First off I am not going to give you a story about why I eat and follow the ketogenic diet; as I see it we are all different and this is what I do and I plan never to go back to the days of grains, sugars and starch. I do however like to help people who are looking to help themselves (mostly through diet) and if there is anything I can share that might assist them in their journey then I feel all this is worth its weight in gold…ok well maybe fat 😉 I believe we should all help each other out but I particularly want to help those that are actively seeking on a change for the better in their health.
We are all at different points in our journey of health and wellness and I still have so much more to learn but I have picked up wonderful information along my way; and who knows now that our paths have crossed each other…let’s move together.
Out With the Old
The ketogenic pantry may seem a bit overwhelming but remember we all started out pretty much the same and we will build up our pantry (and knowledge) one ingredient at a time. I find that the best thing to do is go through your current food inventory and toss out:
- Anything that is processed…be like Frozen and “let it go” just like that- let it go…where you see wasted money I see the beginnings of a healthier lifestyle and that, my friend, is priceless.
- If you question whether or not it’s healthy…toss it; chances are if it is in a box and it says “healthy” chuck it!
- Any and all types of sugar: table sugar, sugar in the raw, Splenda, honey, maple syrup and let’s not forget the worst offender —agave- the list does not stop there but do not fear there are some alternate ingredients that we will be able to use and will work just fine however please keep in mind our new ingredients will be different and because they are different let’s not expect the same results…that’s an important rule to remember.
It will take some adaptation and you will definitely experience a learning curve but if you understand the importance of this change in life style then it’s worth mistakes here and there to see how committed you are. The food blogs are a big help because we try to develop recipes and we learn the hiccups for you and that in turn helps to save money.
In With the New
- Almond Flour: There are many brands and types for that matter but go online and purchase Honeyville Almond Flour. It produces the best results for baking, however if you want to stock Bob’s Red Mill or another brand just for cooking meals (dredging etc) that is fine.
- Fine Celtic Sea Salt/ Real Salt (Fine): Best for baking. There are trace minerals that we prefer as opposed to regular table salt which can contain anti-clumping agents.
- Coconut Flour: Such a good source of MCT and it is a great baking ingredients…be careful because it sucks up a lot of moisture so the cooking ratios have to be monitored. This is not an equal flour to swap in an out of in recipes.
- Vanilla Whey: I stock this in my pantry because it is a good source of protein and it provides a sweetness in baking goods (also it becomes a bulking ingredient as well).
- Xanthum Gum: A little goes along way but in small amounts it acts as a thickener-you will know when you use too much as your dish will be “gummy” and slimy…not good so be mindful but not intimidated.
- Sweeteners: Xylitol, erythritol, stevia in the raw, yacon syrup and lau han
- Raw nuts: I prefer macadamia and walnut but just a few at a time, otherwise you might put yourself over your daily protein threshold.
- Large Coconut Flakes: unsweetened, organic and non gmo…these babies you will snack on. Toss them in a pan with some cinnamon, swerve and a pinch of salt~stir until the color you prefer and bingo you have a great and healthy snack
- Coconut Milk (canned and full fat): always a good ingredients to work with, especially the thick white coconut fat found on the liquid surface…that is keto heaven so we have many places to use it. I scrap off as much as I can and keep it in a container in the fridge and I will add a scoop here and there to just about anything. A good way to keep your fat intake up.
- Egg Whites: if you have a carton of these in your fridge then when you get the urge to bake you can whip something up quick. They provide structure when incorporated into baked goods.
- Gelatin: Use a good source that comes from grass fed animals. They are out there and you want a good one, do not worry about the price as this will last a long time in your pantry. Gelatin makes a good thickener and I use it to make coffee shots to go. You will be amazed how fun and versatile this product is!
- Organic Cream Cheese: I use this in almost everything: I bake with it all the time and I toss loads into any casserole type dish. Or simply spread on a piece of smoked wild caught salmon with some capers..so yummy!!
- Olives: Organic and Non GMO; I open a jar (black or green) and snack on them…great source of fat.
- Organic Avocados: I stock them at different stages and therefore I keep the waste due to over ripening down to a minimum. If I know I am going out to eat I will chop them up squeeze some lime juice to prevent them from turning brown and carefully put in my purse…bringing food into a restaurant is a no-no but I do it and I live with the guilt 😉
- Cocoa Butter: Find a good quality source and you enjoy having this fat on hand. Melt and incorporate into all kinds of treats from ice cream to “brownies”.
- Nut Butter(s): Almond, peanut, coconut they all are good to have on hand whether you are baking or simply using as a dip of some sort.
- Coconut Wraps (aka Paleo Wraps): Simply sheets of coconut. Once heated they are more flexible; use them to make breakfast egg roll ups, cheese roll ups-the possibilities are endless.
- Grass-Fed Butter: I use (Kerrygold) both salted and unsalted. Anything that you can slather some rich tasting butter on you go right ahead…permission granted. The unsalted is a staple: toss a few tablespoons into your coffee (mix well in a blender) and there you go…ecstasy.
- Other Fats to have on hand: bacon, duck, ghee (organic grass fed), schmaltz (chicken)
- Grass Fed Beef: Yep, even if you have to order it online get it and use it!!! So much better for you then grain fed and not to mention the good fats you are treating yourself. Go for the fattier cuts: chuck, ribeye and hanger just to name a few.
- Pasture Raised Pork: Yep, I order this online too! There are great sources for this tasty protein and you will notice the difference…so do it!
- Pasture Raised Chicken: Eat a spare amount of the leaner breast and go for the thighs which have more fat.