Everyday Meals

Vinegar and tinned veg are top store cupboard items likely to stay untouched

Vinegar, stock cubes, and tinned vegetables are some of the most unloved foods in the nation’s kitchen cupboards – with many of them languishing unused for five YEARS or more, due to lack of food inspiration. Pantry staples have topped a list of the top 50 items which are likely to remain unused a year or more after being purchased.

Tinned tuna, chickpeas, and various herbs and spices also made the list, as did gravy and nuts.

And soy sauce, kidney beans, and dried pasta are other foodstuffs lying unused in the nation’s pantries.

The research of 2,000 UK adults found three-quarters feel uninspired by what’s in their store cupboards.

And almost a third (32 percent) experience the “store cupboard stare” – often looking in their pantries and fridges and walking away unenthused by what’s there.

When staring absently to see what they have in stock, 12 percent feel it’s “too much effort” to decide what to make – and 11 percent don’t think they’re creative enough to turn old ingredients into exciting dishes.

To tackle the lack of mealtime inspiration, the rice brand Tilda has created a recipe generator tool that helps you to make the most of your cupboard staples.

The poll was commissioned by the rice brand as part of the launch of their latest flavour, Ready to Heat Golden Vegetable Rice.

Spokeswoman Anna Beheshti said: “We know people lead busy lives, with little time to cook tasty and balanced dishes, including vegetables.

“In a bid to cut down on costs and make life a little bit more affordable, simple meals with fewer ingredients are increasing in popularity.

“All that’s needed is a little inspiration to help people make the most of their store cupboard staples.”

The research went on to find that with the recent increases in the cost of living, Brits have been purchasing 15 percent more “cupboard items” to bolster their store cupboards, and to help reduce the overall cost of their shopping baskets.

And 23 percent have been delving into the depths of their cupboards more over the last six months, to create more affordable meals.

However, 15 percent believe they have had ingredients lurking in the back of cupboards for five years or longer.

And a further 14 percent never seem to make their way through an entire bag of pasta, while 12 percent don’t know how to use up all their mustard.

However, nearly a third (30 percent) believe rice is the easiest cupboard staple ingredient to use – with 42 percent seeing it as a staple ingredient suitable for all of the family.

When it comes to food occasions, Brits struggle most to feel inspired to make a midweek dinner (42 percent) – while weekend lunches are the easiest.

Meanwhile, 15 percent aren’t even sure when was the last time they tried to create a meal purely with what they already had in cupboards and freezers, rather than buying new ingredients.

According to the OnePoll.com data, 27 percent think including enough vegetables in their meals is somewhat difficult.

Anna Beheshti, for Tilda, added: “We live in a world full of flavour, and enjoying that doesn’t need to cost too much time or money. Store cupboard staples are often versatile, and can be eaten alongside a variety of dishes.

“With so many struggling to get enough veg into their diet, Ready to Heat Golden Vegetable Rice can be a solution to this.”

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