Essentials for my Fridge/Pantry
My friend Amanda kindly requested that I post a blog about what I typically have in my kitchen, so here goes! These are things that I usually have on hand, in no particular order of preference.
1. Extra virgin olive oil: my favorite oil. I use this to saute anything and everything. I only use canola oil for making popcorn. I never saute in butter.
2. Canola oil: Which brings me to canola oil. Unless you’re a stovetop popcorn lover like me or plan on doing some deep frying, I wouldn’t have this in stock. Like I said, it’s necessary for popcorn, as olive oil has a lower burning point.
3. Popcorn: 8 lbs. of it. From Costco. I have a big bowl of this stuff (all to MYSELF) at least once a week. (Note: Get yourself a whirley pop. It’s a life saver.)
4. Nutritional yeast: Best stuff ever. I put it on popcorn, toast, soup, etc. A great cheese supplement for vegans.
5. Whole wheat bread: I check the calories on this. I try to get a loaf that is only 90-100 cals a slice. I usually have a slice for breakfast every morning, slathered in almond butter.
6. Almond butter: I can (and have) eat this stuff with a spoon. With honey. On toast. So good.
7. Apples: An apple a day keeps the doctor away. Or so they say. I just like eating an apple everyday because it’s filling, sweet, refreshing, and healthy. Plus, it apparently freshens breath.
8. Bananas: Ditto. I eat a banana every day as a mid-morning snack, usually around 10am.
9. Whole wheat pasta: For a speedy dinner, whole pasta can be dressed and seasoned in a bajillion ways. I never buy white pasta. Sometimes egg noodles. But usually whole wheat. It’s just better for you.
10. Veggie bacon: I love Morningstar veggie bacon. It stays in the freezer forever and two slices are only 60 calories! It’s great crumbled in bits on top of pasta or eggs.
11. Parmesan cheese: I always have some of this in my fridge. I like it because it has a strong, nutty taste lovely for topping pasta with. Plus it’s pretty lean and not as fatty as other cheeses. Yum.
12. Protein bars: My faves are Luna bars or Clifbars. I used to love Zone bars, but have since grown sick of them. I rock climb a couple nights a week and to sustain myself until I get home for dinner, I always try to remember to pack a protein bar.
13. Bell Peppers: Raw or sauteed in a stir fry, bell peppers are super healthy for you. And they don’t really even taste like a “veggie” if that’s what you’re worried about. Kind of mildly sweet.
14. Soybeans (shelled): Trader Joe’s has a bag of this for just a buck. Or maybe $1.99. In any case, super cheap. Simply boil for 5 minutes, drain, and serve in stir fry or eat as is.
15. Lowfat/skim mozarella string cheese: Trader Joe’s sells a pack of 12, at just 60 cals each.
17. Almonds: Nuff said. Duh. Salted and roasted. Yum.
18. Honey: I love it on toast, in oatmeal or almondmeal, in tea. It’s just good.
19. Green tea: Green tea is a great appetite suppressant and helps metabolize too.
20. Ice cream: I try to eat this sparingly, but man. It’s been almost every night lately. For dessert. I allow myself to indulge in ice cream. So what? No shame. Everything in moderation. My faves are vanilla soy or coffee almond fudge.
Well, I think twenty things is good for now. Hopefully this list helps you figure out what essentials to keep in YOUR kitchen.