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The Andie Summers Show

Weekdays 5:30AM-10AM

I love to cook, but when I visit the grocery store I notice that I might be in the minority. The food that I’ve noticed is still missing, and therefore a hot seller, is stuff that’s pre-cooked and ready to just heat up like soup, mac & cheese, and frozen dinners.

I have heard from a lot of folks who are experimenting in the kitchen. That’s great! But, if your pantry is stocked with the stuff I just mentioned, you’re not going to get too far.  So, here are a few staples I suggest you keep in your pantry/freezer/refrigerator so you’re always ready to go …

Fat to cook with:

  • Butter
  • Olive oil
  • Canola oil

In the fridge:

  • Eggs
  • Milk
  • Cheese


  • Onions
  • Garlic


  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Chili seasoning

Dry Goods:

  • Rice
  • Instant mashed potatoes

Canned Goods:

  • Canned broth/stock
  • Tomatoes (crushed, stewed, whatever!)
  • Beets
  • Carrots
  • Onions
  • Sweet potatoes


  • Meat (Chicken breasts, ground beef, ground turkey)
  • Fish
  • Vegetables like spinach, broccoli, corn, peas (they’re really good!)

Okay – and now a quick and delicious recipe to put a lot of this stuff to use (in terms as easy as I can):

Andie Summers’ Shepherd’s Pie

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 1 lb ground beef or turkey
  • 1T butter
  • 1 Onion – diced
  • 1C Frozen or canned vegetable (your fave)
  • Instant Mashed Potatoes (4 servings)
  • Salt & Pepper to taste


  • Set your oven to 400
  • Put a large non-stick pan on the stove, add a pad of butter and heat on medium high until it melts.
  • While the butter melts, dice an onion (if you think this will take a while, dice before you heat the butter so it doesn’t burn)
  • Add the diced onion to the hot pan and sauté for about 30 seconds to a minute – just to soften the onion and let it become fragrant.
  • Add about a pound of ground beef/turkey, sprinkle salt, and pepper on it, and break up the meat with a wooden spoon or plastic spatula (you don’t want to scratch the non-stick surface) Heat until it’s no longer pink.
  • While the meat browns, follow the directions on your box of instant mashed potatoes and get those started.
  • Transfer ground meat in an even layer to a baking dish.  Sprinkle your favorite frozen or canned  vegetables and layer over the meat.
  • Scoop globs of your mashed potatoes to the top of your layered dish and sprinkle with grated cheese (I think sharp cheddar tastes best)
  • Put the dish on the center rack in the oven and bake for about 15 minutes. (You’ll see the cheese starts to melt and brown – don’t let it burn!)