tortillastortillas
  • cous cous
  • polenta
  • pasta (egg free)
  • beans
  • lentils
  • chickpeas
  • grains
  • oats
  • herbs and spices
  • maple syrup
  • coconut milk, almond milk, soy milk, rice milk, cashew milk, etc (we’re not really supposed to call it milk anymore, it should be almond drink – the dairy industry doesn’t like these delicious plant-based alternatives to be called milk

Shall I go on? How many of the above mentioned staples have you bought before? Several of them, right? Before I was vegan I always had large supplies of nuts, because they are my favorite snack. Except for the avocado oil, coconut oil, and grape seed oil, soy, and quinoa, I had most of these things in my pantry already.

More Vegan Items That May Not Have Made it to Your Pantry Shelves Before

Who knows, right? 😉 You may or may not have had the following items before. Nowadays the products I’m going to list here are easy to find. There are plenty of vegan stores, vegan food sections in supermarkets, and there is always the comfort of ordering online. Amazon is a good place to order vegan foods.

About ten years ago (or less) it was a little harder to find certain ingredients, because stores didn’t offer them. In my hometown, there was one vegan store at that time and all its products were imported, so a visit to that store sometimes left my wallet a little thinner.

Luckily though, many more vegan foods are available now, and as for pricing, that has improved a lot too. My wallet doesn’t complain anymore.



So, what are some useful items to have? Let me give you a list of some products that come in handy for several recipes.

  • nutritional yeast (it isn’t yeast in its traditional form, it is a tasty condiment with a hearty cheesy flavor and it’s rich in vitamins, including B12)
  • apple cider vinegar, balsamic vinegar, white wine vinegar, red wine vinegar
  • liquid aminos
  • dates
  • figs
  • spirulinachickpeas
  • matcha powder
  • chia seeds
  • flax seeds
  • hemp seeds
  • sunflower seeds
  • pumpkin seeds
  • sesame seeds
  • poppy seeds
  • almond butter
  • cashew butternutritional-yeast
  • tofu
  • dry shaved cononut
  • dark cocoa powder
  • hemp seed oil (and oils mentioned in my previous list) (this item is not really required in recipes – as far as I’ve seen – but it tastes delicious and is great for your health)
  • sesame oil
  • amaranth
  • milletavocado
  • tamari
  • sriracha
  • apple sauce
  • tahini
  • agave nectar
  • cane sugar
  • All the other items I mentioned in my first list 🙂
    • regarding veggies: root vegetables are great for recipes, and avocados, broccoli, kale, tomatoes, and anything else really
  • Vegan protein powder (optional, you can get this if you’re into protein shakes)


This list is not complete, but this is certainly enough to stock up on a vegan pantry. Then, when you want to try out some recipes, you have all the ingredients you need and you won’t have to rush to the store to get something at the last minute. If you have any questions or if you can think of an item I forgot to mention, please let me know in the comments.

But What About the Risks and Costs of a Vegan Diet?

As I mentioned before, costs have gone down considerably over the last years. When I go shopping, I don’t feel it as a strain on my wallet. Considering the many health benefits that come as a bonus with a plant-based diet, you can decrease or drop doctor’s visits, pills, and other medications, which saves you a lot of money and thus makes the costs of a vegan diet considerably lower.

There have been many reports of people who practically lived on a large daily dose of pills, who claimed that they no longer needed those pills after they went vegan, and who even reported improvement in their health.

See here the story of Diane and Judith who healed from arthritis and pre diabetes on a vegan diet 


Some people may argue about the “dangers” of going vegan, but the only peril I can think of are the streets you will have to cross to reach the stores. There are some reckless drivers out there, you know, so that may be a considerable danger about your vegan quest 😉 Always be careful and look left and right before you cross a street. 😉



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28 thoughts on “Pantry Shelves Go Vegan – A Beginner Vegans Food List”

  1. Yeah thank you so much for this great post, almost all the vegans products you mentioned has one point in time made it to my shelves and that feels so cool, arguably vegan diet don’t come as a burden or much of an expenses again, I think there has been a great reduction in cost of this plant based foods. 

  2. Hello Christine, this is a very good post here. Very nicely written list here. I think I must have been living as a vegan all my life without knowing it because some of the things you have written under the not usually in a person’s shelve is also part of what I take regularly. I believe that this is not a bad idea. I have been thinking of going vegan for a while now. Thank you so much!

  3. Thanks for this informative post, you have made this starter list for alot like me out there to get to know the pantry of a vegan. Some of the items on this list aren’t detailed, like all of the fruits and veggies one should stock but I guess it varies according to personal taste but all the same thanks for this amazing vegan list.

    • Hello,

      Yes, I thought about detailing the fruits and vegetables list, but there are so many out there, and – as you said – it depends  on personal taste, and on the recipes too, I suppose. All fruits and veggies are amazing, right?

      Thanks for stopping by 🙂

  4. Thank you for this article. I like the emoticons in your post. That’s a good idea to keep your pantry stocked so that when you want to make a vegan recipe, everything is there. Have you ever tried Pea protein powders? Are they good for you? Also do you think it’s possible to do bodybuilding or powerlifting on a vegan diet? Thank you!

    • Hello, I haven’t tried pea protein powder yet, but I would like to. When I find it in a store, I’ll definitely try it out. I like the taste of peas, so I imagine it will taste really good.

      There are vegan bodybuilders and they look amazing. There is a lot of information about vegan bodybuilders, their diet, and the benefits of the vegan diet for their bodies. Check out Patrick Babouhiam, he is considered one of the strongest men worldwide (see below link), there are also many others.

  5. Vegan is all the rage these days, and with good reason! It’s nice to live in a day and age when people are becoming more and more health conscious, especially when it comes to food. I am definitely not a vegan professional, so a post like this is really helpful for me. Though I must admit I am not a full-time vegan, I do try and eat vegan from time to time as I feel it’s beneficial to the digestive. I like most of the items on your list, so I will definitely take a page out of your post here, thank you so much!

    • Hello, I’m glad you liked the items on the list. With them you can create many delicious vegan meals. If you’d like to know more recipes, feel free to check out my other articles 🙂 

  6. Considering the number of people given in to the vegan diets, getting vegan foods are made readily available often these days and not as stressful as it has once been. Now, I can July st work up to a grocery store to get a couple. Most of the food listed here at a point in time have made it to my shelves and definitely more and more would having seen the open list you have shared here. Thanks

  7. Hello Christine,

    I found your article quite refreshing, to know that there are many “normal” products that are very often in my pantry and are that they are vegan.

    I am not a vegan but anyone reading this who is, or deciding to become one will find a comprehensive list of items they probably already have. I suppose with anything the more popular it becomes the price comes down. So I am glad that these food products are not all that expensive.

    A balanced diet, coupled with beneficial exercise is my key to health.

    Great article.

    Thank you


    • I agree, a balanced diet, with beneficial exercise is the key to health. I don’t exercise, but I am always moving around, doing things, walking a lot 🙂

  8. Hallo there Christine, 

    Quite a nice list you have here. As a newbie in the vegan field, I am trying to get the best items to get onto my pantry shelves because I have taken the transition to being a vegan very seriously and I don’t want to see things that distract me from this new life. In your first list, I have counted and seen I have around 12 of the items already. Although I will be adding the rest pretty soon. 

    I actually have nothing in the second list. Lol. But I am grateful that I am able to order them online without hassles, like you had years ago with the one store that was available at the time. Thanks a lot for preparing this list for us rookies. It is really going to go a long way for me. Have and awesome day!

    • Hi Dave, I’m so glad this post was helpful to you 🙂 

      Feel free to check out my other articles where I share recipes and other tips 🙂 

  9. Hello there, thanks for sharing such useful post. Vegan diets have been one i have had in mind for a long time now and I must admist seeing a vegan diet for starter makes me really excited because currently I’m on a keto diet buy I wish to try something new real soon. Looking at these suggestions you have given here, I’m pretty convinced I’ll do well with it. But my little problem here is getting nuts because they are quite expensive here. But must importantly I have had issues with feeling drowsy when u change diet, what do you suggest i do as I have plans on going to vegan diet soon?

    • Hello,

      I don’t know where you live, but the nuts that are the least expensive are peanuts and perhaps pecans. Some other nuts can be more expensive, but sometimes I buy them in bulk and then they turn out to be a little better priced. I guess it all depends where you live 😉

      I am not sure why someone can feel drowsy when changing a diet, perhaps because certain nutrients are not covered? I am no doctor 😉 I can only speak from the experience I’ve had. Protein-rich plant foods are usually great against drowsiness, or perhaps a plant-based protein based powder supplement. There are actually many plants that have a healthy amount of protein. Green tea is also rumored to help not feel drowsy. I hope that this helps?

  10. Good afternoon Christine,

    I must start with saying I am not a vegan as I sometimes eat meat albeit seldom. I do enjoy the eggs of my happy chickens which live here as long as they last.  Recently an old one died who had lived a happy chicken life of more than 10 years.

    I looked at your list and nearly all, with a few exceptions, form part of my healthy diet.

    I do not eat anything soy, Ritz crackers, or ketchup. The other day I cooked my own tomato sauce which I deepfreeze to have enough stock for the rest of the year. I try to avoid products which are man-made.

    From reading your second list I realize I also have nearly all these products. I try to eat as close to nature as possible and that is why my health is great at 69.

    I do confess I need a piece of black chocolate and my glass of red wine each evening to keep me happy.

    It is true that people eat too much meat and that most of the time animals are treated in a cruel way. That is why I eat the meat of organically raised animals, but as I said very seldom.


    • Hi Taetske, 

      Your chickens are happy and get to live long, natural lives, I think that is wonderful 🙂 I’m glad you have most of the items on the list I shared, and it’s great to hear that you are in good health 🙂

      I also love chocolate, especially dark chocolate, guilty as charged 🙂 

  11. Very, very, interesting blog. I didn’t realize how much of our world is affected by what we eat. The amount of water it takes to make beef, eggs are unbelievable. That in it self should help to sway you to go vegan. I’m going to research this more, thanks, Deanna 

    • Hi Deanna,

      yes, it’s unbelievable how much water is used to produce beef, pork, and other animal products … It’s shocking how much of our world is affected by it.

  12. Hey Christine!
    Onionsnbugs from WA.
    Loved this: “Some people may argue about the “dangers” of going vegan, but the only peril I can think of are the streets you will have to cross to reach the stores. There are some reckless drivers out there, you know, so that may be a considerable danger about your vegan quest ? Always be careful and look left and right before you cross a street”

    Really enjoy your writing style. Very easy to read.


  13. I have been swinging to the vegan lifestyle for sometime now! Swinging because I have fully committed to it yet. However, I have been making small steps and your article has for sure helped me to take another small step. Most that you have on the list I have already in the pantry. But of course I can always just keep adding more such as the various seeds. Thanks again, this has definatley help me progress my vegan lifestlye dreams!

  14. Hi Christine. Almost all the products described by you consume them. And for me nuts are a favorite snack. It is helpful for the brain and avoids osteoporosis. In addition, they are very tasty. But from time to time, I eat meat and eggs. I know that our body also needs the protein of animal origin.


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