This spring, we’re cleaning out the old and bringing in the new. We are diving deep to find what products and ingredients aren’t needed anymore in our homes and what we can bring swap in. Spring is a time of renewal and cleansing the space around us after a long winter. Before we start planning for the warmer weather ahead (especially here in Chicago), we’re taking time to make simple changes to feel so that we can feel our best. Here’s what we recommend:
1. Ditch the protein powders filled with artificial sweeteners and flavors, add in protein from grass-fed or plant-based sources.
Check the ingredients in your protein powders. They’re not always as clean and innocent as you might think. Anything unrecognizable or unfamiliar, especially when it comes to artificial flavors, colors and sugars.
When deciding on a new protein, aim for:
- Collagen protein like Vital Proteins
Keep in mind that if possible, you want to get your protein straight from the animal source itself but marine and bovine collagen are excellent sources!
- Grass-fed whey (if your body can handle dairy) like Nakd Nutrition
These days, we're also loving plant-powered nutrition. That means we’re looking at those almond milk yogurts for breakfast with paleo granola on top, legumes in our salads for lunch and filling up on greens like spinach and kale for dinner.
2. Baking hacks for when you don’t want to use eggs (or if you don’t include them in your diet)
While we love baking hacks like using coconut oil in replace of vegetable oil, finding replacements for eggs can be tricky but this spring, we’re hopping on board with two new trends:
Mayonnaise made from chickpea liquid? Apparently, yes! Aquafaba is the leftover liquid from a can of chickpeas that can be used to replace eggs.. Bloggers like Minimalist Baker and companies such as Primal Kitchen have been creating their own!
- Flax eggs
Flax eggs are packed with protein and lend a similar texture to eggs, although sometimes a little denser.For one egg replacement, mix 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed with 3 tablespoons of water, let it sit for 5 minutes and use it just as you would a chicken egg.
3. Toss the hydrogenated oils.
When it comes to dressings and condiments, avocado oil bases are everywhere these days. Why avocado oil? It has a higher smoke point, making it an ideal way to bake, roast or sauté all of your fresh meats and vegetables. Our favorite pick from Primal Kitchen is cold pressed, paleo friendly and straight from California grown avocados.
Primal Kitchen uses avocado oil as the first ingredient for their paleo dressings as well, instead of other store bought brands who use processed canola oil and sugar.
Aside from dressings, we’re even seeing avocado oil being used in mayonnaises.
For more info on oils… check out our blog post here on coconut oil, one of our favorites. It also includes an easy to create recipe!
4. Getting rid of canned soups with MSGs and bring in bone broth
Soups these days can come with so many different MSGs, added sugars and high levels of sodium. Of course they can be convenient but with bone broths becoming increasingly popular this year, especially grass-fed and organic, making your own homemade soup is now so much simpler.
Our favorites include:
- Bonafide Provisions
- The first USDA Organic broth on the market including chicken, turkey and beef
- We love using their broth in our very own stuffing recipe you can catch here!
- Kettle and Fire Bone Broth
- Organic, grass-fed chicken and beef sold in vacuum sealed packaging
Are anyone’s spice racks as cluttered as ours are? Instead of adding to the chaos, swap out your old spices and seasonings for new flavors! Our first swap we like to make is with table salt. Sodium is wonderful for balancing out our bodies but did you know himalayan pink sea salt has extra minerals as opposed to white table salt? It is relatively higher in magnesium, iron and calcium, according to Livestrong.com. Just a dash goes a long way, whether it be in baking recipes, sprinkles on avocado toast or even in a green smoothie.
P.s. Don’t forget to throw out any spices such as cinnamon and nutmeg after 2-3 years and dried herbs like basil and oregano after a year.
6. Clean up your kitchen with non-toxic products
Places like the kitchen and the bathroom often tend to get overlooked when it comes to cleaning in terms of the products being used to actually clean your dishes, countertops and even your own hands.This spring, switch out those bright blue soaps that smell like candy and trade them in for all natural products with simple fragrances.
Our top picks this spring:
- This lavender hand soap is our personal favorite!
Now that you’ve swapped out the old for the new and cleaned up the grey areas in your home, here are a few pantry basics we love to stick by:
- Choose flours made from grains as opposed to wheat or all-purpose flour
- Almond, coconut and cassava are gluten and grain-free picks we enjoy most.
- Ditch the potato chips with canola oil for our Fine Ground Sea Salt Almond Flour Crackers made with organic sunflower oil. We always have a box on hand in our cupboard ;)
- Chocolate chip cookies with a laundry list of ingredients hiding in your pantry? Swap them for a brand new ready-to-eat Chocolate Chip Crunchy Cookies.
- Swap your PAM spray for an avocado oil spray.
- Cooking with sugar and butter regularly? Swap them with coconut sugar and grass-fed butter for a fuller flavor and higher nutritional value.
Pro tip: You can usually find them at TJ Maxx and Marshall’s for a lower price than your average grocery store or super market.