Topic 1 Simple is best

You don’t have to be an expert chef to cook at home. As you will see in another unit the important thing is planning. Planning menus allows us to save time because it is decided what to cook. Planning also helps us to know what to buy and to always have some basic foods at home with which to prepare simple dishes. These foods will depend on the tastes and the type of healthy diet followed.

The following table shows ingredients that it is advisable to have at home on a regular basis.


  • Salt and spices
  • Dried vegetables (garlic, onions, etc.)
  • Jars of cooked vegetables
  • Crushed natural tomato
  • Brown rice
  • Wholemeal pasta
  • Flours
  • Dried pulses
  • Nuts (roasted or natural, unsalted)
  • Oils of vegetable origin
  • Vinegars


  • Milk or vegetable drinks
  • Eggs
  • Natural yoghurt
  • Cheese
  • Lemon
  • Tofu


  • Broths
  • Homemade preparations (pesto sauce, tomato sauce, sofrito...)
  • Vegetables (peas, spinach...)

Nowadays there are hundreds of recipe books and thousands of sites on the internet and social networks where recipes are offered. From a health point of view it is enough to have a simple reference, such as the Harvard plate. To assess the environmental impact we should give more prominence to plant-based foods, as well as local and seasonal products, and if they are organic products.

Taking all this into account, there are a series of questions that can help us to always answer these 4 questions:

To follow the recommendations of Harvard plate

To follow healthy cooking techniques

Vegetables, local and seasonal, as protagonists of the dish.

Eat raw, at least once a day (salads, gazpacho, smoothies).

Use culinary techniques that best preserve their nutrients

Foods that provide us with proteins, preferably of vegetable origin.

Boil pulses and then cook them for salads, and in combination with vegetables and cereals.

Cereals, whole grains, at least once a day

For breakfast, with yogurt and fruit are ideal

When boiled, they are ideal to combine with vegetables, fruits, meat or fish.

Seasonal fruits, which are our great source of vitamins and other nutrients.

Fruits can be consumed all day long, either on their own or when preparing different dishes such as salads.