I started working with Holistic Nutritionist, Sabrina Virdee (@sabrinavirdee), a few months to help me get my nutrition and lifestyle back on track from what to eat and what not to eat.
One of her amazing tips to staying on a clean and healthy diet was to make sure my pantry was stocked with the essential staples. These are the foods that you can turn to over and over again and use in different ways and that will always be super nutritious and provide endless benefits to your body.
The following 8 things are essential to my pantry and help to keep me in check.
1. Hemp hearts
Hemp hearts are a good fat (omega –3 and -6 and essential fatty acids) also high in plant based protein and fiber. Because they are packed with protein they are going to keep me fuller for longer and they are easy on the digestive system.
I usually add them to my morning smoothies or protein shakes or sprinkle on top of yogurt. Try sprinkling them on your salads as well!
2. Chia Seeds
These seeds may be tiny but they totally pack a punch! Chia seeds are also packed with essential fats, protein, and fiber. Like hemp hearts they are also easy to add to foods and since their shelf life is extremely long I can buy them in bulk!
3. Coconut Oil
Not only great for cooking, coconut oil can reach a high cooking temperature without denaturing. It can also be used in baking as a butter substitute. Its many other uses include using it as a mouthwash to reduce bad breath, a natural make up remover and relieves dry skin! It’s a multi-tasking miracle!
4. Flax Seeds
I eat flax seeds on a daily basis and besides its multitude of health benefits, I love the effects they have on my skin, hair and nails!
I often grind my whole seeds which become easily broken down during digestion. I often use a flax egg as an egg replacement in some recipes. Mix together 1 tbsp of ground flax and three tbsp of water and let sit to thicken for 5 minutes. This is one “flax egg” and can be used in baking!
5. Almond Butter
I mean do we really need to talk about why this should stay stocked in your pantry. Besides being delicious…almond butter is an amazing protein and fat source and can be easily added to smoothies!
6. Apple Cider Vinegar
Unpasteurized apple cider vinegar is amazing to have on hand! It’s one of my faves in dressings and sauces. I put a spoonful in my water to help aid in digestion, stabilizing blood sugar levels and balancing the body’s acidity.
7. Maple Syrup
Being a Canadian, I hold this sweetener near and dear. I add it to dressings to balance acidity and to my breakfast items like oatmeal and yogurt. Look for dark maple syrup that is labeled Grade B – this type contains the most minerals and has a richer maple test.