Kiwi (organic) – TJ

Kiwi (organic) – TJ

Whenever I make a trip to Trader Joe’s, I buy a bag of kiwi! I also buy them at our local supermarket and sometimes at Costco (4 pound package). Let ripen on the counter. When the kiwi begins to soften (each may ripen at a different time, so check them each day), put it into the fridge (if you don’t eat it right...
Zucchini – (organic) – TJ

Zucchini – (organic) – TJ

Trader Joe’s sells organic zucchini (also known as summer squash) on a consistent basis, and I find it tends to be less expensive than at the supermarket/grocery store. Some of the zucchini (as well as some sweet corn and papaya*) grown in the US is from genetically engineered (GE) seeds. If you want to avoid this, buy organic. *All commercial production of GE papayas is in Hawaii. However, most of the papayas sold in the continental United States are imported from Brazil, Mexico, and the Caribbean (and not genetically engineered)....
Sunflower Seeds

Sunflower Seeds

I use raw sunflower seeds in a variety of dressings and sauces and recommend them in place of nuts (for those with nut allergy). They are sold in bags (great price at Trader Joe’s) and in bulk (supermarket). I keep them in the...
Japanese Eggplant

Japanese Eggplant

I absolutely LOVE Japanese eggplant! They are easy to slice in to planks, rounds or even just in half, lengthwise. I like to grill or roast them, (Fajita Grilled Veggies or Mediterranean Grilled Veggies – both recipes in The Foodie Bar Way). I also broil them with a miso-based marinade. Have fun with these purple...
Arrowroot powder/starch

Arrowroot powder/starch

Arrowroot powder can be used in place of cornstarch in recipes and has the advantage of being non-GMO (unlike most cornstarch), suitable for people with a corn allergy and extracted from the arrowroot without use of harsh chemicals. I keep a large bag of arrowroot in the freezer. Arrowroot tends to survive freezing better than cornstarch, and work well in acidic liquids (sauces, tomato based soups), but may break down after prolonged cooking/high heat. Available at most grocery stores in the specialty flour/baking area, but most reasonably priced when purchased...
BBQ Sauce

BBQ Sauce

When purchasing BBQ sauce, look for one that does not contain High Fructose Corn Syrup or artificial sweeteners. Also, tomato puree should be the first ingredient! Then, you can compare sodium levels if you are trying to decide between a few choices. I will be sure to put a homemade BBQ sauce in the next book! Let me know if you have a great...
Beans – canned

Beans – canned

When shopping for canned beans, be sure to look for those marked “BPA free” – though it is probably best to cook beans from dry when you can! I have found that organic varieties of canned beans are packed in much less sodium (85 mg/svg vs 440...
Bouillon Base (to make veggie broth)

Bouillon Base (to make veggie broth)

I love this Better Than Bouillon Base to make veggie broth. While it can be purchased at grocery stores, larger jars were being sold at Costco. Look carefully at the label, you want the jar marked Organic Reduced Sodium Seasoned Vegetable Base. Once opened, store in the refrigerator (will stay good for months and months, especially if you are careful to use only clean utensils). 1 tsp of this paste can be added to 1 cup of water to make 1 cup of veggie broth. The flavor is excellent and I love to use it in many recipes, including Mia’s Garlic Trees (in The Foodie Bar Way or on my website...
Bread – (Bagels) – sprouted

Bread – (Bagels) – sprouted

While bagels are typically nothing more than “empty calories” – it is possible to track down whole grain (and even sprouted grain) bagels. Like most bread products (especially those without preservatives), they will tend to mold quickly at room temperature, so I cut them in half, wrap them and plastic wrap (to reduce freezer burn), then pop them back into the bag and into the freezer they...
Breadcrumbs – Whole Grain – Panko

Breadcrumbs – Whole Grain – Panko

Panko style bread crumbs create a crunchy texture when used as a coating for roasted veggies or tofu. Look closely at the ingredients, some have hydrogenated fat/oil, an ingredient you most certainly want to avoid (links to health problems from infertility to heart disease). Whole grain products last longer when kept in the freezer (now you know why my upright freezer in the garage was such a smart investment that has paid for itself over and...
Bread – Whole Grain – Dave’s Killer Bread

Bread – Whole Grain – Dave’s Killer Bread

My family LOVES this bread! When we first started purchasing it, I was thrilled, as it was 100% organic, 100% whole grain, 100% free of any animal products, and they used fruit as a sweetener. It is now available at Costco (production shot through the roof) and it looks like they have changed their recipe a bit, to include organic evaporated cane juice. This is a fantastic bread to start with, especially if you are not used to eating whole grain breads! Store it in the freezer and take out a piece or two a few minutes before you are ready to make a sandwich or toast...
Rice – Brown – Boil-in-Bag

Rice – Brown – Boil-in-Bag

For those of you new to cooking brown rice, there are many options for cooking brown rice – including buying a “boil-in-bag” variety. This is partially pre-cooked so it will be done in ~10 minutes. You put the entire bag into a pot of boiling water (do not open the bag until it is cooked and you are ready to serve it. It is more expensive than buying uncooked rice in bulk or bagged, but it could be an option if you are just starting out on a whole grain...
Brussels Sprouts – fresh

Brussels Sprouts – fresh

Though I didn’t grow up eating them, I LOVE Brussels Sprouts! My mom did not enjoy them as a child (overcooking them makes the flavor overpowering and the texture mush), so she never prepared them for our family. When done right, they are amazing! (gently steamed until tender or roasted) Sometimes, stores will even sell them still on their...
Chipotle in Adobo

Chipotle in Adobo

Chipotle peppers are roasted jalapeños and are canned with adobo sauce. The peppers are still whole, with the seeds inside. If you want the smoky pepper flavor without all of the heat, be sure to scrape out the seeds before mincing (finely chopping) the chipotle. Most recipes only call for 1-2 peppers, so you will have plenty leftover, even if you only buy a small can. I like to use the snack or sandwich size zip top bags and freeze one pepper with a few teaspoons of sauce in each per bag. Then, I can thaw out a bag for a recipe (like my Seasoned Black Beans or Sofritas in The Foodie Bar Way) in just a few...
Coconut water

Coconut water

I like to use coconut water for some of my smoothies (see the Smoothie Foodie Bar), so I keep small containers of coconut water in my pantry. Larger containers of coconut water saves on packaging, but once opened, need to be kept in the refrigerator and used within a...
Corn – frozen – (organic whenever possible)

Corn – frozen – (organic whenever possible)

I always keep several bags of organic frozen corn. It couldn’t be easier than grabbing a bag from the freezer, cutting off one corner, pouring out the amount I need (still frozen) and returning the rest to the freezer. It will be thawed in no time (can also rinse in a colander to speed it up). Currently, corn and soy are going to be the most important items to look for non-GMO. Buying organic corn and soy are makes it easy to avoid GMO since that is one of the requirements related to using the organic...
Cornmeal – whole grain – organic

Cornmeal – whole grain – organic

Whole grain organic cornmeal can be found with the specialty flours/baking products in the supermarket or online (typically the best price). I store all cornmeal (and the rest of my whole grains) in the freezer, since higher temperatures can begin to break down the vulnerable unsaturated fats over time (end up rancid or with little...
Crackers – whole grain, oil-free, gluten-free

Crackers – whole grain, oil-free, gluten-free

Mary’s Gone Crackers are my favorite whole grain crackers, as they are made without oil (very rare) and are suitable for those avoiding gluten. They are amazingly crunchy, which I enjoy and although they can be pricey at the grocery store, they are much more reasonably priced at Costco (esp. when they offer at coupon ~$2.50 off, several times a year). Keep in a cool cabinet (or even the freezer, if space...
Cranberries (frozen)

Cranberries (frozen)

Cranberries can be purchased either frozen (all year round) or fresh (typically in the produce area around the holidays in Nov/Dec) and put directly into the freezer in their original package (no prep necessary). When you take out the amount you plan to use for a recipe, just rinse them using a sieve or...
Date Sugar

Date Sugar

Date sugar is the healthiest sweetener, second only to fruit. It is made by drying dates and them making them into a powder. Once I open a package of date sugar, I store it in the refrigerator. I typically buy it online or at a local health food store, but have seen it at our local supermarket (both options are more expensive). If used in place of sugar in a recipe, it has a thickening effect, so you may need to adjust the recipe a bit by increasing the amount of...
Dates – Medjool

Dates – Medjool

Medjool dates are very plump and sweet, while also being larger than the Delget Noor variety. I typically purchase them at Costco in a plastic tub. I remove the pit and little crown piece (if still on the date), which is easiest when they are still at room temperature, transfer them to a quart size zip-top freezer bag and keep them in the crisper drawer of the refrigerator (lasts for months and months, can also be frozen). Then, they are ready to use and I don’t have to worry about a stray pit that would ruin a recipe (and maybe even my blender if I am making a sauce or...
Edamame – Ready to Eat

Edamame – Ready to Eat

We buy Organic Edamame (ready-to-eat) in the refrigerated area at Costco. I always look for packages with the date furthest in the future. When I get home, I divide up the pods into 3 quart zip-top bags and put two in the freezer, because I know we won’t eat them all during the week, (and I don’t want them to go bad). The smaller bags will easily thaw overnight in the refrigerator. You can also buy frozen edamame (uncooked), just boil for 4-5 minutes before...
Flax seed – whole and ground (at home)

Flax seed – whole and ground (at home)

Since flax seed is very stable when whole, but important fatty acids are heat sensitive once ground, I always buy whole flax seed (typically in bulk), at the supermarket. While I store it in the freezer, I grind enough for a week (using a dedicated, $8 coffee grinder) to keep in a glass jar in the refrigerator, for easy access. Health wise, there doesn’t seem to be a difference between brown or golden flax, but in baking, if you are concerned about keeping your recipe light in color, use golden...
Buckwheat flour

Buckwheat flour

Despite it’s name, buckwheat flour is not made from wheat (and is actually gluten free). I like to use it in my Banana Pecan Snack Cake, among other recipes. I keep it in the freezer (with the rest of my whole grains, nuts and seeds). While I have seen it at my local grocery store, with the specialty flours, and sometimes in bulk, I normally buy it...
Rainbow Salad

Rainbow Salad

Rainbow Salad – sold by Mann’s -is a cousin to Broccoli Slaw, however includes the addition of cauliflower (broccoli, cauliflower, purple cabbage and carrots). If often goes on sale at my local supermarket for $0.99 and I use it in my Crazy Salad Base, as well as soups, Un-Fried Rice Foodie Bar, stir-fries and...
Bok choy

Bok choy

While some of my students grew up eating bok choy in stir-fries and soups, others have never tasted this wonderful vegetable from the cabbage family. It is super crispy and can be enjoyed raw in a salad or cooked. It is very nutrient dense and provides calcium that is easily absorbed by your...
Beets – fresh and roasted

Beets – fresh and roasted

Beets can be purchased and cooked or enjoyed raw (grated in salad… amazing -better than you think it would be!), or available already cooked and vacuum sealed. Perfect for your Crazy Salad Foodie Bar or the Beet with Citrus recipe in The Foodie Bar Way. For fresh beets, the condition of the greens will let you know how fresh they are. As soon as you get them home, separate the greens from the beet roots and use the greens within a day or so. The beet roots will last for a week or more in a bag (in the crisper drawer of the...
Tortillas – Corn (some are sprouted)

Tortillas – Corn (some are sprouted)

Several companies make organic corn tortillas that are available in many supermarkets (even look for store brands). Be sure to look for those with very few ingredients. Sprouted corn tortillas are a great choice, but more expensive, and will almost always be kept in the freezer section because they are made without any preservatives and don’t last long on the grocery store shelves. All tortillas can be kept in the freezer. We love making Mia’s 1-2-3 Easy Tortilla Chips from The Foodie Bar Way....
Tempeh

Tempeh

Trader Joe’s Organic 3 Grain Tempeh is my favorite – an 8 oz package provides 40 grams of protein, is only $1.99 and it freezes perfectly. We make a batch of Austin’s Seasoned Tempeh every other week and enjoy it on sandwiches and in our Crazy Salad Foodie Bar. Many grocery stores carry tempeh in the refrigerated section of the produce aisle, with the tofu, wonton wrappers, miso,...
Hibiscus Tea

Hibiscus Tea

Hibiscus tea has an amazing ability to boost the antioxidant level of your blood within minutes! Be sure to make Timaree’s Tropical Splash (recipe in The Foodie Bar Way and on my website – www.TheNutritionProfessor.com) – it couldn’t be easier – no heat needed! Any tea with “hibiscus” as the first ingredient on the label will work – I like the “zinger”...
Chia seeds

Chia seeds

Chia seeds provide protein, fiber, omega-3 fatty acids, are flavorless and have the ability to thicken when stirred/blended with a liquid (in a dressing/sauce, to make a chia “egg”, or in a smoothie). I use them in many recipes They are sold in bulk and bagged and come in black and white varieties (no difference in nutrition – just color). They are very shelf-stable and don’t need to be refrigerated or frozen. They can be used whole or ground, unlike flax, which must be ground (and kept cool) to protect the omega-3 fatty acids and provide an opportunity for your body to access...
Sea vegetables – Seaweed – nori snacks and dulse

Sea vegetables – Seaweed – nori snacks and dulse

Seaweed snacks made from nori are showing up at many stores, from the local supermarket to Costco. Sea vegetables, including “seaweed” are very nutrient rich, especially when it comes to minerals like iodine. Dulse is another type of sea veggie that can be found powdered. Unopened packages should be put into air-tight zip-top bags so they retain their crispy texture. Both impart a “flavor of the sea” to...
Sausage – plant-based, store-bought options

Sausage – plant-based, store-bought options

There are several plant-based sausages available in the refrigerated area in the produce aisle at many grocery stores. While I don’t typically eat them (since they include oil), they are a “sometimes food” for my husband and kids, with one link flavoring dinner for all three of them (some of their favorite Pasta Foodie Bar combinations). Be sure to avoid varieties that include “isolated protein” as an ingredient. They freeze very well and Trader Joe’s tends to have the best price....
Aminos (Bragg’s Liquid Aminos and Coconut Aminos)

Aminos (Bragg’s Liquid Aminos and Coconut Aminos)

Bragg’s Liquid Aminos and Coconut Aminos are flavorful sauces that are fun to experiments with. Coconut Aminos has a slightly sweet flavor, but 0 g of sugar, is made from coconut sap and contains ~113 mg of sodium per teaspoon. Bragg’s Liquid Aminos contains 320 mg of sodium per teaspoon. Coconut Aminos can be expensive, with the best price I’ve found...