Pantry Items

113 Kitchen-Tested Ingredients

Crunchy Peanut Butter
Published: November 2018
Crunchy Peanut Butter
Ever wonder how many peanut pieces are actually in a jar of crunchy peanut butte…
Buy the Winner
Dry Vermouth
Published: November 2017
Dry Vermouth
Could we find a bottle that would do double duty for cooking and cocktails?
Tahini
Published: September 2017
Tahini
Finding the best tahini can be a real grind.
Buy the Winner
White Wine Vinegar
Published: July 2017
White Wine Vinegar
Versatility can seem boring, but it’s an asset for this pantry staple.
Buy the Winner
Single-Varietal White Wine Vinegars
Published: June 2017
Single-Varietal White Wine Vinegars
Some markets now carry wine vinegars made from a specific variety of wine, such …
Buy the Winner
Premium Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
Published: March 2017
Premium Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
High-end extra-virgin olive oils offer a world of flavor beyond grocery-store op…
Buy the Winner
Vegan Mayonnaise
Published: January 2017
Vegan Mayonnaise
Vegan mayo can’t be very good, can it? Read on for a shocking surprise.
Almond Butter
Published: July 2016
Almond Butter
The best almond butter contains more than just ground almonds.
Buy the Winner
Sherry Vinegar
Published: May 2016
Sherry Vinegar
The woodsy yet vibrant taste of sherry vinegar makes it such a standout that it …
Beef Broth
Published: January 2016
Beef Broth
Commercial beef broths contain almost no beef. So what exactly are these product…
Buy the Winner
Gluten-Free Sandwich Bread
Published: November 2015
Gluten-Free Sandwich Bread
We tasted five white, and nine multigrain gluten-free sandwich breads to see if …
Buy the Winner
Supermarket Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
Published: November 2015
Supermarket Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
Often dull or even rancid-tasting, supermarket olive oils never seem to live up …
Buy the Winner
Supermarket Balsamic Vinegar
Published: July 2015
Supermarket Balsamic Vinegar
In recent years, Italy has created a new set of guidelines for mass-produced bal…
Buy the Winner
Low-Sodium Vegetable Broth
Published: January 2015
Low-Sodium Vegetable Broth
Finding a low-sodium vegetable broth worth using is more difficult than it sound…
Buy the Winner
Vegetarian Broth
Published: January 2015
Vegetarian Broth
More vegetables, better broth? We tasted a slew of products and discovered that,…
Buy the Winner
Apricot Preserves
Published: November 2014
Apricot Preserves
We tasted five top-selling products plain and in our Cook's Illustrated French A…
Buy the Winner
Jarred Medium Salsa
Published: August 2013
Jarred Medium Salsa
Sure, it sells well, but is salsa from the supermarket actually any good?
Buy the Winner
Jarred Green Salsa
Published: August 2013
Jarred Green Salsa
Salsa verde adds tangy zest to tacos, enchiladas, and more. We rounded up five n…
Buy the Winner
Chicken Broth
Published: July 2013
Chicken Broth
Just about every broth in the supermarket amounts to a science project of flavor…
Buy the Winner
High-End Barbecue Sauces
Published: July 2013
High-End Barbecue Sauces
We put four small-batch, mail-order barbecue sauces to the test against our supe…
Buy the Winner
Pimento-Stuffed Green Olives
Published: May 2013
Pimento-Stuffed Green Olives
Pimento-stuffed green olives aren’t just for martinis.
Buy the Winner
Hottest Hot Sauces
Published: May 2012
Hottest Hot Sauces
What good is hot sauce so scorching you can't even taste it?
Buy the Winner
Grits
Published: April 2012
Grits
If you're just going to slather them with butter and cheese, does it really matt…
Oyster Crackers
Published: January 2012
Oyster Crackers
Many people enjoy oyster crackers simply for snacking, but they were originally …
Gravy Enhancers
Published: October 2011
Gravy Enhancers
Liquid gravy seasonings claim to enhance homemade gravy. We wanted to find out …
Ketchup
Published: August 2011
Ketchup
Responding to public demands, many manufacturers have ditched high-fructose corn…
Buy the Winner
Graham Crackers
Published: June 2011
Graham Crackers
We tasted three top-selling national brands to see which came out on top.
Buy the Winner
Golden Raisins
Published: April 2011
Golden Raisins
When a recipe calls for golden raisins, your choices are surprisingly limited. B…
Buy the Winner
Cornmeal
Published: September 2002
Cornmeal
We were surprised to discover how much the flavor and grind can vary among diffe…
Buy the Winner
Macaroni and Cheese
Published: April 2011
Macaroni and Cheese
We tasted 25 boxed and frozen versions of mostly clumpy, gloppy, wimpy mac and c…
Ground Ginger
Published: February 2011
Ground Ginger
Since ginger is often used in combination with other spices, would it matter whi…
Buy the Winner
Red Wine Vinegar
Published: January 2011
Red Wine Vinegar
Does aging make a difference in vinegar, or does it all boil down to the grapes …
Pancake Mixes
Published: December 2010
Pancake Mixes
What’s the secret to the best from-the-box pancakes? Here’s a hint: They don’t m…
Buy the Winner
Tomato Paste
Published: October 2010
Tomato Paste
In a tight race, one brand edged ahead with bright, balanced flavor both straigh…
Buy the Winner
Blackberry Jams
Published: October 2010
Blackberry Jams
One product made our tasters berry happy.
Buy the Winner
Yellow Mustard
Published: August 2010
Yellow Mustard
A small organic brand sneaks up on the big boys.
Buy the Winner