Basic Foods to Always Have in the House

“People who love to eat are my favorite people”

Last week, I had another opportunity to guest blog on Seek Health. I shared a post that included 25 essential foods you should always have in your house. Check out Kitchen Must-Haves here; you may recognize this post, as I shared it on the blog earlier this summer.

Especially as summer is ending, back-to-school is in full swing and we’re all starting to get back into a routine, I felt this was a good one to share again.

Below is a list of 25 kitchen basics, allowing for some wiggle room to adjust for your own personal choices, including vegetarians (like me!) and vegans.

Proteins
1. Chicken, fish/tuna, or hamburger (always have one staple)
-Lean, plain versions (not breaded, packed in oil, etc.)

Note: one serving of meat is the size of a deck of cards

2. Eggs or Egg Beaters

Note: if you like hardboiled eggs, they last awhile, are easy to make and can be used in sandwiches, salads or as a snack

3. Greek Yogurt
-Low-calorie/high-protein like Chobani 100 or Light & Fit

Note: if you like sour cream, plain Greek yogurt tastes exactly the same and is a much better choice

4. Cheese
-Shredded and/or thin sliced

Note: lighter-colored cheese is generally the better choice but full-fat cheeses are fine too, just use less

5. Beans
-Black, kidney, chickpeas, etc.

Note: use for Mexican dishes, sandwiches, wraps, or mixed with some veggies for a simple salad

Starches
6. Potatoes
-Sweet or regular (reds, whites, mixes)

7. Brown rice
-White is okay to use too

8. Oats/Oatmeal

9. Wraps, tortillas or light wheat bread (or all, depending on what you like)

10. Wheat pasta

Veggies

A few veggies add some nutrition & spice up plain mac & cheese.

Note: mix a ½ cup of pasta with a whole zucchini, sliced into ribbons/noodles, for a lower calorie, lower carb pasta dish

Veggies
11. Frozen
-Bagged or single-serve; plain or mixes

Note: Variety is good; try to have a few different kinds

12. Bagged spinach and/or head of lettuce

13. Zucchini
-See above, for use with pasta

14. Tomatoes, Cucumber, Peppers, etc.
-Whatever you like; what you’d use on sandwiches, in salads, pastas, etc.

Fruit
15. Berries
-Black, Blue, Rasp and Straw – all are great

16. Apples

17. Bananas
-If you like them on toast or in oatmeal, a half banana is great for breakfast

18. Cherries, oranges and pineapple
-Rotate in, when in season

Fats
19. Peanut Butter
-Go with the natural varieties or a full-fat vs. reduced fat version

Eggs

Hardboiled eggs – one yolk, mashed w/avocado & Greek yogurt. Yum!

20. Avocado

21. Olive Oil

22. Light butter/margarine

Extras and Snacks
23. Soup
-Cans of light and low-sodium versions of your favorite soups
-Mixes (you can make a batch in the crock pot and add extra veggies/protein to it)

24. Rice Cakes
-Flavored ones to snack on instead of chips
-Apple or chocolate flavored for sweet snack (add peanut butter)

25. Protein Bars
-Pure Protein or Quest, ideally

Note: be very cautious when choosing protein bars; many don’t have much protein and they’re closer to a candy bar

Finally, add and adjust so you get some of your own personal favorites. For example, Chris and I love cereal, both as a snack or sometimes for dinner, so we always have at least one box (simple options like Honey Nut Cheerios, Corn Flakes or Special K) and milk.

As always, please share on Facebook and Twitter if you like. And feel free to comment with questions or your own kitchen must-haves, or tweet them to me @runlikeagirl311 on Twitter.

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