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3 Ways to Harmonize Your Kitchen for Winter

healthy organized kitchen with a teapot
Photo by John-Mark Smith, Unsplash.

For a lot of folks that I work with, 'the kitchen' has become a source of stress and challenge. There's not enough time, meal times are demanding, or they're out of ideas and feel in a rut.

I put 'the kitchen' in quotes - because by this I include: food choices, dietary needs, grocery shopping, meal plans, family life, the noisy and confusing diet & nutrition world at large.

Without a little time to dig in and reset our life with food, we can get a little stuck in doing the same things, over and over. I'm posting this now to help you look at the season with new eyes and a look at refreshing your routines and kitchen for the season. Read on!


How we thrive with food changes seasonally. Winter is dry, darker and cold, and the foods naturally available to us in this northern climate are dense - quite literally (hello root veggies, grains & beans), and also nutritionally and energetically dense. Does it surprise you to read that winter is actually a time when our digestion can be its strongest and we build overall strength? There is a purpose to this winter madness. As we build up energy reserves in the winter season, we prepare for the energy of spring. The food choices we make or crave also help balance the cold & dry qualities of winter and optimize our body function.

Now let's talk about harmonizing and setting up our food so we can be nourished right now! Here are three steps you can take to make it all come together with ease.

1) Stock Up on the Best Foods for Winter

We can balance the dry, dark and cold qualities of winter with foods that are hydrating, oily, and warming. The neat thing is - the seasonal foods that are available to us are also what can work well for our bodies right now.

Stocking up on the best foods for the season is step one in eating more of them! Click the Winter Grocery Items to view the entire shopping list.

Winter Foods Shopping List

Beets Carrots Celery Kale Fresh ginger root Onions & garlic Potatoes Seaweed/sea vegetables Squash Sweet Potato Tomatoes (canned) Dense, sweet fruit: Apples, bananas, dates, oranges, pears and frozen raspberries Dried fruits Sour fruits like cranberry, grapefruit, pomegranate, lime and lemon (these stimulate saliva production & digestion) Pickles and olives Moist grains cooked with extra water, like brown rice or quinoa Rolled oats & oat flour Black beans Lentils Gluten free pastas (or any pasta, but I encourage you to try chickpea or quinoa pasta!) Butter and/or ghee Olive oil Other cold-pressed nut and seed oils A favourite nut and nut butter Almond flour Cow's milk and cream or dairy alternatives Yogurt Eggs Tahini (sesame seed butter) Warming spices like cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, chili powder, turmeric, paprika, chilies Pantry staples like raw honey, apple cider vinegar, other vinegars, cacao powder, maple syrup, molasses and sea salt Herbal teas, sweet and warming Fermented beverages like kombucha

You can also check out this recent post I wrote on Foods for Winter Wellness, including a simple sheet pan recipe for immune boosting chicken & veggies.

2) Honouring Winter Cravings

Honour my cravings?? This may surprise you unless you've worked with me - I'm a big advocate of listening to cravings. Cravings are messages that your body is sending you about what you truly need. We may need to practice understanding and interpreting them, but they are not wrong or bad, despite what diet culture wants us to believe.

Winter in particular is a time to seek out flavours of sweet, sour and salty - as these qualities generate moisture and digestive strength. You may also notice you crave rich cream, meat and dense protein, fats, and starchier foods and dishes. Try to follow these cravings back to a whole foods, home cooked version and enjoy them slowly, mindfully and thoroughly.

If you find your cravings seem confusing and seemingly insatiable, and you often turn to processed or 'junk' food, I invite you to book a free consultation with me (link takes you to a short questionnaire and I'll be in touch to book a call soon).

3) Your Personal Goals and Ensuring Lasting Impacts

Your personal goals for the year and these winter months must also be integrated into your kitchen setup. Going plant-based? Stock up stapes for 2-3 go-to recipes. Short on time? Use my template to make a meal plan and stock up for it. Try answering these questions:

My high priority health intention right now is ______________________________________.

It would help a lot if I cleared out ___________________________________ and stocked up on ____________________________________.

The value of taking a few hours to filter through and reset your food and plans to align with your personal goals will have lasting impacts on your ability to meet your intentions with greater ease. Building habit and routines is about setting yourself up for success, and then refreshing your system seasonally to make sure it's optimal for your needs and the seasons as they change.

Take the time to set your winter up for the next 6-8 weeks of winter conditions, and it will set you free and take care of you in return, right where it matters.

Create a Joyful, Nourishing Kitchen with me on January 29

If know that you want to dig deeper and set yourself up for feeling your best again this winter, and you know that working with me during a set time is what is going to get it done, check out my upcoming small group virtual program: Joyful (Virtual) Kitchen Clean Out and Reset

Customized to your needs, we're going to clear out clutter and restock with health-supporting foods that suit your goals. You'll learn about food choices, packaging and labels, and receive resources for choosing and restocking food in the future. This is so much more than a kitchen clean out - details here.

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