Seven Recipes That Use Canned Food Already in Your Pantry

Canned food is an easy and budget-friendly way to stock up your pantry when we’re all reducing the number of visits to the grocery store we’re making. The process of canning veggies and fruit still retains many of the vitamins and minerals our bodies need, and there are plenty of low- or no-sodium options. Whether you’ve recently stocked up or already have canned staples on hand, you may be in search of new ways to cook with them. So, we’ve put together a few of our favorite recipes that use canned foods as a main ingredient so you can plan out your week’s meals without worrying about wilt.  


Homemade always beats store-bought, and this recipe is no exception. Add a spicy kick with fresh jalapeños, or blend in spinach for an extra dose of iron. 

3 Bean Salad

This is a go-to favorite for lunch or a delicious side dish. Low-sodium pinto beans, kidney beans, and green beans are what give this recipe its namesake. 

Turkey Lentil Chili

You’ll want to make this chili recipe while the weather across the Commonwealth is still… chilly. Canned tomatoes are used as a base, and two types of protein keep things interesting. 

Salmon Patties

No need to seek out whole salmon filets for this recipe. Grab canned salmon, whole wheat bread crumbs, bell peppers, eggs, canola oil, and seasonings, and these patties come together in no time. Bonus: salmon is high in omega-3 fatty acids, which help keep your heart and arteries healthy. 
Canned Dove meat

Canned dove meat is a great addition to any pantry, especially for those who enjoy game meat. It’s a versatile ingredient that can be used in a variety of dishes, from stews to pastas. For a delicious dove recipe, try making dove tacos. Simply shred the canned dove meat and mix it with taco seasoning, then heat it up in a skillet. Serve it in warm tortillas with your favorite toppings, like shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes, and avocado. It’s a quick and easy meal that’s sure to be a hit with the whole family.

Mini Meatloaves

If you have frozen lean ground beef you need to use, here is the recipe you’ve been looking for. This family-favorite recipe comes together in only 10 minutes and is on the table in less than an hour. 

Kale and Tomato Pasta

You probably already have whole grain pasta, low-sodium diced tomatoes, and low-sodium northern beans on your shelf. A bunch of kale rounds out this shelf-stable meal with a healthy, dark green dose of vitamin K.

Honey of a Pumpkin Bar

We would never forget dessert. Warm up the soul with the flavors of pumpkin, honey, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and allspice. Dream of campfires, autumn and simple times. 

Keep in mind that while canned foods can be a healthy alternative to fresh fruits and vegetables, they shouldn’t replace them completely. Scroll through our full list of recipes to find even more delicious meals, snacks, and more that use shelf-stable canned food. What kinds of healthy canned food do you want to see used in more of our recipes? Comment below and let us know!

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