The majority of the foods I eat I make from scratch. It’s an easy task when I’m prepared with fruits and vegetables in the fridge, meats in the freezer and grains and beans in the cupboard. Even though I make a lot, I don’t make everything I eat. There just isn’t enough time in the day.
Here’s my list of some of the processed foods I regularly eat or use for convenience and taste. Side note: Most foods are processed (flour doesn’t begin as a powder – it has to be ground) and while these products are not as processed as say a frozen chicken nuggets they are a bit processed… someone had to do something to it to make it the end product I eat.
Sometimes I do make bread, buns and rolls from scratch. It isn’t a regular thing though. Baking is time consuming for sure, that’s why I rely on these handy purchases.
Dave’s Killer Bread - I’ve talked about Dave’s bread many times before. It’s my go to bread, plus it’s a local company and I always like supporting local foods. The bread is just so good!
Sprouted grain hamburger buns and hot dog buns – I like both Ezekiel and Alvarado Street Bakery buns.
La Tortilla Factor hand-made style while corn tortillas – The while corn tortillas are pretty flexible and super tasty when crisped up a bit.
I am not very good at making crackers. Maybe if I used a dehydrator I wouldn’t burn them but for now I buy most of my crackers and chips.
Food Should Taste Good chips – Perfect for dipping in hummus, especially the spinach and artichoke hummus I made yesterday (recipe to come soon).
Crunch Master baked toasted sesame rice crackers
I’m not sure if you can make soymilk at home. I doubt it would be as easy as making almond milk so I always purchase it.
West Soy or Soy Dream plain soymilk – I switch between these 2 because they taste pretty similar to me and don’t have a ton of sugar in them. Whichever one is on sale goes in my cart.
Chicken sausage is super handy to keep in the freezer for quick meals. We recently tried a couple of the sausages from our local butcher, Butcher Boys. We purchase about 90% of our meat from there so we’re glad to add this to our Butcher Boys list. The meat they use is local and high quality with minimal ingredients added to it.
Al fresco - If I want a pre-cook sausage I like this brand.
Trident frozen wild Alaska salmon burgers – A friend of mine introduced me to these a while back and they have become a staple in our house. The patties cook up in 10 minutes. I eat them as a burger patty, or break them up to add to pasta dishes or salads.
I really try to limit my dairy intake because it bugs my stomach. However, I choose to eat it sometimes in the form of yogurt, cheese or ice cream. When I buy yogurt I like get plain yogurt so that I can add to it. I find that most flavored yogurt has a pretty long list of ingredients. When I flavor it I only add 1 or 2 ingredients.
I’m not too picky on the brand, but I do search for ones that are higher in protein than carbs (like thick greek yogurt), or if the carbs are higher then they should be almost equal. Plain yogurt is my substitute for sour cream and mayo a lot of the time, and makes perfect tzatziki sauce.
These canned foods are used because they are so convenient.
Garbanzo beans - They take forever to cook and I use them a lot so buying canned garbanzo beans just makes sense to me (especially in bulk at Costco). I go through at least 1 or 2 cans a week just in making hummus or adding the rinsed beans to salads and casseroles.
Pumpkin – Pumpkin season is just around the corner so I hope to make my own puréed pumpking to freeze. Throughout the year I rely on canned pumpkin for baked goods, pancakes oatmeal or homemade pumpkin and mozzarella ravioli. I just make sure the only ingredient is pumpkin.
Tomatoes - Cut up and ready to be added to casseroles or stews.
Chicken broth – When I get the chance I try to save the chicken broth made from boiling chickens, but most of the time I bake or grill my chicken. Canned low sodium chicken broth is a simple trick I use to make rice and grains taste extra flavorful.
Tuna – I buy the tuna in water. It doesn’t come out of the can super oily and is simple for quick lunches.
That’s my list of time-saving foods I buy. I know there are a ton more I didn’t list. Many of these don’t seem too processed, but like I noted earlier something had to be done to them to get them in their current state.
What foods to you rely on?