Healthy Kitchen Essentials
As a full-time working mother who is also working on growing her health coaching practice, I’m always seeking out simple meals that are both delicious and nutritious.
Let’s face it, lack of time, not wanting to spend the entire evening in the kitchen, and the temptation of quick (read – packaged and obviously less nutritious) foods is a challenge at times.
After some trials and errors, including thorough recipe planning and cooking several meals on Sundays for the upcoming week, I realized that the secret to consistent kitchen success lies in two basic principles:
1) always have quality ingredients on hand, and
2) don’t have unhealthy foods available at home.
Keeping a few healthy essentials in your pantry and fridge means that no matter the hour, you’ll always be able to whip up something that is wholesome and tasty. You don’t need to buy all of the following items, but rather a few from each category. Most have a significant shelf life and – produce aside – don’t need to be bought on a weekly basis.
Here is my healthy kitchen essentials list:
- Whole grain pasta (wheat, corn, quinoa or buckwheat)
- Brown rice
- Quinoa, white and red
- Rice noodles
- Whole oatmeal
- Olive oil
- Coconut oil
- Organic butter (from grass-fed cows)
- Potatoes and/or sweet potatoes
Refrigerated produce, dairy, eggs, meats
- Salad greens/lettuce/spinach
- Mushrooms (portobello, shitake, or crimini)
- Blueberries/other berries (frozen OK)
- Pesto sauce
- Yogurt or kefir
- Organic eggs
- Rotisserie chicken (all-natural, Harvestland brand)
- Fully-cooked chicken sausage (all-natural, Harvestland brand)
- Organic green and herbal tea
- Almond or peanut butter
- Chia seeds
- Cacao powder
- Rice crackers
- Nuts (walnuts, almonds, cashews – raw is better)
- Dried fruit
- Agave nectar
- Almond/any other kind of nut milk
- Beans and chickpeas (canned)
- Sardines (canned)
A few simple examples of snacks or meals you can make with the above:
- Rice noodle soup with mushrooms, spinach, and carrots.
- Sauteed kale with olive oil, garlic, mushrooms and carrots.
- Quinoa salad with sprouts, avocado, tomatoes, and cilantro.
- Banana, cacao, and almond milk smoothie.
- Oatmeal with blueberries and nuts.
- Salad with greens, cucumber, tomatoes, mushrooms, and roasted chickpeas.
- Pesto pasta with chicken.
The possibilities are endless!
Interested in learning more?