It is no secret that the pantry is one of the most frequently visited spaces in the home, across all hours of the day. Whether you’re reaching for an afternoon snack, or finding ingredients for meal preparation, the pantry makes up the foundation of our diet, which is why it’s so important to get right.
Susie Burrell, leading dietitian and Mayver’s ambassador, says that improving you and your family’s nutrition doesn’t have to be complex and simply swapping a few basic pantry essentials can go a long way.
“Staple pantry items are replenished frequently, so ensuring these foods have the highest nutritional value possible is the best way to provide your family with food that’s as natural as possible, free from added nasties and low in added fats and sugars,” Susie says.
Despite a rise in the number of wholefoods available in Australia, it is reported that many Australians are suffering from poor diets, that lack diversity across all food groups. Susie recommends the following easy alternatives to ensure your diet is nutritionally balanced and free from hidden nasties and items that contain added fats and sugars.
Rice, pasta and breads
For the carbohydrate pantry essentials, Susie suggests finding a wholemeal or wholegrain variety to replace generic rice, pasta or bread varieties. She says wholemeal or wholegrain varieties increase the fibre, vitamin and mineral of the meal, allowing you to enjoy your favourite recipes with added nutritional benefits.
This can include replacing white rice with brown rice, using wholewheat pasta instead of white pasta and bread loaded with wholemeal or grains such as rye or seeded loaves.
A pantry staple that’s often consumed daily as an accompaniment to bread and toast is spread and condiments, but unbeknownst to many consumers, spreads like peanut butter can have lots of added sugar and fats.
This is why choosing 100% natural alternatives like can significantly benefit your diet and comparatively, is one of the most nutritious options to choose from.
The way to spot the nutritional winners in nut spreads, Susie says, is by looking for the separation of good oils at the top of the jar that every natural peanut and nut butter has.
High antioxidant oils
Another simple way of enhancing the nutritional value of your pantry is by replacing your oils with healthier alternatives, like Australian Extra Virgin Olive Oil for use in both cooking and dressings.
Susie says opting for Australian Extra Virgin Olive Oil is a better option due to its high antioxidant content, which not only protects it from damage during cooking, but assists in creating a nutrient rich salad dressing.
For all the chocoholics out there, fearing their pantries have to be stripped bare of anything cocoa based, think again. Rather than reaching for a chocolate bar full of added sugar, a chocolate spread alternative like Mayver’s Hazelnut, Cashew and Cacao is a delicious and nutritious option that can be enjoyed guilt free.