Stocking A Clean Eating Pantry

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Stocking a clean eating pantry has never been easier! This guide makes is super easy. Give it a try!

One of the problems I had when I started eating clean was my incredibly, junk-food-filled pantry. There was just nothing I didn’t have in there! From candy bars, to white rice and pasta, I had it! Far from the modeling “diet” I followed in my teens.

How To Convert Your Pantry To Clean Eating

Now I admit, I didn’t go through and toss everything so I could start from scratch in one day. Switching my pantry contents to 100% clean foods was a challenge, and I just didn’t have the money to start from scratch all at once. So what did I do?

Every week, I chose one food to replace. Out went the candy bars and in came the protein bars. In a few months, my pantry was…. perfect!

So what clean foods should you buy to replace what’s in your pantry now?


Stocking A Clean Eating Pantry

Whole What?

Whole Wheat Pastry Flour is easily substituted in most recipes calling for white flour. It’s cheapest to purchase it in bulk at your local health food store. (You’ll need to find another alternative if you are gluten sensitive). As far as I know, this is the finest “grind” of whole wheat flour you can buy.

Beans, beans the magical fruit. The more you eat the more you…

Whether you like them canned or cooked from scratch at home, be sure you have plenty of these on hand in a broad variety. They are nutrition powerhouses and are very easy on the wallet. Just be sure to read labels if you are buying canned beans. Many will have added sugar. Avoid these. The sugar is not necessary or part of a clean eating lifestyle. Some beans to try:

  • Garbanzo beans (chickpeas)
  • Black beans
  • Kidney beans
  • Pinto beans
  • Adzuki beans
  • Navy beans
The Wonderful World of Grains

If you’ve only ever heard of wheat, oats and rice, you’re not alone. Many people don’t even realize the incredible list of healthy grains available to them. Long gone are the days when we had to make due with a few simple and well known grains. Today we have a veritable cornucopia of nutritious grains at our disposal. Here are just a few to get you started:

  • Quinoa
  • Brown Rice
  • Barley
  • Millet
  • Farro
  • Amaranth
  • Buckwheat
  • Kamut
  • Oats – Steel cut is best
Moooooove Over Dairy!

If you are sensitive to dairy like I am, you have some fantastic alternatives available to you!

  • Almond milk (Unsweetened)
  • Rice milk (Unsweetened)
  • Hemp milk (Unsweetened)
  • Hazelnut milk (Unsweetened)
  • Coconut milk (Unsweetened – usually canned)
Maybe The Squirrels Have It Right!

Nuts are wondrous little doo-dads and are a great addition to your eating plan in small amounts. The nutrients found in nuts are unequaled, and they really add a flavorful punch to anything you add them to. Some nuts to get you started are:

  • Almonds – nothing added.
  • Hazelnuts
  • Walnuts
  • Pecans
Do You Have A Sweet Tooth?

There are actually quite a few sweeteners allowed on a clean eating plan. In moderation, you can enjoy some sweet treats on a semi-regular basis!

  • Honey
  • Sucanat
  • Maple syrup
  • Brown rice syrup
  • Stevia, liquid variety

Some extras you should always have on hand are:

  • Chia Seeds
  • Flax Seed Meal
  • Oat bran
  • Wheat germ
  • Bee pollen

So there you have it. It’s by no means a complete list, but it’s a place to start. When you go grocery shopping, just add fresh fruits and veggies to this list and you’ll be well on your way to better health!


These FREE, self-paced 8 lessons will guide you through getting started with clean eating. Get more info here.

Article is an original work and is © Tiffany McCauley. It may not be reproduced for any reason without written permission by the author.

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  1. Cindie LaForce says:

    Can you use agave as a sweetener? In my Blendtec recipe book it calls for agave in many of the recipes. Should I use agave or substitute it with something else?

    1. graciouspantry says:

      I no longer use agave as it turns out it’s very processed and apparently nearly as bad as corn syrup. I just sub with honey.

  2. I have done this a few years back. I just wanted to share a tip. I use canning jars to hold my grains, beans, nuts, and other items that I buy in the organic bulk section at Whole Foods Market. They work great, are inexpensive, and come in different sizes. Now is the season to buy them. I even found a silverware holder to put in my pantry that was wide enough to hold several of the jars. I can slide the holder out like a drawer instead of moving several jars to get to the one I want.

    1. graciouspantry says:

      Nice! Thanks!

  3. graciouspantry says:

    In moderation, yes. They are clean.

  4. I’m very big on flavor, what seasonings do you suggest?

    1. graciouspantry says:

      I focus a lot on single herbs like basil as well as powders like garlic powder, onion powder and such. I also have a good quality pumpkin spice mix (they are not all equal!).

  5. graciouspantry says:

    Wonderful! It’s all about finding ways to make it work for you. Great job!

  6. graciouspantry says:

    I’m just now learning about gluten free cooking myself. It’s a huge undertaking, but once I get it down, I think it’ll be a nice change.

  7. This would be a nice post to re-post before the beginning of the new year for those who may be new to your page.

    1. graciouspantry says:

      Thanks! I might very well do that.

  8. graciouspantry says:

    Do you have a health food store? I would start there. You can also find foods like this on

  9. graciouspantry says:

    No, it’s not clean. Sorry.

  10. graciouspantry says:

    I prep everything ahead of time so I always have it on hand. I’ve got it down to a science these days.

  11. Protein drinks are my go-to after work outs. I use Beverly UMP.. but have read not-so-great things about its “cleanliness”. Any suggestions for protein powder that is clean and tasty?

    1. Honestly, I don’t believe there is any such thing as clean protein powder. You can’t find it in nature that way. It has to be processed to get it that way. But that said, some are better choices than others. Opt for powders that are 100%. So, 100% whey, 100% hemp… etc. The fewer the ingredients, the better. Natural Factors seems pretty good as does Jay Robb and Manitoba Harvest. I know there are others, but those are the three I know of.

  12. I live in Calgary, AB. I am having a hard time finding whole wheat pastry flour. What is the difference between regular whole wheat and the pastry flour? Also, I am considering buying a wheat grinder so I can grind my own flours. Can I make whole wheat pastry flour? What other flours are good for baking?

    Thanks so much!

    1. The difference is the wheat. These flours are made with two different types of wheat. The pastry variety is also a finer grind and has less gluten. Different flours are good for different recipes. So the types you should have on hand will vary based on what you want to make.

  13. Super helpful! Clean eating doesn’t sound too scary after all ๐Ÿ™‚

  14. Thanks for this information, very interesting and informative.

  15. Is it okay to add sesame seeds to recipes, I like to add it to my homemade salad dressings?

    Great website…Thank you!!!!

  16. I’m ok with all the changes, especially beans,I love them and can make a lot of receipes with them. It’s the milk, almond, goat, rice. I can’t do it. I know it’s a mind of matter thing. I’m not a big milk drinker but cereal and a little in my coffee.

  17. Glad I found your site…we are working towards being clean eaters. My family loves cold cereals , that’s our our main breakfast in this family on weekdays. My husband often has a bowl before bed as well. I don’t buy the super sugary stuff, our main ones are Cheerios, corn flakes, shreddies,weetabix,rice crispies, etc.. My question is there any one you call clean? Also do you know of any clean cereal that kids will eat?. Or any recipes that is a make ahead cold cereal ?

    1. There really isn’t a cold cereal that is clean. The closest I’ve found is from the health food store and it’s just puffed grains (cheap though!). I have a granola recipe on my site if that helps.

  18. Umm… wheres the meat? No meat in clean eating??

    1. Karyn – I don’t keep meat in my pantry. I listed the dairy-free stuff because it usually comes in a carton that you can keep in the pantry until you are ready to use it. So maybe that’s where the confusion is coming in?

  19. Love your site. I had a question about raw cane sugar. I have a home baking business and use raw sugar(not a fan of plain old granulated sugar at all. I make my own brown sugar at home). Is raw sugar, or sugar in the raw, considered clean?

    1. I don’t believe so, but I will be researching all of that for an upcoming article in the very near future. So I’ll know more then. Wish I could be more help…

  20. Love this!! I’ve been wanting to start and didn’t know where to begin. Thank you so much.

  21. I read in one of your comments to someone else that you worry about the cholesterol levels in egg yolks, but sometimes the fat is needed.
    You can substitute eggs with avacados, even in baking. Comes out just as yummy. And the fats are still there, but in a different way.
    You can substitute oil with apple sauce too.

    Thanks for this post. I’ve been seeing recipes for clean eating lately and wasn’t sure what it was all about. I read one of your other articles which led me to this one. I love it. Thanks again for the information!

  22. My dad found raw sugar that has been unprocessed at the store. It is slightly brown and the crystals are bigger than those of white sugar. It has one ingredient, cane sugar. Is this sugar clean due to the fact is hasn’t been processed, or should it still be avoided?

  23. I have just started clean eating not just for me but my family’s health and well being as well, I have you to thank for helping me start and for sharing recipes that my kids will enjoy as well:)