To be frank- eating right can feel overwhelming. We are drowning in information about what's good for you and what's not. One week coffee rocks, the next you shouldn't touch it with a 10ft pole… and don't even get me started on wine! I wish it was easier…. I want it to be easier.
I'm no expert, but I do know a thing or two about baking. My goal today is to share with you some simple ways to clean up your baked goods. The items in this list have stood the test of time and have become some of my non-negotiables.
Eating nutritiously can start with simple swaps for better alternatives to what you may be using.
Organic: First and foremost, when possible- choose organic. It may not be 100% perfect but at least there are strict standards for organic certification. All our suppliers are certified, as are we, so you can trust that all our ingredients are as clean as possible.
Unrefined salt. Like flour- not all salt is created equal. Did you know all salt is sea salt? We use Redmond Real Salt that comes from underground mines in Utah. Once there were sea beds there and this is the result of it drying out over the years. This salt deposit is protected from harmful pollutants. The salt mined from this deposit contains 60+ trace minerals and is unrefined and all natural- exactly the way nature intended it to be. Another reason we love Redmond Real Salt is because it is mined in the USA giving this reputable company complete control of the process from their mine to our mill.
Sure, there might be an occasional easily broken up clump but I would rather have that than anti-caking agents in my salt. It’s available online or in specialty grocery stores.
Unrefined Sugar: Rather than refined sugar, reach for unrefined. Again, minimally processed. Refined and unrefined sugars start in the same place but the production process looks a little different. Refined sugars have any impurities removed through multiple cycles. The naturally found molasses in sugar is removed, whitening the end results.
Molasses remains in unrefined sugars rather than being taken out. Molasses is a good source of iron, potassium, and magnesium. If nature wanted molasses in sugar- who are we to be taking it out???
These are some of the things unrefined sugar might be called: turbinado, demerara, evaporated cane juice, dried cane syrup, dehydrated cane juice, less processed cane sugar, washed sugar, natural cane sugar, and single-crystallization sugar. Whew, that’s a lot to remember.
Organic Powdered Sugar: I know immediately after one bite if I’m eating organic powdered sugar or non-organic. Organic powdered sugar flies high above more processed powdered sugars. It has a flavor that’s above and beyond. I’m sometimes tempted to eat it with a spoon… I don't… but could!!
Eggs: This can be quite confusing but there are a few things I look out for:
Free-range: allowed access to outside although they may not go out.
Pasture-raised - chickens spend at least some of their days outside.
Organic- skip the hormones, synthetic fertilizers, animal byproducts, or many of the other nasty ingredients fed to the chicken that laid a non-organic egg…sticking to organic is always a safer bet. It’s no surprise that when you feed and treat the chickens well, they lay more nutritious eggs.
Vanilla: Imitation vs real… there isn't even a competition in my head. Real vanilla wins every time. Imitation vanilla comes from artificial wood byproducts that may contain chemicals. It often has a harsh flavor. I find you need twice as much imitation to approach the amount in pure vanilla and I can always tell the difference.
Organic, Heritage Flour: If you're a customer of ours, you likely already know this but the wheat used to make flour and the production process makes a MASSIVE difference. Our heritage wheat is more digestible, minimally processed, retains maximum flavor and nutrition, is 100% organic, and creates lighter and loftier baked goods.
Whole Milk: Highest in omega 3 fatty acids, the good kind. Though it’s still important to moderate your saturated fat intake if you’re living with health conditions like high cholesterol or heart disease, studies are now showing that moderate saturated fat consumption does not directly increase the risk of heart disease in otherwise healthy individuals. Additionally, certain foods that contain saturated fat may affect heart health differently (Healthline).
There are more but this covers a lot of the main ingredients commonly found in recipes. Do you have any specific ingredients that are non-negotiable for you? Reply and let us know or comment on the bottom of this blog post to join others in this conversation!
All for now,