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Adopting a healthier lifestyle should be built around what we eat, we all know that. But, what are the essential healthy foods that we need to have in our fridge freezers to ensure that we’re getting all of the goodness that we need?

Good question! Read on to find out.

The essential healthy foods list for your fridge freezer

Here’s our list of essential healthy foods to keep in your fridge freezer, starting with:

Fresh (or frozen) fruit

fresh fruit in a bowl

No surprises here. We could have listed them all individually, but that would have been a bore! You already know what you’ve got to do; keep it local whenever you can and make sure that you get a good mixture of colors if possible.

Fruit – along with the next staple on our list (no spoilers!) – is a great source of fiber, phytonutrients, vitamin C and a whole host of other good stuff that will get you well on your way to much healthier way of life.

Oh, and they all taste great, too!

So, whether you have a stock of out of season stuff in your freezer or in season fruits in your fridge, having them readily available means that you and your family are on the right track.

Fresh (or frozen) vegetables

assortment of fresh vegetables

Well, we never promised anything revelatory in the first couple of spots now did we? Might as well get the old favorites out of the way before we get to some that you may not have thought of before!

Let’s face it, veggies rock. They are so good for us it makes you wonder how we ever let the food industry persuade us that junk food is the better option.

Keep a good stock of green leafy veg, some wholesome roots and some colorful vine dwellers and you’ll never go far wrong.

Whether you juice, blend, chomp or sizzle, fresh veg will do you more good than almost anything else available to you. That’s why they’re up top on our essential healthy foods list.

FOR THE BEST VEGAN NUTRITION GUIDE ON THE NET, CLICK HERE

Nuts

pile of mixed nuts

Nuts make a fantastic healthy alternative to all those sugary snacks that may commonly populate your pantry.

Not only that, they’re versatile too. You can throw them into your worktop blender when making smoothies, top off your morning cereal with them, throw them in a nut butter machine, or whizz up a plant-based beverage in a milk maker.

Whatever you decide to do with them, nuts will bring you good fats and stacks of minerals that can ward off a multitude of diseases.

Should you have a stock of almonds, walnuts, cashews, pistachios and other nutty goodness in your fridge? You’d be nuts not to!

Seeds

various seeds on spoons

Just like they’re nutty cousins, seeds are another one of those essential health foods that we simply couldn’t leave off of our list.

Good for supplying the body with both protein and fibre, seeds should be a staple in your home.

The range of seeds that you can pick up is vast. From pumpkin to flax, chia to sunflower, these little health bombs are a fantastic way to pack a punch with a small package.

Lightly toast them in a pan and sprinkle over vegan salads, add them to your morning smoothie (see our Ninja professional blender reviews if you’re in need of a new machine), bake them into your artisan breads or just nibble away at them raw.

However you decide to take them, seeds are a great food to have to hand.

Plant-based milks

plant-based milks

Dairy? No thanks. We’d rather see plant-based milks in the fridge any day.

The variety of plant-based milks that you can buy from almost any store nowadays is phenomenal. Rice, almond, oat, coconut, hemp and soy are a few of the most popular but you can also find some made with spelt or peas in some health food shops.

Despite what you may think, plant-based milks are relatively easy to make at home, too. Providing you have the right equipment and products, you can be whizzing up your own creamy goodness in no time at all. Check out our post on the best milkmakers to find out more!

WORRIED ABOUT CALCIUM? CHECK OUT THESE AMAZING 35 PLANT-BASED SOURCES

Nut butter

jars of nut butter

If you were pondering the question, “Is peanut butter vegan?“, I’m delighted to tell you that it most definitely is!

We’ve all had peanut butter at some point in our lives, so how come it’s taken until the 21st century for nut butters to explode the way that they have?

We don’t know the answer to that, but we do know that we wouldn’t be without them!

Almond butter or cashew butter can be picked up in store or online, but it’s really simple to make your own too.

If you’ve never spread almond butter on top of a halved date and added a sprinkling of cacao powder you haven’t lived. No, seriously. Go and do it now!

Once you’ve tried that you’ll understand just why nut butters figure so highly on our list of essential healthy foods for your fridge freezer.

Tahini

bowl of tahini

Staying on a nutty/seedy tip, tahini makes it in at number seven on our list.

Tahini is simply sesame seeds smashed down to make an oily paste that is an essential ingredient in many dishes that you may already know and love, especially hummus (more of that later!).

High in B vitamins and packed with protein, calcium, iron, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus and lecithin, tahini is a serious health food that promotes great skin and muscle tone.

Make a salad dressing, whip up your own hummus, spoon into a stir-fry or break out the baba ganoush! Just make sure that you have a jar of tahini in your fridge from now on.

FIND OUT HOW BEST TO STORE TAHINI HERE

Ginger

root ginger sliced

Although it is essentially a vegetable and could have wound up lost in amongst number two on our list, we thought that good old ginger deserved a spot all of its own.

This radical rhizome can be taken in a number of ways, and its health benefits are abundantly clear.

Known as a first-rate anti-inflammatory, ginger can help with conditions such as osteoarthritis and muscle pain. Its also been used for centuries to ease menstrual pain and is now thought to have anti-diabetic properties and could also help to prevent cancer when taken raw.

Many believe that ginger has anti-ageing properties too and that it can help enhance brain function.

Do you need any more reasons to make sure that you have some ginger in your fridge?

READ NEXT: GINGER FACTS

Fresh herbs

several fresh herbs

One thing that concerns some people about transitioning over to a vegan diet is that they won’t be able to get enough flavour into their food.

Well, let’s be honest, meat has to be seasoned pretty heavily before those who eat it consider it tasty, so what’s the difference?

Having a good selection of fresh herbs in your fridge, and even in the freezer, will mean that you’ll always have flavour to hand whenever you need it.

Add to that the fact that many fresh herbs have been used as remedies for all manner of ailments and some are now considered to be great at preventing numerous diseases, and it’s easy to see why fresh herbs are on happyhappyvegan.com’s essential health foods list.

Dried fruit

assorted dried fruits

Dried fruit is much maligned in some circles thanks to its high sugar content, but it does serve a purpose when used sparingly.

Make sure that you read the label when purchasing things such as cranberries and blueberries as they will often have extra sugar added to them. Naturally, this is something that you’ll want to avoid.

Other dried fruits such as dates and raisins are great for snacking, baking or sprinkling and you’ll be amazed at how much refined sugar you can substitute out of your diet when you get to grips with using dried fruit instead.

WANT TO DRY YOUR OWN FOOD AT HOME? CHECK OUT THE BEST FOOD DEHYDRATORS ON THE MARKET!

Cooked grains

three bowls of different cooked grains

If you often find yourself in need of a fast fix to fill your tummy, storing cooked grains in either the fridge or the freezer can help enormously.

While you should always pay heed to the safety warnings about storing things such as cooked rice, when done correctly they offer a fantastically fast way to get some protein in with your veggies.

Turn rice into stir fries or bulk out salads with some leftover quinoa whenever you need something filling but don’t have the time to do the full cooking process.

Want the most from your grains? Check out this post on rice cookers

Cooked beans

bowl of cooked white beans

As with the grains above, ready cooked beans give you fantastic options when you want something fast.

You can, of course, also pre-make many dishes that include beans which store beautifully in both fridge and freezer.

Veggie chilli, homemade baked beans, soups, bean burgers, falafels – the list is endless, and it’s just as well because beans are an extremely healthy staple that we all should be eating every single day, regardless of what form they come in.

Hummus

bowl of hummus

What self-respecting vegan would go without hummus? In fact, what sane human being would go without the wonderful whizzed up chickpea concoction?

Hummus is a standard in any healthy fridge as chickpeas are little nutritional wonder-bullets and the middle eastern staple is now available in so many different flavors it really can appeal to absolutely anyone.

Research has shown that chickpeas may lower cholesterol and can even help lower the risk of cancer, too. And, they are also thought to be great for weight loss thanks to the high amount of protein that they have stored inside their soft little shells.

Check out our articles on the shelf life of hummus and the chickpea spread’s vegan status next!

Wholewheat pittas or tortillas

wholewheat pittas

Getting rid of those refined grains from your diet can be tough for some people, but it really needn’t be such a chore.

Having a good stock of wholewheat alternatives in the freezer for whenever that urge takes you can make switching from bleached white, nutritionally dead flour to wholesome wholewheat a breeze.

Whole grains are thought to have some quite amazing benefits, including help with weight loss and lowering the risk of contracting type 2 diabetes.

So, if you are looking for a quick and versatile alternative to sliced white, why not try some wholewheat pittas or tortillas instead?

Iced green tea

two cups of iced green tea

Now that we have discussed all that food we’re going to need something healthy to wash it all down with. Sure, you can’t go far wrong with water, but we wanted to end our list of essential healthy foods with something a little more exciting.

Enter iced green tea.

Green tea has so many benefits we had to write a whole article on them, but suffice to say that if you were only going to have one beverage to live on bar water, green tea would be an excellent choice.

WANT THE PERFECT TEAPOT? CHECK OUT OUR POST HERE

Conclusion

That’s it! We’ve come to the end of our list of essential healthy foods that no discerning fridge freezer should be without.

However, we know that yours will have one or two gems that we’ve missed out, so let us know exactly what they are in the comments sections below.

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