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Wednesday, October 10, 2018, In Nutrition by

Having a well-stocked pantry provides the foundations for a variety of dishes that can be adapted using whatever fresh produce you have available. Whip your pantry into shape with these key staples for a nutritious and speedy meal at your fingertips.


When it comes to grains, it’s important to choose whole grains and wholemeal varieties whenever you can. Whole grains are a simple way to boost your fibre intake, provide slow-burning carbohydrates for long-lasting energy and make a nutritious and filling base for meals and snacks.

  • Barley Rice (brown, Basmati, wild)
  • Couscous
  • Whole-wheat pasta
  • Quinoa Noodles (Udon, Soba)
  • Rolled Oats Amaranth (puffed)
  • Breads/Wraps/Tortillas


No pantry is complete without flour. Thankfully, with a variety of flour options available, you can easily take your baked goods to new, healthy heights.

  • Wholemeal
  • Spelt
  • Almond Meal
  • Buckwheat


Pulses and legumes provide a budget-friendly and versatile way to add hunger-busting fibre, plant-based protein and antioxidants to almost any dish.  Team with salads, soups, tacos, rice bowls, or mash them into a tasty dip, or use as a meat substitute in pasta sauce or patties. Opt for the salt-reduced varieties where possible and rinse thoroughly to remove excess salt.

  • Dried and canned lentils
  • Canned beans (Baked, Kidney, Borlotti, Black, Four Bean Mix)
  • Chickpeas


Packed with heart-healthy healthy fats, fibre and protein, as well as health-promoting phytochemicals. Enjoy the goodness of nuts as a snack, as a spread, sprinkled over breakfast cereals or smoothies, or ground into a delicious pesto. 

  • Almonds
  • Cashews
  • Brazil
  • Walnuts
  • Pepita
  • Sunflower
  • Chia
  • Pistachio
  • Sesame
  • Nut butters
  • Tahini
  • Pinenuts


Canned tomatoes are a cost-effective, long lasting pantry item that can be used in a range of healthy recipes and provide an excellent source of lycopene, which is linked to heart health. Opt for reduced-salt varieties.

  • Tomatoes


Healthy oils contain a mix of fatty acids such as monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. These fats are considered heart-friendly because they help to lower the bad (LDL) cholesterol and have abundant disease-fighting antioxidants. Whether you’re baking, frying, sautéing or drizzling, having a variety of healthy oils on hand will give distinct flavours that can be tailored with certain ingredients.

  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Canola (rapeseed)
  • Peanut
  • Other (Macadamia, Sunflower, Coconut oil)


As well as being incredibly versatile, canned fish pack a nutritious punch offering the all-important omega-3 fatty acids and ready-to-eat protein. Toss into pasta, baked dishes or top wholegrain crackers for a well-rounded snack.

  • Tuna
  • Salmon


Dried herbs and spices are a delicious way to add a variety of flavours to recipes and reduce the need for added salt.

  • Chilli flakes
  • Cumin
  • Curry powder
  • Paprika
  • Coriander
  • Ginger
  • Rosemary
  • Thyme
  • Turmeric
  • Cayenne pepper


When done right, a healthy stash of nourishing snacks can help to stabilise blood sugar levels, combat energy slumps and take the edge off your hunger so you don’t overeat at the next meal.

  • Wholegrain crackers
  • Raw nuts
  • Dried fruit (medjool dates, apricots, figs, raisins, currants)
  • Popcorn
  • Roasted beans/legumes


  • Baking powder
  • Cacao Powder


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