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What’s in my Plant-Based Diet Plan Medicine Cabinet?

Each week, when someone finds out that I follow a plant-based diet plan they say, “You don’t eat meat, dairy, or most processed foods?! What in the world do you eat?” I try to explain to them that I eat more variety NOW than I ever did before, but they still seem to think I’m deprived and going to starve myself.

Plant Based Medicine Cabinet

Plant-based diet kitchen

Pictures are worth a thousand words, they say. These pictures of my cupboards are my 1,000+ unspoken words.

Every day, we choose health or sickness with our forks. I choose health. Come take a look at my plant-based medicine cabinet….I mean pantry!

Beans canned and dry

My canned cabinet is about 2′ deep, stacked 2-3 cans high of every kind of bean you can imagine, plus a few other items, like roasted red peppers, mushrooms, sauerkraut, fire-roasted tomatoes, pumpkin, cream corn, mandarin oranges.

Please note that I always drain and thoroughly rinse all my beans before using.

I replace the flavor with my own seasonings. And I cook my own dried beans often in my crockpot and eat throughout the week.

dry beans

I love making my own legumes in a crockpot with lots of fresh spices like basil, rosemary, thyme, etc. that I grow in a couple of large pots on my dining room table in front of a window.

Nothing better than clipping my own fresh spices and adding them to my recipes!

Grains, grains, and more whole grains

Did you know that on a plant-based diet, 70+% of your plate should be whole grains?

whole grains and pastas on counter top
Whole grains and whole-grain pasta provide health-promoting complex carbohydrates.

Yep! This group includes brown rice, millet, oats, barley, bulgur, quinoa, spelt, corn, and all products made from whole grains including bread, cereals, pasta, and more.

Whole grains are filling but have very little fat. In countries where whole grains are staples, such as rural Asia, diabetes, heart disease, and certain cancers, are much less common than in the States and Europe.

As you can see, we eat a wide variety!

Sauces and seasonings

Don’t judge! It looks messy, but I know where everything is. Notice we eat lots of Asian noodles–rice stick noodles, Udon, etc.–with seaweed, rice wrap paper, and a number of tasty Asian sauces.

I thank my Japanese family members for introducing me to these amazingly healthy flavors and tastes nearly 25 years ago!

Plant-based diet cabinet full of sauces and seasonings
Plant-based diet cabinets can get messy too.

Fresh vegetables for health

We hit ALDI’S discount grocery for fresh produce about every-other-week. Having 2 refrigerators (one out in the garage) helps us store lots of veggies and bags of apples, oranges, pears, mangoes, etc.

Fresh veggies for a plant-based lifestyle.
Fresh veggies for a plant-based lifestyle.

Veggies Galore! These foods are loaded with vitamins and minerals, are very low in fat, and like all plant foods, have no cholesterol at all.

These are just the ones I happened to have on hand. We eat a HUGE variety from week-to-week, depending on what’s available at the grocery store.

One note, ALDI’S doesn’t have a big variety of veggies, but they do have plenty of the basics. For more variety, I make a weekly run to our local grocery store, Ingles, and get things like leeks, broccoli slaw, Napa cabbage, Bok Choy, chard, turnip greens, collards, sprouts, artichokes, radishes, etc.

Spices are important for seasoning

I have no less than 50 spices in my kitchen at all times. They are an important part of making plant-based foods taste delicious.

spice jars hanging on wall
Spices are an important part of cooking on a plant-based diet plan. Affiliate link.

These handy spice clips can be placed on cabinet doors or walls. They are great for keeping spices handy.

I always keep lots of dried spices on hand to add tons of flavor to all my recipes. I buy from a local shop that gets theirs from the PA Amish country. They’re fresh and cheap!

For those of you new to the whole food plant-based lifestyle, we’ve created a FREE 7-Day Plant-Based Menu Planner to help you get started!

The articles might be helpful

Even if I knew my life would not be extended by one day, I would still make these healthy lifestyle changes, because now I know what feeling truly good at this stage in my life feels like. I don’t want to just live longer, but to live better.

About Terri Edwards

Hi guys! I am the content creator behind EatPlant-Based and a licensed Food for Life instructor with the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. I am passionate about sharing healthy recipes and tips to empower others to get healthy.  I’m so glad you’re here! Read More…

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plant based diet plan

Lexi M

Wednesday 4th of July 2018

Awesome pictures! Feels so good looking at a full, hearty fridge and pantry!

Thanks for the inspiration! :D Love you

Wednesday 4th of July 2018

Hey Lexi! You just made my day! I love that you are checking my website out. Love you too sweet girl, and hope to see you before too long. :)

Carolyn Nowling-Archer

Saturday 24th of June 2017

Do you feed an army? My goodness, we can't have that much fresh produce in our house. It tends to rot in 3 days. Seems I am always going to the store. Living in northwestern Wisconsin has its advantages. Being able to have FRESH PRODUCE is not one of them unfortunately. I do love seeing what staples you keep on hand. Looking like a Costco run is in store for this gal! :)

Saturday 24th of June 2017

Ha! Yes, I do indeed feed an army, because I usually teach 2 Food for Life classes each week. In addition to my family, I regularly make a meal for up to 30-40 people (15-20 people/ x2, and even sometimes 35 in a class). You should see my grocery shopping trips to 3 stores weekly! Happy Costco shopping to you! :)


Monday 19th of June 2017

Love the article. FYI, spices come from trees, cinnamon, cloves, pepper, nutmeg, etc. Herbs are soil based plants like oregano, basil, parsley, and thyme. So, your dining room plants are not spices.

Valerie Scrafford

Saturday 31st of December 2016

Love your pantry pics Terri--very similiar to mine; although I do have some small bags of beans, I mostly buy my beans in bulk, which is much more cost effective for me.


Saturday 31st of December 2016

Is that vegan Worcestershire? Or does someone other than you use it?

Saturday 31st of December 2016

Yes, I use Worcestershire sauce that is vegan. We are luck that our local big grocery store chain (Ingles) carries their off-brand (Laura Lynn) that is very inexpensive and happens to be vegan.