Is it weird to have a crush on a well-stocked refrigerator? Not in our world. We love exploring the real-life kitchen situations of wellness pros we admire, and the one below is as inspiring as any – both because of the contents and the backstory.
Integrative and functional nutritionist, Jennie Miremadi wasn’t always the whole food wonder-woman she is now. Overcoming a personal struggle with self-image and weight taught her the importance of listening to her body’s needs and fueling up with natural foods. It also helped her cultivate a strong sense of balance she’s now able to share with clients – and us!
We’re peeking though the fridge of this functional nutritionist slash self-love inspo source, and modeling our next grocery list after it. Read on for easy recipes, plant-y pantry staples and Jennie’s tips for dinner party perfection…
ALWAYS IN MY FRIDGE:
Coconut yogurt is one of my favorite snacks. I love CoYo and New Earth Superfoods brands.
Nuts are another favorite snack. I also add them to my salads, make nut milks with them and grind them up and bake with them. Because nuts can go rancid pretty easily, I store them in my fridge.
I use nut milks and chia seeds in my smoothies and chia seed puddings.
The lemons, limes, greens and avocados are perfect for salads, which is what I usually eat for lunch, and sometimes for dinner.
RECIPE STAPLES ALWAYS ON HAND:
Most of my recipes have at least a few of these ingredients: coconut milk, extra-virgin olive oil, coconut oil, balsamic vinegar, apple cider vinegar, lemons, limes, tahini paste, nutritional yeast, Himalayan pink salt, organic chicken broth, fresh herbs, avocado, raw cacao, chia seeds, nuts, cinnamon and stevia.
Raw, sprouted almonds, pecans, walnuts and pumpkin seeds. Years ago, I tried sprouted nuts and seeds for the first time at the Hollywood Farmer’s Market and I was blown away by how good they were. Now if I’m having nuts or seeds as a snack, I always have the sprouted kind.
Wild Alaskan salmon, wild sole, organic, grass-fed buffalo and organic, free-range turkey and chicken. My go-to for chicken is an organic rotisserie chicken, which I buy pre-cooked. I bring it home, shred it, and then throw it in salads and wraps. It makes preparing meals so easy!
My go-to non-dairy staples are coconut milk, coconut cream and coconut yogurt. I also love making my own nut milks; hazelnut milk is my absolute favorite.
MUST-HAVE PANTRY ITEMS:
Extra-virgin olive oil, coconut oil, balsamic vinegar, apple cider vinegar, nutritional yeast, canned organic, coconut milk (BPA-free, gum-free), a variety of vegan protein powders, Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides, Vital Choice canned wild Alaskan sockeye salmon, Himalayan pink salt, black pepper and lots of different spices.
SWEETS + OTHER INDULGENCES:
If I’m going to do sweets, I generally make my own dairy-free, gluten-free treats and use stevia as a sweetener. Some of my favorites are my spicy cinnamon hot cocoa, chocolate almond butter cups, and my no-bake vegan chocolate mint cream pie!
I eat a healthy diet about 95% of the time, but life is about balance and I believe that the occasional indulgence is totally okay and a normal part of life! Instead of looking at a particular food as good or bad, I try to think about how something is going to make me feel when I eat it. Most of the time, I would much rather eat the food that is going to make me feel well. But there are occasions when I know something might not make me feel my best, but I decide to eat it anyway because I know it’s going to be delicious and I’m really going to enjoy it. This normally happens if I’m eating at an amazing restaurant and there is something special on the menu that I want to try. Or if I go to a restaurant that is known for a particular food, like pizza, I don’t get the salad… I have the pizza!
FAVE VEGGIE + WHAT I MAKE WITH IT:
Cauliflower is my favorite vegetable! It’s full of nutrients, super filling and tastes delicious. Some of my favorite go-to cauliflower recipes are my vegetable chicken cauliflower fried rice, mushroom cauliflower risotto, warm roasted cauliflower salad, and creamy cauliflower soup with sautéed shiitake mushrooms.
SIMPLE GO-TO RECIPE:
For dinner, I’ll quickly steam some Brussels sprouts, broccoli, or whatever other vegetables I have on hand. When the veggies are done, I drizzle extra-virgin olive oil on top, and sprinkle some Himalayan pink salt and black pepper on them as well. This is so quick and easy and in no time I have a delicious and healthy vegetable side.
INGREDIENT THAT MAKES EVERYTHING BETTER:
FOR LAST-MINUTE ENTERTAINING:
My favorite way to entertain is an intimate dinner party with about six to eight people, good music, delicious food, lots of candles, beautiful place settings and, most importantly, great company. When it comes to the food, I try to keep it simple. For a last-minute winter dinner party, I might sauté wild sole with lemon and olive oil, roast asparagus, and make my cauliflower mushroom risotto. For dessert, I might serve my roasted dates with thyme, sage and rosemary clarified butter. I don’t drink alcohol very often, but I always serve it when I have a dinner party. When I do drink, my go-to is champagne – I love the taste and I can always think of a reason to celebrate! So, there would likely be some champagne on the table. And, I would probably also serve a few different California wines that worked well with the fish. I’m not great at pairing wine with food, so I’d probably get someone to help me with that!
BEST SHOPPING TIPS:
Before you go to the grocery store, make a list of everything that you need. This will help you get organized, avoid forgetting anything and prevent you from coming home with food items that you don’t need.
BEST LABEL-READING TIP:
Make sure that each ingredient on the label is a real, whole-food item. If you can’t pronounce an ingredient or don’t know what it is, don’t buy it. Also, watch out for hidden sugar. Just because something is organic, dairy-free or gluten-free, doesn’t mean that it isn’t loaded with sugar!
FAVORITE PLACES TO SHOP:
I’m so lucky to live in Los Angeles where there are healthy food options everywhere. Because there are so many great choices, I tend to shop at several different places because each one has different things that I like. I usually go to Erewhon for their prepared foods, salad bar, grass-fed buffalo and organic rotisserie chicken. I shop at Lassen’s and Whole Foods for their fruits, vegetables, poultry and most of my pantry and recipe staples. I have a Farmer’s Market very close to my house, so I’ll generally walk over there on Sundays to pick up whatever fresh herbs and seasonal fruits and vegetables look good. I’ve recently started buying all of my fish online through Vital Choice. I shop at Trader Joe’s for some of their organic vegetables, especially their frozen, organic cauliflower rice – I stock up on it because Trader Joe’s always runs out so quickly!
Fruits and vegetables are the best bargain. You can buy so many and do so much with them for such a low cost!
CRAZIEST THING I BUY:
My onion goggles. I look silly, but it’s worth it! My eyes never hurt when I chop onions!
WHAT'S IN MY SHOPPING BAG:
My shopping bag is pretty basic – mostly fruits and vegetables, nuts, seeds, gluten-free grains and some animal protein. Sometimes my bag also has some already prepared or packaged foods in it, but all of the ingredients in those prepared or packaged foods are still real ingredients. I also buy some other non-food items when I’m out shopping. So you might find some EO lavender hand spray or Dr. Bronner’s Hemp Almond Pure-Castile Soap in my bag too.