How to stock a healthy pantry

Need to put together a nutritious meal in a hurry? Stock your pantry with these key staples and you'll always have what you need for a quick, healthy dinner

By Tara Nolan

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Give your pantry a makeover

We all know what it’s like to get in the door after a busy day and have no clue what to eat. But if you stock a well-organized pantry, you’ll find that throwing meals together is much easier when you have the right ingredients at hand. 


We’ve taken some creative licence with the word "pantry" to include your fridge and freezer. As to what you need to buy? "I break it down into categories," says Lisa Tsakos, a registered holistic nutritionist and co-author of Unjunk Your Junk Food. Tsakos divides her pantry into the following items:

• Grains (quinoa, millet, brown rice)
• Flours (brown rice, whole grain)
• Pasta (brown rice, kamut, spelt)
• Dried beans
• Nuts and seeds or legumes
• Non-dairy milk
• Dried fruits
• Herbs and spices
• A selection of sulfite-free vinegars

With these categories in mind, here are some ideas that will provide you with multiple options for healthy meals—and hopefully make you pause before reaching for the phone to order takeout.

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