CREATING A HEALTHY PLANT-BASED PANTRY
THE ESSENTIALS FOR YOUR PLANT-BASED PANTRY
It is important to fill your pantry with healthy food to make the most of your plant-based diet. Having a variety of staples on hand can be a useful advantage for you while completing the 21-day clean eating plan, which may result in an overall positive lifestyle change.
Here are our recommendations for essential plant-based foods to have in your pantry.
Whole grains and flours
Brown rice flour
Beans and legumes
These foods are rich in fiber, iron, potassium and protein. Also, you can buy organic varieties in bulk at your local markets or grocery stores. You can use these beans and legumes in your salads, soups and other dishes.
Yellow split peas
Red kidney beans
White kidney beans
Nuts and seeds
Adding raw and unsalted nuts and seeds to your smoothies, snacks, desserts and meals is a great choice. They contain fiber, minerals, vitamins and mono- and polyunsaturated fats (omega-3 fatty acids and omega-6 fatty acids) that are beneficial to your heart, nerves, cells, muscles and other bodily organs.
Plant-based milk alternatives
Most milk alternatives tend to be digested more easily. Pick those which are unflavored, lower in calories and sugar, and free from the added and harmful hormones and antibiotics that can be found in cow's milk.
Dried fruits (best to get organic)
HOW AND WHERE TO STORE YOUR PANTRY STAPLES
Whole grains and flours should be stored in airtight containers on dry pantry shelves (grains for up to 6 months, flours for up to 1-3 months) or in the freezer (grains for up to a year, flours for up to 2-6 months). It's better to use glass than plastic containers.
Beans and legumes should be stored in a cool, dry area. You can increase their shelf life by storing them in airtight containers.
Airtight glass containers are good for storing nuts and seeds. Putting jars in the refrigerator or freezer is preferred if you wish to keep them for longer than 4 months.
Plant-based milk alternatives are mostly stored in the refrigerator and should be consumed within 5-7 days.
Most unopened oils (except coconut oil), vinegar and some condiments can be kept in the pantry for long periods. Once opened, they should be kept in the refrigerator, but vegetable oils and vinegar can be kept at room temperature.
Most foods need to be preserved in a dry, cool place and in the absence of oxygen and light. Keep in mind that most labels have a "best by" or expiration date that needs to be considered because all items are not the same.
A healthy food pantry with a variety of plant-based products will help you enjoy a delicious and nutritious diet. Check out our meal plans for help navigating through this process.