Published on January 11, 2016

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Photography by Epicurious

cup noodles

College is over and long gone are the days of instant soup and noodles. Not to worry, this mouthwatering recipe is just what you need.

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Photography by Bakery and snacks

flour

If you’re not much of a baker, chances are that pack of flour hidden in the back of your pantry has expired. A bag of all-purpose flour (opened or unopened!) has a shelf life of only up to 6 months.

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Photography by epicurious

oils

It’s time to rethink that growing collection of oils – grapeseed, avocado, coconut, the list is endless. Stick to a reserved few and toss out the rest!

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Photography by pinterest

canned goods

Veggies such as corn and tomatoes can be purchased fresh, prepped at home, and preserved in the freezer. Here’s how to make summer tomatoes, last through winter

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Photography by naturally down to earth

dried herbs

Herbs such as parsley, cilantro, and dill are supermarket staples, which are best consumed in a fresh variety. 

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Photography by cooking light

bottled lemon juice

Need we say more? This preservative-based blend hardly comes close to the real thing.

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Photography by duncan hines

boxed cake

Opened boxes of cake mix often feature raising agents, which may deplete over time. Toss it out and opt for a freshly baked one instead!

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Photography by www.navacenter.com

old spices

If you haven’t used a certain spice within the last year, you can probably live without it. When it comes to the spice rack, every square inch counts.

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Photography by www.girlscosmo.com

avocados and bananas

Catching these fruits at the peak of their ripeness can be nothing short of a challenge, especially when they’re left outside. Once you notice either getting relatively soft or browned, pop them in the fridge to preserve them until they’re ready for consumption.

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maple syrup

While syrup can essentially last in the pantry, it will have a significantly longer shelf life in the fridge.

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Photography by bloomberg

boxed mac n’ cheese

This childhood staple, which can seamlessly translate into the occasional adult indulgence, deserves a more grown-up approach. Here’s what we’ve got in mind

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Photography by pillsbury

frosting

Cake toppings hardly belong in the pantry, and the boxed variety simply goes without saying. Enter 9 mouthwatering recipes that prove our case.

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Photography by wise geek

salad dressings

These calorie-laden toppings are rarely healthy and often filled with preservatives. Opt for a more simple (and fresh!) vinaigrette you can make at home, or experiment with these mouthwatering combos instead. 

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Photography by juli shore

tea

If you’re not the regular tea drinker, consider purchasing it on an as-needed basis. There’s nothing like bulky tea boxes crowding up a cozy cabinet.

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Photography by crunchy wisdom

pasta sauce

Sure, it’s nice to have your go-to sauce on hand, but we can’t deny the fact that a homemade version is almost always the more delicious alternative. 

Take a peek at the five basic pasta sauces everyone should know.

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Photography by serious eats

cereal boxes

Swap the clunky packaging in lieu of a more space-friendly alternative, such as canisters or jars.