Proper preparation is always a good idea. That’s especially true when you start something super important! Today I’m showing you how to get your kitchen ready for the GAPS diet.
How to get your kitchen ready for the GAPS diet
Getting started with the GAPS diet (and more importantly, sticking with it!) is so much more doable when your kitchen is ready.
What to get rid of
That’s right! The first step in getting your kitchen ready for the GAPS diet is to get rid of things you shouldn’t be using.
Dr. Natasha recommends avoiding toxins as much as possible. Plastics contain a lot of harmful chemicals. I avoid using plastic kitchenware, such as utensils, storage containers, and dishes. Nonstick coated cookware is another thing I definitely avoid using.
I also find it helpful to get rid of the foods I won’t be eating while on GAPS. If my kitchen is well stocked with only the foods I should be eating, I’ll be a lot less likely to cheat and eat things I’m supposed to be avoiding.
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Essential kitchen equipment to get your kitchen ready for the GAPS diet
Now let’s start gathering everything we will need to have on hand to get ready for the GAPS diet. Let’s start with kitchen equipment.
- Stockpot – The GAPS diet involves a lot of stock and broth. I show how to make meat stock here. Since you’ll make this on a regular basis, you’ll want to have the proper pot for making it. Bigger is better. That way, you can make big batches less often, and keep them in the fridge and freezer, ready to use. Make sure it’s stainless steel.
- Cooking utensils – Like I mentioned before, I avoid using plastic cooking utensils. Some good stainless steel and wooden ones will work nicely. And, you won’t have to worry about toxins in your food from plastics. Some essential ones are a ladle, stirring spoon, spatula, and a metal strainer.
- Glass bakeware – Some glass baking pans are really handy. You’ll use these for casseroles, desserts, and so much more. I find glass to be a very safe cooking material.
- Cast iron pan – I love cast iron! When it is properly seasoned, it’s just like cooking on a nonstick coated pan, minus the toxic chemicals. A large cast iron skillet is perfect for all sorts of cooking, and it can also go in the oven.
- Stainless steel cookware – You’ll want a pot for cooking soups, and a smaller saucepan is also good to have. Make sure these are stainless steel as well.
- Glass food storage containers – Again, I avoid plastic. I love these glass food storage containers with snap on lids. They’re very secure, stackable, and freezer safe.
- Wide mouth mason jars – Mason jars are a real food and GAPS cooking essential. I use them all the time for storing broth and soups, fermented foods, homemade condiments, and so much more! Wide mouth is easiest to use.
- Crockpot – These are wonderful for easy meal prep, as well as making broth and stock. I like a nice large crockpot.
- Yogurt maker – You can get a stand alone yogurt maker, like I have, or you can also use an Instant Pot to make yogurt. And instant pot isn’t essential, but it can be very handy to have. So if you want to invest in one, you’ll have a yogurt maker in the Instant Pot.
- Juicer – You’ll be making fresh juice on the GAPS diet. I really like this juicer.
- Blender – You can totally get by with an inexpensive blender, but a really nice blender does make life easier. I’ve had a Blendtec for years, and I love it! You can use it for so many different food processing needs.
- I definitely recommend making sure you have your own copy of Gut and Psychology Syndrome on hand as well!
Optional kitchen equipment
There are other kitchen gadgets that are nice to have, such as a food processor, cast iron griddle, and ice cream maker, but they aren’t essential. If you end up wanting to invest in them down the road, they do make life easier. But, for getting started, the list above contains everything you really need.
Eat well on the GAPS diet
Sourcing high quality foods is so important. I want to give my body all the nutrients it needs. Local farms are best, but health food stores can be good options as well. I get a lot of our organic foods from Azure Standard. They have very high quality foods and lots of bulk options for good prices.
Find local farms by searching on Craigslist, or through your local Weston A. Price chapter. Find a local chapter here.
Essential GAPS diet foods
Variety is important. As you progress through the GAPS diet, Dr. Natasha recommends making sure you’re eating a wide array of foods. But to get started, here are the essential foods you’ll want to make sure you have on hand. This also works as a good list of staples to keep available at all times.
- Pasture raised, organic meats and bones – To get the most nutrition for your money, Dr. Natasha recommends sticking with things like whole chickens and ground meats. You’ll also be using soup bones and organ meats. The most important thing is that they’re sourced well, from organic, pasture raised animals. Dr. Natasha says this will ensure the highest nutrient content, and reduce the toxic load on your body.
- Pasture raised, organic eggs – You’ll be eating a lot of them on the GAPS diet. Dr. Natasha says eggs are full of nutrition.
- Healthy fats – Pasture raised, organic tallow, lard, and duck fat are all good choices for in the beginning, as they agree with most people right away. Butter from pasture raised cows is also important for making ghee, and later for eating just as butter. Coconut oil and olive oil are also good to have.
- Organic produce – Variety is really important long term. But, these staples you’ll want to have on hand to start with, and on a regular basis. Onions, garlic, carrots, celery, summer squash, and apples. With those, you’ll be able to make so many nourishing dishes.
- High quality salt – Celtic sea salt or pink Himalayan salt are good choices, and these are rich in important minerals.
- Pepper corns – You’ll use these for making stock and broth, and grinding them is the tastiest way to have pepper to season food, too.
- Fermented foods – These take some time to ferment, so it’s a good idea to make them well before you plan to start the GAPS diet. The very best fermented food to start with is homemade sauerkraut, which I show how to make here. Depending on your body, you’ll need some fermented dairy products at some point as well. Some people start with yogurt right away, and some do better with sour cream. Still others have to wait longer to introduce dairy. In any case, you’ll want to at least start thinking about getting some homemade yogurt started. I show how to make yogurt from raw milk here.
- Organic nut butter – This is nice to have for making snacks and treats.
- Tea herbs – You’ll need fresh ginger root, mint leaves, and chamomile can be nice to have. I show how to make the GAPS diet tea here.
- Fresh herbs – These really enhance cooking. You can buy them at the store, but if you grow them yourself, that’s even better!
- Grain free flours – The best option is homemade almond flour from soaked or sprouted almonds. You can buy almond flour also, but it goes rancid easily.
Other GAPS legal foods
Of course, you’ll be adding many foods to this list as you progress through the GAPS diet. But these are the essential foods to have on hand before you start.
I have a handy printable checklist that includes everything I’ve listed here, and you can grab that below. Keep it handy as you go through your kitchen, and as you shop!
GAPS intro diet for toddlers
Get my guide on how to start the GAPS intro diet here. In it, l walk you through how to start the GAPS introduction diet.
If you’re helping a child start the GAPS diet, you’ll definitely want to check out my guide on the GAPS intro diet for toddlers. I share all of my experience with getting toddlers started eating GAPS foods, enjoying meat stock, and more.
How to Get Your Kitchen Ready for the GAPS Diet Video
More GAPS Diet resources
The GAPS diet for dummies series:
Is your kitchen ready to start the GAPS diet?
What changes do you need to make? Share in the comments below!
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Looking for a GAPS intro meal plan?
GAPS to Go is a 30 day meal plan for the GAPS introduction diet that tells you what to eat each day, with complete cooking instructions, and guidance on when to move to each intro diet stage. Check out GAPS to Go here.
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