Making healthy eating choices is more difficult than ever.
The concerned shopper faces many challenges including genetically engineered ingredients, preservatives, artificial colors, flavors, and sweeteners, to name a few.
Busy lifestyles take a toll on the amount of time people have to cook for themselves and their families.
Convenience items, restaurants, and take-out have become the norm but there is still time for cooking from scratch, especially with these simple foods.
1. Pizza Dough
Just do it! Making your own pizza dough is easy and can lend a real sense of accomplishment when you have your finished product. Like most uncomplicated food, it is vastly cheaper than buying a pre-made crust or ordering from a pizza place. The only special ingredient necessary is dry yeast which is readily available in grocery stores. Pizza dough is actually just bread and can be used to make bread sticks or loaves. There are many solid recipes available online and once you have learned how to make pizza dough, you are really just a step away from making artisan bread.
Luckily, popcorn is not yet genetically modified. However, there is no shortage of information regarding the dangers of microwave popcorn. The three most harmful chemicals are Diacetyl (butter flavor), Tertiary butylhydroquinone or TBHQ (chemical preservative), and Perfluorooctanoic acid or PFOA (chemical in the microwave bag). These are known carcinogens that combine to make microwave popcorn one of the worst foods you can eat.
Popping your own corn is so easy that there is no reason not to do it. You don’t need a fancy air popper, just a pot with a lid. Simply put a few tablespoons of high heat oil like Safflower or Organic Canola and pour in enough kernels to cover the bottom of the pan in one layer. Put on medium to low heat and cover. The popcorn will be done in a few minutes and can be topped with melted butter, coconut oil, olive oil, parmesan cheese, brewers yeast, or really whatever you like.
3. Salad Dressing
Salad dressings are filled with trans fat, GMO’s, high fructose corn syrup, and artificial flavors. It seems a shame to load up on those kinds of ingredients while eating a healthful salad. Salad dressing is easy to make. There are many delicious options but starting with oil and vinegar recipes are a common sense choice. With just those two primary ingredients, food purveyors have made a fortune.
4. Potato Wedges
Of all food to make at home, potato wedges or french fries are a no brainer. You are taking a whole food, an unprocessed potato, and cooking it fresh. All that is required is peeling (if you like), slicing into rustic strips, tossing in a light coating of olive oil and salt, and baking at a 400 degrees until golden brown. Voila, it’s that easy!
Making homemade mayonnaise may sound intimidating but it really isn’t. The benefit of mastering this simple ingredient is that you can control the oil, choosing healthful alternatives to hydrogenated varieties.
Start small and empower yourself to becoming free of the commercial food chain. There is nothing more gratifying than discovering that you can learn to eat without all the packaging and processing. These 5 popular foods give a look at what can be done quickly and affordably at home and provide a foundation to build upon.
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