Search
  • Tammy @ Cooking On The Veg

How to stock a vegan pantry


​One of the most common questions I get asked as a whole-food vegan, besides where I get my protein from, is what kind of foods do vegans eat. There is a huge misconception out there that we just eat rabbit food, aka salads. While salads are both healthy and nutritious, they are a part, not the whole, of what vegans eat. One would find it increasingly difficult to live on fruits and vegetables without the satisfying additions of grains, legumes and starchy vegetables. This is what fills us up and creates satiety. This is one reason some fail at a vegan diet. It’s very difficult to eat just fruits and vegetables enough to maintain the typical 2,000 calorie a day diet. The fiber content alone would fill you up long before enough calories were consumed. And then you’d be hungry again within an hour or two. Do not make this same mistake when transitioning to a whole foods vegan diet. Not eating enough food can lead to fatigue and sluggishness, feelings of deprivation, cravings, and even binges. This is not what you want. Be sure to eat plenty of carbohydrates and starchy foods, they are not the enemy. Unfortunately, good carbs and bad carbs get lumped together under one heading. Refined sugar and highly processed foods are not the same as fruits, vegetables, legumes and whole grains! Even a white potato is nutritionally healthy. It’s all the stuff that comes with the potato that demonizes it such as bacon bits, sour cream, cheese etc. And let’s not forget how the potato is typically consumed here in the US, as french fries. Talk about bad news for the humble spud! Deep fried potatoes are not healthy!

This is a list of whole food vegan items. I’d like to also cover what is excluded from a healthy vegan diet: meat (any animal flesh), seafood (any marine flesh or byproduct), eggs, dairy milk (goat and sheep milk as well), dairy cheese (cow, sheep or goat), honey and gelatin. Basically, if it came from something that had a mother or a face, then a vegan does not consume it

You might ask yourself, but what do I do with the other food I have already at home? Most people transition gradually into this lifestyle. My husband and I were more the exception to the rule, we went vegan overnight. We spend an entire Labor Day weekend watching documentaries on health, the environment and the animals. That Monday, we cleaned out our whole kitchen. We either donated items to food shelters or gave it to friends and neighbors. However, if you are like most, you’ll want to gradually incorporate more of these items into your kitchen while phasing out the other foods. Having said that, do not let this process take too long. One month is plenty of time and an ideal goal for the transition. Pace yourself, this is a marathon not a sprint. Change seems to stay if it’s made over weeks, not days.   I highly recommend picking one day of the week to plan the week ahead. My favorite day is Sunday. This is when I do my weekly meal planning. Planning helps to prevent the “cheat days” because you’re starving and there’s no food prepared at home, so why not go to that fast food place? Failure to plan is a plan to fail! I also do my batch cooking on Sundays for the week. I typically use an electric pressure cooker (love my Instant Pot) or a slow cooker depending on the recipe. This really helps, especially in the summer when I don’t want to heat up my kitchen with Arizona temperatures soaring into the 110F plus zone.  This is a list of whole food vegan items. I’d like to also cover what is excluded from a healthy vegan diet: meat (any animal flesh), seafood (any marine flesh or byproduct), eggs, dairy milk (also included in this category is goat and sheep milk), dairy cheese (cow, sheep or goat), honey and gelatin. Basically, if it came from something that had a mother or a face, then vegans don’t consume it. A whole food vegan diet can be very inexpensive. Some of the most budget friendly items in the grocery store are listed below. Dried beans, legumes and grains are especially inexpensive. The more processed a food is, the more costly it tends to be because someone has to pay for the processing. For a family of two, one only has to spend $150/week or less to have plenty of food in the kitchen. Some of the best places to buy vegan foods are: Trader Joe’s, Costco, Target, Walmart, local farmer’s markets, Whole Foods, Aldi and specialty stores where ethnic foods are abundant such as Indian or Asian markets. One can even get store to door delivery in certain areas of the US. And of course, let us not forget about online food shopping on Amazon and Thrive market.  The most important thing you can do for your health, the environment and the animals is to transition to a whole food vegan diet. Remember to keep meals simple and allow yourself a few weeks to change over completely. Congratulations on your decision to change your lifestyle in such a positive way. All the best on your vegan journey! **NOTE: If you can buy organic and non-GMO, do so. Keep in mind that it is not required however. All of these items are healthy and nutritious.** 

Pantry Items Legumes 

  • garbanzo/chickpeas

  • Lentils

  • Red

  • Yellow

  • Black

  • Green 

  • Brown


  • Black beans

  • Navy beans

  • Pinto

  • Soy beans

  • Kidney beans

  • Lima beans

  • Split peas

  • Black-eyed peas


Grains

  • Rice

  • Brown

  • White

  • Black or forbidden

  • Wild  


  • Couscous

  • Barley

  • Bulgar

  • Quinoa (pronounced KEEN-WAH)

  • White

  • Red

  • Black 

  • Tricolored


  • Polenta


Pastas (ensure these are all vegan, many contain eggs)

  • Spaghetti

  • Linguini

  • Orecchiette 

  • Macaroni

  • Conchiglie (shells)

  • Fettuccine

  • Whole wheat ramen 

  • Gnocchi 

  • Potato

  • Cauliflower 


  • Farfalle (bows) 

  • Orzo 

  • Fusilli 

  • Penne

  • Ziti 

  • Capellini

  • Lasagna

  • Soba noodles

  • Mung bean 

  • Lentil 

  • Chickpea 


Spices

  • Nutritional yeast (not Brewer’s yeast)

  • Black salt: kala namak

  • Sea salt

  • Peppercorns for grinding in a pepper mill (black pepper)

  • Garlic salt

  • Garlic powder

  • Onion powder

  • Paprika 

  • Smoked paprika

  • Cumin

  • Turmeric

  • Taco seasoning

  • White pepper

  • Dill

  • Red pepper flakes

  • Taco seasoning 

  • Dehydrated onion

  • Dried parsley

  • Basil

  • Sage

  • Rosemary

  • Thyme 

  • Dried bay leaves

  • Oregano

  • Chili powder

  • Cayenne 

  • Smoked salt

  • Old Bay seasoning

  • Mustard 

  • Nutmeg 

  • Bay leaves

  • Curry

  • Ginger  


Condiments

  • Vinegar

  • ACV

  • Rice

  • Balsamic

  • White wine

  • Red wine


  • Ketchup

  • Mustard

  • Salsa

  • Pico de gallo

  • Sriracha

  • Hot sauce

  • Tamari/soy sauce

  • Coconut aminos

  • Liquid aminos

  • Horseradish

  • Mirin 

  • Worcestershire sauce (make sure it’s vegan)

  • Liquid smoke

  • Pickles

  • Pickle relish


Canned and packaged goods

  • Beans

  • Lentils

  • Soup/stew/chili

  • Vegetable broth

  • Vegetable stock


Other

  • Cooking wine

  • Shelf stable plant milks

  • Soy

  • Almond

  • Hemp

  • Oat

  • Rice

  • Hazelnut

  • Cashew 

  • Pea 


  • Garlic 

  • Potatoes (keep in a cool, dry place and store in a paper bag out of sunlight)

  • Tomatoes 

  • Low fat pasta sauce

  • Oatmeal


Refrigerated Items Plant milks (see above) Fruits

  • Berries

  • Blue

  • Black

  • Strawberry

  • Raspberry


  • Apples

  • Oranges 

  • Mangoes

  • Kiwi 

  • Pineapple

  • Grapes 

  • Pear

  • Banana

  • Citrus

  • Lemon

  • Lime

  • Grapefruit 


  • Cherries

  • Plums

  • Peaches

  • Nectarines

  • Melons

  • Watermelon

  • Honeydew

  • Cantaloupe 



Vegetables 

  • Onions

  • Red

  • Yellow

  • Sweet

  • White 

  • Green onions or spring onions


  • Celery

  • Spinach

  • Kale 

  • Cauliflower

  • Broccoli

  • Broccolini 

  • Carrots

  • Brussels sprouts

  • Peas

  • Corn

  • Green beans

  • Potatoes

  • Russet

  • Purple and blue

  • Japanese sweet

  • Fingerling

  • Yukon gold

  • Red 


  • Cabbage

  • Asparagus

  • Collard greens

  • Bok choy

  • Peppers

  • Red

  • Yellow

  • Green 

  • Orange 


  • Swiss chard

  • Mustard greens

  • Rainbow chard

  • Parsley 

  • Mushrooms

  • Cremini

  • Button

  • Shiitake

  • Oyster

  • Portobello 


  • Cucumber

  • Zucchini 

  • Radish 

  • Lettuce

  • Butter

  • Romaine

  • Radicchio

  • Arugula 

  • Red leaf 



Other

  • Tofu

  • Tempeh

  • Seitan

  • Soy curls (I prefer the Butler brand)

  • Breads

  • Whole wheat

  • Rye 

  • Pumpernickel 

  • Multi grain


  • Tortillas 

  • Wheat

  • Corn

  • Spelt 


  • Low fat salad dressing that is oil free

  • Flax seeds (preferably whole to be ground up before each daily use)

  • Low fat, oil free hummus

  • Miso paste

  • Maple syrup

  • Agave syrup

  • Dates


Freezer Items

  • Leftovers

  • Frozen fruit

  • Frozen vegetables

  • Tofu (yes, it can be frozen in the original packaging for up to 6 months)

Purposely omitted from this list: oils (of ANY kind), avocados, nuts, most seeds, olives. These are very high fat plant foods. And contrary to popular belief, oils are not healthy foods https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OGGQxJLuVjg https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b_o4YBQPKtQ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RrKdDbOazuA

The only place oils should be used is topically, on the skin. Avocados, nuts, seeds and olives should only be eaten as a small part of a recipe, not to be bought and kept at home as this can be too much of a temptation for most.  




27 views

520-200-1781

Scottsdale, AZ

  • Facebook

This site does not provide medical or legal advice. This site is for information purposes only. Viewing this site, receipt of information contained on this site, or the transmission of information from or to this site does not constitute a physician-patient relationship. The information on this site is designed to complement, not replace, the relationship between a patient and his/her own physician and is for informational purposes only.  The medical and/or nutritional information on this site is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you saw or read on this Cooking On The Veg website.


©2020 by Cooking On The Veg. Proudly created with Wix.com