A well stocked kitchen doesn’t mean that you have to have every spice and seasoning available. There is a list of common herbs and spices that can easily season most of the dishes that you’ll cook. Those who are into cooking ethnic foods can expand on this list of basics.
Salt and pepper are the most basic of seasonings and they will be used in nearly everything you cook. Nothing brings out the flavor of foods like salt and pepper. Garlic powder and onion powder are also very useful in many common dishes. Cumin and chili seasoning are ideal if you find yourself making chili, soup, and tacos frequently. Paprika is another basic that has many uses in the kitchen.
When it comes to herbs, there are some common ones that should be found in every well-stocked kitchen. Parsley, sage, oregano, and chives work well to season soups, stews, pastas, and many other basic foods. Cilantro is often used in Latin American dishes but it’s an herb that most people either love or hate so it may not be a necessity in all kitchens. Thyme is also a good addition to your pantry and can be used for many different dishes.