Eat Better, Feel Better with a Well-Stocked Kitchen



Making changes to your diet takes work, but one easy way to reach your goals is to make sure you have the right ingredients on hand, including non-food items like kitchen tools and appliances. As you’re getting ready to start the Fresh Express 30 Day Salad Swap, take a look around your kitchen and in your pantry, fridge, and freezer to see if you have what you need to start the program. If you don’t, head out and stock up on some of the most important items. They won’t cost you a lot – we’re not talking a $500 Vitamix blender, just a couple of kitchen staples that will make it easier for you to achieve the Salad Swap goal to Eat Better, Feel Better!

Pantry Staples:

  • Extra Virgin Olive oil – used for homemade dressings and to sauté salad ingredients
  • Kosher salt – coarser than table salt, which helps reduce the amount of salt you need, thereby reducing the sodium content
  • Black peppercorns – freshly ground pepper adds more intense flavor to dishes
  • Canned beans – look for no-salt added varieties, otherwise drain and rinse before using
  • Vinegars (e.g. balsamic, red wine, apple cider)
  • Whole grain pasta
  • Dried herbs and spices – a variety are used in Salad Swap recipes to add flavor without added calories and sodium
  • Dijon mustard
  • Raw, unsalted nuts (e.g. pecans, almonds, walnuts)
  • Low-sodium soy sauce
  • Honey
  • Canned tomatoes
  • Whole grain breadcrumbs/panko
  • Cooking spray

Refrigerator and Freezer Staples:

  • Fresh Express salad!
  • Reduced fat and low-fat cheeses (cheddar, Monterey Jack, Parmesan, goat, blue)
  • Fresh herbs (e.g. cilantro, parsley, rosemary, basil)
  • Eggs
  • Low-fat plain or Greek yogurt – a great substitute for mayonnaise, sour cream, and other higher-calorie ingredients
  • Frozen shrimp
  • Frozen corn

Non-Refrigerated Kitchen Staples:

  • Lemons, limes, and oranges – often juiced for a vinaigrette dressing or marinade
  • Garlic, onions, shallots
  • Grape tomatoes

Kitchen Tools:

  • Cutting boards
  • Chef’s knife
  • Hand juicer
  • Strainers
  • Whisk
  • Prep/mixing bowls
  • Baking sheets
  • Baking pan
  • Medium to large sauté pan
  • Pasta pot
  • Sauce pan
  • Heat-safe spatulas
  • Can opener
  • Microplane zester/grater
  • Measuring spoons and cups
  • Pepper mill

By Jessica Fishman Levinson, MS, RDN, CDN for Fresh Express


2 thoughts on “Eat Better, Feel Better with a Well-Stocked Kitchen

  1. […] Keep a well-stocked pantry. It’s easier to follow a recipe when you have everything on hand. Almost every salad dressing in the Swap calls for extra-virgin olive oil, so you’ll want to have a bottle or two in your pantry. Other salad ingredients to keep around: canned beans, raw nuts, breadcrumbs, cooking spray, vinegars, and a variety of grains. […]

  2. […] be to eat healthier. In addition to meal planning and setting specific goals, it helps to keep a well-stocked pantry and kitchen. Before you head to the supermarket, find out some of my top tips for navigating the store and […]

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