Though grocery store shelves have been quick to run out of canned goods these days, knowing what to snatch up once those shelves are restocked can be tough. If you’re someone who doesn’t usually have a lot of canned veggies or beans in their pantry or cooking rotation, trying to navigate the non-perishables at a time where everyone is trying to stock up on them can feel a little bit overwhelming. To help you make choices about the healthiest canned goods to pick up on your next grocery haul, we’ve rounded up a few of the best bets out there — along with a few healthy recipes you can try out if you’re new to working with canned goods.
Black beans are super high in protein, as well as folate, which helps your body convert carbohydrates into energy.
RECIPE TO TRY: Black beans with rice from A Couple Cooks
Greens are a less intuitive thing to buy canned, but canned spinach (without added salt) is just as nutritious as the fresh stuff, with a high dose of vitamin C.
RECIPE TO TRY:Simple sautéed spinach from Eating Well
Like the other beans on this list, cannellini beans are full of protein, and are also packed with healthy servings of folate, iron, and magnesium.
RECIPE TO TRY:Cannellini beans with spinach from Bon Appétit
In addition to being a strong source of protein like other beans on this list, kidney beans are notably high in fiber and antioxidants that contribute to colon health.
RECIPE TO TRY:Lebanese lemon-parsley bean salad from Cookie and Kate
A single can of tuna offers over 30 grams of protein and less than 200 calories. You'll also get a good dose of omega-3 fatty acids.
RECIPE TO TRY:Canned tuna pasta from Salt and Lavender
Tomatoes are a great source of lycopene, which is an antioxidant that can defend against disease and certain cancers. As with other canned meats and vegetables, look for varieties with no salt added to avoid high levels of sodium.
RECIPE TO TRY:Cassoulet from The Modern Proper
Canned pumpkin isn't something you think to buy outside of fall, but it ought to be. Canned natural pumpkin flesh offers a highly concentrated serving of key nutrients, including high levels of vitamins A and C, as well as iron.
RECIPE TO TRY:No-bean pumpkin turkey chili from Once Upon a Pumpkin
Like tuna, sardines are a great source of omega-3 fatty acids. Make sure to opt for sardines packed in water, not oil, as this helps these fats remained sealed into the fish. Fish packed in oil can transfer those fats to the oil, which you then lose when you rinse it.
RECIPE TO TRY:Mediterranean sardine pasta from Tori Avey