Learn How to Stock Your Pantry for Healthy Recipes. This way, you and your family will have healthy and nutritious meals no matter how busy you are! It helps you plan and eat better and even stay on track.
How to Stock Your Pantry for Healthy Recipes
Keeping your pantry stocked with healthy food will make it much simpler for you to throw together a meal that will taste good, fill you up, and keep you healthy. A pantry well-stocked with healthy essentials is the best way to ensure you'll have everything you need to make a nutritious and flavorful dinner every night.
Learning how to stock your pantry for healthy recipes will help you plan better and even help you stay on track when planning goes out the window.
We love feeding my family healthy food recipes, and this guide helps! Here are some basics you want to follow.
- Read Expiration Dates – These days, everything comes with an expiration date, including canned items. However, often these dates aren't realistic. You can find information online about how long past the expiration dates various things are good. However, one example is canned food. If stored in a cool, dry place and not dropped or dented, they can last twice as long as the can states.
- Store Properly – Always read storage directions if they are on the package. If not, look up the best way to store different items. You want to keep most long-term pantry items cool and dry. If you don't organize your pantry correctly, your things can get old and moldy or lose flavor faster. For example, potatoes kept in the dark, cool place will last for a long time, even months, when stored correctly.
- Rotate Old vs. New – When you buy a new item, always put it behind the older item. It can be tempting to open whatever is in front of you, at least for the kids or the spouse, so it is less likely to happen if you hide it behind the old item. Here's another tip. Always shop your pantry before going to the store.
- Buy in Bulk Sometimes – Some things you can buy in bulk, but others you want to avoid buying in bulk. For example, spices you don't use daily aren't a good buy in bulk because their flavor usually dulls within four months. But rice, beans, lentils are all items you should buy in bulk and store in dry containers.
- Avoid Processed Food – Processed food has little to no nutritional value, so there's no reason to stock these things in your pantry. Most people won't make an extra grocery store run just to get sour cream and onion potato chips. If you don't buy it to keep on hand, you're not as likely to eat it.
- Get Back to Nature – Think of things that grow from the ground, such as beans, lentils, rice, veggies, and fruit, as your base for nutritious meals. Focus on natural fats found in avocado, olives, and coconuts. But, other than dried ingredients, buy everything else in season locally, and you'll save a lot of money.
- Remember Flavor – Onions and fresh garlic can last a long time when stored properly. If you have just some rice, black beans, onions, and garlic in your cool, dry pantry, you can have an entire meal prepped and prepared in no time. But also remember vinegar and condiments that can make the flavor of your food pop!
Healthy Pantry Staples for Quick-and-Easy Healthy Meals
- Whole Wheat Pasta
- Canned Tuna
- Natural Peanut Butter or Almond Butter
- Canned Beans (black beans, pinto beans, or any other kind you like)
- Canned Low-Sodium Diced Tomatoes
- Brown Rice
- Almond Flour
- Low Sodium Chicken Broth or Vegetable Broth
Nuts, Seeds, And Dried Fruit
- Dried Fruit (apricots, blueberries, plums)
- Chia seeds
- Sunflower seeds
- Garlic Cloves
- Potatoes (sweet potatoes and white potatoes)
- Winter squash (spaghetti squash, butternut, acorn, etc.)
Fridge Staples for Healthy Eating
- Veggies (lettuce/ spinach, tomatoes, carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, bell peppers, ginger root, etc.)
- Fruits (lemons, limes, apples, oranges, grapes, blueberries, avocados, etc.)
- Frozen Fruit (we love frozen berries)
- Frozen Veggies (mixed veggies, green beans, and spinach are good ones to start with)
With these ingredients, you can make:
- Crock Pot Oatmeal
- Quinoa Pizza Bites
- Peanut Butter Cookies
- Easy Oatmeal Bars
- Baked Oatmeal Cups
- Healthy Crock Pot Taco Soup
- Mexican Casserole
- and more!
Plus, these cooking and baking oils:
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- Avocado Oil (our favorite - it has excellent flavor and cooks/roasts/bakes perfectly every time)
- Olive Oil
- Coconut Oil
Healthy Pantry Snacks
- Nuts (almonds, cashews, peanuts, walnuts, etc.)
- Dried Fruit (raisins, apricots, or cherries)
- Seeds (sunflower, flax, chia, or hemp)
- Baked Chickpeas
- Homemade Oatmeal Bars
- Unsweetened applesauce
- Kind Bars
- Whole Grain Crackers
- Fruit Leather
- Multi-grain chips
Preparing healthy meals is easier with a fully stocked healthy kitchen pantry. Learning how to stock your pantry for healthy recipes that you and your family enjoy eating will lessen the temptation to go through that drive-through on your way home and lead to better habits overall.
There's no question keeping a well-stocked pantry makes cooking a lot easier. Here's a comprehensive list of pantry essentials that guarantees you have what you need to cook up delicious meals.
Meal Planning for Healthy Recipes
If you need help with Meal Planning, read this post to get started - it makes all the difference in the world when it comes to feeding your family and not being stressed! There's a free printable meal planner so you can map out delicious meals for the week in 10 minutes!
If you need some ideas, here are some tasty meal plans done for you!
The post was originally published on August 7, 2017. We updated it with more information on January 3, 2022.