How to stock your pantry for success

by

Starting a divinely healthy lifestyle is a decision; staying on track is all about what’s in your pantry!

So let’s get right to it, shall we? Here’s how to stock a pantry that creates a totally doable, affordable, and healthy lifestyle for you and your family.

STEP 1: Dump the Junk

The strategy is simple: if it’s not in the kitchen, you won’t be tempted to eat it!

Start by separating out processed foods and products. Many processed foods are full of trans fats, refined sugars, sodium, and artificial colours and flavours (even those that say ‘natural’ can be hiding loads of undesirable additives). They’re also expensive! Ditching them is a great way to keep your grocery shopping under budget.

The list is extensive, but a snapshot of the types of processed foods to dump includes:

  • Packaged chips and snacks, including microwave popcorn.
  • Muesli bars and cereals (check the sugar and salt content).
  • Prepackaged cakes, muffins, donuts, biscuits, confectionary, and most ice cream.
  • Frozen dinners and pre-made products like dim sims, chicken nuggets and pizza.
  • Condiments like traditional peanut butter, highly processed chocolate spreads, and jams laden with sugar.

Just throw them out. Once you start eating the whole food way, you won’t want them anyway! And trust me, there are tons of amazing alternatives you can make or buy instead, so you won’t be missing out.

STEP 2: Load up on the Goooooood Stuff

STEP 3: Preparation for TemptationBefore you start thinking that your kitchen will be a hollowed-out shell after the big food dump, start getting excited about what you actually can put in there.

You want to focus on stocking your pantry and fridge with whole foods and minimally processed products, of which there are endless amounts of variety and potential for yummy meals.

For example:

  • Any and all kinds of fruits, vegetables and herbs (fresh and frozen).
  • Legumes (chickpeas, lentils, black beans, kidney beans, split peas etc).
  • Eggs, goats cheese, Greek yoghurt or coconut/almond yoghurt.
  • Clean meats (try to buy meat without hormones or antibiotics).
  • Nuts and seeds.
  • Wholegrains (quinoa, brown rice, oats).
  • Canned/jarred whole foods (tomatoes, olives, sundried tomatoes, chipotle, coconut milk etc).
  • Dried fruit and nuts (no added sugar or chocolate coatings).
  • Condiments (mustards, vinegars, dried herbs and spices, clean stock powders, natural peanut butters and jams made from actual fruit).
  • Baking goods (flour from whole foods like coconut and almond, baking powder and bicarb soda, arrowroot and tapioca flour)
  • Natural sweeteners (honey, rice malt syrup, pure maple syrup, stevia, blackstrap molasses, and cacao powder).

Plan your meals and snacks for the week so you only buy what you’ll use, and get ready to see a rainbow of colour in your fridge and on your benchtops!

Check out our 101 on quick and budget-friendly meal planning here for tips and ideas, too.

 

STEP 3: Preparation for Temptation

We’ve lived a long time in ‘convenience’ mode, so it makes sense to have treats ready to combat those times when you’re hangry or just in a hurry.

Healthy snacks can take the form of your favourite nuts, natural peanut or almond butter on rice cakes, vegetable dips and seaweed crackers, bliss balls, homemade popcorn, dried fruit, coconut yoghurt, cacao nibs, fruits for a quick smoothie, frozen healthy homemade muffins or slices, and so on.

You can make your own frozen icy poles or even pop some grapes or blueberries into the freezer for a chilly treat.

TIP: If you have to buy processed foods like chips or muesli bars, keep them in non-transparent containers where you can’t spot them, or hide them in a different cupboard.

STEP 4: Load up on Staples

Stockpile canned vegetables, legumes, tomatoes and coconut milk in the pantry, and frozen vegetables and quality meats in the freezer. They’re staples for a huge array of quick family-friendly meals like soups, curries, Mexican chilli, and simple meat-and-three-veg.

It’s easier to make the choice to eat a quick and healthy meal at home (and avoid fast food) when you know all the ingredients are waiting in your pantry!

STEP 5: Practice Pantry Portion-control

After you bring your shopping home, prep some of your food right away. For example, portion out some of your snacks into small containers (like nuts, or trail mix, or popcorn) that you can grab and go, so you don’t overindulge.

Similarly, pre-chop any meats that you want to freeze so they’re easy to defrost and cook up. Portion out chicken breasts into freezer bags so you quickly defrost only as many as you need.

You can also stockpile carbonated water for times when soft drink cravings hit. Flavour your drink with combinations of lemon or lime juice, cucumber, ginger, mint, fruit or herbal tea bags. Once you start eating the whole food way, you’ll find you have heaps of these on hand to discover some yummy combinations.

It’s also a fun idea to buy loads of lemons or limes when they’re in season and freeze the juice into ice cube trays, so you always have some on hand to flavour your water or pop into green smoothies.

STEP 6: Enjoy the Rainbow

You’ve done it! Trust me, you won’t miss all those packets once you’ve tasted what real, wholesome food (with all its beautiful flavours and textures) has to offer up on your plate!

Love our vibe?

Learn about becoming a part of our tribe of Mumpreneurs… 

Trending Articles

Paleo GF Healthy Sweet Potato Brownies

These delicious moist brownies are a favourite in our house! Paleo, gluten free, dairy free and sugar free. They are the only way I love my sweet potatoes after all they are meant to be sweet right?? Packed full of goodness and no nasties!! 2 medium sweet potatoes...

read more
Conversation Starters

As a parent, most of us feel as though we know our children pretty well. Their likes, dislikes and their unspoken emotions that are shown on their face and in their body language. However, as our children grow more independent of us the constant change can leave them...

read more
10 Ways to Find Peace During Chaos

At this moment many people are struggling, feeling like their world, life, and mind are in a state of flux. During a time of chaos, you often have feelings of uncertainty, fear,  insecurity, and a loss of control of the situation. But, it is crucial to keep a calm...

read more
Gratitude in a Crisis

Saying things are uncertain at the moment is a bit of an understatement, We have record unemployment, stay-at-home orders, and kids aren’t able to go to school.  Covid-19 has brought an unprecedented situation and it’s distressing on multiple levels. One of the things...

read more
Dragonfruit Popsicles

As the weather is still warm this is an easy recipe for a quick and healthy snack or dessert for the family.  You can swap dragon fruit for any other fruit of your choice  1 cup frozen dragon fruit  ½ cup coconut milk 1 banana  1 sachet vanilla complete protein powder...

read more
Rustic Autumn Vegetable Soup

This hearty delicious soup is gluten free, dairy free and so packed full of goodness! It is so versatile you can really add or leave out anything you want! We sometimes love it with cooked gluten free pasta added in too! Just find any vegetables in your fridge you...

read more