25 Foods You Won't Find In My Kitchen

25 Foods You Won’t Find in My Kitchen + Daily vlog

For today’s #livinginspiralized feature, I wanted to talk about the foods you won’t find in my...

25 Foods You Won't Find in My Kitchen + Daily vlog

For today’s #livinginspiralized feature, I wanted to talk about the foods you won’t find in my home, since I spend a lot of time talking about the foods that I DO eat.

I’ve built a list of foods that I never, ever keep in my kitchen. While, sure, I will go out and have some chocolate cake for dessert, I would never keep those ingredients in my home (ie sugar and butter), because I don’t cook with them ever and also, who wants that temptation in their home?

ALSO, I’m sharing my first ever daily vlog. I am doing an “experiment” and filming everything I do this week, out of curiosity to see what the footage shows! You’ll see.

What I Ate Today, February 28, 2017



I made avocado toast on Ezekial bread with some freshly squeezed lemon, salt, and pepper. The avocado was just about to go bad, so it’s a little brown. I served it with two hard-boiled eggs and dijon mustard.


If you missed my Instagram post, I’ve been making raw nut mixes on the weekends to last me all week. This time, I bought organic raisins to add a little something extra. I also bought these gorgeous figs over the weekend! I snacked on this bag all day, it was about a full cup of nuts!


Yesterday we filmed new cooking videos, so I have so many leftovers and am trying to be conscious of making sure nothing goes to waste! I had the same collard green wrap today as I did yesterday, but forgot to take a picture of it, so here’s a picture of it (from yesterday, but it’s the same exact thing!) I stuff a collard green with hummus, avocado, onion, carrots, cucumber, zucchini noodles, and mustard. It’s the best!


I came from a meeting in the city around 4:40pm and I have my standing weekly Spanish lesson at 5pm, so I wanted something to give me a boost to last through the end of the day, while I did my Spanish homework. I was craving a smoothie this morning, but was too lazy to grab the ingredients for it, so I picked them on my way home from the city. The smoothie has ice, almond milk, kale, almond butter, frozen bananas, blueberries, and a serving of collagen (this is the brand I use/love.)


Lu requested my Bikini Bolognese with Zucchini Noodles from my first cookbook for dinner tonight. Halfway through me cooking dinner, he called and said he had to stay out for dinner with clients. Womp, womp. More for me! This dish is so easy to throw together on a weeknight!

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset


A lovely lady named Nikki founded P.S. Snacks, based out of Washington, D.C. She reached out to me as a fellow Wake Forest graduate/girl-boss and sent me some of her vegan, gluten-free, chickpea-based cookie dough and ever since, I’ve been addicted! It’s the perfect post-dinner indulgence, and it’s made with real ingredients – and tastes amazing. She just launched on Jet.com, so you can order it there – but just a warning, it sells out quickly!! I had about 1/4 cup of this deliciousness for dessert and finished my last tub.

Foods You Won’t Find in My Home

There are certain food items that you will never find in my home. My kitchen is always stocked with the healthiest of foods, so that the healthy choice is the ONLY choice. That’s key to living a healthy lifestyle – making the choices easy, convenient, and eliminating ALL temptation.

Now, I still treat myself when I go out, but when I’m snacking and cooking at home, it’s all clean.

  1. White rice
  2. White flour
  3. White bread
  4. Dairy milks & cream: we use almond and cashew milk
  5. Nutella
  6. Sugar other than coconut sugar
  7. Butter
  8. Margarine
  9. Processed pre-made pastries & cookies
  10. Anything labeled “sugar free” or “fat free”
  11. Candy
  12. Processed snacks: all of our snacks are clean-eating friendly (for example, you won’t find Lay’s or Doritos in our pantry, but you may find Garden of Eatin’s Red Hot Blues)
  13. Vegetable oil
  14. Sugary cereals: no Lucky Charms in this house. This is my go-to cereal.
  15. Regular yogurt: from time to time I buy Greek yogurt for making dressings and for breakfast (although I haven’t had it for about 8 months). I never buy regular yogurt.
  16. Juice: unless we’re making cocktails, I’ll buy juice, but we don’t drink juice.
  17. Artificial sweetners: Sweet ‘n Low, Stevia – no way.
  18. Pastas other than couscous
  19. Dairy ice cream
  20. Soda: I haven’t had a sip of soda since July 2012, not even in an alcoholic drink.
  21. Breadcrumbs
  22. Cornstarch
  23. Sour cream
  24. Mayonnaise
  25. Pre-made salad dressings

The Daily Vlog

Here’s my first ever daily “vlog.” I documented every thing I did on Monday, February 27th. I’m recording this entire week with the original intent of putting together a “weekly vlog”, but I fear it may too be long (it’s 25 minutes too long?) Let me know what you think – and if you’d rather prefer a daily vlog. They’re definitely fun to make, and I could definitely do one a week! Kind of like a weekly video check-in. Let me know in the comments!

What are some foods you don’t keep in your home?


with love, Ali

leave a comment


  • I love ❤️ everything you do...prefer a daily vlog over weekly....just no time :)
  • Very, very interesting. I have a few questions: 1. which brand of almond milk do you recommend? The list of ingredients on the more popular brands scares me a bit. 2. I notice you stay away from dairy but cheese is part of many of your recipes....is this part of your 80/20 philosophy? 3. And.....no more chocolate teddy grahams!?:)
    • 1) I like New Barn or Silk! 2) Yes, cheese is the 80/20 rule! I don't eat cheese during the week, only on the weekends or if I'm going out/it's a special occasion! and 3) haha, nope! if I do indulge, I never keep the box in the pantry, I give it away.
  • Ali, I love your blog....you feel like a sister to me. Keep them coming.....
  • Hi there-can you elaborate on why you don't use stevia? Its all natural, so I'm just curious why you prefer coconut sugar?
    • The only reason I have coconut sugar in the pantry is because if I ever do bake, it's with coconut sugar. I use coconut sugar probably once every 4-5 months. I don't use Stevia, because I don't like consuming sugary-tasting things. If you use sugar (or in this case, Stevia), you're training your tastebuds to crave sweet. I rarely crave sweet, I crave more savory, because I don't eat sugar very often. Hope that helps!
      • Jessica, Stevia in the packets is not good for you, but if you have the Stevia plant and eat it as plant material, its great! Its the processing that makes it, not so good for you.
      • Was wondering this too! But it is very sweet.. I haven't tried coconut sugar is the sweetness not as intense? P.S. I follow you on almost all social media and just love you! ❤ thank you for all that you do!
      • I just tried the coconut sugar in baking and the texture was completely off. I think the item was too dry do you have any tips to increase the moisture?
      • Deborah, You're right, coconut sugar is a little different to work with! America's Test Kitchen has a great baking book out called Naturally Sweet that uses it and Sucanat almost exclusively, I bake from that book and I love it. I've had some success baking with coconut sugar in normal cookie recipes by halving the amount of sugar added, but sometimes you have to make other adjustments as well. I'd check out their book!
  • Good list! Mine is virtually the same, though I am a Siggi's addict. (The only yogurt I eat, literally! But none junky and loaded with sugar, like Dannon.) I used to keep a lot of cheese to nibble on, but I have no control when it comes to snacking on it. I have literally consumed 3/4 of a block while making dinner in the past. "Oh, just another slice of cheese will tide me over until dinner's ready." Ha! Now I keep my fridge cheese-free unless I'm using it for a recipe, then I'll buy a small amount.
  • I'm curious why no corn starch if you eat corn? There is non-GMO cornstarch, so I'm just curious if there's another reason. Also wondering why no mayo if you can make it with olive oil? Is it just the overall fat content? (I make my own b/c I want better quality oil, but I didn't know if you had a different reason for avoiding it?) Thanks for all you do!
    • It's just a highly processed carb, and I prefer to thicken my sauces with wholer ingredients, like pureed cashews & veggies, coconut milk, etc. It's also pretty calorically dense and low in nutritional benefits (ie vitamins, minerals). Hope that helps!
  • I LOVE the vlog....however, is it going to take away from your snaps and insta stories? I love love those too!! okay....now I just feel like I sound like a creeper....ha ha ha!
    • No, definitely not - it would be on top of all that!! :)
      • Awesome! I vote daily then because sometimes vlogs can get too long and the content isn't as good as it could be if it was a short daily or one every few days.
  • Love the daily vlog!!
  • I love your cookbooks and recipes Ali - thanks for sharing all that you do! I also am curious why no cornstarch - my daughter has a gluten sensitivity and I have recently started using cornstarch for thickening sauces. I know Arrowroot is another option, but am new to trying to cook gluten free.
  • Hi Ali, Could you let me know what kind of cooking pans you used in the video? The white one and the other one...thanks! And of course, I really really love your blog!!! I like the daily ones.
    • Inspiralized.com/favorites - the white pan is a Le Creuset!
  • What do you use in lieu of butter when you bake?
    • I rarely ever bake, but usually sub coconut oil for butter! I don't like baking. I'm the wrong person to ask :)
  • What do you use in place of butter?
  • I would LOVE to make this for my sister and brother in law when they watch my son on Saturday night, but I can't seem to find the recipe. Is it on your website somewhere? I LOVE all of your recipes!
      • Sorry! Bikini Bolognese with Zucchini Noodles
    • hi Michelle - I make this all the time - it's THAT good and easy! You'll find it on the 9th page of the 'zucchini recipes' in the 'recipes' section ( top of this page, far right, beneath the YouTube button) ~ ruth
  • Love the daily vlog. I would prefer that over a weekly vlog. Thanks for sharing your day with us! Love the post on what you don't keep in your house. Please keep the insta-stories too! I love those.
  • I LOVE Your videos! They help me alot! I would love Daily but if its too much then weekly. But I would watch either :)
  • Hi Ali, your number one Cdn. fan here! Luv your vlog but, honestly girl, I do not know how you do it all - you are soooo busy. Clearly, you are happy and fulfilled so it's all good! As I have said, I do so many of your recipes and just luv everything you do. I also eat that cereal but my guilty pleasure would be Froot Loops - bad me but I only have them once in a while. Yup, Dijon mustard with hard boiled eggs all the way! Enjoyed your list of no no foods but most of my questions you have answered in comments already. Keep up the fab work and take care, Ali and I am waiting for your Cdn. shopping channel appearance ! Kat.
  • Hey Ali, really appreciate the list- just a quick question about yogurt. Do you avoid it because it's cow dairy? And do you get your probiotics with coconut yogurt or something like that, for example? Or do supplement with probiotics?
    • I get my probiotics from dark chocolate, spirulina, miso soup, kombucha, and the occasional pickle! I don't have yogurt because of the dairy, yes. I try to limit my dairy intake and yogurt causes me to break out, gives me gas, and bloats me!
  • Hi Ali, Love these posts--thank you. Regarding keeping clean snacks only in the house--I too am trying to maintain this in my home, but how do you know that that chips you linked to are clean, or not a processed food? I'm really trying to give up processed foods and right now I'm considering anything in cans (with the exception of whole beans, corns, etc), frozen meals, bagged snacks, etc to be processed. Your chip share really threw me for a loop! Thanks in advance for the insight!
    • A "processed food", to me, is a food that is created through many complex processing steps, often containing additives, artificial flavorings and other chemical ingredients. SO, my clean check is reading the ingredient list. If your bag of chips says "potatoes, olive oil" then you're good! It's all about eating real, whole ingredients.
  • Thank you Ali. I vote for a daily log. I love to bake I.e. Christina Lane-Desserts For Two but keep that to a minimum twice a month. So, I have a lot of your no no's in my kitchen. Other then that, I make from your cookbooks especially when the hubs is traveling.
  • Ali, I noticed you listed butter - can you elaborate? I feel like using organic butter in moderation is healthy, but I'd love your feedback!
    • I personally don't cook with butter - it doesn't sit well with me, it carries so many unnecessary fats and calories, it tastes too sweet to me, and I have no use for it - olive oil gives me all the benefits I need!
  • Great post! Love the idea of knowing what we shouldn't have at home in order to resist temptation. Many times I buy loads of healthy options but just mixed them in with my non-healthy (sometimes processed) food options and I feel like that just defeats the purpose. You mentioned no juices, but what are you thoughts on cranberry juice? (I usually buy the no sugar added option) Is there a reason for not buying something labeled fat free? BTW we had similar breakfast today. With the exception that I mashed my avocado and dijon mustard together with the eggs and topped my Ezekial bread with the egg salad. Thanks again, I look forward to your reply.
    • I don't drink juice because it dehydrates me (the sugar content is so high) and there are other ways to get nutritional benefits of juice (like eating a piece of real, whole fruit.) And I don't buy anything "fat free" because I don't eliminate fats from my diet and "fat free" usually coincides with high in sugars - read the labels!
  • Hi Ali: I enjoyed reading the "25 Things You Wont Find in my Kitchen." Can you tell us if you substitute something else for bread crumbs, cornstarch, sour cream, mayonnaise and butter. thanks much!
    • Breadcrumbs= almond meal (I have a YouTube video on this), sour cream = cashew cream or a Greek yogurt substitute, mayonnaise = mashed avocado or Greek yogurt usually, and butter = olive oil.
  • Ali: I had never heard of Vital Proteins Maine Collagen before. Please tell us why you incorporate it in your diet and what benefits you have noticed. thanks again!
    • Collagen helps with anti-aging and immunity support!!
  • i looked for a healthier mayonnaise and i use the one made with avocado oil, much healthier and good tasting.
  • Hi Ali, I make my own mayonnaise with an egg, a cup of light-tasting olive oil and 2 teaspoons of organic apple cider vinegar. Wouldn't that be acceptable in your kitchen?
    • Lorna, yes, of course - but it's a high-fat condiment that I just don't need and care for the taste! I prefer to use Greek yogurt as a "mayo" or mashed/pureed avocado.
  • If you do some research ... white rice is an amazing carbohydrate source for athletes post workout to quickly replenish glycogen stores for faster recovery.... Love ur blog!
    • Definitely, I've known marathoners who exclusively eat white rice before a race! Different people metabolize and view foods differently. White rice isn't something that nourishes me personally, so I don't cook with it.
  • Ali, Loved the vlog. I would do that length, maybe a bit longer once a week. I think you'll burn yourself out if you do it everyday. Also, just curious, why don't you use vegetable oil? Do you only use coconut oil as far as oils go?
    • Leslie, I use all types of oils except for vegetable oil. Olive oil is my #1 oil of choice, but I cooked with coconut oil as well for flavor and if I do bake (on the rare occasion.) There have been many studies about vegetable oil and based on my research, I've omitted it from my diet because of its high levels of trans fats, it's highly processed production, and the inflammation they cause. Hope that clarifies!
  • Hi Ali, I love your recipes and the 25 things NOT in your kitchen, but as far as the vlog goes, that your personal decision on whether you want your daily moves shown, or whether you'd rather be a more private person. As part of your readership, I don't think it is up to us to decide how much personal exposure you allow.
    • It's not about how much I show, I meant what format would you all prefer to view it in - a 20 minute video at the end of the week or 1 short video that shows less, but is more "digestable." Thanks!
  • I like your list of what NOT to stock in at home. Would help to see that, alongside a list of good substitutes and their proportional measurements. I enjoy the vlog - it's more "personal". While you are extremely professional, certainly talented and highly qualified, I see you as more like a personal friend sitting in my home. I'd like to hear your voice more like you're talking with a good friend, and just slightly less "report-like". You do an Awesome job!!!! Thank you Ali!
  • Hi! have always wondered why in a lot of your recipes requiring garlic you use garlic powder rather than fresh, commercial brands can be a highly processed food with fillers and all sorts of nasties - I wont use it at all but presumably as busy as you are its for convenience? Love the recipes, but fresh organic garlic so much better!!
    • Sometimes garlic powder is necessary for a more concentrated flavor! But of course, I go through about 4 heads of garlic a week!
  • Sounds similar to ours. Have you tried Califia almond milk?? So divine. https://bermudaglobetrotters.wordpress.com/
  • I would definitely prefer DAILY vlogs. That way, if I have time to watch more than one, I can, but if it is one Week-long vlog, I wont know where one day stops and the next day starts. Thanks for asking/caring what we think!
  • I think stick to the short vlog and vary the content as you see fit, like you do on your blog. It is fun to see your day, which is a combo of healthy living, work and relationships. All the ways you show us how to make these work gether are great! Food prep tips are interesting, too. Short and variety plus give us something to take away. :) I had a different spiralizer when I found your books. I have both books and the app. Can only imagine the Inspiralizer is awesome! Maybe will ask for one for my birthday! ;)
    • Oops! Together, not gether!
  • So when you say you don't have any pre-made dressings, does this mean Tessamaes, too?!
      • Your Soy Ginger chicken recipe uses Tessamaes - you claim on that recipe that it's all natural "I used Tessemae’s Soy Ginger, which doubles as a dressing and a marinade. I first marinated the chicken and then used the rest to dress the salad. The ingredients in all of Tessemae’s products are real, which I love – you all know I’m obsessed with their BBQ Sauce (Matty’s BBQ." So do you use it or not? Please be consistent at the very least!!!!
  • Ali: I made the same changes with food that you are describing about one year ago. And I have never looked back. The changes in my health and well-being are incredible. I have come to the same revelation concerning the products I put on by body as well---skin care and cosmetics, etc. I enjoyed your recent post about the swaps you are in the process of making. (Beauty Counter, etc.). May I suggest another "swap"? I am "beyond sold" in the same way regarding the power and potential of essential oils to further facilitate chemical free and healthy living. Would love to chat with you further if you are interested! Love your recipes and lifestyle! Thanks for the inspiration. Please contact me re: essential oils if you would like to explore those as well. Thanks again!
    • I use essential oils everyday - mainly lavender and peppermint! But thank you! So glad you've found your healthy stride.
  • I love the list and wish I could get rid of all this stuff from my house. I know having it at home is my biggest downfall. Unfortunately my husband isn't on board with eating like I do so I am very jealous of your support from Lu!
    • Steph, what would happen if you explained to your husband how important it is for you to eat healthy and feel good? What if you explained to him the negative effects those foods have on you short and long term? What if you just STOPPED buying those foods and got healthy alternatives instead. What would your husband say?
  • Great post Ali! I really liked the Vlog, but wow that must be a lot of work to put together/film all day! Maybe a once a week thing? I still like the "what i ate today" videos best because SnapChat and Instagram stories give us that sneak peak into your life... maybe both could be too much? Just my thoughts! How do you JUST have a 1/4 c. serving of that cookie dough? Do you portion it out? I guess I'm not at that level of self-control yet. It's sort of why i don't try to keep mutltiple nut butter jars open.. I'll eat it all! I don't really crave almond butter though, so I've been okay with that one being open. Do you sweeten tea or coffee with anything? What are you going to do with all those leftovers from filming!? Does Lu take leftovers for lunch?
    • Hillary, you definitely need to teach yourself portion control. It's a mental game! You control exactly what you put into your body. Yes, I portion it out! I don't drink coffee anymore, and I sweeten my tea (non caffeinated) with steamed almond milk! As for the leftovers, we ate them all already! :)
      • I didn't mean that I don't understand portion control... at all. For meals, I am all about that. For example I made your Winter lasagna with brussels from inspiralize everything last night and I portioned out half of it already, and will portion the rest if needed or freeze. I eat on smaller plates, measure as needed, and pay attention to serving sizes. I only was really talking about sweets, i.e having maybe 1.5 - 2 servings of something just bc its fun and tasty. (I do need to get control of sugar cravings, yes) I guess I'm a little defensive because I have put a lot of work into this and I didnt love the automatic "you need to teach yourself" comment.
        • I think you may have mis-interpreted my response! I was talking about sweets (since that's what you asked about) - it's just a mental game and you have to teach yourself (not you specifically, everyone in general that's reading these comments) to portion control when eating. It was just a general tip meant for everyone reading these blog comments, sorry you took offense!
  • I follow the same 'clean kitchen' rules and since completing the whole30 in January, I have really kicked my sugar cravings and replaced them with natural sugars such as berries. It's eye opening once you come to the realization how much of an impact food has on your body, and how eating clean and finding balance can change your life for the better. Have you heard of intuitive eating? A lot of your advice reminds me of that mentality.
    • Yes, I have! It's so true - we're on the same page, lady! :)
  • Loved the vblog, it was fun to see you in action, and of course I love all your recipes. We recently moved from CA to NC and the new house has granite counter tops so the Inspiralizer sticks better, thus works better (old counters were hand honed rock) so it gets used for at least two meals a day. Keep the info coming, oh will you ever have an app for Android phones?
  • hi Ali! I absolutely your blog and all of your social media. Eating your moms spiralized pepper & potato dish for lunches this week! I swear my coworker and I talk about you daily (in a non creepy way) haha. First, I think a daily vlog is great. have you ever considered doing a podcast? I started commuting recently and have become obsessed with listening to them and would love for you to have one! Not to add more to your plate but just a thought and I know people would love it! Also, I can't believe the huge list of things you don't keep at home. I definitely avoid a lot on your list but my boyfriend is obsessed with juice and cookies among many of the other things you included. How do you get Lu to agree to that? V impressive!
  • I rarely comment but thought this was funny: my initial reaction to #1 white rice was "but what if the dog gets sick?!" Obviously not an issue when there's no doggy in the home :D I may only have 1-2 other items on this list in my house (admittedly my sugar is probably 5 years old, also not a baker) so overall my kitchen is pretty similar!
  • Hey there! My sister recently told me that women have difficulty digesting and processing anything nut-based, including nut butters and almond milk! Needless to say, I was crushed because I almost exclusively use almond milk in place of dairy milk, and almond butter instead of peanut butter. Have you heard anything about this?
  • Love to read your blogs. What course are you following for your Spanish classes?
  • This was a great post! I'm trying to eat more clean and paleo, and actually just starting an elimination diet this week to figure out which foods are triggering allergy and psoriasis symptoms. I cut out dairy Jan. 1st and have felt 90% better but had a food allergy test done and now trying to figure out what else I should cut. My question is, although it's not really a question, is my husband will eat most of what I make but he enjoys mayo and bread and other standard american diet foods, and my kids love dairy, gluten, and sugar. I would love my kids to eat healthier but not sure they are up for eating spiralized veggies and the meals that don't include pasta! Im finding it hard to please everyone and not spend a ton of money on groceries. I worry about my kids health, as my daughter has bad allergies and I think dairy could make it worse. But I also know how stubborn and rigid she is particularly around food and not sure Im up for the battle to completely change her diet. I know you don't have kids, but any advice?
  • Hello! I just started following you. I saw an IG friend had bought an Inspiralizer and showed on IG how much she liked it. I ordered one because the one I had was very "Mickey Mouse" and hard to work with. But I am really enjoying using your brand. Since following you on IG and your blog, I have become more aware of what I am eating and you are all around a good influence on me. I just want to thank you for that.
    • This is so wonderful to hear! We're so happy you're enjoying your Inspiralizer!
  • I would love to see inside your refrigerator. :o) Mainly, do you buy all your veggies for 1 week, or go back to the store for more during the week? How do you store your veggies?
  • I see you only use coconut sugar. What are your thoughts on eliminating sugar from your diet all together?
  • Hi Ali! Great post. Like you, I never used to use pre-made salad dressing, but I recently found a brand that I really like that uses whole ingredients with no to very little sugar. I started using the brand because I was doing the whole 30 and they have a line of compliant products. The brand is Tessemae's. You can order online, I've never seen them in stores. Your blog has contributed to me so much. I was so excited when I realized I might be able to contribute to you with a great brand recommendation. I hope you enjoy!
  • Hi!! I have been following you on instagram for quite some time! Your posts have inspired me to make some of my own version of spiralized dishes! I was wondering, however (and forgive me if you have already made a post on this), do you stick to a certain daily meal plan? For example: 2 servings of carbs a day, 4 of protein, 4 tsp of nut butters, etc. I have read several meal plans/programs, such as 21 day fix, and was wondering if you keep track and plan your meals any particular way? Or have any advice! Thanks a bunch -Alisha
  • Hi Ali! Why is couscous the one pasta that you eat at home? Thanks!
  • Hi Alli! I love your advice and tips that you give us. I especially love this article on what you don't have in your home. I do agree with you on the Non dairy, I don't keep any type of dairy products in my home other than yogurts. I do love to have yogurt & granola in the morning, but do you mentioned that you don't buy regular yogurt. Do you eat any other type of yogurt or do you have any recommendations on what type of yogurt that isn't too bad for you?