Food Essentials for a Healthy Household

Oh the great challenge of healthy snacks and meals…. what do you keep on hand to feed a hungry family in a hurry? We have had some fantastic suggestions for healthy snacks you can prepare ahead here on Inner Child Food, but how about what to keep on hand at all times in your pantry?  Well, I scavenged my cupboards for some ideas on what WE always have handy.

Food Essentials for a Healthy Household


Pantry Essentials: 

  • Canned Beans – you can use beans in so many ways – wraps, casseroles, side dishes and in salads.  I always keep many different varieties on hand.  You can skip the canned and make your own stored in the freezer. 
  • Canned Tomatoes – just like beans – tomatoes go in just about everything!
  • Whole Wheat Tortillas – use them for wraps at lunch or at dinner for tacos, burritos, casseroles, etc… You can even use them for dessert!
  • Soups/Broth – who doesn’t love a good soup.  Keep some healthy options on hand for a quick dinner.
  • Rice/Quinoa – whole wheat, jasmine, wild… they are all great starts to a healthy meal.
  • Pasta – keep a variety of pastas for easy dinners and casseroles.
  • Canned Fruit – an easy snack or light side for lunch.
  • Granola – one of the best snacks ever made invented.
  • Fruit Snacks– dried fruits or homemade fruit leather.
  • Crackers
  • Almond Butter
  • Grains – Oats, wheat berry, etc… they can be added into recipes for texture, or salads, and more.

Grains are also a great source of protein – Read more: Vegan Protein Sources


Weekly Fresh Essentials: 

  • Fresh Fruit & Veggies
  • Herbs
  • Garlic
  • Onions
  • Whole Wheat Bread
  • Milk
  • Eggs
  • Pesto

My favorite Herbs, Spices & Seasonings: 

  • Rosemary
  • Sage
  • Oregeno
  • Chives
  • Parsley
  • Cilantro
  • Cajun Seasoning
  • Taco Seasoning
  • Cayenne Pepper

Easy Dinner Ideas:

  • Pasta with Pesto
  • Breakfast for Dinner
  • Make your own Pizzas
  • Spaghetti with Tomato Sauce
  • Crock Pot Dinners 
  • Stuffed Baked Potatoes
  • Wraps/Burritos
  • Casseroles

For more healthy snack and dinner ideas, visit Busy Vegetarian Mom for some of my recipes.