Building a Healthy Pantry
Keeping a pantry stocked full of healthy choices can make the difference between ordering takeout, or preparing a wholesome meal at home. There are nights I only have some leftover veggies in the fridge, yet I am able to pull together something pretty fabulous with a few items from the cupboard. If I had to give advice on a total pantry makeover, I would say throw out the Fruit Loops, and bring on the whole grains!
These are my go to staples that everyone should keep on hand:
• Cartons of low sodium natural broth to create instant soups, stews, and add slow cooked flavor to any dish.
• I love to keep a variety of vinegars like red wine, apple cider, aged balsamic (my personal favorite), and rice wine vinegar.
• Canned tomatoes such as diced, fire roasted, and pureed.
• A selection of canned beans to add a protein boost. I love garbanzos, black beans, and lentils. It's great to soak your own dry beans, but during a busy week lets get real!
• Stock your favorite pastas and include whole grain varieties or gluten free options
• Grains like quinoa, rice, millet, couscous, and barley can serve as the basis for any delicious meal, and can be purchased in bulk and stored in airtight containers. I am a porridge fanatic, so I've always got big containers of rolled and steel cut oats for a filling breakfast anytime.
• Baking supplies such as different flours, baking soda/powder, and a wide selection of spices. Replace every six months or so to ensure they are fresh.
• Good quality extra virgin olive oil, and coconut oil as well as a variety of nuts, and seeds for healthy fat.
To make culinary magic in minutes you only need a few fresh ingredients, and a healthy, well organized pantry!