Pack the Pantries: Kylee’s Kitchen shares filling recipes made with food pantry staples

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As the coronavirus crisis continues to hit some of the most vulnerable residents in the state, food pantries are more critical now than ever before. However, depending on what’s available, you may be stuck trying to figure out what to make with the items you received.

The last few years, I toured local food pantries to get an idea of the kinds of foods available, and then I created several recipes using the ingredients I found.

Here is a roundup of the recipes I created.

Egg Breakfast Sandwich


  • 1 English muffin
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 Tablespoon cheese, if available


  1. Split your English muffin with a fork and toast it by laying both sides face down on a skillet for about 1.5 minutes. Add cheese to 1 muffin half and set aside.
  2. Lay the ring of a mason jar lid onto the skillet crack an egg, and pour it into the ring. Use a fork to break the yolk so it flows into the white but it’s not completely scrambled. Cook the egg for about 2.5 minutes or until the white firms up.
  3. Remove the mason jar ring and carefully flip the egg. Cook for an additional minute and remove from skillet. Place egg on the muffin half with the cheese.
  4. Eat immediately or make ahead up to 3 days in advance.

Fruit & Yogurt Parfaits


  • 1/4 cup granola, plus 1 Tablespoon for sprinkling on top*
  • 1/4 cup frozen blueberries, plus 1 Tablespoon for sprinkling on top*
  • 1 cup yogurt, any flavor
  • 1 strawberry*


  1. Add 1/4 cup granola to bowl or mason jar. Layer 1/4 cup frozen blueberries and yogurt on top.
  2. Finish off by adding another Tablespoon of granola and frozen blueberries. Finish with a strawberry on top.
  3. Can be made up to three days in advance.

*You can substitute dry cereal for granola, and you can use any frozen or fresh fruit.

Easy Egg Toast Cups


  • 6 slices of bread
  • 1/4 cup cheese, if available
  • 6 eggs
  • Salt and pepper to taste


1. Preheat oven to 375.

2. Cut crust off bread and flatten with rolling pin.

3. Stuff bread into each cavity of a muffin tin. Bake for 5 minutes, or until bread is lightly toasted.

4. Remove from oven and sprinkle 1 to 2 teaspoons of cheese in center of toasted bread cup

5. Crack one egg into each cup and bake for 18 to 20 minutes, depending on how runny you like your egg yolk.

6. Remove egg toast cups from muffin tin and season with salt and pepper.

Easy Egg Salad


  • 6 hard-boiled eggs
  • 1/2 cup diced celery, if available
  • 1/2 cup diced onion, if available
  • 1/2 cup peas or other canned vegetable for added nutrition, if available
  • 1/4 cup mayo (or sour cream or plain non-fat Greek yogurt)
  • 2 teaspoons mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • Bread and lettuce for serving


1. Peel the eggs and cut into a rough dice.

2. Place in a large mixing bowl and add the celery, onion, peas, mayo, mustard, salt, and pepper

3. Stir to combine.

4. Serve egg salad on bread with lettuce

Chicken Fried Rice


  • 2 Tablespoons oil
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 3 eggs
  • 4 cups rice
  • 1 pound chicken, cooked
  • 1 can mixed vegetables
  • 5 Tablespoons soy sauce


  1. Prepare rice according to package instructions and cook chicken ahead of time.*
  2. Heat oil in large skillet on low and add green onions and garlic and cook for about 2 minutes, stirring intermittently.
  3. Push onion and garlic to one side of pan with spatula, and add eggs to empty side. Scramble eggs and cook until no longer runny. Stir everything back together so it’s evenly distributed throughout pan.
  4. Add rice, chicken, and mixed vegetables, and drizzle soy sauce evenly on top. Stir until everything is combined and heated through, about 2 minutes.
  5. Serve immediately or keep in airtight container in refrigerator for up to 5 days.

*If using a whole, frozen chicken let thaw before cooking and bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about 1.5 to 2 hours. Remove chicken meat from bones and dice into bite-size pieces.

Southwest Chicken Skillet


  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 2 teaspoons chicken bouillon
  • 1 1/2 cups uncooked white rice
  • 1 pound cooked chicken, shredded
  • 15-ounce can black beans, drained
  • 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 11-ounce can corn, drained
  • 1 cup salsa
  • 4.5-ounce can green chiles
  • 2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 cup cheese, if available


1. In a large skillet, mix together water and chicken bouillon. Add rice, chicken, black beans, diced tomatoes, corn, salsa, green chiles, and red pepper flakes to skillet and stir.

2. Place lid on skillet and let mixture come to a boil. Once it starts boiling, reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes.

3. Turn off the heat and let the skillet rest with the lid in place for an additional 5 minutes.

4. Remove lid, sprinkle cheese on top, replace lid, and let sit for just a few minutes until cheese is melted.

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