It’s official. Summer is less than 12 weeks away. Are you ready for tank tops, bikinis and short skirts?
No? Then, let’s get started.
Welcome to the first installment of my Countdown to a Healthy Summer series.
Week 1: Spring Cleaning the Pantry
Start the week off right with a pantry raid. Get organized. Rid your pantry (and your life) of processed, low nutrient foods that are getting in the way of you getting healthy.
A well-stocked pantry is the secret to getting and staying healthy. Having everything you need on hand to whip up a quick and healthy meal is the goal for this week. Below are basic pantry staples that should be stocked in your kitchen at all times. These foods are the foundation for most of the healthy recipes you find in magazines and cookbooks.
Oils, Vinegars & Condiments
Oils: extra-virgin olive oil, canola oil, cooking spray
Toasted sesame oil
Vinegars: cider, red-wine, balsamic, rice
Reduced-sodium soy sauce
Sun-dried tomatoes (not in oil)
Dried herbs and spices: ground cumin, cayenne pepper, chili powder, crushed red pepper, rosemary, thyme leaves, oregano, Italian seasoning blend, tarragon leaves, ground cinnamon, ground ginger, lemon pepper
Canned Goods & Bottle Items
Canned tomatoes, (diced, whole, sauce, and tomato paste)
Reduced-sodium broths (chicken, beef, veggie)
Canned beans: cannellini, black, kidney, chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
Chunk light tuna in water (Tongol)
Artichoke hearts in water
Roasted red peppers in water
Grains & Bread
Assorted sizes whole-wheat pasta
Precooked brown rice (Uncle Ben’s & Trader Joes)
Rice – Brown Basmati, wild, white long grain
Regular and quick-cooking barley
Oats – Instant/quick cooking & old fashioned rolled
Sweeteners & Baking
Whole-wheat flour, whole-wheat pastry flour, buckwheat flour
All-purpose white flour
Dark and light brown sugar
Dark chocolate (60-70% cocoa, bittersweet)
100% real maple syrup
Nuts, Seeds & Dried Fruit
Dry roasted, unsalted walnuts, pecans, almonds (can store in freezer)
Dried apricots, dates, cranberries, raisins
Peanut butter (natural)
Ground flaxseed (store in fridge)
Sesame seeds (can store in freezer)
In the Freezer
Unsweetened frozen fruit (blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, sliced peaches)
Corn and peas
Lima beans and succotash mixes
Pureed winter squash
Large uncooked shrimp
Pre-portioned meats and fish (chicken breast, salmon, white fish)
Turkey meatballs and turkey burgers
NEXT WEEK, we’ll turn up the volume on refrigerated and fresh foods!