Most days many of us come home and struggle to find something to make for our next meal. If you add cancer treatments to the mix, what seems to be a hard task already suddenly becomes daunting. We don’t always make the best food choices when we are hungry either since the quickest and easiest foods tend to not be the healthiest. But what if we could better prepare by being surrounded by quick and easy foods that are better for us? I like to refer to this as our “food environment.” Almost seems to good to be true right?

Well let me try to make it a little easier for you! I’m going to share with you some of my favorite quick and easy to prepare store purchases. I keep most of these foods in my house as staples and it really does make a huge difference in my daily eating habits. You may not have all of these foods available to you, but you can start with what is available at your local grocery store. Here’s what I like to stock up on…

  • Plain Greek yogurt — I add cinnamon or coconut flakes with a fresh fruit and a dash of vanilla or coconut extract for sweetness
  • Cottage cheese — Try adding pineapple or other favorite fruit
  • Nuts or seeds — in prepackaged bags or in the bulk section at the store
  • Cliff bars — great for on the go snacks
  • Kind bars — great for on the go snacks
  • Hummus with whole grain pita bread or carrots and celery sticks
  • Bag of apples (they keep for a while in your fridge)
  • Frozen vegetables or steamers — We use these in stir fry’s a lot at home
  • Frozen Fish — this is quick and easy to heat up in the oven
  • Sliced veggies — pair with cheese, hummus, or peanut butter
  • String cheese — great snack option
  • Hard boiled eggs (can buy pre-hardboiled or you can boil them at home)
  • Oatmeal (can buy instant or longer cooking options) — add your favorite toppings like nuts, seeds, dried or fresh fruit, coconut flakes, cinnamon, etc.
  • Quinoa — this cooks quite quickly and is loaded with protein
  • Frozen edamame — great high protein snack
  • Amy’s frozen burritos
  • Tempeh — great in stirfrys or rice bowls
  • Grape leaves in a can — usually get from Trader Joes (they are filled with rice)
  • Ezekiel Sprouted Grain bread (usually found in the freezer section and loaded with fiber)
  • Peanut or almond butter — atop toast, crackers, or veggies
  • Whole wheat pasta
  • Canned beans
  • Brown rice
  • Fresh Fruit or frozen fruit

My list often changes depending on season or what store I’m shopping at. Think about some of your favorite local options and create a list so next time you are at the store shopping is easier. You list could also change depending on what side effects you may be experiencing with treatment. For example, you might want completely different foods than usual if you have taste changes or mouth sores. Or if you’ve recently made some changes to your diet to promote healthier eating then your tastes can change if you cut out certain foods from your diet. The trick is that it doesn’t have to be complicated or time consuming to create a healthy eating environment in your home! Cheers.

This post originally appeared on Survivors’ Table. It is republished with permission.