Keep these 10 foods on hand, and you will always be able to make a quick, healthy dinner

It’s 7pm and your fridge is as empty as your stomach.

You haven’t been grocery shopping since last week. 

Your hangry and with little inspiration. 

Logically, you have two options:

1.You can panic at what is about to be the steep downward trajectory of your blood sugar levels and get takeaway. (Guilty).

2.Or, you can open up your pantry and the dregs of your refrigerator and turn nothing into something. Onion? A can of salmon? A tin of tomatoes? Pasta? Challenge accepted. 

Should you need a little inspiration, Georgia from GH Nutrition has put together 10 foods that will take you from takeout to homemade in under 10 minutes.  Winner winner chicken dinner.   

Beans

When dinner needs to be on the table five minutes ago and your looking for something to fill you up, whip out the can opener and open up a can of beans.  Whether it be kidney beans, cannellini beans, chickpeas or lentils, this little pantry staple can be used to create many versatile, protein packed dishes.  Add a can of chopped tomatoes and spices and top with a poached or fried egg for a comforting baked bean dish. 

Pasta

There is a reason it is a staple dinner amongst resourceful Italians.  Simple is always better, so serve with a dash of olive oil and parmesan.  

Tinned salmon 

Canned fish is an affordable way to incorporate healthy fish into your diet.  Make it into fish cakes with fresh herbs and spices, mix it in with pasta, pile it on a green salad or bake it in a frittata or quiche, canned salmon turns what was a simple dinner into a nourishing meal. 

Anchovies or sardines

In his song Juicy, rapper Notorious B.I.G reminisces about when he used to have to eat sardines for dinner.  Well Mr B.I.G, just because you’ve made it to the big time and don’t have to eat fish from a tin anymore, I don’t think you realised just how good you had it with those inexpensive, nutrition powerhouses of the sea.  My recommendation: mash with red onion and season with lemon and pepper and serve on toast.  Delicious any time of the day. 

Onion

There are countless ways to enjoy onions.  Baked, grilled, roasted, sautéed or eaten raw, adding onion to your dish ensures that it is packing a punch in the flavour department. 

Garlic

The cornerstone of cuisines around the world.  Gentle in flavour with its sweet casings and soft cloves, roasted garlic heads are a delicious accompaniment to a simple roast chicken.  Also, who can deny the smell of sautéed garlic.  Throw in a some onion and you have an aroma that pleasantly awakens the senses. 

Lemon

The secret ingredient to making pasta taste even better.  (Apart from parmesan, of course).  When life gives you lemons, specifically in the means of what to make for dinner tonight, squeeze them over spaghetti. 

Parsley

No kitchen should be without a good supply of the fresh, multi-purpose herb that is parsley.  Used as a garnish or in marinades, the fresh taste of parsley compliments any dish.  My favourite – atop a bowl of pasta with lemon, tuna and a generous sprinkle of parmesan and parsley. 

Tin of tomatoes

Add pasta, garlic, onion and tuna or beans and you have a delicious 10-minute pasta recipe.  Or, add it with the eggs and you have your own Moroccan egg dish.

Eggs

Put an egg on it.  Adding fried, poached or scrambled eggs can nearly turn anything into a healthy, balanced meal.  Plus, this humble ingredient gets bonus points as it stores well in the fridge for a long period of time. 

 

  • WHAT’S IN SEASON: FRUIT | APPLES: All new season except for Pink Ladies and Granny Smiths. BANANAS: Prices still impacted by supply issues from QLD floods. BERRIES: Last weeks for Tassie blueberries. Cooler weather has helped Strawberries with better value and longevity this week. Blackberries available. EXOTIC: Aussie mangosteens, rambutans, dragonfruit, guava and starfruit available. FIGS: Still peaking with a beautiful blush this week. GRAPES: Great range of grapes in season. Your preference depends on levels of crunch and sweetness desired. MANGOES: NSW KP mangoes still available. Last weeks for mangoes! MELONS: Rockmelons and watermelons a little scarce. PEARS: Corellas, Nashi, Williams and Buerre Bosc in season. Josephines and Packhams should start next week or so. PINES: Topless still eating well. POMEGRANATES: Aussie pomegranates in season. Better value this week. STONE FRUIT: Plums great varieties available still eating and cooking really well. Poach and freeze! VEGETABLES | Still feeling some impacts from the hot weather in January impacting vegetable crops around Australia and prices. Cooler Autumn weather will start to take effect over next few weeks. ASPARAGUS: Cooler weather in Victoria has meant a good Autumn asparagus crop with great value asparagus in season. However, Autumn season for Aussie asparagus is short so buy while available. AVOCADOS: New season shepherds in season. Hass ending soon. BEANS: Sugar snap and snowpeas still scarce. Round beans better value this week. Butter and Borlotti beans available. CAVOLO NERO & KALE: Beaut bunches. GARLIC: Tassie and organic garlic in season. GOOD VALUE: Zucchini, cucumbers and green capsicums. POTATOES & PUMPKIN: Kiflers the pick. TOMATOES: Scarce. FLOWERS: Great value roses.