***Updated as of 11/1/16.
I am opinionated about a few things, so I should be honest and tell you that food is definitely one of them.
When I say I am opinionated about food, it’s not just because I am living with ADHD. I am writing about stocking a pantry and meal-planning because it benefits everyone trying to feed a family.
I am known for losing my keys. I am revered for my ability to turn anything into a crockpot recipe. Some people have even referred to my daily routines as “rigid.” But…Nobody has ever called me disciplined. Except when it comes to meal planning. http://wp.me/p60iCk-j6 Click To Tweet
There are days when I have to discipline myself to stop after half a bar of 88% Endangered Species Chocolate. Find it here. Don’t’ judge me. That stuff is like crack.
What was I saying?….
Oh yes, I am super weird about what I eat and what I feed my family. But that doesn’t mean I am disciplined. It just means I hyperfocus on something I feel like I can control. So much of our lives is completely outside of our control.
We are omnivores around in this house. We eat pretty much everything including gluten and some dairy. We do not subscribe to any particular way of eating and we have never done an elimination diet.
My son has tried all manner of healthy and non-healthy food in his short life.
All the same, I am painfully aware of the fact that food is the most powerful drug we will ever encounter.
The best way to support our brains and bodies is to eat a whole-foods based diet. In essence limiting our consumption of processed food while increasing our consumption of brain and body fortifying produce and lean proteins. As an added bonus, we save ourselves some cash to spend on other stuff.
And now you are thinking:
So Liz, how do you handle feeding your family? (While running from work to home to school to appointments to fill-in-the-blank.)
And how do you ensure that you are providing nutrient dense, wholesome meals at the same time?
You create a list of must-have pantry staples
When I write pantry staples, I mean realistic food staples. Food that the average family can afford to buy and enjoy eating. Not necessarily all organic or from the “health” food aisle of the grocery store.Having a stocked pantry is the key to my meal planning success. That and a budget.… Click To Tweet
Pantry staples are the foods you use the most at home, the foods you cannot live without.
Every family has their own “staples.”
Benefits of a well-stocked pantry
It saves time. There is nothing better than getting in and out of the grocery store in less than 30 minutes. When you have a stockpile of your frequently used items at home, all you need are a few extras to put together your meals.
Stocking Up Makes Planning (or lack thereof) Easier. Knowing that your family favorites are in-house takes the pressure off for you to come up with a meal on the fly. Your pantry staples serve as a safety net for busy weeknights or a lack of clear planning.
It Saves Money. Think about it – stockpiling the foods your family enjoys enables you to buy in bulk. All other food is purchased in smaller, less expensive quantities. Making a large bulk purchase once per month and then supplementing is much less expensive than running to the grocery store three times a week for everything your family needs.
I have included a checklist of what additives/chemicals/etc I personally try to avoid. Totally optional.
A List of pantry staples to get you started
I made a little downloadable that shows you some of the pantry staples that I like to keep on hand. This list is by no means complete, but it does give you a window into how much food I keep in my house. It’s sort of embarrassing actually.
Oh and I also included some of my favorite non-food items and a list of cheap eats. We could all stand to save a little money.
Many people have been emailing me asking about what supplements I like. The best way for me to explain my favorite supplements is to show you this video I made:
There are so many food options out there
Nobody but you can decide what is right for your family. If you want to eat convenience food, I don’t judge you. Convenience food is in fact, “convenient.” But if you are not entirely comfortable with how you are feeding your family, let me know. I would love to help.
Eat well. Move your body. Keep it simple.
If you want to see another AMAZING list of pantry items go visit Susan over at Our Family Eats. She has so many wonderful recipes and ideas. Susan is my meal-planning idol. Check out this article:
What are your family food go-to’s?
Is there anything food-wise that you try to avoid?