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Lockdown recipes using store cupboard essentials

Lockdown recipes using store cupboard essentials

In these strange times, some of us have found it challenging to get our usual groceries, meaning we’re left with whatever’s in the pantry! But we’ve got you covered with the best store-cupboard recipes to get you through lockdown.

1. Tuna and Mixed Bean Salad

If we’re lucky enough to get some warm weather in the UK, this salad takes little to no time to make and you’re bound to have all the ingredients. It would make the perfect lunch, great for enjoying in the garden!


  • 200g pasta (any shape you have)
  • 2 x 185g cans tuna chunks
  • 2 x 290g cans mixed beans salad
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 1 small red onion


  1. Cook the pasta in a pan of boiling water for 10-12 minutes until tender then drain and rinse.
  2. Drain the tuna and flake into a bowl along with the pasta and mixed beans, including the juices.
  3. Roughly chop the tomatoes and red onion then add both to the bowl. Stir together until well combined and add salt and pepper to taste.


2. Quick Minestrone Soup

This soup is a one-pot wonder, no effort is required and it makes a filling meal for lunch or dinner!


  • 1-litre hot vegetable stock
  • 1 x 400g tin chopped tomato
  • 100g spaghetti, broken into short lengths
  • 350g frozen mixed vegetable

To serve:

  • grated parmesan-style cheese (optional)
  • 4 tbsp. pesto
  • a drizzle of olive oil


  1. Boil the stock with the tomatoes, then add the spaghetti and cook for 6 mins.
  2. Add the rest of the vegetables and bring back to the boil. Simmer for 2 mins until everything is cooked.
  3. Spoon into bowls with a drizzle of pesto and olive oil, finished with grated parmesan cheese to serve.


3. Red Lentil Dhal

Lentils always seem to be in the food cupboard, but when was the last time you cooked with them? Now’s your chance and this red lentil dhal is warming and filling. Plus you’ll have loads left over for the next day!


  • 3 tbsp rapeseed or sunflower oil
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 500g sweet pumpkin or butternut squash, cut into 2.5cm chunks
  • 150g chopped tomatoes
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 tsp dried chilli flakes
  • 3cm piece ginger, peeled and grated
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp ground turmeric
  • 225g red lentils
  • 1-litre vegetable stock (optional)
  • 3 tbsp coriander


  1. Heat half the oil in a large pan and fry the onion until golden brown. Meanwhile, heat the rest of the oil in a frying pan and sauté the pumpkin until golden all over.
  2. Add the tomatoes to the onion and cook for 4 minutes, then add the garlic and spices and cook for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Add the lentils and pumpkin to the onions and pour on the stock or 1l water. Season with salt and bring to the boil.
  4. Turn down the heat and cook for 20 minutes, until the mixture is thick. The lentils should collapse and the pumpkin will be tender. Season to taste.
  5. Serve with rice, plain yoghurt and dried coriander (optional)


4. Seed Topped Banana Bread

Banana bread seems to be trending on social media lately, and it’s no surprise. With people’s routines and schedules interrupted, no one is touching the fruit bowl. This beloved Mary Berry recipe makes two hearty banana cakes!


  • 100g spread, plus extra for greasing
  • 150g muscovado sugar
  • 200g self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 medium (about 200g) ripe bananas, peeled and mashed
  • 25g pumpkin seeds
  • 25g sunflower seeds
  • 1 tbsp demerara sugar


  1. Preheat your oven to 180°C/160°C fan/Gas 4 then grease and line the loaf tins.
  2. In a large bowl, mix the baking spread, sugar, flour and bicarbonate of soda, add the eggs and bananas and beat with an electric hand whisk until light and combined.
  3. Spoon the mixture equally between the prepared tins and level the tops. Sprinkle over the seeds and demerara sugar.
  4. Bake the cakes for about 35–40 minutes or until well risen, golden and a skewer inserted into the middle of each cake comes out clean.
  5. Allow to cool in the tin for 10 minutes and then turn out on to a wire rack and peel off the baking paper before leaving to cool down completely.


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