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How To Stock A Healthy Pantry (Video Blog)

Posted by on Aug 28, 2017 in All Food + Nutrition, Featured, Videos | 0 comments

Elizabeth Finch

We eat what we see. That’s why I believe in the importance of keeping a well organized, well stocked pantry.

If your pantry is organized, clear of junky processed foods and well stocked with healthier options, then it goes without saying that you (and your family members!) will be more likely to choose healthier foods. 

You’ll also know what you’ve got on hand, which will save you money at the grocery store. Who hasn’t bought items at the store, gotten home and put them away, and then found them at the back of the pantry months later, well past their expiration date? (Raises hand.)

In my latest segment for Good Morning Arkansas on KATV, I shared my top tips for clearing out the junk, restocking and organizing a healthy pantry. 


And in case you missed them in the video segment, here are my pantry stocking and organizing tips:

Step 1: Toss out anything that’s highly processed. Keeping foods in the pantry that make you lose your self control is like setting yourself up to fail. Don’t do it to yourself! And if they aren’t healthy choices for you, they aren’t healthy choices for your kids, either. Do everyone in your family a favor, toss the junk and restock with healthier options.Go ahead and look at expiration dates while you’re at it and get rid of anything that’s no longer good.

Step 2: Restock with healthy staples. Some of the pantry staples that I always try to keep on hand are: oats, brown rice and/or quinoa, whole grain pasta, whole grain crackers, canned diced tomatoes, canned beans, chicken or vegetable broth, sustainably caught canned tuna, raw nuts and seeds, nut butter, healthier snack bars, and good quality dark chocolate.

Step 3: Organize your pantry items in easy-to-find groupings. Strategically place healthier options for kids at their eye level and less healthy options up higher than eye level. Here’s how I like to keep my own pantry organized so that I can see everything I’ve got, and I know exactly where to find what I’m looking for:

  • Healthier sweet treats & snackier foods up higher than eye level
  • Canned goods like beans, chicken or veggie broth, canned tomatoes
  • Whole grains, whole grain pasta & jarred pasta sauce
  • Breakfast foods like cereals, oats and breakfast bars
  • Healthier chip & crackers 
  • Nuts & seeds in jars, nut butters

Also, it’s a good idea to set out fresh fruit that’s washed and ready to go, along with a few nuts or nut butter packets, in the afternoons when kids come home from school. This will encourage them to make healthier choices instead of going for the junkier foods.

Having a healthily-stocked pantry makes it so much easier for me to put together a quick, healthy dinner for my family on busy weeknights. Having all my pantry items in their designated place ensures that I can find whatever I need in a jiffy, and also keeps me from buying duplicate items at the store because I didn’t realize I already had it on hand. Buying healthy food isn’t cheap and I certainly don’t like having to throw things out because they’ve gone bad before I can use them!

And, keeping healthier options at eye level makes it easier for my kids to grab a healthy snack that will provide them with nutrition that fuels their bodies and their brains. It really is a win-win for everyone in the family.

Now, I’d love to hear your thoughts!

What are your favorite pantry staples for healthy family snacks and quick weeknight meals? 

Please share with us all in the comments below! 

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