DIY Pantry

9 Pantry Staples You Didn’t Know You Could Make Yourself

24th March 2020

You might have noticed we’re big fans of making our own pantry staples here at Farmdrop. Not only is it simpler and quicker than you might think, it’s a great way to magic meals from whatever you’ve got in the fridge or cupboards. Got a load of leftover yoghurt? Turn it into creamy labneh. Need a tin of coconut milk for that curry? Blitz up some desiccated coconut instead. Run out of icing sugar in the middle of making a cake? No bother. Learn how to make icing sugar by blitzing up the sugar in your cupboards.

What about making yoghurt, cheese or even kombucha? We’ve got it covered with food writer, Malou Herkes’ step-by-step guides. Here are 9 that may surprise you.

1. Yoghurt

how to make yoghurt

Photography: Natalé Towell

Yoghurt starts with yoghurt. Just a spoon of it. Then all you need are a couple of pints of milk, a thermos flask and eight hours of no work whatsoever, to get you a whole big lot of it. Thick, tangy, creamy yoghurt. No effort, less plastic and a few quid saved. Here’s a guide to help you.

2. Peanut butter

homemade peanut butter

Pimp those breakfast spreads and learn how to make your own delicious peanut butter from scratch in six simple steps.

3. Cheese


You’ve probably had ricotta or paneer in your fridge at some point or other, but did you know you can make it at home with just whole milk and lemon juice? Deliciously fresh and milky, making paneer or ricotta is simple and a great way to use up milk that’s on the turn.

4. Icing sugar

how to make icing sugar

Icing sugar is actually just ground sugar, and it takes a matter of minutes to make it at home. Next time you find yourself out of this baking staple, there’s no need to rush out to the shops. Here’s how you make icing sugar yourself.

5. Vinegar

how to make red wine vinegar

Turn leftover red wine dregs into delicious red wine vinegar super easily. Or make apple cider vinegar from your leftover apple scraps by steeping them in sugared water for about a week – perfect for dressings or for an eco alternative to cleaning your kitchen.

6. Almond milk

Dairy-free milks aren’t just for vegans or the lactose intolerant, they can be a wonderful ingredient in their own right. And if you find yourself with a pack of nuts you want to use up, why not blitz and strain it into milk. Learn how to make almond milk at home.

7. Butter

how to make butter

Making butter is a great way to use up double cream, and it takes no more than 30 minutes to make a deliciously creamy spread from start to finish. Here’s how.

8. Fruit cordial

how to citrus cordial

Preserve a glut of the season’s produce into a fruity cordial that you can dilute with water for a tasty alternative to straight-up H2O. From berry cordial to this clever guide to citrus cordial, made with leftover citrus peel.

9. Gut-friendly kombucha… and kefir water too

You might have seen kombucha cropping up on menus and shop shelves in recent years as a probiotic drink that is great for your gut. Kombucha is essentially sweet tea that is fermented with a culture of bacteria and yeast (called a SCOBY). Strange but true, and it’s simple to make, too. Here’s everything you need to know about making kombucha yourself. Intrigued by kefir water? Here’s a guide for that too.

Find more of Malou’s DIY Pantry guides here on the Farmblog.

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