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May 17, 2019

by Alyssa

My Staple Grocery List: What I Buy Every Week

This staple grocery list shows you 10 items to add to your shopping list each week to create healthy and nutritious meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

Staple Grocery List: 10 items to buy each week

One of my goals here at SQ is to simplify healthy living for you. I want to share the things that I've learned over the years so that I can make your life a little bit easier. I do that through recipes of course, but also articles like this. Where I bring you behind the scenes into my life and get the hacks I use to make this life maintainable (and sustainable).

I know that grocery shopping can be pretty overwhelming at times. But it doesn't have to be!

Today I'm sharing my staple grocery list with you and walk you through the 10 things that you'll find in my grocery cart every single week. These items are healthy, they're budget-friendly and they can be used a bunch of different ways!

My Staple Grocery List

Okay, let's get to do it. What do I buy every single week? Initially, it was hard to narrow down, but once I really thought about it I realized that the 1o items I have below are in constant rotation in my house. I'm able to build healthy balanced meals with them (plus a few items from my pantry) and I can use them in a lot of different ways.

I'm breaking down the list by ingredient (or category) and will also share how I like to use them. So let's dive in!

1. Spinach

The one item I probably go through the most is spinach. I buy a 1lb box of spinach at least once per week to fuel me for my morning smoothie bowls. Spinach is my favorite because it has the most mellow taste, it's easy on my system, it blends super well and it's packed with amazing nutrients. I usually add about 3 cups of greens into my morning smoothies, but will also use spinach in other ways like omelets/scrambles, salads, sauteed as a side, with pasta, etc.

My favorite spinach recipes:

Winter Kale Salad with Lentils

2. Kale

Since I'm more of the spinach hoarder in our house, I also always pick up a few bunches of kale each week. Matt doesn't eat a ton of greens, so I like to make sure that we have some greens at dinner. Our favorite way to make them is as a side. We quickly steam the kale leaves, then toss them with lemon, garlic, salt and pepper flakes. It's so easy, but it's delicious! And just like spinach, you can use kale a million different ways. Any of the ways I mentioned above totally work.

My favorite kale recipes:

3. Broccoli

In addition to greens at our meals, I also always add other veggies. I'm a firm believer that our plates should be made up of mostly vegetables, with the addition of protein, healthy fats and carbs. This is definitely a category in my staple grocery list that rotates, but if I had to narrow my list down to just one veggie, it would be broccoli. I love it and always have and it's something you can get year round. My favorite way to prepare it is roasted with avocado oil, salt, and pepper. So simple, but absolutely delicious. Broccoli is also delicious steamed with lemon and nutritional yeast, as well as incorporated into other meals like salads, pasta, pizza, etc.

My favorite broccoli recipes:

Mexican Quinoa Stuffed Sweet Potatoes

4. Sweet Potato

My love for sweet potatoes runs deep. They're probably one of my all-time favorite foods and one we absolutely eat weekly (even in the summer). Sweet potatoes are incredibly good for you; they're high in vitamin A, fiber, they're low on the glycemic index and they're a complex carbohydrate which means they take longer to digest. They also taste amazing! I usually just roast sweet potatoes and serve them as a side dish, but they're incredibly versatile. You can add them into soups and chili, into salads, serve them as a main course, and more.

My favorite sweet potato recipes:

5. Avocado

I think pretty much the whole world is obsessed with avocado at this point and I'm not different. I've actually loved avocado ever since I was a baby; it was one of the first foods my parents gave me and I've loved it ever since. At this point, I probably eat at least 2 – 3 avocados each week! I love it on top of toast, in my salads, in my smoothies, as a snack. You really can't go wrong! Plus, avocado is super good for you. It's high in fiber, it's full of healthy fats, it's amazing for your skin and it's great for brain health. Doesn't hurt that it tastes delicious too! ????

My favorite avocado recipes:

easy quinoa bowls with tofu, green beans and broccoli

6. Plant-Based Protein

So far we've covered greens, veggies, carbs, and healthy fats. Now it's time for the protein! This is a category that I actually switch out every single week. Sometimes I'll pick up tempeh, other times it will be tofu or beans. I like to rotate my proteins so that we can keep things interesting and not focus too heavily on one specific ingredient. While I don't eat soy a ton, the soy that I do buy needs to be organic, non-GMO and preferably sprouted/fermented. Beans are also organic, non-GMO and in BPA-free cans.

My favorite high protein vegan dinners:

7. Lemon

For flavoring my food, I love to have lemons on hand. We use them as a garnish to our vegetables, but I also often use them in my salad dressings or in the morning with some warm water. I think lemons are one of those things that really help to enhance flavors without being overpowering. It almost gives it a little pop!

My favorite recipes using lemon:

Apple Pie Breakfast Parfaits

8. Apples

For a little sweetness, apples are my go-to. I usually just have apples as a snack, but I do also love to bake with them. My favorite way to enjoy apples is to slice them up and put them on top of a piece of peanut butter toast. It's like my favorite snack ever. And if I'm not feeling the bread, I'll just cut the apple up, drizzle it with peanut (or almond) butter and sprinkle it with cinnamon. So simple and so delicious!

My favorite apple recipes:

9. Nut Butter

This is another category that I rotate through, but something I always have on hand. I eat some form of nut butter every day, whether it's on my smoothie bowls, in my smoothies, on my toast, as a snack, in dressing, a dipping sauce, etc. I think they're incredibly versatile and delicious! These are the four that I rotate through: peanut, almond, cashew, and tahini. With those four, I feel like I can make anything! I love Once Again, as well as the ones from Thrive Market!

Want to try making nut butter at home? Check out our ultimate guide to homemade nut butter!

My favorite recipes using nut butter:

Triple Berry Smoothie Bowl Recipe

10. Smoothie Ingredients

And last but certainly not least, my smoothie ingredients! This is being constantly changed in and out, but I always have a freezer stocked full of frozen cauliflower, frozen zucchini, and frozen fruit. Some of my staple fruits include all the berries (raspberry, strawberry, blueberry, blackberry), as well as frozen cherries, frozen peaches, and frozen mango. I love a good smoothie and really enjoy changing up my ingredients every day. They're easy to make, packed with nutrients and taste amazing!

My favorite smoothie recipes:

What's on YOUR Staple Grocery List?

Let us know what you think in the comments! We'd love to hear what your top items are each week. Do you have your own staple grocery list? If so, share it below!


Staple Grocery List: 10 items to buy each week

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About Alyssa

Hey there, I’m Alyssa Rimmer, a certified Holistic Nutritionist, yoga-lover, dog mom, and founder of Simply Quinoa. It’s nice to meet you! I created SQ as a way to provide solutions for women just like me, who were struggling to find helpful information about how to live a healthy and fulfilled life. My hope is that you will find inspiration here on SQ – in my story, in my recipes, in the hundreds of wellness articles, and in our amazing community. Welcome!

Interested in Healthy Eating? Grab our 7-Day Vegan Meal Plan!

With a week’s worth of simple and healthy meals, Eat Clean will help you see just how easy living a life full of whole foods can be. Recipe are 100% gluten-free and vegan!


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  1. No soy or fermented foods for me… but love the rest of your list. And Antonio’s list too.
    I would add Seeds… particularly hemp seeds, plus pumpkin and a few sunflower.
    Definitely use Quinoa as a source of protein.
    Arugula and watercress are also highly nutritious greens.
    Just one quick “recipe”… massage broccoli with red pepper hummus, then roast in the oven. Amazing flavor!

  2. I was on this site when you first started. It was interesting … but how you’ve evolved over the years is wonderful!! Great article.

  3. I like what you have on your list. I go the seasonal route and I also base it on my diet direction which is also seasonal.
    I like to go with spinach and a second leafy green such as dandelion greens, bitter nettles or kale
    I go for starchy vegetables next such as golden beets, seasonal squash, sweet potatoes when in season
    Grains I love quinoa, go figure haha! Wild rice and black rice are also favorites I lean on a lot
    Fruits, bananas and dates are a must! I need the sugar. Apples definitely and whatever else is in season so right now, strawberries, cherries and loquats 🙂
    Coconut butter is my new nut butter, coconut oil, I make my own ghee for fats and as a treat I usually buy sunflower butter or PEANUT BUTTER!!!!!
    Avocados are definitely a must as are microgreens, protein powder (whey, collagen, vegetable) and a plant protein such as tofu, edemame most prominently.
    Sorry if I spilled everything, or left something off haha!!


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