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Getting Lean(er) Starts in the Kitchen

You’ve been on the right path for a while now especially if you’ve read my article 5 Reasons You’re Not Lean(er).The only thing missing now is putting it all into action. Besides, how do you finish the job without the right tools? Never go into battle without being prepared!

If you’re on the path to getting your diet dialed-in, you’re going to need to start with what’s in the kitchen or find out what’s missing. Here’s my comprehensive list of kitchen necessities to make you successful when it comes down to your nutrition.

The Hardware

You’re an adult so act accordingly, Count Chocula, Peter Pan. This includes your kitchen wares. A self-respecting adult should own MOST if not all of the following:

– Entry-level pots and pans
– Quality set of knives
– Baking sheets/pans
– Casserole Dishes
– Measuring cups and spoons
– Stainless steel bowls
– Digital scale for weighing foods accurately (grams and ounces FTW)
– Various kitchen tools such as spoons, rubber/silicon spatulas, tongs, etc.
– Blender
– Tupperware of varying sizes and shapes
– Cooler to pack your Tupperware
– Ice Packs for the cooler
– Cutting boards (one for meats, poultry, and veggies)
– At least 2 shaker bottles for protein shakes
– Wok
– Food Processor
– Graters
– Tea Kettle
– Indoor grill

All of this stuff can be ordered on Amazon or picked up locally. If you already have the last five items then bravo (fancy pants)! These are considered the essentials to a complete kitchen since most people already have a toaster and microwave at a minimum.

The Pantry

Now we’re going to start talking about food items that can be kept at room temperature that will benefit you from a nutritional standpoint.Your pantry may be the place where you keep snacks or anything else that is quick to prepare. Here are some healthy ideas to get you started:

– Almonds, Walnuts, or other mixed nuts
– Natural Nut butters (avoid hydrogenated oils when possible)
– Oatmeal and/or Oats
– Canned or bagged beans
– Whole-Grain, veggie, or bean based pastas (such as Barilla Plus)
– Canned tuna, salmon, or sardines (gross but good source of Omega-3s)
– Canned veggies
– White potatoes and Sweet potatoes
– Extra virgin olive oil
– Coconut oil
– Apple Cider Vinegar
– Quinoa
Protein Powders
Fish oils

The Fridge & Freezer

This is the star of the show in terms of what ends up on your plate for the most part (provided you’re dining at home). This may make up the majority of your grocery list particularly if you buy these items in bulk from a Costco or Sam’s. Consider this your healthy food cheat sheet:

– Lean beef such as filets, sirloins, and extra lean ground beef
– Lean meats such as poultry breasts, tenderloins, and thighs
– Salmon, trout, and tuna
– Liquid egg whites and/or egg substitute
– Whole eggs
– Various Cheeses (cottage, sliced, shredded)
– A variety of fruits of different colors
– A variety of veggies of different colors

Again, these are all ideas for those of you that need a little guidance on eating a more balanced and healthy diet. Keep your diet flexible by making room for treats every now and then as long as you stick to an actual portion size. Adherence wins the race in the long run.

From this list the possibilities are endless. You can get creative with a lot of these ingredients and make a healthy dish. One example would be a lean ground turkey meatloaf using ingredients such as chopped zucchini, peppers, whole eggs, and spices. Another idea is to make an omelette with your favorite veggies in it. Maybe you want to make a fruit and protein powder smoothie. Again, the options are limitless and just takes a little creativity on your end.


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