When you’re resolving to embrace a gut-healthy diet, it’s no surprise that your weekly grocery haul should include plenty of fruits, veggies, and lean protein. And while that’s a great first step, having these additional gut-friendly foods in your kitchen pantry will make your journey so much easier!
Keep these ingredients on hand in your kitchen pantry so you can make a delicious, nutritious gut-healthy meal every night of the week.
- Bone broth: Bone broth is much more concentrated than regular chicken or beef broth. It contains more protein, collagen, electrolytes, vitamins, and minerals, plus helps support a strong gut lining.
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil contains polyphenols, an antioxidant compound that keeps your microbiome in healthy balance. A 2020 study showed that Extra Virgin olive oil increases Bifidobacteria in the gut. Bifidobacteria supports healthy cholesterol levels and makes weight control easier, since they increase feelings of fullness.
- Nuts are a great source of fiber as well as omega 6 and plant-based omega 3, healthy fats that fight inflammation and support your heart and brain. Studies show that eating nuts supports healthy bacteria balance in the gut and may even help lower “bad” LDL cholesterol.
- Whole Grains: Fiber-friendly whole grains bulk up your stool and help keep you regular. They also keep your microbiome nicely balanced. Research shows that people who eat a diet rich in whole grains have lower BMIs and a healthier weight.
- Ginger is among the healthiest (and most delicious) spices on the planet. It supports smooth digestion, reduces nausea, increases energy and helps fight the flu and common cold, to name just a few of its many health benefits.
- Maple syrup is not only a delicious condiment and delightful natural sweetener. It’s also a source of inulin, a prebiotic food that fuels good bacteria in your gut for healthy digestion and intestinal balance.
- Honey, like maple syrup, contains prebiotics. However, it’s also rich in antibacterial compounds that can help reduce irritation and inflammation in the digestive tract.
- Apple Cider Vinegar contains antioxidants, probiotics, and acetic acid. Acetic acid helps kill harmful bacteria [ACV is about 5% to 6% acetic acid] Research also shows ACV can help reduce blood sugar levels, lower cholesterol, and protect your heart.
How about a Gut-Friendly Side Dish?
Since your gut-friendly kitchen is well stocked, here’s a gut-friendly veggie dish to get you started! This prebiotic- rich Dijon Artichokes and Asparagus bowl is a nutritious companion to grilled fish or even by itself with some brown rice.
Dijon Artichokes and Asparagus
- 1 batch Dijon Hemp Vinaigrette (recipe below)
- 2 cups asparagus cut into 2” pieces)
- 1 cup chopped artichoke hearts (jarred in water, drained, chopped)
- Salt and pepper, to taste
1 Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2 Make the Dijon Hemp Vinaigrette. Set aside.
3 Add the asparagus and artichokes to a medium bowl. Pour ⅓ of the vinaigrette in the bowl (just enough to coat the asparagus and artichoke). Sprinkle with salt and pepper, then mix well to fully coat the veggies. Reserve the remaining vinaigrette for drizzling after cooking.
4. Transfer the asparagus and artichoke to the parchment-lined baking sheet.
5. Bake for 13–15 minutes, tossing halfway through.
6. Transfer the asparagus and artichokes to a serving platter and drizzle with the remaining dressing. Enjoy!
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
Dijon Hemp Apple Cider Vinaigrette
- 4 tbsp hemp seeds
- 4 tbsp water
- 1-1/2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard
- 2 garlic cloves, minced [or ½ tsp garlic powder]
- ¼ tsp ground ginger [or 2 tsp fresh]
- 1-1/2 tsp pure maple syrup
- 1 tsp organic miso (mellow white or chickpea) or Tahini
- Salt and pepper to taste
Put all ingredients in a small blender. Mix for 1–2 minutes until creamy. Start with 4 tablespoons of water and add more as needed for the consistency you prefer.
Store dressing in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.