We have officially been at Sugar Water Manor for eight months now. I have spent day after day building the gardens, planting, weeding, harvesting, unpacking (we are still not done), caring for animals and raising animals from young. We have learned so much, but I know our education will never end.

sunset on the farm with the garden

Over these months, our focus has been on the outside and the farm, itself. Then, there was the whole “we had no air conditioning” issue, which was just recently fixed. We are under construction and about to start a kitchen re-model. Crazy, I know.

Not to mention the work on the two lodge houses and the rest of the property. All of this while we have both still been working. And the closest market that carries most of the products we use is more than 3 hours away! We have been settling for products we normally wouldn’t have in our house and having many things shipped. But, there is no better time than the present to get back to the basics in the kitchen.

Tomorrow we will clean out the kitchen and make a run to the food pantry. Tomorrow we will begin to use up what is in the refrigerator and freezer and start fresh with all whole ingredients. Although we have still been eating well, we have taken short cuts we would rather not.

veggies from the garden

So, I thought I would share our back to the basics in the kitchen plan. Just one note…Due to the construction and lack of air conditioning, I was not able to preserve any of our garden goods to take us into winter, so many items will have to be bought for this year.

Getting Back to the Basics in the Kitchen Plan

  • Empty out all cabinets and remove all food items that are processed or not organic. So as to not go to waste, I will make a donation to the food pantry.
  • Go through spices and organize and give away those we no longer use.
  • Inventory the root cellar, so we know exactly what we have to use.
  • Find a source for raw goat milk to make yogurt.
  • Start to work through freezer.
  • Make a list of whole ingredients we need to stock the kitchen.
  • Source all the ingredients from above.
  • Start to preserve the rest of the harvest.
  • Use what is left to make a meal plan for the next two weeks.
  • Make all the items needed to have on hand like granola, bread, bars, yogurt, bone broth, dressings and more.

Overwhelmed? You bet I am. But, we used to live this way all the time and it is time to get back to old habits. It is time to make my home even more healthy. So, yes, the list is long and time is involved in the preparations. I am frustrated I strayed, but I did so out of my own decisions. Which means it is my responsibility to get back to doing what we should be.

eating healthy and local

Here’s what my back to basics in the kitchen week will look like…

  • Monday – Empty cabinets and do our meal plan.
  • Tuesday – Harvest and preserve, make bread, take inventory.
  • Wednesday – Source all we need to get started, organize, make granola.
  • Thursday – Food Pantry run with these items and extra from harvest.
  • Friday – Spend time prepping all that is needed, like dressings to make everyday easier.

Coming back from ShiftCon this week has introduced me to many new brands and re-introduced me to others that I need back in our home. It brought me energy being around inspirational people who live like we do with the understanding that life changes and sometimes you have to change with it. Here are four brands that will make their way back into or for the first time in my kitchen.

  1. Lotus Foods – I have literally not bought rice or noodles since we left Omaha. I totally need to try so many of the new products from Lotus.
  2. Bison – Have you enjoyed Bison yet? I have not had it in a long time. I am looking forward to bringing it back into out kitchen for so many reasons. Besides the taste, it is leaner than beef and packed full of protein. I love the grazing practices used that help out the eco-system.
  3. ZEGO OATS – With double the protein, I am adding organic and super clean ZEGO oats into our kitchen. The taste is delicious and I know exactly what we are getting with them. Plus, they make super yummy overnight oats.
  4. Numi Daily Super Shots – Numi has long been a favorite tea in our home. While I was at ShiftCon, I discovered these and OMG they are awesome. I especially love the Mind Tonic made with cocoa, lion’s mane, and reishi mushrooms. I have had two so far, and I have to say, they have worked for me.

back to kitchen basics with healthy eating

We are so excited to get back to the basics in our kitchen and restart our journey to a healthier lifestyle. The next few weeks will be a lot of work, but the outcome is so worth it. Stay tuned…

Have you ever completely cut out processed foods from your diet?

What products do you like to use when making your kitchen healthier?