A Healthy Grocery List and 4 Healthy Recipes For Beginners

This post contains tips for making a healthy grocery list and using those healthy ingredients to make a delicious yet healthy recipe.

Please note that we do not provide medical advice, and these tips are solely based on nutritional facts.

It has always been a real struggle when it comes to dieting and eating healthy. We often wonder, ‘What can I cook that tastes amazing but is super healthy too?’ What even is a healthy grocery list?

This post will help you prepare a yummy yet healthy grocery list for you and the loved ones you feed. We also find ourselves incorporating healthy grocery items and switching to healthy alternatives of foods and ingredients. And then we find ourselves making a healthy grocery list.

You must make sure you consume certain vitamins and minerals for a healthy and disease-free lifestyle.

Some whole grain products, such as quinoa, yogurt, particularly Greek yogurt, dried or canned beans, and soy products, such as tofu, are a portion of food that includes carbohydrates and protein.

Both carbohydrates and protein are essential components of your diet. Carbohydrates1 are the body’s primary energy source. Our body needs protein for tissue growth and repair, regulates physiological functions, and provides energy. Below are some products which are classified mineral-wise to add to your healthy grocery list.

Eggs, shrimp, fish, sweet potatoes, carrots, pumpkins, spinach, and mangoes are rich in Vitamin A.

Vegetable oils, leafy green vegetables, and nuts provide a ton of Vitamin E.

A good amount of calcium is present in yoghurt, cheese, milk, salmon, and leafy green vegetables.

Now let’s look at a healthy grocery list plan. These tips will help you stay fit and organized while shopping from your local grocery store, and by the end of this article, you will be ready with a healthy grocery list in your hands and some amazing recipes using the ingredients in the list.

1. 11 Healthy Grocery List

Planning your ‘healthy’ grocery list can be of tremendous help. It can save you loads of time. Penning down a healthy grocery list before shopping day also ensures you don’t miss out on any key item while sticking to your healthy eating plan.

Most grocery stores align their products aisle-wise. So, when shopping from grocery stores, start aisle by aisle.

Here are some tips and knick-knacks to get that grocery store cart filled with the healthiest foods from every aisle and check those items off your healthy grocery list.

1.1. Bakery

By: Yeh Xintong/ Unsplash, Copyright September 2019

Now, the first thing that comes to our mind when we hear of a bakery or baked goods is bread. There are multiple types of bread.

For example, a healthier option for ordinary bread would be a pack of whole-wheat bread or whole-grain bread. Brown bread is also a great option to include in your dietary supplements.

You can also include whole-grain tortillas. Similarly, for flour options, an ideal choice would be whole wheat flour.

To ensure you are keeping up with a healthy grocery list, you must look for items with 3-4 grams of fibre to the least with less than 100 calories per slice.

1.2. Rice and Grains

When it comes to grains, follow the similar concept of picking bread. Look out for whole grains to add to your healthy grocery list.

Speaking of rice, you can add brown rice to your grocery list to make things healthier and tastier.

1.3. Meat and Seafood

Meat is an excellent source of protein for your body. The more the protein intake, the lesser risk you have of having cardiovascular disease or any disease for that matter.

When buying red meat, you must pick out meat with the least marbling and the leanest cuts.

So, swap ground beef with either ground chicken breasts or ground turkey breasts. By doing this, the saturated fat content is reduced, and in turn, you eat healthily!

1.4. Salad Dressings, Oils and Condiments

Getting health-conscious when picking sauces can be a little tedious and this, folks, is the first baby step towards your cheat meal.

The majority of the sauces are high in sugar and sodium. So all you can do here is to keep in check with the sodium levels and pick sugar-free condiments.

Some of the shopping cart add-ons would be:

  • Olive oil or extra virgin olive oil
  • Salsa or hot sauce
  • Mustard
  • Tomato sauce

Avoid mayonnaise. Look for alternatives for mayonnaise because this condiment can ruin your healthy eating plan.

1.5. Breakfast and Cereals

To avoid blandness, you can choose bars and cereals with dried fruits to add sweetness to your snack. Pick out cereals and bars that contain lower sugar levels and are high in fibre. Many bars also have dry fruits in them, which are also great.

1.6. Soups and Packaged Foods

Again, look for lower sodium levels in your canned veggies. Look out for items filled with juice instead of syrup. Foods in syrup tend to have extra added sugar, which makes our meals unhealthy.

1.7. Frozen Goods

Buy frozen food items only for casseroles, soups, juices, and smoothies for a healthy lifestyle.

Some frozen items you might want to add to your grocery list would include:

  • Frozen fruit like some frozen berries
  • Frozen vegetables like dried beans
  • Frozen shrimp
  • Packed whole-grain waffles

1.8. Dairy and Eggs

There is no harm in eating whole-fat butter, and cheese and drinking whole-fat milk as long as you limit your portion sizes.

You can purchase cheeses with a stronger flavour to reduce portion sizes, such as goat cheese or parmesan cheese. Moreover, use low-fat or fat-free cottage cheese.

Flavoured or pre-sweetened yogurts like Greek yogurt can have added sugar. To avoid that, you can buy plain yogurt and add your flavour by yourself!

When it comes to milk, cow’s milk is rich in fat. So you might want to reduce your consumption if you want to eat healthily. If cow milk is not your jam, some healthier options would include:

  • Oat milk
  • Soy milk
  • Almond milk or unsweetened almond milk for reduced sugar levels

1.9. Snacks

Snacks are delicious whether they are categorized as healthy or unhealthy foods. Some fun, healthy choices would include:

  • Dry fruits like dried apricots and berries
  • Peanut butter or any nut butter in place of Nutella or any other chocolate spread works best
  • Dark chocolate
  • Hummus and pita bread

1.10. Fresh Produce

Fresh fruits and vegetables are the healthiest foods we have discussed above.

Large and colourful vegetables have the maximum nutrition. Produce that is in season tends to be of the best quality.

Some diet-efficient fruits and vegetables would be:

  • Carrots
  • Spinach for a mixed green salad
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Broccoli
  • Bananas
  • Apples
  • Any kind of berries

There are many more options that you can add to your healthy grocery list, but these have to be the classic ones that we see in every diet plan.

1.11. Beverages

A grocery list is incomplete without some fun drinks.

When purchasing juices, make sure it’s 100% fruit juice rather than drinks with ‘-ade’ or juice drinks.

Unsweetened teas or green teas can be a fantastic intoxicating 2add-on to your healthy grocery list.

Sparkling water is another alternative you can consider adding to your healthy grocery list.

By the end of this checklist, you should be ready with an organized, healthy grocery list to ensure you don’t have any food waste at home after purchasing from the grocery store.

2. Healthy Beginner-Friendly Recipes

You got all these healthy foods when you went grocery shopping, but now what do you cook with all these ingredients?

So, let’s move on to healthy meals that are super beginner-friendly and do not taste ‘healthy’ at all!

So get all those goodies out of your healthy grocery list.

You might want to add some extras as per the recipes below!

2.1. Burrito Bowl

Serves: 6

A burrito in a bowl? What could be better than avoiding the messy eating of a burrito?

What’s not to love about fresh veggies, a 10-minute prep time, and a creamy chipotle drizzle?

Plus, you may add your favourite proteins to make them truly unique. You can also keep it vegetarian.

If you want to go the extra mile and make these even healthier, replace the rice with quinoa. You’ll get a boost of protein and feel satisfied for hours! So, who’s up for Chipotle tonight?

2.1.1. Ingredients for the Burrito Bowl:

  • 1 cup uncooked rice or quinoa for healthy eating
  • 1 cup salsa
  • 3 cups chopped Romaine lettuce
  • 1 can whole kernel corn, drained
  • 1 black bean, drained and rinsed (you can use canned beans here)
  • 2 tomatoes, diced
  • 1 avocado, halved, seeded, peeled, and diced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves

2.1.2. For The Chipotle Cream Sauce:

  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon chipotle paste
  • 1 clove pressed garlic
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt, or more, according to your taste buds

2.1.3. Directions to Make the Bowl:

I’m sure you must’ve got these ingredients covered in your healthy grocery list, so let’s get cooking!

First, let’s make the chipotle cream sauce.

  1.  To do so, combine all your sauce ingredients in a bowl and whisk them together. Once it is well combined, you’re good to go! Yes, it was that simple. You need not add a ready-made sauce item to your healthy grocery list too. You can make it from all the ingredients you already have.
  2. Pour 1 & 1/2 cups water into a large saucepan and cook the rice.
  3. While our rice is cooking, in another saucepan, cook our salsa. We do this to make sure it’s nice, warm, and flavorful.
  4. Next, we assemble our burrito bowls. To do so, first, divide the cooked rice into different bowls. Garnish with lettuce, beans, tomatoes, corn, avocado, and cilantro. You can also add a chopped baked potato to your bowl. Not all like it, but it tastes exceptionally good.
  5. Serve immediately with drizzled balsamic vinegar 3and our chipotle cream sauce.

See, it was that easy! Sprinkling some red chilli flakes, sea salt, or mixed herbs on top adds a fancy touch to the burrito bowl. You can also drizzle some avocado oil to enhance the avocado flavour in the dish.

2.2. Quinoa Stuffed Bell Peppers

Serves: 6

These filled peppers, packed with protein, vegetables, and whole grains from your grocery list, will provide you with all the nutrition you need for a healthy, balanced dinner!

You can make a southwest quinoa combo with leftover corn, beans, tomatoes, green chilis for heat, and cheesy pepper-jack-feta for extra bliss.

It makes a perfect dish for Meatless Mondays or any other day of the week!

2.2.1. Ingredients for Quinoa Stuffed Peppers:

  • 3 cups cooked quinoa
  • 1 can of green chiles
  • 1 cup kernels of corn
  • 1/2 cup black beans, drain and rinse them
  • 1/2 cup diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup shredded pepper jack cheese
  • 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon chilli powder, or more according to your taste buds
  • Salt and ground black pepper, to taste
  • Olive oil to drizzle
  • 6 bell peppers, tops cut, stemmed and seeded

2.2.2. Directions for Making Stuffed Peppers:

1. First, preheat the oven to 350°F and line a baking tray with parchment paper.

2. Combine all the ingredients, except the peppers, in a large bowl. And drizzle the stuffing with olive oil.

3. Stuff the peppers with stuffing and bake them until they are soft and the filling is cooked thoroughly, for about 25-30 minutes. Make sure the paper cavity is faced up and doesn’t tumble over to avoid spillage.

4. Once cooked, serve immediately!

2.3. Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese

Serves: 6

Now, I know mac and cheese are considered in the ‘unhealthy’ foods category. But we can very easily turn it into a super healthy dish, and you can add it to your healthy meal plan without any hesitation!

Like egg substitutes, you can use whole-grain pasta instead of regular pasta, and you are good to go.

2.3.1. Ingredients for Mac and Cheese:

  • 1 medium butternut squash, peeled and cubed
  • 1 finely chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup raw cashews
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary, finely chopped
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • ¼ cup nutritional yeast
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 3 cups dried whole-grain penne pasta
  • Fresh parsley, to garnish

2.3.2. Directions to Make Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese:

  • First, we will prepare our squash. To do so, you will need to poke the squash all over with a fork and microwave it on high for 3-4 minutes.
  • Once cooked, peel the skin of the squash, slice it in half and remove the seeds. Cut the squash into cubes. You should have 5 cups of cubed squash.
  • In a cooker, add your squash, onions, garlic, nutritional yeast, cashews, rosemary, olive oil, mustard, vegetable stock, and salt at a slow flame. Stir well.
  • Now, you might need to be patient. Cover the lid and let it cook for 4 hours on high heat. When done, make sure the vegetables are soft and can be mashed easily using a fork.
  • Pour the squash mixture into a blender and blend to make a puree without unnecessary lumps or chunks.
  • Cook your pasta and pour the sauce over it. Stir well and serve hot!

3. Healthy Desserts for Beginners

Let’s sign off simply with two healthy desserts to maintain your healthy eating plan. These sweet treats are delicious yet healthy.

3.1. Almond Butter Chocolate Bites

Serves: 1 (makes 6 bites)

These bites are great low-carb on-the-go snacks and can be stored for up to several months!

3.1.1. Ingredients for Bites:

  • 2 tbsp dark chocolate
  • ⅓ cup almond butter
  • 1 ½ tbsp flax meal or whole wheat flour
  • 3 tbsp coconut flour
  • 2 tbsp honey

3.1.2. Directions:

  • Combine all the ingredients except chocolate in a large bowl. And wet your hands to form balls.
  • In a microwave, melt the chocolate.
  • Using a fork, dip the balls in the melted chocolate and coat them with the chocolate.
  • Line the coated balls on parchment paper and freeze them for 30 minutes or until the chocolate coating hardens.
  • Serve with coffee or have them on the go. You can also use any other nut butter in this recipe according to your taste.

3.2. Peanut Butter Yogurt Bark

Peanut Butter & Jelly Frozen Yogurt Bark  | Healthy Summer Snack

Serves: 2

This bark is high in protein and an easy frozen treat. You can add frozen or fresh fruit to it for slightly added sugar but still keep it healthy.

3.2.1. Ingredients for the Bark:

  • 3/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • A pinch of cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons peanut butter

3.2.2. Directions:

  • Line a container with parchment paper that is freezer-safe and airtight.
  • In a bowl, combine the Greek yogurt, honey, and cinnamon and stir well.
  • Transfer the combined mix to the lined container. Add dollops of peanut butter and stir just enough to make it swirl in the mixture.
  • Cover and freeze until it is solid.
  • Finally, once frozen, break it into pieces and store it in an airtight container for up to as long as you like. You can also add frozen fruits like berries to the yogurt mix to enhance the flavour and taste of the bark.

4. Bottom Line

So, these are all the healthy foods that you can cook with the healthy grocery list we made. Having a healthy grocery list today is important since everyone is very health-conscious.

Before you go, here are a few suggested reads, enjoy

Read more from us here.

Suggested reads: Spinach Smoothie Benefits

  1. de Carvalho Silvello, Maria Augusta, et al. “Microalgae-based carbohydrates: A green innovative source of bioenergy.” Bioresource Technology 344 (2022): 126304. ↩︎
  2. Kicman, Aleksandra, and Marek Toczek. “The effects of cannabidiol, a non-intoxicating compound of cannabis, on the cardiovascular system in health and disease.” International journal of molecular sciences 21.18 (2020): 6740. ↩︎
  3. Ríos-Reina, R., et al. “Sensory and spectroscopic characterization of Argentinean wine and balsamic vinegars: A comparative study with European vinegars.” Food chemistry 323 (2020): 126791. ↩︎

Last Updated on by Suchi



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