Doing the weekly grocery shopping is a task I’ll admit I don’t always love. The weeks seem to speed by and inevitably, Friday rolls around and I’m back to weekly meal planning again. While I often have to force myself to stay on track with this task, the payback is worth it when we have healthy home cooked meals at the ready. I’ve written about several hacks for meal planning in minutes both on this blog and in my book. While re-stocking the perishable food is a must from week to week, there are several healthy pantry staples that I re-stock less often, but still always make a point to have on hand.
One // Miso. There are so many uses for miso, which has an umami flavor – slightly salty and a little sweet. It’s a paste made from soybeans, which is traditionally used in Asian miso soup recipes. Miso is fermented so it’s easy to digest and imparts a slightly rich flavor to seafood and vegetables. I like to spread it on salmon or cod right before baking. I choose the sweet white miso but red miso is also a great option!
Brand I Use: Miso Master Sweet White Miso
Two // Tahini. Tahini is made from ground sesame seeds – similar to how nut butter is made – and can be used in sauces and salad dressings, even smoothies. I like to drizzle it on steamed veggies like broccoli, kale or carrots to keep it simple but dress them up a little.
Brand I Use: Artisana Organics Sesame Tahini
Three // Apple Cider Vinegar. Another simple ingredient with strong digestive health benefits, a bottle of apple cider vinegar (ACV) goes a long way. Take it in the morning as a shot to stimulate digestion or use it in salad dressings and sauces in place of other vinegars.
Brand I Use: Bragg Organic Raw Apple Cider Vinegar
Four // Coconut Aminos. With far higher amino acid content than soy sauce, coconut aminos are made from the sap of a coconut tree. It’s slightly sweeter and less saltier than traditional soy sauce. I use coconut aminos in stir-frys, sauces and dressings as a gluten-free, alcohol-free, soy-free replacement for soy sauce.
Brand I Use: Coconut Secret Coconut Aminos
Five // Dijon Mustard. I’ve never liked mustard, but Dijon is an entirely different ball game. It’s lower in acidity than other mustards and is a natural emulsifier making it an ideal replacement for cream or butter in sauces, dips and salad dressings while adding a tangy flavor.
Brand I Use: Annie’s Homegrown Organic Dijon Mustard
These five healthy pantry staples are just a handful of my favorites. You’ll find that the more often you cook at home and consult healthy recipes, the more you’ll encounter most – if not all – of these ingredients or you’ll call on them as substitutes for other less healthy ingredients. An investment in thee pantry staples now means that they’ll often last for weeks or months on hand in your home kitchen.