lemon limeOne reason which makes people eat junk food is the lack of food ingredients which can be quickly turned into meals in their house. When you are terribly hungry, it’s easier to hop down to the nearest Burger King or to order it through delivery service rather than rummaging your lonely pantry for ingredients to cook.

In the morning it’s easier to grab Subway Sandwich on the way rather than preparing a tasteless sandwich from leftover ingredient in your pantry. There’s a saying that goes “one of the healthiest foods that you can eat is the one that you prepare yourself.” The only way to put this saying into reality is by having a well stocked pantry. Here are top 15 ingredients which you should have in your pantry and can be turned EASILY into a quick healthy meal.

1. Tomato
This juicy fruit can be quickly turned into almost anything. Add cantaloupe, bread and olive oil then put it into a blender, voila, instant gazpacho. You can easily chop the tomato to make salad in a minute. Not to mention that tomato juice is also delicious and refreshing. Have a stash of this red fruit handy in your kitchen.

2. Milk
You can also add low fat milk to your juice to make a delicious drink as well. There’s no quicker meal in the morning other than cereal. Just pour the milk and you get your healthy quick breakfast.

3. Carrots
Carrot is another ‘one size fits all’ ingredient. You can literally just shred it to give your salad more vitamins or juice it along with apple. It’s enriched with vitamin A and can last for a long time in your shelf. It never hurt to have a stock ready.

banana agustina4. Banana
This magic fruit is always welcomed at my pantry anytime. Having a bunch handy isn’t going to hurt at all. When I am hungry I can literally just eat one or two bananas. It’s also sweet and laden with tons of benefit. Alldeaf has compiled a long benefit of banana in this post. Banana can also be easily incorporated into a milkshake, sandwich, cereal or even yogurt. The problem with banana is it can quickly become overripe so buy it accordingly.
5. Yogurt
Yogurt can be used as a low fat salad dressing. You can also use it as a dipping sauce for your favorite meal (I use it for my sandwich). Yogurt isn’t going to make you fat, in fact it’s healthy and it’s refreshing.

6. Olive Oil
Olive oil is considered as healthy oil due to the fact that its high unsaturated fat as opposed to traditional cooking oil. Personally I often use olive oil as salad dressing or as an addition to my sandwich.

7. Lemon
It has many uses; you can add it to your afternoon tea. You can squeeze it to get fresh refreshing lime juice, you can also use it for many quick salad and sandwich dishes.

8. Mustard
Compared to mayonnaise, mustard is lower in fat. A cup of mustard gives around 165 calories (source) while a cup of mayonnaise gives around 917 calories (source). It is kinder to your waist than mayonnaise and you can use mustard instead of mayo on your sandwiches to knock the fat out.

9. Cheese
Cottage cheese should be your choice but if it’s hard to find then normal cheese will do. Cheese can brighten our dull low calorie meal considerably, provided that you don’t eat too much of it.

10. Whole wheat bread
Needless to say that bread is a must have for every household. You can’t make sandwich without bread and even salad will taste better if you add a couple of baked bread inside. Hint: choose the whole wheat one.

11. Canned tuna
Although I am not a fan of food which is laden with preservatives such as canned food, I have to say that canned tuna is the best emergency food for me. It’s a source of high quality protein along with omega 3 essential fatty acid (aka the good fat). You can make a delicious tuna sandwich, tuna pita bread or just drop it to a salad bowl for a quick and delicious fish salad.

12. Whole Wheat Pasta
God sent. Instant spaghetti is always a lifesaver.

13. Nuts
Most nuts are laden with B vitamins which act as fatigue combatants and are essential for hormone growth. Healthierlife has a great post explaining the numerous benefits of nuts. Personally my favorite is almond. I can chop it and put it on top of my yogurt. Of course almond can’t go wrong in my salad either. Don’t consume the one which is already salted though.

14. Cereal
As long as you don’t eat the batty one you’re safe. Cereal act as quick breakfast in the morning (pour the milk and eat it). You can also have the cereal as a snack as opposed to chips. Be wary of colorful cereal or honey flavored one. Colorful cereal is often laden with sugar and food coloring while the honey flavored one may not be composed of 100% honey.

15. Potato
This carbohydrate powerhouse is easier to prepare than rice. Just boil some and eat it with your salad. Or you can roast the potatoes and top it with cheese and tuna. It’s easy to incorporate potato into many dishes and definitely you should have a stock available in your kitchen.


  1. Ellen said...

    Another well written list. For student, tuna and spaghetti along with instant ramen are really life saver!

  2. cbenc12 said...

    Whoa, that's certainly a list that I can follow. As I m leaving wif my frens, sometimes I m just lazy to prepare my own food. Easier & faster to get outside food. ;)

  3. Suzie said...

    While I am accustomed to eat rice, I admit that preparing rice is troublesome. I prefer potato and bread for the practical reason.

  4. Shane said...

    Funny thing is this happened to me just before I came to surf this afternoon. I just reached for a few apples to help me until tea and they do the trick!

  5. Leigh said...

    Am I the only one who finds chilled water beneficial to keep hunger pains away?
    I always find thast drinking plenty of chilled water helps to a certain extent.

  6. Brice said...

    Cereal is my favourite on the list. Whole wheat cereal esopecially

  7. shern's mom said...

    in my house, we almost never ran out of tomatoes, potatoes, carrot, milk, bananas, bread and such. good thing so we can whipped out a healthy meal for the kids anytime. but we adults don't eat as healthy.

  8. Cherry said...

    Yes, when we are lacking these ingredients we tend to resort to fast food. These 15 ingredients are always ready at my pantry. And I personally don't think that chilled water can temporarily curb my hunger.

  9. evelyn said...

    I Love banana. I'm so happy when i saw banana pic in your posting.
    It was so delicious...

  10. Cherry said...

    Thanks for the compliment. The picture was bad actually :P. I was just taking picture of my dining table where the banana just happened to be lying around.

  11. Health Freak Mommy said...

    I have most of these food in my kitchen, except for potatoes, cereals and bananas as I thought they are high carbo and fattening food, no?

  12. Health Freak Mommy said...

    BTW Cherry.... thanks for your suggestion to help me solve my blog / pc woes. My hubs deleted a number of files fr the PC last night and then did a defragmentation. Now, it seems ok.

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