The most essential belonging I brought with me to college freshman year was the "dorm staples" guide I created. It helped me survive my first year away from home and I'm confident it'll help you too. The top 10 healthy pantry staples I've listed below are all unrefrigerated or non-perishable items to ensure they'll last you a long time. 

1. Nut Butters

cream, sweet, milk, jam, caramel, chocolate, honey, peanut butter
Maggie Gorman

Nut and seed butters, such as peanut butter, almond butter or sunflower seed butter are great healthy staples to have in your dorm or apartment. They pair perfectly with toast, rice cakes, oatmeal, smoothies or even solo on a spoon. Nut and seed butters contain healthy fats and proteins that will keep you full for longer.

2. Rice Cakes 

Caitlyn Halfon

Rice cakes are essential because they won't perish as quickly as bread. They're a versatile and healthy pantry staple that you can stock up on, buying a few packs at once to keep in your pantry. Fresh Market sells Lundberg brand rice cakes and Thin Stackers made from organic brown rice. Rice cake topping choices are virtually endless, so get creative and have fun with it. A few of my favorites are cream cheese, peanut butter and avocado. 

3. Non-Dairy Milk 

Caitlyn Halfon

Fresh sells a variety of non-dairy milks, including almond, rice or soy milk. I highly recommend stocking up on unrefrigerated milks because they won't spoil like dairy milks would. Non-dairy milks taste great in cereals or in smoothies. The chocolate almond flavor is great if you're in the mood for something sweet and refreshing. 

4. Crackers

Caitlyn Halfon

Crackers are an essential (and quite addictive) staple for anyone's pantry. I tend to eat more nutrient-packed crackers, rather than "empty calorie" crackers, such as Ritz or Cheez-its. Mary's Gone Crackers are so delicious and have a crisp bread-like texture. They're high in fiber with a mix of grains and seeds. Mary's brand is a bit on the pricier side, so if it's not as cost-effective for you, any crackers with whole grains and low/no sugar are great options too.

5. Beans

Caitlyn Halfon

Canned beans are very nutritious and budget-friendly. They add a great boost of fiber and protein to any meal, whether it be in a salad, as a side dish or in a soup. Fresh offers good deals on many different types of canned beans, making it an affordable and versatile pantry staple. Fresh carries both organic and conventional beans.

6. Nuts

Caitlyn Halfon

Nuts contain healthy fats, fiber and protein, which will keep you full and make you feel satisfied. Try opting for ones without salts or added oils — the only ingredient should be the nut itself. Buying different kinds of nuts also gives you the opportunity to make your own trail mix, a healthier alternative to many store-bought options.

8. Bars

Caitlyn Halfon

Fresh has a vast selection of bars for when you need a snack on-the-go. My favorites are Kind, Lärabar and RX Bars, as they tend to be less processed than other bars. Bars are a perfect snack to keep in your apartment or dorm for an afternoon pick-me-up, or even in your backpack if you get hungry during class. 

9. Oats

Caitlyn Halfon

Oats are not only a nutritionally-dense carb, but also a cheap and delicious meal. Fresh sells organic and conventional oats, depending on your preference. Top your oats with fruit, cinnamon and some nut butter to make yourself a yummy and filling meal. Get creative with it! 

Pro Tip: Fresh sells oats in their bulk section, which is often cheaper than buying a normal pack/tub. Bring your own container to fill your oats with to save money and the planet. It's a win-win!

10. Spices

pepper, chili, condiment, cardamom, curry, cereal, spices
Srishti Jain

We can't forget about the spices now, can we? A few good staple spices to have at all times (especially for those of you living in dorms) are salt, pepper and cinnamon. Depending on whether or not you have access to a kitchen, garlic and onion powder are great spice options too.

If you're a first year student or just someone looking to stock up your pantry with nutritious foods, these top 10 healthy pantry staples that won't perish are essential. They're basic enough for picky eaters, but can easily be spiced up with the addition of fruits, veggies or various dips and sauces.