How to Stock a Healthy Veg Kitchen - Vegetarian Times

How to Stock a Healthy Veg Kitchen


The best part about vegetarianism is definitely the eating part. Getting familiar with these basic goods and stocking your veg kitchen makes reaching for a quick snack or the ingredients for any recipe a lot easier—and a lot tastier. For our go-to shopping list, we collaborated with Dawn Jackson Blatner, RD, LDN, author of The Flexitarian Diet.


Brown rice for Mexican dishes, curries, and stir-frys
Lentils for soups, salads, pilafs, and dips
Low-sodium vegetable broth to give depth of flavor to soups and sauces

Nuts and seeds (flax, pumpkin, sesame, sunflower) for snacking, as a toasted salad topper, and for savory patés and spreads
Oatmeal for breakfast and desserts
Quinoa a quick-cook grain for curries, stir-frys, and casseroles
Rice vermicelli quick-prep noodles for soups, stir-fries, and salads
Sprouted whole-grain bread for sandwiches, toast, and an accompaniment to salads
Whole-grain angel hair pasta for a quick Italian lunch, noodle soups, and Asian-noodle stir-frys
Whole-grain crackers for snacking, or a quick lunch with hummus and veggies

Whole-grain tortillas for burritos, quesadillas, and pinwheel sandwiches
Whole-wheat pita for stuffed sandwiches and dipping into hummus


Black/pinto beans for burritos, soups, and Mexican-inspired salads
Coconut milk for south-Asian inspired curries, soups, and desserts

Garbanzo beans for curries, salads, and DIY hummus

Kidney beans/white beans for salads, Italian dishes, and hearty casseroles
Tomatoes for pasta sauce, stews, and spicy tajines


Avocados Whether smashed into guacamole, stuffed in a sandwich, or sliced in a salad, avocados always satisfy the craving for something tasty and filling

Carrots Great for snacking, in salads, and soups
Garlic crushed raw in salad dressings, sautéed with leafy greens, added to sauces
Hummus for stuffing into pita bread, dipping chips into, and slathering on toast

Kale try it in hearty soups, sautéed with garlic, and chopped in a salad
Lemons/limes/oranges add a bright splash of flavor to salads, sautéed greens, salsas, and sauces

Mushrooms with their “meaty” texture, and “umami” flavor, they add heft and satisfying taste to stir-frys, stews, sauces, and salads
Onions sauté to add flavor to savory cooked dishes, and try purple ones raw in salad
Red bell pepper colorful, crunchy, and full of Vitamin C, try in salads, pasta sauce, and spreads

Spinach sauté it, toss in a salad, toss into soup at the last minute, and blend into dips

Sweet potatoes try them roasted, puréed, or steamed

Tempeh makes excellent taco or sloppy joe filling, or addition to stir-frys
Tofu for breakfast scrambles, stir-frys, barbecued skewers, or tofu “ricotta” for lasagna. When frozen and thawed, tofu becomes chewy and hearty.


Berries for your morning smoothie or hot cereal
Corn for chowders, salads, and relishes

Edamame out of the pod, toss in Asian stir-frys soups, or salads; in the pod, heat-and-eat solo as a protein-packed snack
Peas great in salads, soups, and sauce


Agave nectar a great sweetener for oatmeal and desserts

Balsamic vinegar adds a tangy depth of flavor to salad dressings, grilled veggies, and sauces
Barbecue sauce try it on sautéed tofu, grilled veggies, and as a dip for sweet potato fries
Cinnamon livens up your morning oatmeal
Curry powder adds pizzazz to whatever you’re making with coconut milk!
Dark sesame oil gives Asian dishes a toasty, nutty flavor

Mustard makes a great addition to home-made salad dressing

Nut butters (almond, peanut, cashew, etc.) use as a salad-dressing base, or sandwich spread

Olive oil is a tasty source of monounsaturated fat for salad dressings or sautés
Smoked paprika add it to soups, stews, and rice dishes for a savory, smoky flavor
Soy sauce more flavorful than salt, but opt for light versions for sodium control
Toasted sesame seeds great sprinkled on grains and grilled/sautéed veggies