When searching the isles for fridge food, look for short ingredient lists and as few numbers as possible (The Chemical Maze is a good book to help decipher numbers on packaging). Always buy FULL FAT products, anything that says 'Fat Free' has a whole lot of added sugar! Once you figure out the products that work for you, supermarket shopping becomes a very quick and easy trip. We shop at Countdown - mainly because it is close and I am generally shopping with kids in tow - so a quick trip is a good trip!!
In the Fridge:
- Milk: Anchor Silver Top - Full cream unhomongenised, I use this when my raw milk supplier isn't available. It is cheaper than the same milk by Meadow Fresh. Or buy silver top or blue top, always full fat!
- Bacon: Hendersons - dry cured, preservative free and they use free-range pigs. Cheapest place to buy Hendersons is Pank n Save - bigger packets for same price as Countdown.
- Cream: Fresha Valley - I buy a two litre from the markets for $6
- Parmesan Cheese: Mainland - It is often on special, has a nice short ingredient list and I really like the flavour.
Haloumi: The Collective Dairy - Handmade, preservative free and fries up really nicely!
- Natural Yoghurt: Cyclops Organic Thick and Creamy (Full Fat) - This has a beautiful thick, creamy consistency - it is delicious! Bio Farm Acidophilus Organic yoghurt also has a good ingredient list but is really runny and I find it a bit 'cheesy' tasting. The cheapest option is Yoplait Original Unsweetened, nice consistency and flavour with a reasonable ingredients list. The Collective Dairy also does a good natural yoghurt. Make sure you always buy full fat otherwise it has a lot of added sugar!
- Butter: Mainland - when it is on special otherwise Anchor
- Canterbury Biltong Bier Sticks: These are preservative free and the kids love them in their lunches.
- Hard Cheese: Mainland or Anchor depending what is on special and full fat varieties - usually Colby
- Cream Cheese: Philadelphia - This has the best ingredient list by far.
- Mustard: Macro Organic - by far the best ingredient list, I have whole seed and dijon.
- Eggs: Free Range - definitely the best (chickens need sunlight and grass/bugs/worms to get a full nutrient profile in their eggs) - they are however a lot more expensive. We have our own chickens.
- Basil Pesto: Homemade - Used for adding to mince for flavour, putting on crackers, dressing on salad, keeps for about 2 weeks. Recipe here
- Aioli: Homemade - Used as dressing, dip for kumara chips, spreading on burritos, add some extra oil and use as coleslaw dressing. Super easy to make and lasts for about 1 week in the fridge. Recipe here
- Grain-free Crackers: Homemade - these are a delicious snack and keep really well in a container the fridge - at least 4weeks. Recipe here
- Seasonal Fruit and Veggies: Sourced from local farmers market, in-season and spray free if available.
- Baking: Most wheat-free baking will keep a lot better in the fridge, especially if it contains coconut flour - tends to absorb moisture and will spoil quickly if kept in the pantry.
In the Freezer:
Berries: Trader Toms Organic or Oob - These are a bit more expensive than the standard berries but they are really nice!
- Meat: The great thing about living in NZ is that our Beef and Lamb is grass fed and our fish is reasonably fresh (very fresh if getting it form the markets). However the commercial chicken and pork is stall fed inside on grain. When buying Chicken and Pork try to get the free-range meat, it makes a big difference to the quality of the meat and fat. I try to stock up when it is on special. You can get Macro Free-range Chicken or Brinks Chicken and Freedom Farms Pork. If your budget won't stretch to free range meat try and make the main meat in your diet beef, lamb and fish with a small amount of chicken and pork when you want a change.
- Sausages: Gluten Free, Preservative Free - ask your local butcher if they do them - I get mine from Tikipunga Wholesale Meats or Omak.
- Apple Puree: Home made stewed apples - frozen in 2 cup quantities or silicon muffin trays and then stored in a bag. Used for baby and baking.
- Pumpkin Puree: Home made - frozen in silicon muffin trays and then stored in a bag. Used for baby and baking.
- Chicken Stock: Homemade - frozen in 1-2 cup quantities, Campbells Real Chicken Stock is a good supermarket option.
- Left-over Gravy: Frozen in small quantities - used to add to baby food and for adding flavour to cooking.
- Ice-cream: Homemade - recipe here
- Ground Flaxseed (Linseed): I use this a lot in my baking, really high in fibre and low carb. However it goes rancid fast once ground, so I grind it up and put it in the freezer - doesn't stick together so this works really well.
- Baking: Cut into lunch-box-sized pieces for quick and easy lunch options