I have gathered my TOP 15 ingredients I think you should have in your pantry to be able to create healthy meals whenever you need! I looked through my cupboards to see what ingredients I tend to always have on hand and came up with a list of about 15 things. Keep reading if you’re interested in creating your own healthy pantry with me!
1. Canned or Dried Beans: black beans, chickpeas, kidney beansBeans are so versatile, not only are they cheap but are also full of good fibre! They can be used in chilis, soups, salads and even dessert. Canned beans can be way more convenient but that does come with a price..they are not only more expensive but contain A LOT more sodium in order to preserve them. I suggest you look for low sodium versions or stick with dried beans.
Quinoa is often seen as THE epitome of health foods, this is for good reason. It is packed with protein, fibre and various vitamins and minerals! You can use this seed in many ways to add a boost of protein and fibre to your meals like on salads, soups, chilli or have it straight up as a side! My favourite way to have it is in a Greek quinoa salad.
3. Sprouted Brown Rice
I like sprouted brown rice in particular because it is much easier for the body to digest. It is a great addition to any meal and can add lots of good carbohydrates and vitamins and minerals to your diet. Great for stir fry’s.
4. Dried lentils
I LOVE lentils, I think they are a super adaptable ingredient! These little legumes are filled with fibre and protein, and are a great addition to any soup, stew or curry.
5. Rolled oats
I always have a bag or two of rolled oats stashed away. I use them for my oatmeal in the morning, in my baking, energy bites and even in my smoothies to make them more filling! You should always look for ORGANIC rolled oats because these crops are heavily sprayed with pesticides. Try my Spiced Apple Oatmeal recipe using rolled oats.
6. Healthy oils: extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil and avocado oil are my go to’s. I usually have all three of these on hand at once. I use extra virgin oil olive for dressings, marinades and as a finishing oil. Coconut oil for baking and for hair masks (lol) and avocado oil I use for roasting vegetables at high heats.
7. Gluten-free flour: almond flour, buckwheat flour, oat flour are my favourites. Almond flour is my all time favourite for baking, it gives a similar texture to all-purpose flour and gives your baking a slight nutty taste. You could also use oat flour for baking as well. Buckwheat flour is best for things like pancakes and waffles because it gives a fluffy texture.
8. Protein powder: This is always a good thing to have on hand for the days when you’re so busy you can’t seem to fit in a full meal. Genuine Health fermented vegan protein is my favourite. It has added gut health benefits, making it easier to absorb so you aren’t dealing with any bloating or gas like some proteins can cause.
9. Nut butters: natural peanut butter, almond butter, etc. (make sure whatever nut it is, is the only ingredient)
I am a nut butter fanatic, I don’t think a day goes by where I don’t have it! You can use it on toast, in oatmeal, baking, smoothies, chia pudding and my personal favourite energy balls like my chocolate brownie batter bites. It provides a great source of healthy fats to leave you feeling more satiated.
10. Nuts and seeds: pumpkin seeds, flax seeds, chia seeds, walnuts, raw almonds
Nuts and seeds are great to have on hand for quick snack options, I always suggest buying RAW both nuts and seeds because they contain the most nutrients. Make sure to store your’e nuts and seeds in the fridge to prevent them from going rancid.
11. Canned tomato products: crushed tomatoes, pureed tomatoes, tomato paste. Tomato products are so versatile, they can be used in stews, chilis, soups, sauces etc. Try to look for low sodium versions for these as well.
12. Low-sodium broth: either chicken or veggie broth (Pacifica is a good brand) I like to keep a carton of broth on hand for days I don’t have any bone broth made up. It is great obviously to make quick soups, you can also use it to cook your rice or quinoa in to give it some extra flavour
13. Vinegars: apple cider vinegar, balsamic vinegar, white vinegar
Vinegars can have a ton of uses as well, I like to have all 3 of these on hand. Apple cider vinegar can be great for dressings, marinades, as well as a tonic in morning diluted with water to activate digestion. Balsamic vinegar with olive oil to make a quick salad dressing, as a marinade for your meats or veggies and white vinegar for cleaning your produce and kitchen.
14. Natural sweeteners: pure maple syrup, honey, Medjool dates
I have a bit of a sweet tooth, so there is always some kind of baking going down in my house. These are my top 3 natural sweeteners to sweeten things up!
15. Pasta alternatives: brown rice pasta, lentil pasta, chickpea pasta
These alternatives are great for when you are craving pasta but don’t want to always be eating the refined carbohydrates of white pasta. (everything is fine in moderation, I just eat a lot of pasta)
I hope you now have the tools to stock your own pantries with nutritious foods and be able to create some beautiful, healthy meals out of them!
Thanks for reading,