8 Essential Asian Ingredients You Need In Your Pantry


Thursday - 9th July 2020

Are you missing your favourite Asian take-out dishes? Whether you’re craving a crunchy veggie-loaded stir-fry, an enormous comforting bowl of ramen or the perfect pad thai, discover the essential pantry staples you need to have on hand to create all your favourite recipes in your very own kitchen! Let the enticing aromas inspire a culinary journey out of your cooking comfort zone.
Coconut Milk

The key to creamy soups and smooth, rich curries, coconut milk is an absolute essential. Widely used in Thai cuisine, sweet cream of coconut is a delicious and versatile addition to desserts, its delectable aroma can be used to flavour cakes, puddings and ice cream.


The secret to achieving that perfect crunchy texture to your breaded shrimp, salmon tartare or General Tao chicken? Panko bread crumbs! Lighter and crispier than traditional breadcrumbs, panko is a Japanese staple beloved by chefs worldwide. Its distinctive flaky texture will take your culinary creations to the next level!

Noodles and Vermicelli

Used in a vast array of recipes such as stir-fries and soups or as an alternative side-dish to rice, vermicelli are an indispensable staple of Asian cooking. Incredibly quick and easy to prepare, these noodles simply need to be soaked in boiling water for a few minutes and are ready to enjoy in no time! Premium Asian-style noodles are equally effortless to prepare and are the perfect base for pad thai, chop suey and stir-fries.


Sesame seeds add an irresistible finishing touch to a variety of Asian dishes, with a crunchy texture and lightly toasted flavour, a sprinkling of sesame seeds looks great and tastes even better. They’re a wonderful addition to salads. Sesame oil, toasted or untoasted, depending on your preference, is popular in a variety of Asian cuisines. The nutty, aromatic flavour of toasted sesame oil marries perfectly with soy sauce, ginger and lemon and is ideal for flavourful dressings and savoury sauces. Sesame oil is also an excellent choice for wok cooking.

Rice Vinegar

While French cuisine favours wine vinegar and balsamic vinegar is the ideal accompaniment to an Italian dish, a properly stocked Asian pantry would be incomplete without rice vinegar. Whether used in the preparation of sushi rice, in marinades or in salad dressings, rice vinegar will perfectly showcase the flavours of your Japanese, Thai and Vietnamese inspired dishes.

Soy Sauce

The most recognizable Asian pantry essential is undoubtedly soy sauce. The dipping sauce of choice for sushi, imperial rolls and rice, this salty sauce also adds an umami kick to stir-fries, braises and soups and pairs especially well with pork and seafood.

Canned Vegetables

Finding rare or imported fresh produce year-round can be challenging. Take the frustration out of hunting for hard-to-find ingredients by stocking your pantry with mixed Asian vegetables and shiitake mushrooms. These delicious canned offerings make it easy to add some nutrient-rich colour to pad thai, poke bowls and stir-fries. With all the benefits of fresh produce and none of the hassle, these vegetables are ready to be enjoyed anytime!

Authentic Aromas in Handy Jars

Typically added to a dish just before serving, coriander adds the perfect touch of brightness to a variety of Asian dishes. Unfortunately fresh coriander can often end up forgotten in the bottom of a refrigerator drawer and going to waste before it can be used. Why not opt for a jar of minced coriander instead? Finding fresh lemongrass in the average grocery store aisle can be especially difficult but nothing compares to the delicate lemony aroma it can add to many Asian dishes. Luckily, lemongrass is also available in a jar. These preserved aromatic herbs are flavourful, convenient and perfect to keep on hand year-round.

Stocking your pantry with these versatile and easy-to-use options will ensure you have everything you need to whip up the perfect Asian-inspired dish whenever the craving strikes. With these staples on hand, making your restaurant favourites in your own kitchen couldn’t be easier!