Simple Shopping Guide

Tip #1 – Prioritize Proteins and Vegetables
Consciously choosing proteins and vegetables ensures that you’ll have a diet with the highest level of nutrients to support physical, mental, and emotional balance and integrity

  • Clean proteins, healthy fats, and organic vegetable-based carbohydrates are powerful macronutrients, providing a spectrum of rich micro-nutrients. With my tips, you can use these elements to create delicious simple meals.
  • Examples of protein and vegetable dynamic duos:
    • Simplify packed lunches with dynamic duos such as large batches of roasted organic vegetables and grilled wild salmon or grass-fed bison mini-burgers
    • Budget and think ahead with power pairs like organic rotisserie chickens, pulled and tossed with sliced grilled vegetables, fresh herbs, and arugula. This can be nourishment for several meals! These foods can be kept in containers in the fridge for organization and ease.

Tip #2 –Structure food shopping based on lifestyle, meal planning, and rotation
Your time is valuable, and taking a few minutes to plan out your meals for the week will mean less time in the store and more time for you and your loved ones.

It’s a simple equation: 10 minutes of meal planning + 1 comprehensive shopping list  = MORE JOY IN THE KITCHEN & SPACE IN YOUR WEEK.

  • Lifestyle
    • Your lifestyle and interest in cooking will determine what level of cooking you engage in.
  • Meal Planning
    • Prior to shopping, create a plan by building simple meals with protein and vegetables as your bases. Think about what you already have on hand, and what you need to add to create simple inspiring dishes that will feed your body and soul throughout the week.
    • Begin the meal planning process by assessing the fullness of your week, and start from there to determine the complexity of meals to choose. Try a new recipe and double it to have leftovers for the week.
    • If it is a busy week, keep it simple, and support yourself with nourishing quick simple affordable go-to’s found in my Shopping Guide ebook (Coming Soon!). These choices offer quick preparation and potential for abundant leftovers.
  • Rotate meals!
    • When meals are a hit, stick with it, and put them into a frequent rotation.

Tip #3- Buy Local & Organic as much as possible!

It’s not just the trendy choice! Local, organic foods contain more of the nutrients our bodies crave because they are not susceptible to the effects of intense chemical treatments and long-distance transport.

Buying local and organic is important for both proteins and produce. We’ve become so detached from what we are eating; we need to reconnect with our food sources. Shopping local is a way to not only strengthen our bodies but also our communities. Cut out the middle-man and support local agriculture!

When purchasing local it’s important to know that local farms often do not have the resources to have organic certification. The best way to learn about your protein is to visit the farm. Talk to them about what they are feeding their animals and how they are raising their vegetables.

Resources:

  • Boulder’s Golden Hoof Farm offers delicious heritage lamb, duck and chicken eggs, lamb tallow, fresh lard, bones for bone broth, organically raised heritage pork, and organic produce.
  • Jo Robinson’s site Eating on the Wild Side provides important details about how quickly vegetables lose their nutritional value after harvesting.
  • www.localharvest.org is a great resource to find local farms near you.

Tip #4 – Wise-up on Veggies
Vegetables are the carbohydrate foundation of a protein-vegetable based diet. The possibilities of vegetable preparation techniques form the creative backdrop to our proteins, fats, herbs, and other components of the dishes that we create.

  • Maximize low-sugar, high vitamin and mineral content vegetables
    • Kale, Swiss chard, spinach, asparagus, broccoli and Brussels sprouts.
  • Choose vegetables that are bulky, filling, abundant, and affordable
    • Cauliflower, zucchini, butternut squash, summer squash, spaghetti squash, broccoli, and various greens

As stated in Tip #3, it’s important to buy organic produce as much as you can. While organic produce tends to be more expensive, there are some vegetables such as cauliflower and cabbage that test lower in pesticide residues that make them relatively safe to purchase non-organic.

A full list of wise vegetable choices and simple preparations ideas is available in my Shopping Guide ebook (Coming Soon!)

Tip #5 Learn about Fish & Seafood Sourcing
The sourcing of your fish and seafood is important, especially if you aren’t living near a coast. Where and how seafood is wild caught, small-batch raised, or farmed, all play a significant role in its overall health and flavor content.

  • The Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch provides current information on the effect that specific fish and seafood purchasing has on the environment. It is a great resource to use in the fish market when deciding what fish to purchase.
  • Talk to your fishmonger! Ask where the fish is from, and how it is caught. If he or she doesn’t know, they can find out.

When choosing fish for my personal or professional kitchen, I consider everything from mercury contamination, environment and overfishing challenges, to taste, cooking versatility, and ease. Below are a handful of my suggestions for safe & delicious fish options:

  • Alaskan Wild Salmon, fresh, frozen, canned
  • Domestic Catfish
  • Salmon, organic farm raised
  • Sardines, Pacific
  • Wild Alaskan Cod
  • Tilapia, domestic and Ecuadorian
  • Trout (all varieties), US farmed or wild

 

Tip #6 – Eat Meat & Eat it Responsibly!
Meat adds to satiety, the feeling of fullness, is full of vital nutrients and protein, and is delicious when prepared properly!

  • Buy organic and grass-fed as much as possible to ensure that the animals are not fed genetically modified organisms such as corn. In order to be certified as organic, meat must be raised organically, on certified organic land, and fed certified organic feed, without GMOs. No antibiotics or growth hormones are allowed, and the animal must have outdoor access.
  • Local sources are best, especially if they are feeding their animals from non-GMO food sources.
  • Find clean local sources, often the best meat options, through www.localharvest.org.
  • Incorporate wild game and protein sources that are not over-farmed, such as bison, wild boar, ostrich, and game birds like quail, pheasant, partridge, wild duck, and grouse.  Look for local sources in your area.
  • Look into mail-order options online for healthy animal proteins, if they are not easily accessible in your area.

Tip #7 –Use Fats & Oils Appropriately
Fat is important for many bodily needs such as neurological function, energy, digestion. Natural sources of fat such as lamb and grass-fed beef tallow, lard, organic chicken fat, ghee (clarified butter) and coconut oil provide the body with many important nutrients. Fat also allows flavor to travel around our palate and provides balance of flavor to dishes.

  • Buy oils fresh, and store them appropriately in the refrigerator or in a cool place.
  • Use the correct oil for the correct application. For example, use fats with a high smoke point such as tallow, lard, or avocado oil for sautéing and stir-frying, while using extra-virgin olive oil or nut oils for cold applications like preparing salad dressings.
  • Find a healthy fats chart in my Shopping Guide (Coming Soon!), with tips on oil and fat choice when preparing dishes, smoke points, and Internet purchasing options.

Tip #8 – Create a Simple Pantry
Keep your pantry stocked with simple and fresh ingredients. It’s easy to keep a smaller pantry when you aren’t following a traditional diet consisting of grains, breads, cereals, and baked goods.

  • Organic Nuts & Seeds
  • Protein Powders and other protein shake components such as flax and high quality organic vegetable powders
  • Spices (ground and whole) and Dry Herbs
  • Cooking Oils & Vinegars

Find more tools on how to wisely stock a simple pantry, fridge, and freezer with healthy proteins, vegetables, fats, and flavor components like spices and herbs with the help of my Shopping Guide (Coming Soon!).