How To Upgrade Your Kitchen Ingredients

Summertime Beet Hummus

Written by Amy

Hey you, my name is Amy. I've spent the past decade studying holistic plant-based nutrition, Ayurveda & mysticism. This page is my cozy corner where I get to share the wisdom that has transformed my body, mind & deepened my connection to spirit. I hope you enjoy!

December 24, 2021

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Let’s discuss some common foods that could be recondered in a wholesome, plant-based kitchen

Now, purging doesn’t mean you have to throw everything in the garbage and start fresh. You can donate some of these items to people who may prefer them, you can store them away for a later date, or you can dispose of them and start to focus on whole foods and homemade snacks (think nuts, seeds, fruit, veggies & dip…etc).

Before we talk about what to purge, I’d like to invite you into a new way of viewing nutrition, with something I like to call The Lesser Evils Approach.

Lesser Evils

Abstainance is not my preferred approach, and for many people, a strictly whole food diet is not realistic. 

Instead of removing all of the foods you love, I encourage you to focus on upgrading them: seeking new brands that make similar foods with higher quality ingredients. 

Purging less healthy ingredients

  • Anything expired (especially oils)
  • Anything made of mostly sugar (marshmallows, candy, fruit roll-ups, cookies, cakes, bon-bons… think of any sweet treats that you unconsciously munch)
  • Pop & concentrated juices
  • Prepackaged // frozen meals containing complex ingredients and low quality or toxic oils.

Upgrading your ingredients

Now is a good time to talk about upgrading your kitchen staples

Sugar, salt, bread, and fat. When talking about these groups, there are a few things to remember:

  • Sugars: Sugar is sugar is sugar, however there is a lesser evil. Aim to use only unrefined sugars like pure maple syrup, unpasteurized raw honey, unrefined coconut or cane sugar, or molasses.
  • Salts: Pigmented salt is better (the darker coloured salts [pink, red, black, brown, & grey] indicate higher mineral content).
    Avoid white salt (including the labelled sea salt). When it’s white it has been stripped of essential minerals and can play a role in cardiovascular disease.
  • Bread/Grains: No need to give up bread completely. Unrefined grains – or whole grains – are a much better that white bread… especially if they’re sprouted.
    Traditional sourdough is another fantastic option for optimal digestibility! They are higher in fibre, help balance blood sugar, and keep you fuller for longer.
  • Fats/Oils: Fats are a huge topic, so please remember that not all fats are created equal. The key words to keep an eye out for are: unrefine, cold-pressed, and virgin. These oils are going to be most easily utilized by your body, as opposed to heat-treated or hydrogenated oils.
    Aim for healthy fats such as extra virgin olive oil, avocado oil, coconut oil, and flax oil.
    Avoid hydrogenated and rancid oils. Anything deep-fried is no bueno. If the oils in your cupboard smell off – toss ’em.
    Oh yeah… and NO MORE MARGARINE… not even at a ‘lil bit. Friends don’t let friends eat margarine! 

* Pro tip: You can cook with avocado oil, coconut oil, or olive oil at a med-low temperature.
Only use flax oil and olive oil for dressings – they’re best when unheated.

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