Stocking a full, healthy, plant-based pantry is no small feat! It’s an art, and like any art, it needs practice to perfect. Here is a handy list of plant-based ingredients that should have a place in your pantry reserved just for them:
Healthy Whole grains
Beyond refined white bread, rice and pasta, grains can be very healthy as they provide complex carbohydrates and fibre. Pick the right ones and they will energise your body and support digestion – try quinoa, brown rice, black rice, bulgar wheat, whole wheat pasta, whole rye and rolled oats. These grains are great for main meals and provide a solid base for your diet.
Super Seeds: Chia & Flax
Thanks to their versatility in the kitchen, chia seeds and flax seeds are an absolute must-have. They can be used to create what’s known as a chia or flax egg – great for thickening up liquids or as a vegan substitute for regular eggs in baking. They can also be added to smoothies, sprinkled on brekkie, or used to make puddings like this Lean Green SuperChia Pud.
Both are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids to maintain healthy blood cholesterol levels, as well as dietary fibre to support a healthy digestive system.
Where do you keep your protein powder? On top of the fridge, in the pantry, in your room, or maybe even in your bed because that’s how much you love the gains. Regardless, protein powder is an essential. It can be added to any smoothie or shake for extra protein, texture, and flavour. Check out our Ultimate Chocolate Smoothie, with double the chocolatiness thanks to cacao powder.
Legumes are packed with protein but also provide a great source of complex carbohydrates and fibre, supporting digestive health. Our top picks include black beans, pinto beans, chickpeas, lentils and kidney beans. They’re so easy to use, cheap, and extremely versatile.
Superfoods – of course
Superfoods are a brilliant way to add extra nutrients to any meal. By keeping stocked up and making a habit out of eating superfoods such as Spirulina, Wheatgrass and Cacao, you can build long-term health and immunity. They provide you with essential micro and macronutrients as well as antioxidants that can improve energy levels, support cognitive and psychological function, and your ability to fight certain illnesses. Sprinkle them onto breakfasts, mix them into smoothies, or even use them in savoury dishes.
Nuts provide are the perfect snack given they contain healthy fats, protein, fibre, iron and calcium. They also add an unexpected crunch to your cooking, whether that’s in a smoothie, curry or even a salad. Almonds, cashew, and pecans are some great nuts.
An easy way to bulk up smoothies and hit your calorie target for the day, your cupboard wouldn’t be complete without nut butter. However, not all are made equal, make sure to pick wisely. Nuts and only nuts, that’s all that’s needed for quality nut butter – try to avoid added sugars, salts and oils.