Who feels like a pantry makeover? I’ll make it easy for you to stock your holistic pantry: I’ve created a list of healthy staples for you. If you’re detoxing the junk from your cupboards, here are the foods to have on hand for regular use in cooking and baking. I’ve also included my quick meal staples: foods you can have use to assemble easy meals if you’re in a pinch.
How to Stock Your Holistic Pantry
Cooking Oils and Fats
Coconut oil: I use coconut oil for my primary cooking oil. It’s a saturated fat that’s solid at room temperature, making it incredibly stable when heat is applied. It won’t break down and oxidize like monounsaturated fats such as olive oil. I love this tub of coconut oil. Always choose virgin, unrefined coconut oil. If you don’t like the coconutty taste, you can use refined, but the refined oils do not offer the same health benefits of unrefined/raw coconut oil.
I love coconut butter to use in baked goods, as a spread or as an energy-boosting afternoon snack. Nikki’s coconut butter offers a delicious line in flavors like vanilla cake batter (my favorite). Artisana’s coconut butter is delicious and raw.
Extra virgin olive oil: I like California Olive Ranch olive oil . Be aware that many olive oils have been cut with soy and vegetables oils, so make sure what you’re buying is true olive oil. Olive oil should be used for low and medium temp cooking. I also like the flavored olive oils infused with garlic, basil, or lemon.
I also keep lard and tallow on hand occasionally, and I buy it locally here in San Francisco from The Fatted Calf, which makes both from local pigs and cows.
I always have raw kraut (a must for probiotics, detox support and enhancing digestion) in the fridge. It lasts for months. I use Farmhouse Cultures, which I get at Whole Foods, but you can make your own or buy local.
Chia seeds are great in baking for egg replacement or to make pudding. They’re high in omega 3s & fiber and are also great in smoothies.
I like almond butter and tahini for snacks or in smoothies. You can make your own using soaked almonds, which is the optimal option, but Artisana’s raw almond butter is a good store-bought brand.
I use raw apple cider vinegar as a rinse on my hair to normalize scalp PH. I also drink it diluted with water to support good digestion and detox. I use balsamic vinegar mixed with olive oil as a salad dressing. You don’t need to use store-bought salad dressings that are made with toxic vegetable oils.
I like to have raw, unfiltered local honey on hand. If I’m not sourcing locally, Really Raw is a great brand.
I keep supergreens blends around to use in smoothies. They contain mineral-rich and antioxidant-rich veggies and sea veggies like chlorella and spirulina, which also aid in detox.
For smoothies, I like PaleoMeal or PaleoMeal dairy free. And I also make sure to keep gelatin around for snacks and for use in smoothies. Click here to read about gelatin’s amazing benefits. I also use collagen and moringa in smoothies.
This coconut milk (which I use as my primary dairy free milk in smoothies and in cooking) is BPA-free.
I primarily use a combo of almond and coconut flour for baking, and I also use Pamela’s gluten free baking mix. Blanched almond flour is best. Bob’s Red Mill gluten free 1:1 flour works well for more savory muffins or breads. I’ve also used it to make gnocchi, which was delicious.
For sweetener, I like granulated monk fruit, which doesn’t spike blood sugar or feed intestinal yeast, and coconut palm sugar, which is low on the glycemic index, so it won’t spike blood sugar either.
Foods to Have on Hand for Quick & Easy Meals
Canned wild salmon is great flaked with dijon mustard over salad greens or inside a ½ avocado for quick meal if you don’t feel like cooking. I don’t recommend tuna due to high mercury, but apparently Wild Planet offers low mercury tuna.
I keep wild frozen shrimp from Whole Foods in the freezer, because it’s very easy to defrost and cook up. Just run under hot water for 5 minutes. You can also keep frozen chicken legs and add directly to the crockpot for 6-8 hours on low. I keep organic frozen berries around for smoothies, and I always have sweet potatoes, onions and garlic since they keep for weeks.
Herbs & Spices
Always use unrefined sea salt. I get mine from Costco. Celtic sea salt is great for adrenal support. I also buy cinnamon in bulk there, because I use it almost daily in snacks and smoothies. It’s a great natural blood sugar stabilizer. I keep chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, curry, turmeric and baking spices (vanilla, nutmeg, etc) stocked.
Detox Your Cleaning Supplies
Cleaning products are full of toxic chemicals that overwhelm your liver’s detox capacity ad build up in your fatty tissues, leading to endocrine disruption over time. There’s no reason to use the chemical stuff. You can make your own easily, or there are many good nontoxic options available. I love Mrs. Meyers. They all smell divine. I use her all purpose cleaner and handsoap. I also like her laundry detergent. You don’t want to wash your undies with chemicals, do you?
I use my crock pot, cast iron, and green pans for cooking. Essentials! Click here to visit my shop to see the other cooking utensils I have on hand.
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Mary Vance is a Certified Nutrition Consultant and author specializing in digestive health. She combines a science-based approach with natural therapies to rebalance the body. In addition to her 1:1 coaching, she offers courses to help you heal your gut and improve your health. Mary lives in San Francisco and Lake Tahoe in Northern California. Read more about her coaching practice here and her background here.