Top 10 items to stash in your pantry

Start your week off right with this healthy shopping list that will stock your pantry with lots of great options.

| April 9, 2017 | Nutrition

Photo >Steven Cukrov | had the idea for this article at the perfect time, just as we had finalized our "Compeat Shopping List" for our athletes using our programs. So here is a taster (pun intended!).

Nuts & Seeds:

Our favourites that are always on hand are pepitas, sunflower seeds, chia seeds, walnuts, almonds, cashews and pine nuts. These beautiful bundles of healthy fat and protein are extremely versatile and a great way to boost the quality of your intake and add a fullness factor that is hard to beat.

We use ours just plain as a handy snack, in bliss balls, to make home-made muesli, to add a bit more zing to salads and as a crunchy topper to yogurt.  

A range of Oils

Having on hand a good selection of oils is a must. Olive oil is something we include daily and seem to go through at an impressive rate. It adds a beautiful rich flavour to foods and is perfect as a salad dressing, cooking with or dipping fresh sourdough in accompanied with balsamic.

Coconut oil can also be found in our pantry as it is a real flavour booster and a great option in cooking and baking.

Another gem oil that we love is sesame oil. A little goes a long way, but the flavour add is amazing. We use it in marinades and stir-fries.

Grain Sourdough

Ditch the processed white bread and go for a slower to digest, wholesome option as often as possible. Our favourite is grain or rye sourdough. Our pantry wouldn’t be complete without a loaf of grain sourdough ready to be topped with eggs in the morning, a satisfying lunch with salad or dipped in olive oil.

The bonus is that, because of the long and slow fermentation, most find that is easier to digest with less gut issues.

Nut Butter

The convenience food that not only tastes great, but can also offer some impressive health benefits. We use it as a topper on toast or crumpets for pre-training, on crispbreads as a quick snack, in marinades and as a dipper for apple and banana.

The bonus tip: make overnight oats in the empty jars. The swirls of leftover peanut butter in the jars with the oats is amazing. It makes finishing the jar a little less painful. 


The winner of the versatility award for sure. Oats are ridiculously budget-friendly and offer a carbohydrate source that is slow to digest and full of fibre. Use them to make muesli, cook them up with your milk of choice to make a warming porridge or soak them overnight to create bircher. We also love adding them to our bliss balls or whizzing them up with our smoothies on those high training days.


We often stock a good range of varieties of crispbread ready to be devoured by hungry athletes pre- and post-training or by our ravenous toddler. Top them with anything from avocado and salads to cheese, egg or nut butter.

Grains – brown rice & quinoa

The fillers that offer a little more than just being the accompaniment. These wholesome grains add essential vitamins, minerals and fibre to your meal, while also being an important source of carbohydrate to support your training load. We love including these in our salads, with our stir-fries and served with curries.

Canned supplies – Tuna, Tinned Tomatoes, Legumes & Lentils

A very big component of eating well is being able to create a wholesome meal no matter what level of preparation you have been able to sort for the week. By stocking your cupboard with items that will help you “build a meal,” you will be able to whip up a nourishing and quick meal such as a tomato based pasta or risotto; team flavoured tuna with rice and veggies for an instant dinner or boost salads and dishes with beans and lentils.

Maple Syrup

This syrup is just delicious – simple as that. It also boasts being a natural sugar source from a tree, but really the only reason I need to include it in my pantry is the flavor. We add it to our baking, into smoothies, in our home-made muesli and drizzled on to our porridge. Perfection.

Note: Just make sure you buy the real stuff and not the imitation one.

Flavor Makers: Asian sauces, Spices, herbs, onion and garlic

This list is endless and should be formed around your own tastes and preferences. Start simple with a few Asian sauces and basic herbs. From there, let your stash grow as you get more adventurous and trial new recipes. Onion and garlic are a no brainer – I am always doubtful when I see a recipe without garlic, surely garlic should be added to everything, right?

Our must haves are soy sauce, sweet chilli, balsamic vinegar and spices such as turmeric, cumin, cinnamon and paprika. Herbs that are always handy include basil, oregano, thyme and rosemary.

Stay tuned for further sneak peaks into our kitchen ahead – we haven’t covered the arena of fridge or freezer yet!

If you would like access to the full Compeat Shopping List along with a fully periodised nutrition program designed around your training, check out our Vitality Package. We focus intake around your individual goals – whether that be for optimal energy, body composition change or performance.

Alicia Edge, Advanced Sports Dietitian & Principal Dietitian at Compeat Nutrition