Choose Real Simple Food
Happy National Honey Month! With the help of a nutritionist and mom experts, we are here to provide straightforward, no-nonsense tools to choosing real, nutritious food for your family, starting with honey.
Table of contents
- Go to the grocery store with a plan. We’ll equip you with all the tools you need to make good decisions at the shelf and go home with everything you need to make quick & nutritious meals. ● 10 versatile pantry staples ● Not all honey is created equal ● 5 ingredients = 5 lunches ● Meal prep tips & tricks
- With the shopping conquered, you just need some practical ways to throw it all together. Put those real simple pantry staples to work without spending too much time in the kitchen. ● Ditch processed sugar, for real ● Throw-together breakfasts ● What’s in a balanced lunchbox? ● 6-ingredient dinners ● How to navigate picky eaters
- Ditch perfection and start with the basics, like ways to avoid processed sugar & how to stop eating when you’re full. Your mom confidence will soar as you set your kids up for a lifetime of healthy eating. ● Avoid processed. Choose real. ● Regulating blood sugar for mood maintenance ● On-the-go snacking for the whole family ● Choosing real food 101 ● Advice from real moms
REAL & SIMPLE ways to shop for real food
Get out your playbook because grocery shopping is all about strategy. If you want to eat real & simple food, you have to have the right goods on hand. Screenshot or download this list of real food that includes everything necessary to make the simple recipes on this page.
1. Grab these 10 staples
Ingredients so versatile you can use them in every meal
Put these go-to ingredients on your grocery list in stone. You’ll be able to mix and match to meet the high standards of a house full of taste buds. Grabbing this mix of real ingredients that don’t spoil quickly and a couple essentials that can be restocked with a quick trip to the store makes sticking to these staples sustainable.
10 Versatile Pantry StaplesWe've got a list of 10 very versatile pantry staples to buy next time you're at the store. You'll have your go-to ingredients in the cabinet when you need to use them over and over.
GET THE LIST
2. Not all honey is created equal
Make sure to bring your cliff notes and snag honey that’s the real deal to get sweetness with nutritional benefits. Some honey bottles on the shelf are over-processed and void of nutrition or, worse, not just honey. Make sure you’re getting unadulterated honey with all the straight-from-the-hive benefits, just as the bees intended.
Honey is more than just an added flavor. Honey right out of the hive is naturally packed with nutrients like vitamin B, C, iron and calcium! Make sure your honey does too by learning more about how to recognize the real deal among imposters.
3. With 5 ingredients, make a different lunch for every day of the week
Five pantry staples to mix and match for balanced lunches on-the-go or at home in a pinch
Most people don’t have the foresight to meal prep for lunch, and at stomach-grumbling time—usually in meetings or after a messy kid moment—you’re trying to find time to escape to the nearest fast food drive-through. Not your proudest moment, but really, anything will do.
Choose real simple food to pack up the night before, or even on Sundays for the week ahead. Simple combos will quickly become your favorites for simple work and school mid-day breaks.
4. Save time during the week
No, you don’t need to spend all day Sunday chopping vegetables. No, you don’t have to eat the same thing all week for dinner. Meal prepping should make your life easier, not harder. There are quick and simple tips you’ll be thankful to know, and the time saved in the week will give you a big sigh of relief come mealtime when you’re lacking time between stepping through the front door and bedtime.
Learn how to take the first step, make multiple meals with the same ingredients, get the kids involved and multi task using this guide.
REAL & SIMPLE ways to prepare real food
PART TWOWe have all the ingredients but what to do with them and when? Explore ways to keep it simple in the kitchen using ingredients from your real food grocery list above.
1. Ditch processed sugar, for real
How and when to use honey instead of processed sugar
Breaking up with processed sugar can be hard. We get it. We know from experience the versatility of raw & unfiltered honey that make it an essential pantry staple to replace that boring, refined sugar. It’s easy to choose real with honey when you know all the facts like how it’s lower on the glycemic index than other sweeteners, so you can get the energy without a crash. Explore how to put your newfound knowledge to work with recipes and tips for using raw & unfiltered honey to bake and cook!
For the curious, check out 10 interesting facts about raw honey for more details on what to look for in the honey aisle, why your honey is crystalizing and raw honey’s shocking expiration date.
You’d be surprised how often honey can be used. For easy access, keep it on the counter with the cap down so you don’t have to wait to start dousing your favorite honey pairing. This golden goodness is your motivation to kick processed sugar for good. Sure, you can use it in your tea and coffee instead of dumping the processed stuff in, but it’s also perfect for simple baking recipes for those times you’re peer pressured by the kids or PTA.
2. Throw-together breakfasts
We’ve all heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Let’s make sure we’re 1) actually eating breakfast and 2) choosing real with our breakfasts. Check out these simple ideas you will wish you thought of yourself! These solutions will get you and yours out the door quickly, equipped for an action-packed day.
3. What’s in a balanced lunchbox?
We all have our favorite foods that we could eat every day in perpetuity. We may try to justify that chips and salsa is a balanced meal of vegetables (corn, tomatoes, onion), but we’ll leave the nutrition advice to our friend Kelly Jones, registered dietitian and nutritionist.
Kelly outlines the importance of feeding yourself and your kids well-balanced lunches to get through the day, powering your biggest dreams and most boring chores. She even offers a simple checklist to make sure you’re fueling in all the right ways!
Check the guide out here to get major mom points and feel good about how you’re setting your family up for success!
Feel guilty every time you hand over cheese balls to the kids after school? Check out our all-natural after school snack ideas to keep the kids playing until dinner time.
4. 6-ingredient dinners
Not only is it difficult to find time to cook, but when we do, gathering the right ingredients requires an extra trip to the store. While it’s impossible to be prepared, pantry stocked, 100% of the time, our real & simple grocery list will be a first step in keeping the right, real stuff on hand.
Grab the essentials and start cooking. You’ll be done before you know it! These 6 dinner recipes are so easy the kids can even lend a hand.
5. How to navigate picky eaters
The culture of parenting for nutrition success changes with each generation. As we’ve studied patterns over the years, it’s become clear making a big deal out of food is one reason for polar opinions of foods. Being force fed collard greens has similar effects on a child as restricting and making a big deal of brownies can. Both create associations with nutritious and not-so-nutritious foods that lead to aversions to real food and obsessions with processed.
Nutritionist, Kelly Jones, walks through her personal journey of being labeled a picky eater as a kid to defying that label as an adult. She outlines tips for adapting to the needs of a picky eater like preparing food differently and involving them in the process.
If there’s one big assumption we’ll make, it’s that everybody loves cheese. And thankfully, it has protein, calcium, B12 and other nutrients the body needs. Set out a cheese plate for come-and-go snacking for the whole family. Add raw honey for the perfect sweet/salty ratio and an added vitamin boost.
5-minute cheese plateEveryone loves cheese, and cheese plates can be used to entertain at fancy parties all the way to setting out for the kids' snack time during lunch. Containing only real, natural ingredients, let the cheese plate be the answer to all your problems.
GET THE RECIPE
REAL & SIMPLE ways to create long-term habits
PART THREEEasier said than done, right? Knowing the why behind the what makes it easier to make choosing real a sustainable habit for your family like learning how to avoid processed sugar and how to take time for yourself to refuel.
1. Avoid processed. Choose real.
It’s all about creating long-term habits.
It doesn’t take extreme dieting to change your ways for good. To create a sustainable game plan for your food choices, keep it simple by making realistic changes. Choose real. It’s as simple as that.
2. Regulating blood sugar for mood maintenance
Blood sugar is a tricky thing in a world where “carbs are bad.” Not having enough of the good sugars in your blood can make your body feel deprived and cause physiological issues that affect your daily life, like cause you to lose your cool-mom status when the tiny rulers of your house make just one too many demands.
Going too long without eating or eating poorly balanced meals and snacks can result in lower energy levels and slowed metabolism. Learn more and get 3 tips for keeping blood sugar spikes and lulls at bay from a registered dietitian here.
3. On-the-go snacking for the whole family
Forget pre-packaged and processed. Snacking real is integral for maintaining energy throughout the day (moms, us too!). Get a nutritionist’s perspective on proper snacking for lasting fuel and some bonus emergency snack ideas full of nutrients.
4. Choosing real food 101
The most simple tasks can seem impossible when you’re juggling a full calendar of tasks. It’s hard to prioritize the prep work for the store that will take 5 minutes when that 5 minutes could be spent finally getting ahead on laundry or simply taking some time to rest.
Check out this real & simple guide to properly planning with the end in mind by asking yourself: Will I thank myself tomorrow? The answer will be yes if you learn the best way for you to make a list, follow some basic shopping tips and learn how to properly read a label.
5. Advice from real moms
At Nature Nate’s Honey Co., we believe in keeping it honest and real. Our ever-growing, on-the-go lifestyles can easily make us the poster-children of busy. We love our families and own our to-do lists like a boss, yet often feel lost in how to take care of ourselves in the process. Whether a secret superhero dressed in yoga pants or a business suit, choosing real in your everyday life starts with choosing to love yourself.