In this post, I wanted to share the always on-hand ingredients that I stock up on to make mindful eating effortless and inexpensive any day of the week. Don't forget to scroll all the way to the end, where I've made a custom grocery list that you can download or print!
My mindful kitchen staples
Read this list like you would a grocery list, as it’s organized by sections of a Trader Joe’s store (where I do most of my shopping).
I get the majority of my fruit intake at work (blueberries, apples, pineapple, melon, etc.), so I don’t end up needing to buy much #bless. But I always make sure to have bananas for smoothies, so I’ll buy a couple a week and freeze what I don't consume immediately. Dates keep for a good long time, and avocados have a decent shelf life, too. Apples I’ll get for a healthy snack on the weekend.
Below are some of the most versatile veggies I’ve found. Kale works great in smoothies or soups. Mushrooms are a tasty addition to turkey burgers, spaghetti sauce, or soup, as well. Zucchini noodles are the favorite for anything Italian-inspired and sweet potato is good with some chili & cheese on top!
Frozen foods are often overlooked as lesser versions of their fresh counterparts, but studies actually show them to retain a majority of their nutrients. Their convenience can't be beat, so I make sure to have a bag of frozen fruits and veggies at all times. Perfect for when you’ve struggled to get to the store and all you’ve got lying around are eggs (for stir fry) and greek yogurt (for smoothies).
Frozen mixed berries
Frozen mixed veggies
Frozen turkey burgers
Confession: I put cheese on everything. It’s one of the easiest ways I know to make veggie-based meals more flavorful and satisfying. Eggs can be thrown into a veggie stir fry at a moment’s notice, and hummus makes for a lovely, guilt-free snack that I never seem to OD on. Almond milk goes in my smoothies and coffee, and ground turkey can be used in a variety of Italian or Mexican-inspired dishes.
Shredded mozzarella or parmesan
Almond milk (vanilla, unsweetened)
Low-fat ground turkey
Again, big fan of canned foods for their convenience and general health benefits. Healthline states that, “canning preserves most of a food's nutrients.” Meaning vegetables out of the can still count! Also, beans are a nutrient powerhouse most often found in cans. You can buy them dry, but ain't nobody got time for that.
I try to steer clear of the majority of packaged goods, just because I realize that the longer anything something can hang out on a shelf, the fewer nutrients it retains from the point of freshness. But there are some definite exceptions I make when it comes to snacks, desserts, and condiments.
Quinoa is excellent due to its lack of gluten and abundance of fiber & protein. Mary’s Gone Crackers are just about the only crackers I allow myself to keep in the house, because they you can’t just eat them on their own -- they are solely a vehicle for whatever healthy dip I have. Rx bars have very few ingredients and make for lovely snacks when cut in half. I put almond butter in my smoothies and on dates for a wholesome dessert. A square of dark chocolate also generally feels indulgent enough for dessert. Then there’s sriracha, which is not not processed, but a little goes a long way, and I just love it on everything.
Mary’s Gone Crackers
Almond butter (raw, salted)
Quick recipes to make with these kitchen staples
I kind of alluded to the majority of the use cases for each of the above ingredients, but here I’ll get in to the exact combos I’ll make for quick and easy healthful sustenance.
Eggs + Avocado + Mary’s Gone Crackers
Apples + Almond Butter
Mary’s Gone Crackers + Hummus
½ Rx Bar
Lunch or Dinner
Turkey + Zucchini + Canned Tomatoes + Mushrooms
Soup + Frozen Veggies + Shredded Cheese
Dates + Almond Butter
My mindful eating grocery list
Print this grocery list & stick it in your regular grocery bag or purse. Or, do what I do & take a picture on your phone! Pull it out whenever you walk into a grocery store without a plan but with a desire to be eat mindfully.
Up Next: Read Eating Mindfully on a Time & Money Budget