Rice and pasta are great staples. They can be added to a meal to extend it, served on their own or used as the center of an elegant meal.

1. Rice and pasta

Most everything on this list can be purchased readymade, including pizza dough, which you can keep on hand in the freezer and ready for pizza, calzones, cheesy breadsticks and other treats. Making your own pizza saves big bucks over takeout or delivery.

2. Pizza dough

Rotisserie chickens don’t have the shelf life of other items on this list, but after you’ve enjoyed the meat you can freeze the carcass and turn it into flavorful stock later.

3. Rotisserie chicken

You no doubt have your favorite preparation method: scrambled, baked, fried, poached or hard-cooked. Dean suggests broadening the familiar repertoire to include such elegant egg dishes as frittatas, quiches, omelets and souffles.

4. Eggs

Tortillas may be a simple Mexican staple, but they are versatile beyond their origins..“This wrapper of all things can be rolled, filled, baked or layered in exquisite glory,”

5. Tortillas

No matter which cheese is your favorite, cooking with cheese makes for “grate” meals.

6. Cheese

Use them to beef up a hearty salad or to assemble a quick vegetarian stew or soup. Make beans into a dip by mashing them with herbs and lemon, Washington tells Money Talks News.

7. Canned beans

Whipping cream is so useful, yet it’s a nuisance to run to the store to get the refrigerated stuff when a recipe calls for it.Washington has a solution: Trader Joe’s shelf-stable whipping cream can be stored at room temperature and then refrigerated before using.

8. Whipping cream