STOCK UP ON THESE ITEMS:
At all times I have the following items in my kitchen:
- Almond milk (no sugar, unflavored) or organic skim milk. I am now cutting out most dairy, so I use Almond milk mostly now. It works in coffee too.
- Bolthouse Farms dressings (I do not like the Caesar one). Bolthouse dressings are yogurt based dressings and have low calories. It is best to keep your dressing under 50 calories per serving. I use 2 tablespoons or less on my salad each day. Remember, dressing is for flavor, not to cover the taste of the food. 🙂 Bolthouse is usually sold next to the produce (lettuce, mushrooms) and is sold chilled in most stores. You won’t typically find it on the dressing isle.
- Olive Garden LIGHT italian dressing. It tastes exactly like the restaurant version and you will never miss the fat or calories! You can buy it at any grocery store.
- Roasted organic garlic seasoning & Fresh garlic (minced in a jar). I use both, a lot!
- Mrs. Dash seasonings!!! Tomato basil, Chipotle flavor, lemon pepper, garlic and herb, table blend, etc. I use these specifically because they are sodium free. This is very important when watching your weight. Sodium=bloating and swelling! It is truly really bad for you, so watch the sodium content in anything you buy. You sho
uld not buy anything with sodium or sugar in the first five ingredients. (Their website is here in case you want to see all the flavors. They also have some great recipes on there. http://www.mrsdash.com/ )
- Kirkland’s Organic Seasoning: At Costco. It is yummy and is great on sweet potatoes or in beans to add flavor.
- Any other organic, non-sodium seasonings. Whole foods has some great ones.
- Morton’s lite salt: I use this salt ONLY. I actually eat a minimum of 1/2 teaspoon every day. It has a really strong salt flavor but limited sodium and has a great deal of potassium. Potassium is why you need it. The more water you drink, the more potassium you will need each day to balance out your electrolytes. Measure it out each morning and get it in all day long. I put mine in a little pill bottle I keep on my car keys or in my purse. That way, I can use it even when I eat out.
- Magic seasoning for fish: It makes salmon taste delicious!!!! My favorite!
- 5th Season Italian seasoning
- Original Pam spray. I get mine in large two packs at Costco (they are cheaper there). I don’t use any other oils at all.
- Land-O-Lakes light butter. (You can have one teaspoon of fat each day. You can also use 2 ounces of Light mayo or avocado as a fat instead.)
- Molly McButter-(Tastes great in steam and mash potatoes.)
- Onion flakes (I get a large container at Costco)
- Onion powder (Not onion salt)
- Gourmet organic basil (in the salad section)
- Melba toast. You can have two slices per serving (if you watch carbs, like I do).. I use Melba toast a good bit to make breading for veggies (on eggplant) or to bread chicken (to make chicken nuggets). I use my blender (or you can use a magic bullet) to crush the melba toast. I then use egg whites or eggs to dip the chicken or eggplant in first and then add the crushed melba toast as a breading. Spray with Pam spray and then bake. It is REALLY good! You won’t miss the fatty kind I promise!!!
- Fresh cilantro
- Organic tomato paste (I get it at Costco. Large box of 15 or so. Use it for sauces).
STAPLE FRUITS: Always best to eat organic if possible. I order a mixed basket each week from www.naturesgardenexpress.com. They put in my order each Friday, I can make changes to my account each weekend (until Monday at 10am). At 10am, they charge my card and then deliver it to my house each Tuesday. Check the dirty dozen list for all fruits you should NEVER eat if they are not organic. It is a bit more expensive, but if you are going to eat healthy, do it right! This list will show you which are important. The lower the number next to the fruit, the more you should stay away from if not organic:. http://www.ewg.org/foodnews/list.php
Seedless watermelon (we eat one per week):
- Orange cuties (small nectarines)
- Fresh pineapple
- Apples (I love fuji apples best)
- Green grapes
(Always get a variety of good fruits. This will keep you from getting bored with the same old thing). Once you cut all other sugar out of your diet, you will start to rely on these nice fresh fruits to serve your sweet tooth! I eat three servings of fruit every day. Breakfast, 11am snack and after lunch. You need to get all fruits in at least five hours before bed.
- Green beans
- Turnip greens
- Broccoli spears
- “Steam and mash” potatoes
- Organic hashbrowns
- Stew veggies
Fresh Veggies(I buy mostly organic- if not, check the list re: pesticides):
- Romaine lettuce
- Artisan lettuce
- Green leaf lettuce (Great for fake tacos/lettuce wraps)
- Arugula (I always have three or four different types of lettuce in the house)
- Jalepeno pappers
- Green onions
- Spaghetti squash
- Broccoli (can do frozen too)
- Summer squash
- Tomatoes (We use LOTS. If you have friends that garden it helps!)
- Red onions
- Sweet potatoes (We are cutting white potatoes, going more paleo). This is why we eat sweet potatoes now. We used to eat white potatoes or rice three times per week or so). You can season sweet potatoes so they don’t taste sweet. Using the Kirkland’s seasoning and green onions with Morton’s lite salt. Also, you can dice them and use Pam spray to pan fry. We usually overcook them a bit because they are yummy blackened. 🙂 We use a counter-top convection oven to bake potatoes quickly. Spray the outside of the potatoes with Pam spray and then add Morton’s salt to the outside. This will make the skins crispy. Bake in about 20 minutes in a convection oven. (Tip: line your pans with aluminum foil and you don’t have to wash them often).
Best places to shop:
Nature’s Garden Express:
An awesome resource for fresh organic fruits and veggies is Nature’s Garden Express. You can order your size box to your specifications and can choose from an all fruits, all veggies, or mixed fruits and veggies box. Boxes vary in price from $35 to $55. You order before Friday, you have until Sunday to edit your order and make substitutions and they process your order on Monday and they deliver them to your door by Tuesday! Go towww.naturesgardenexpress.com to set up your account.
ASSI Plaza Market:
I shop at the Peachtree Parkway location. You have to get used to the smell of a fragrant asian market (think seafood aroma), but you can get AWESOME deals on fresh fruits and veggies. The price of green onions is 5 bunches for $1 and you won’t find bigger and cheaper fuji apples! I can get an entire week or two’s produce for under $50. Not everything is organic, but if you need to eat well on a budget- go to ASSI! For locations click here: http://www.assiplaza.net/stores.php