Plant-Based Shopping Tips
Shopping is a vital link in the chain for those who follow a plant-based diet, or for those who are curious and want to give it a try. Our handy shopping guide, In Pursuit of Great Food, is a practical guide to help you learn about the many different plant-based choices to stock in your kitchen, and how to get the best value in time and money from your food budget.
Many people are on a tight budget and worry that eating healthy, plant-based food will be expensive. However, if you are willing to plan and prepare your own meals from basic ingredients, you can save quite a bit of money. For those who often find themselves short on time, there’s a wide selection of convenience and prepared products to choose from in many local grocery stores.
At this time of year, local farmer’s markets are fun to visit and a great way to buy really fresh produce directly from the farmer. Another option is to sign up for a local CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) program. This can be a convenient way to receive regular fresh produce, and to learn about new fruits and vegetables to expand your eating horizons. If grocery stores and markets aren’t convenient for you, or they don’t stock some of the harder-to-find items you’d like to try, don’t forget to check out online specialty stores which can ship to you directly.
Before you shop, we recommend that you take time to plan your menus for the week, check which ingredients you already have at home, and make a list of those you’ll need. This is the best way to avoid wasting time or money buying food you don’t need. Make sure you’ll have the space to safely store all the food you plan to buy, especially in the fridge or freezer. Throwing away any out-of-date or spoiled foods before you go shopping is a good habit to get into.
When you’re ready to go, don’t forget to pick up any coupons you’ve collected, grab your reusable bags, and if you have some distance to travel, a cool box or insulated bag can be useful to keep cold food cold or hot food hot, to reduce the risk of any bacteria multiplying.
When you’re new to eating plant-based foods, look on food shopping as an adventure in good eating. Choose one new food to try every week, and pretty soon you’ll be an expert on plant-based shopping.