15 Best Easy Pantry Meals

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Pantry meals are the perfect solution for busy families looking to create delicious and healthy recipes without breaking the bank.

Using pantry staples, you can whip up a variety of dinner recipes that are both nutritious and satisfying.

Whether you’re in need of a quick one pot recipe or a comforting homemade dish, these easy pantry meals have you covered.

From make-ahead dinners to classic chicken dinners, these budget recipes are ideal for any family dinner.

Explore a range of baked recipes perfect for potluck meals, versatile side dishes, and even summer recipes that will keep everyone coming back for more.

Best Cheap and Easy Pantry Meals

With these pantry meals, you can enjoy the convenience of having all the ingredients on hand, making meal prep a breeze.

Join us as we dive into some of the best pantry meal ideas that are sure to become your new family favorites.

1. Spaghetti and Meat Sauce

Spaghetti with meat sauce is the ultimate one pot recipe!

This homemade dinner recipe is easy to make, budget-friendly, and perfect for any night. Enjoy the convenience of make-ahead meals with this classic spaghetti dish.

Closeup of a Serving a slice of baked spaghetti topped with melted mozzarella.

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2. Easy Fried Rice

Chicken Rice Recipe is a perfect weeknight dinner idea! Simple to make.

This homemade fried rice tastes SO good.

This image shows Firecracker Spicy Rice up close, highlighting its spicy buffalo sauce-coated grains in red and orange hues. Green peas, orange carrots, yellow scrambled eggs, and green onion slices add a colorful and textured contrast, designed to convey the dish's vibrant appearance and rich flavors.

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3. Best Chicken Noodle Soup

Chicken noodle soup is a classic recipe that everyone loves.

This quick and easy chicken noodle recipe won’t disappoint.

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4. Million Dollar Chicken and Rice Casserole

Million Dollar Chicken and Rice Casserole is the ultimate one pot recipe!

This homemade chicken dinner is perfect for family dinners, offering a delicious and budget-friendly option. Enjoy this easy and comforting meal.

A freshly baked, golden-brown chicken and rice casserole in a white dish, topped with crispy, buttered Ritz crackers. Below lies a creamy blend of chicken, rice, and cheeses, seasoned to perfection, radiating warmth and home-cooked charm.

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5. Homemade Baked Beans

Homemade baked beans are the perfect one pot recipe for any occasion!

This baked recipe is ideal as a side dish for summer meals or a potluck meal. Enjoy the rich, savory flavors of homemade baked beans. Enjoy delicious summer recipes and potluck meals!

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6. Creamy Instant Pot Mac And Cheese

This is a Mac & Cheese with a twist. Creamy instant pot Mac & Cheese with just 5 ingredients.

This recipe is for a perfectly creamy instant pot mac and cheese that adults and kids alike will go crazy for.

It ticks all the boxes of our favorite comfort food and best of all, it only takes one pot.

Close-up of creamy mac and cheese served in a pristine white bowl, highlighting its rich consistency.
Creamy Instant Pot Mac & Cheese

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7. Instant Pot Chicken Pasta

Instant PotChicken Pasta with come together effortlessly in the Pressure Cooker!

Crockpot filled with creamy garlic parmesan chicken pasta.

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8. Instant Pot Lemon Chicken with Garlic

This Instant Pot Lemon Chicken with Garlic is an easy low carb / keto-friendly meal for spring.

Best of all, this pressure cooker chicken recipe cooks up tender, juicy, and full of flavor! 

 Instant Pot Lemon Chicken with Garlic
Instant Pot Lemon Chicken with Garlic
Photo Credit: Life Made Sweeter

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9. Ground Beef and Rice Skillet

Ground Beef and Rice Skillet is the perfect pantry meal!

This dinner recipe combines pantry staples into a delicious and healthy dish. Enjoy budget-friendly and easy-to-make ground beef and rice skillet for a nutritious family meal.

A single serving of Ground Beef and Rice Skillet Dinner neatly plated on a white dish, showcasing the colorful blend of beef, rice, and vegetables.

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10. Lemon Butter Pasta 

This vegetarian garlic butter pasta takes just 15 minutes from start to finish and uses only 6 ingredients!

It’s the easiest, most flavorful weeknight dinner ever and even the pickiest of eaters in your family are going to LOVE it!

A plate of vegetarian pasta with lemon, butter and garlic sauce.

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11. Easy Chicken Tacos

With a simple spice rub, the chicken is cooked so quickly on the stovetop! Dice into small pieces and serve with pico, avocado + lime!

I think this one of the best Taco Tuesday go-to weeknight meal for the next few weeks

Top view of a platter with three shredded chicken tacos on corn tortillas, generously topped with diced red onion, chopped cilantro, and a squeeze of lime.

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12. Best Ever Pancake Recipe

Easy Pancakes | Simple ingredients and a few minutes time is all you need to make this delicious pancake recipe.

Load these perfect pancakes up with fresh fruit or drown them in your favorite maple syrup. 

A stack of fluffy blueberry pancakes topped with fresh blueberries and a drizzle of maple syrup on a white plate.

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13. Shrimp Quinoa Salad

This Shrimp Quinoa Salad is fast, flavorful, and easily made in advance for speedy lunches and sides for work, school, or home!

A vibrant shrimp and quinoa bowl featuring juicy shrimp, fresh vegetables, and a zesty cilantro lime dressing for a healthy, flavorful meal.

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14. Traditional Potato Salad

This easy, traditional potato salad recipe, handed down from my grandma to my mom and then to me, has their secret tips that makes it the very best potato salad recipe every single time.

Traditional southern-style potato salad served at a family gathering.

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15. Ground Turkey Pasta

Ground turkey pasta is a delicious and healthy meal option! Discover easy recipes combining lean ground turkey with pasta for a quick and nutritious dinner.

A fork twirling a generous serving of Easy Minced Turkey Spaghetti, highlighting the succulent, finely minced turkey and perfectly cooked spaghetti in a flavorful sauce.

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