Vegan Pantry Staple Foods
Stocking Your Vegan Pantry with Healthy Foods
These are some plant based staple foods I like to keep on hand in my vegan pantry and refrigerator. If you are like me, you will often want to throw a quick and easy meal together. That’s where canned beans, quick-cooking grains, salad greens, fresh and frozen fruit, and fresh veggies come in handy. When you only keep healthy foods around the house, you will be a lot less likely to eat junk foods.
Here’s a trick you may want to try when you want a good grain base for your meal. Cook millet and quinoa together, half and half. I like the combined flavor and texture better than either of them on their own. I know quinoa is not technically a grain, because it does not come from the grass family, but it is so much like a grain, that I’m just going to call it that.
1/2 cup millet
1/2 cup quinoa
2 1/2 cups water
Rinse grains well in a fine strainer. Combine grains and water. Bring to boil. Turn down heat. Cover and cook for 25 minutes as you would rice. In fact, a rice cooker will do an excellent job.
Stock Up on Non-perishable Foods (Organic and healthy ingredients of course):
- Dry grains – quinoa, millet, amaranth (best when mixed with other grains), gluten-free oats, rice (look for California short grain organic rice, because of arsenic content in other types of rice)
- Dry beans, lentils, & split peas
- BPA-free canned beans – no salt added
- Seeds – whole flax seeds (refrigerate in air-tight container and grind fresh daily), chia seeds (refrigerate), hemp seeds (refrigerate)
- Sesame tahini (refrigerate after opening)
- Nuts – almonds, cashews, walnuts, Brazil nuts (limit Brazil nuts to 4 or less per day due to high selenium content), macadamia nuts, pine nuts
- Nut butters – raw almond butter, raw cashew butter, raw coconut butter, roasted peanut butter (refrigerate all nut butters except coconut butter)
- Frozen vegetables – spinach, broccoli, peas, green beans
- Frozen fruits – wild Maine blueberries, assorted berries, mango
- Dried herbs and spices
- Dried fruit – dates, prunes, goji berries, fruit-juice-sweetened cranberries, apricots, raisins (soak dried fruits before eating, ideally)
- Seeds for sprouting – broccoli, radish (avoid alfalfa, because of mold growth), buckwheat, sunflower
- Olive oil spray (optional)
- Salsa (in glass jar)
- Marinara sauce (in glass jar)
- Atlantic seaweeds – dulse, nori, wakame
- Celtic Sea Salt or Himalayan Pink Salt
- Sweeteners – date sugar, maple syrup, raw honey, black strap molasses, coconut sugar
- Dried mushrooms – shiitake, porcini
- Whole grain gluten-free pasta
- Coconut oil
- Chickpea miso (refrigerate)
Important: Store all seeds, grains, nuts, and beans in moth-proof and mouse-proof containers!
Keep a Variety of Perishable Foods on Hand:
- Salad Greens – spinach, lettuce, arugula, radicchio, endive
- Cabbage family vegetables – kale, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage
- Vegetables, assorted – celery, cucumber, carrots, yams, potatoes, onions
- Fruits – apples, oranges, bananas, avocado, pears, seasonal fruits
- Lemons and/or limes
- Sprouts (avoid alfalfa, because of mold growth)
- Hummus – make your own or look for brand without added oil or citric acid
- Forager cashew yogurt or drinkable cashewgurt
The most important staples for daily consumption are in bold print. You will have your own favorites to add, I’m sure. Eat seasonal fresh fruits and vegetables when they are available.
If you are looking for good recipes to start using these ingredients, I recommend Pantry to Plate and the China Study Family Cookbook.
Here are some good websites featuring healthy vegan recipes:
How to Deal with Vegan Objections You Will Hear from Family and Friends
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