12 Healthy Food Staples in My Kitchen

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I always say I’m a “pretty healthy eater.” Depending on who you ask, that’s true! But I know one thing — I try to get my veggies everyday and I always always get my fruit. The unspoken rule for me is at least 3 fruits, 2 veggies and 100% whole wheat bread every day if possible.

There are a few things I rely on for my staple “healthy” go-tos each week and never get sick of! It’s easy to start giving your body what it needs if you make it a habit. Not on the following list is the daily low-sodium V-8 I force down my throat each day. Do I like it? Nope! But I’ve made it habit (sensing a trend here with the veggies, ie. kale?)

Ericka’s 12 Health Food Staples

1. Fuji organic apples: I always get organic because I’ve heard time and again that you should always go that route when eating the peels of fresh fruits & veggies. Truth be told, I ONLY like Fuji apples — the perfect mixture of sweet, crisp & juicy!

2. Bananas: Bananas on toast, in smoothies, on top of cereal, topped with a lone spoonful of peanut butter. I cannot get enough of this fruit! I eat a banana every single day.

3. Nature Valley Granola Bars: Yes, sugary but…they are something I love and eat daily. My favorite kind is the dark chocolate, peanut & almond though I also by the regular double packs of cinnamon, peanut butter and oats n’ honey. LOVE!

4. Almond butter: Homemade or storebought — both delicious. I swap it out for peanut butter in smoothies, on toast and on ice cream with Hershey’s syrup. It’s such an amazing thing and soooo easy to make in my food processor.

5. Bell peppers: Snack on them in slices for a crunchy delight, chop up in your salad or add to many thousands of dinner dishes. I use in stir fry or just as a random ingredient all the time. My fav? Stuffed bell peppers!

6. Hummus: I can eat hummus by the spoonful with nothing else. After going to Lebanon and eating it there, I’ll never be the same but Sabra does a pretty damn good job with keeping me addicted. Also easy as pie to make at home. It can be eaten on almost any diet too…amazing food.

7. Raspberries: Don’t love raspberry flavored things — but the actual raspberries? Bring it. I buy the mini-cartons and eat an entire carton in one sitting. Something about the texture and the ease of eating them one by one. Also: dark chocolate covered raspberries are a fav!

8. Brussel sprouts: You’ve heard me proclaim my love for these before. I LOVE brussel sprouts. Tossed in olive oil and roasted with sea salt — they are to die for. Be sure you leave them in the oven long enough to carmelize and crisp. I eat them like popcorn.

9. Whole wheat rice & beans: Always have rice & beans as a side dish available. It’s super healthy and goes with everything. A good thing for me? I actually really enjoy eating them. That will serve me well when I go to the Congo this summer!

10. 100% whole wheat bread: My momma always taught me to buy 100% whole wheat and just “wheat” or it didn’t count! And so I have for years. I’m so used to wheat that eating white seems weird to me — though I occasionally indulge :)

11. Frozen broccoli: I always have a massive bag of this in the freezer. When you don’t know what to have for a side dish — boom. Super healthy and keeps forever. For me, roasted like the sprouts is best.

12. 100% Orange juice w/ extra pulp: I would never buy anything other than 100% juice — a habit I formed long ago. And I love pulp! OJ is the answer to good health (in a way) so it’s always good to have it on hand!

Not so healthy staples include: Tortilla chips, Breyers ice cream, canned soup and four kinds of cheese :)

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While my spending habits at the grocery store shouldn’t be anyone’s good example, I justify spending extra money on good, healthy food because it’s important to feed your body right and…I rarely ever buy lunch or dinner out during the week. Although I could take a tip or two from my thrifty sister, Shelby (check our her new blog!).

Having my staple items keeps my health habits grounded and helps me to build off of them and try new things from time to time (like kiwis and asparagus and grapefruit and chia seeds!) Make your healthy items a habit and you’ll start feeling a lot better, garunteed!

QUESTION: What are the staple, go-to items that always find their way into your grocery cart? What are your unhealthy staples? Do you spend a lot at the store because you buy a lot of healthy foods?

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