Spring Cleaning your Eating

Happy Spring! There’s just something about this season that calls for freshness, newness, and cleanliness. It motivates us to get moving and to revisit those goals from January that we may have put off to the side. Now is the perfect time to refresh, revamp, and tidy up those health goals!

Spring cleaning your eating
Many of us vow to eat better this year and it all begins in the kitchen. It’s time for a fridge and pantry makeover. Toss all the junk and questionable items away and restock with healthy foods to get started eating better. Here are the essential ingredients to have on hand to whip up a healthy meal in no time!
Pantry Essentials
  • Canned beans– can easily be incorporated into chilis, soups, salads and made into hummus. They make a meal hearty and add protein, iron, and fiber. Just open, rinse, and eat!
  • Lentils– these little legumes are a go-to item when you need to add some protein and fiber to your meal. They cook quickly and maintain their texture very well when refrigerated.
  • Nut butter– can be eaten with apple slices as a snack, spread on toast, or added to smoothies for a rich nutty flavor. A little goes a long way….
  • Quinoa– can be cooked and ready in 15-20 minutes. It is one of the easier grains to cook, and also provides protein, fiber, iron, and B vitamins. Cook a big batch and use it throughout the week!
  • Low sodium chicken stock– to make sauces, soups, for cooking grains. It provides great flavor and really comes in handy in the winter time when it is soup season.
  • Nuts and seeds– Good to have on hand to add on top of salads for some crunch, munch on as a snack, and who knows, maybe you’ll even feel like making nut milk one day.
  • Canned Tomatoes– A staple for sauces, soups, and chili!
  • Whole wheat pasta– toss with homemade marinara sauce (made from those canned tomatoes), pesto, or garlic and oil
  • Olive Oil– you need it for almost everything from roasting to sautéing to making salad dressings
  • Vegetable oil– for baking and cooking at higher temperatures
  • Balsamic vinegar – for salad dressings, braising meats, and marinades
  • Honey – drizzle onto plain Greek yogurt, use in baking, and in sauces
  • Spices – besides salt and pepper, keep some oregano, bay leaves, garlic powder, onion powder, cinnamon, cumin, paprika, chili powder, turmeric
Fridge Essentials
  • Eggs–  one of the most versatile ingredients in your fridge! You can use them to make omelets, frittatas, baked goods, or hard boil them to have for the whole week.
  • Hummus– a great dip to have in your fridge when you need a snack. Spread it on some crackers, pita chips, or dip in carrots.
  • Cut up veggies– carrot sticks, celery sticks, peppers dipped in hummus make a great afternoon snack.
  • Plain Greek Yogurt – for yogurt parfaits, smoothies, soups, tuna salads, or used as sour cream on potatoes
  • Milk– cow’s milk, almond milk, soy milk. Something for smoothies, coffee, or a cup in the morning with your breakfast.
  • Low-fat string cheese– Another great snack option, goes great with some whole-grain crackers or fruit.
  • Cut up veggies and fruits– best to have at eye level to remind you to eat them 🙂
  • Lean protein– chicken, turkey, fish is great to have in the fridge but store it in the freezer if you know it will be hanging out for a while

Freezer Essentials

  • Frozen veggies– they are a lifesaver and can be thrown into anything from soups to pasta to a quick stir fry.
  • Frozen fruits- for smoothies and on yogurt. They are frozen at their peak so yes you can still make your smoothies in the winter!
  • Frozen meals– If you are cooking a meal, make a big batch and freeze the rest for later. Soups, burgers, and chili stay well in the freezer.
  • Frozen protein– chicken, fish, shrimp. They will all come in handy when you need to whip up a meal.
  • Bread– cause you will never know when you want some toast or some with soup. They defrost well and can be kept in the freezer for up to 3 months!

Hope this helps you spring clean and de-clutter your kitchen and gets you back to eating healthy! A kitchen stocked with nutritious foods makes eating healthy easier 🙂

Happy spring,

Joanna

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