Vegan at Wal-Mart? - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 11-23-2007, 09:03 AM
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I'm new to this vegetarian thing and I'm doing it for animal, environment, world hunger reasons. The health benefits are a plus too! I've decided to not eat meat, poultry, seafood or fish. But I'll eat organic dairy, although I'll try to get everything I can in soy since I like the stuff anyways. I've never liked the taste of ANY time of animal or eggs so there reallyt wasn't anything to give up anyways lol.



BUT I have a question. The more I learn about how badly animals are treated the more I'm interested in being a full vegan. The only issue is that my family doesn't have a lot of money right now so we do all of our grocery shopping at wal-mart. Some day when I make enough to money to shop at Whole Foods, being a vegan won't be so hard. Until then, Wal-Mart doesn't have too many options. I've eatin some morningstar, boca and garden burger stuff enough to know that I LOVE them! (it's weird that I like imitation meat stuff, but have never liked real meat lol.) And they have some at Wal-Mart along with fake turkey meat, ground burger,etc. But the other day when I bought some galaxy cheese slices, I was sad to see that they actually had casein in them. There also isn't an alternative to cottage cheese (which I use a lot for cookng) and I'm having trouble figuring out which breads and buns are vegan. I like soy yogurt and milk though and the eggnog too. SO basically what I'm asking is. Do you think it's okay to stay Lacto- vegetarian till I am able to afford to shop at the health food stores? Am I making enough of a difference not eating fish, seafood, meat, poultry and eggs? Please get back to me. Thank you.



Any suggestions or personal experiences welcome!
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#2 Old 11-23-2007, 09:28 AM
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Make the choice that works for you. But shopping at Walmart, there is still a lot you can get---beans, grains, frozen fruits and vegetables etc. If you can get some TVP at a bulk food store then you'll be set. My local bulk food store has a $10 minimum for using your debit card, and I struggle to find $10 worth of stuff every time I go, you would be amazed at how cheap it is to buy in bulk! I get all my lentils, beans, rice, couscous, TVP, mashed potato flakes, baking items and nutritional yeast there. Some meal ideas based only on things from Walmart:



Shepherd's Pie: use a veggie burger and instant mashed potato as a base

Soup: A veggie, grain and a protein, in broth

Stir-Fry: 2 or more veggies, a protein and some sauce over rice, pasta etc.

Salad: Beans and dressing over salad fixings

Rice Bowl: Cooked rice, reconstituted TVP, veggies and stir-fry sauce



You do not need to shop at health food stores and get fancy prepared foods to eat an easy, healthy diet. Just eat less prepared stuff and cook yourself.
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#3 Old 11-23-2007, 09:32 AM
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Those are some good ideas. I LOVE veggies and fruit so working with those are not a problem. I also plan to buy veggie chili, amy's kitchen stuff, soup, crackers, manwich sauce (since it's actually vegan) to make sloppy joes, etc. Do whole grain vegan bread and vegan buns exist at Wal-Mart? And what do you do about cheese? From I've seen so far they just have the galaxy as an option, which is vegetarian but not vegan.
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#4 Old 11-23-2007, 09:34 AM
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But my overall question is: Am I making enough of a difference by being a lacto vegetarian? I want to be a veggie forever and I hope the fact that I'll eat organic dairy won't throw it all off.
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#5 Old 11-23-2007, 09:41 AM
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Eating a vegan diet is VERY cheap if you aren't depending on convenience foods (i.e. boca, morningstar farms stuff). I base our diet on fresh fruits and vegetables, legumes, whole grains, pastas, tofu, and seitan (homemade, really cheap to make). Most of our grocery budget goes towards fruits and veggies, but I shop in season (more squash and root veggies and leafy greens in the winter), grow veggies in the summer, and it really isn't so bad in the end.

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#6 Old 11-23-2007, 10:11 AM
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Most of us have just given up cheese for the most part instead of replacing it. Try it for a couple of weeks and it won't seem like such a big deal. Guacamole, and hummus are good on sandwiches, etc. instead of cheese. Walmart has some really good deals on things, a vegan could easily live off of walmart food if they needed to.



As for, is it ok to be lacto-veg, well thats up to you. Learn the facts and do what feels right to YOU.
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#7 Old 11-23-2007, 12:28 PM
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My best advice would be to learn to cook. Pasta, rice, and bean dishes can be made for next to nothing.



You might want to see if you can stretch your money a little more. Buy what you can at Aldi (if you have one) and that way you can spend a little more at Wal Mart.



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#8 Old 11-23-2007, 02:26 PM
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For now I'm just gonna be a lacto ovo veggie. Although I don't eat eggs but until I get into the habit of decoding the ingredients, some of the breads I eat may have eggs in them. And of course, I'm not eating any meat, fish, seafood or poultry. I think I'm still making a difference especially considering that when it comes to dairy products, I'm trying to use every vegan option that's available. I did make a mistake though. I didn't realize that most vitamins have gelatin in them until I read one of the vegetarian books I checked out today. And the multi vitamin I bought since it has vitamin B12 in it has gelatin too! I'm not gonna beat myself up over it. But whenever I run out of my vitamins, I'll just search more carefully for a vegetarian vitamin.



Any other lacto ovo veggies here? WHat do you specifically eat and don't eat?
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#9 Old 11-23-2007, 04:35 PM
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If you actually want to be vegan, let me know. I have to shop at wal-mart temporarily because we're having some financial troubles and I could give you a copy of my grocery list and basic things I make from it
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#10 Old 11-23-2007, 04:52 PM
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Hey Congrats!

You can find lots of goodies at Walmart (I used to work there and my bf does currently). I LOVE SmartGround (in the produce dept) so far I have used it in every meal I used to put ground beef in and it tastes awesome. Soem of the "burgers" there are vegan, you just gotta read the fine print. I always jazz them up by adding ground peppercorns, garlic salt and soemtimes the more expensive ($3) custom seasonings that K.C. Masterpiece puts out. Oh and Sweet Baby Ray's BBQ sauce (its heaven in a bottle!) Of course all this is veggie and not vegan...but since you havn't transitioned into becoming a vegan yet, you can still eat all of those

If you liek chili, here's an awesome recipe:

http://www.meatlessmonday.com/site/P...e=chili_cowboy

Cowboy Chili

Amy Brooks, Memphis, TN

Serves 6



Ingredients

1 56-oz can of tomato sauce

1 package Smart Ground

1 28-oz can Bush's Vegetarian Baked Beans

1 15-oz can each: black beans, kidney beans, pinto beans

1 medium green bell pepper, diced

1 medium red bell pepper, diced

1 jalepeno pepper, diced

1 medium red onion, diced

10 shakes chili powder

4 shakes garlic powder

1 tbsp Mongolian fire oil



Directions

Simmer beans, tomato sauce and spices while dicing vegetables. Add remaining ingredients and let cook on low to medium heat for 2 hours, stirring occasionally.



Instead of the mongolian fire oil I soaked red pepper (the dried kind with seeds) in a Tbsp of veg oil.

There are a ton of other recipes on there too and pretty easy to make.
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#11 Old 11-23-2007, 05:03 PM
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Oh and I forgot to add: The only vegan bread I've found at wal-mart is a brand called Earth Grains. But your wal-mart may have the kinds by Arnolds and Pepridge Farms that are vegan (only certein kinds are). Google "vegan shopping list PETA" and one will come up at the very top that is a list of convenience foods that are vegan, check under breads
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#12 Old 11-23-2007, 05:32 PM
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Does it say in obvious (big) letters its vegan?
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#13 Old 11-23-2007, 05:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hooligan View Post

Does it say in obvious (big) letters its vegan?



No, but there weren't any non-veg ingredients and when I wrote the company they said the kind I had (something like 7 grain) was vegan.



EDIT: And lots of vegan convenience products/breads don't say vegan on them

The site I was talking about is this one: http://www.vegcooking.com/shoppingGuide.asp

All those things are vegan (like bisquick) hardly any actually say it
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#14 Old 11-23-2007, 06:05 PM
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Whether your omni, lacto-ovo, or vegan:



Lentils!!! So delicious. So nutritious. So cheap.

They can be incorporated into many dishes. I make lentil soups, tacos, tostadas, and main courses for very cheap. They do not require soaking and they cook very fast.

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#15 Old 11-23-2007, 06:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by holly golightly View Post

Whether your omni, lacto-ovo, or vegan:



Lentils!!! So delicious. So nutritious. So cheap.

They can be incorporated into many dishes. I make lentil soups, tacos, tostadas, and main courses for very cheap. They do not require soaking and they cook very fast.



So true! I love lentils. I'm also in love with Beans.



To the OP: I'll include this in the list I e-mail to you, but if you like canned beans/etc I found out today that wal-mart's brand of Black eyed peas have HALF the sodium of the other brands (250mg compared to 450-500mg) and DOUBLE the protein (10g compared to 5-6g)! And if you drain/rinse the juice off them before cooking in just plain water/veg.broth, it will take away even more sodium
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#16 Old 11-23-2007, 07:18 PM
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Okay thanks. I'm really new to this whole legume thing. Like the lentils, chik peas, couscous. I have never seen any of those.
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#17 Old 11-23-2007, 07:47 PM
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Originally Posted by ltrahan View Post

Okay thanks. I'm really new to this whole legume thing. Like the lentils, chik peas, couscous. I have never seen any of those.



Hehe couscous is pasta

If you can find it anywhere, especially if anywhere around you (like a health food store) has bulk bins - you should stock up. It's super quick to cook (5 minutes!) and is yummy
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#18 Old 11-23-2007, 08:52 PM
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Walmart has couscous, its with the Rice-A-Roni And the lentils and such are with the dry beans.



Thanks for the info on the bread. I actually bought some EarthGrains bread today/ I need to check out that list and print it out!



Oh and to the OP, check out AllRecipes.com I have gotten alot of good Mexican and Italian recipes from there and they didn't call for meat.
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#19 Old 11-23-2007, 09:18 PM
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I dunno how well this will work, but you could probably make an imitation cottage cheese with tofu!

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#20 Old 11-24-2007, 02:30 AM
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I'm a newbie vegan...and I'm on a budget as well.



I've seen people describe thier grocery bills two ways: Some say it was CUT IN HALF, and others argue that it DOUBLED.



Now...NO ONE TAKE OFFENSE... but I couldn't help but notice that the ones who's grocery bills doubled were men (straight men), and the ones whose grocery bills were cut in half were women, who also complained that it made grocery shopping take three times as long.



I've also heard that people's variety in thier diet expands...as you learn more ways to cook your cheaper staples (beans, lentils, sweet potatoes, etc...)



I have found areas where I'm saving money (produce is $1-$2 per lb!!! ...usually), but some areas where I'm spending more (I now need to eat more nuts).



I LOVE my Veggie Steamer!!!! It has opened up a ton of possibilities!!!



Also, there is an asian market here...and I've found that many of these asian items really do contain the basic ingredients...and don't have so much extra animal-derived chemicals and additives. If you have one, check out their BIG variety of pasta noodles (buckwheat, white wheat, rice, etc...) And, many have Kobocha pumpkin which is delicious when simmered.



Anyways, at Wal-mart...I just read the labels... Many times, I put an item back, and try to find a vegan variety. I don't need special vegan salad dressing for $5... if I can get a nice vinigarette for $2.

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#21 Old 11-24-2007, 03:57 AM
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I'm a vegan and I do all my shopping at Wal-Mart. Why? Only because it is the only grocery store within an hour of me.



It's not really that hard, but I don't buy a lot of convenience foods like imitation meats.



My staples are lentils, canned beans, brown rice, couscous, whole grain pasta, spices like curry, cinnamon, cumin, garlic, chili powder, paprika, tumeric, and ginger (fresh/powdered), Almond Breeze almond milk and/or Silk, a lot of vegetables (frozen and fresh. Frozen is great when you are in a hurry or when you run out of fresh), fruit, cereal, organic peanut butter, raisins, almonds, tortillas, bread, hummus, canned diced tomatoes, tomato paste, luna bars (to keep in my purse just in case), and occasionally tofu.



That's all I can think of right now, but really, just by using the ingredients I listed above, you can make many different meals. I suggest buying the cookbook La Dolce Vegan. It has a lot of recipes with everyday ingredients and almost all take less the 45 minutes to make.



Here are a few recipes: http://vegweb.com/index.php?topic=10625.0, http://vegweb.com/index.php?topic=15853.0, http://vegweb.com/index.php?topic=10226.0, http://vegweb.com/index.php?topic=5076.0 (if you can't find pita bread, just use tortillas or regular bread)



I noticed that when I first went vegan, I did spend more money buying groceries. After a while, though, when I had most of the essentials, my grocery bill was very small.
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#22 Old 11-24-2007, 03:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hooligan View Post

Walmart has couscous, its with the Rice-A-Roni And the lentils and such are with the dry beans.



Thanks for the info on the bread. I actually bought some EarthGrains bread today/ I need to check out that list and print it out!



Oh and to the OP, check out AllRecipes.com I have gotten alot of good Mexican and Italian recipes from there and they didn't call for meat.

Well the one I have has that preboxed couscous, but it's so expensive compared to if you can find it in bulk bins somewhere or even if you can get to somewhere like Harris Teeter that sells it in a big container.





Quote:
Originally Posted by LovelyPerv View Post

I'm a newbie vegan...and I'm on a budget as well.



I've seen people describe thier grocery bills two ways: Some say it was CUT IN HALF, and others argue that it DOUBLED.



Now...NO ONE TAKE OFFENSE... but I couldn't help but notice that the ones who's grocery bills doubled were men (straight men), and the ones whose grocery bills were cut in half were women, who also complained that it made grocery shopping take three times as long.



I've also heard that people's variety in thier diet expands...as you learn more ways to cook your cheaper staples (beans, lentils, sweet potatoes, etc...)



I have found areas where I'm saving money (produce is $1-$2 per lb!!! ...usually), but some areas where I'm spending more (I now need to eat more nuts).



I LOVE my Veggie Steamer!!!! It has opened up a ton of possibilities!!!



Also, there is an asian market here...and I've found that many of these asian items really do contain the basic ingredients...and don't have so much extra animal-derived chemicals and additives. If you have one, check out their BIG variety of pasta noodles (buckwheat, white wheat, rice, etc...) And, many have Kobocha pumpkin which is delicious when simmered.



Anyways, at Wal-mart...I just read the labels... Many times, I put an item back, and try to find a vegan variety. I don't need special vegan salad dressing for $5... if I can get a nice vinigarette for $2.

Whew, I'm glad I'm not one of the women that spends 3 hours in the store!

I write out exactly what I want before I even get there. If I want a certain food (let's say some cookies) I know before I go in there what brands they have and I try to find out before I even go in there if they even have any cookies that are vegan. Aw and all our asian markets are uptown WAY away from me, and the store's asian section is only about as big as my body lol, no great noodles or anything. they have lots of rice, but I have plenty of that at home anyways.



Oh for anyone who uses spices, check out the Mexican section for it before you buy it in the spices section! I found ground cumin in a little bag over in the Mexican section for 88cents, the same size (except in shaker) over in the spice area was almost $4!



**I should also add that I do shop occasionally at a store called Bi-Lo here when I can't find the foods at Wal-Mart. But the price difference is LARGE. for instance, a pomegranate ON SALE on bi-lo is $2.50, at wal-mart it's $1.50 (both prices are per fruit). But I go there for things like broco sprouts and veggie broth/bullion because they dont sell it at my walmart (wtf?)**
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#23 Old 11-24-2007, 04:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bells View Post

I'm a vegan and I do all my shopping at Wal-Mart. Why? Only because it is the only grocery store within an hour of me.



It's not really that hard, but I don't buy a lot of convenience foods like imitation meats.



My staples are lentils, canned beans, brown rice, couscous, whole grain pasta, spices like curry, cinnamon, cumin, garlic, chili powder, paprika, tumeric, and ginger (fresh/powdered), Almond Breeze almond milk and/or Silk, a lot of vegetables (frozen and fresh. Frozen is great when you are in a hurry or when you run out of fresh), fruit, cereal, organic peanut butter, raisins, almonds, tortillas, bread, hummus, canned diced tomatoes, tomato paste, luna bars (to keep in my purse just in case), and occasionally tofu.



That's all I can think of right now, but really, just by using the ingredients I listed above, you can make many different meals. I suggest buying the cookbook La Dolce Vegan. It has a lot of recipes with everyday ingredients and almost all take less the 45 minutes to make.



Here are a few recipes: http://vegweb.com/index.php?topic=10625.0, http://vegweb.com/index.php?topic=15853.0, http://vegweb.com/index.php?topic=10226.0, http://vegweb.com/index.php?topic=5076.0 (if you can't find pita bread, just use tortillas or regular bread)



I noticed that when I first went vegan, I did spend more money buying groceries. After a while, though, when I had most of the essentials, my grocery bill was very small.



I just wrote this in my above comment, but if you look for your spices in the Mexican section you can find the same amount (except in a bag instead of shaker) for about 1/4-1/3 of the price!



And I agree SO much with spending more in the beginning. You go out and are finding all this specialty crap, then you realize...hey, I could just grab some beans. lol.

Also, I've found little tricks...like if you buy soymilk (not Silk, but a random brand) that is on the shelf rather than in the case...the same size it's about .50 cents cheaper. I always bought the off brand of soymilk anyways...my son drinks it not me .



You're so right about things like Imitation Meats as well - ESPECIALLY if you're buying that SmartBrand kind over near the fruits/veggies!
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#24 Old 11-24-2007, 05:18 AM
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Oh yeah, our asian market rocks! That is the only place I found seitan, plus a ton of other veggie edibles.
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#25 Old 11-24-2007, 06:02 AM
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Oh yeah, our asian market rocks! That is the only place I found seitan, plus a ton of other veggie edibles.

I still have yet to taste seitan. I wanted to make my own, but I've heard it takes a long time and I have a one year old so that is NOT going to work for me. I wish I could get to the asian markets here! I try to go once a month to this local place (Home Economist - a health food store) to get stuff that they have in bulk bins because it's super cheap. But since I don't drive (by choice) I have to wait until my husband wants things there so we can go together.
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#26 Old 11-24-2007, 10:39 AM
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Our asian market is pretty cool. The have a wall for frozen stuff that is vegetarian and then they have all noodles and canned stuff (but the canned fake meat is scary looking) The seitan just says Gluten Rolls. But I made a meal with it last night and it was awesome. Philly Cheese"steaks"

Our WM has veggie broth, its so weird that yours doesn't. YOu can talk tot he store manager and ask if they can start carrying more vegetarian/vegan things too. There are several vegetarians that work at our WM (bf included) and they are part of the reason that so much is carried.
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#27 Old 11-24-2007, 10:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Vegreenmom View Post

I still have yet to taste seitan. I wanted to make my own, but I've heard it takes a long time and I have a one year old so that is NOT going to work for me. I wish I could get to the asian markets here! I try to go once a month to this local place (Home Economist - a health food store) to get stuff that they have in bulk bins because it's super cheap. But since I don't drive (by choice) I have to wait until my husband wants things there so we can go together.



The overseas food market isn't much further down south blvd than the home economist, I'll bet your hubby would be willing to take you. The "vegetarian oyster and mushroom sauce" makes GREAT stir fry w/ a little garlic, soy sauce and a hit of sugar w/ udon noodles and veggies. If you can get some dark soy sauce and some light soy sauce with the oyster sauce, and some fresh rice noodles you have my favorite Thai food (pad see eww). Or you can take the bus, the 12 goes right by there, if they haven't changed things too much since I moved, I know they were decentralizing the bus station when I left.
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#28 Old 11-24-2007, 11:14 AM
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Okay thanks. I've decided to eat the meat substitute stuff sparingly to save some cash. Maybe only once or twice a week. Hopefully I'll be able to go grocery shopping with the next week or two and I'll definitely buy some brown rice and lentil stuff. I'm Korean so I'm at the Korean Market (which also sells other Oriental foods) 24/7!
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#29 Old 11-24-2007, 03:00 PM
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I figured I'd post here the same thing I sent to the two people who asked me for my shopping list:



Quote:
Hey there! I decided to not only just write a grocery list, but just a list of items I keep stocked up. I hope this helps!



- Canned beans (canellini, black, northern, black eyed peas, etc)

- Dried beans (black, 15bean)

- Dried lentils

- Brown rice (bagged)

- Brown rice (minute rice, boxed)

- Canned veggies (no-salt-added green beans, NSA corn, peas)

- Fresh veggies (collards, tomatoes, potatoes, broccoli, carrots, mushrooms)

- Frozen veggies (corn, green beans, peas, okra)

- Canned fruit *in it's own juice or water* (pineapple, pears, peaches)

- Fresh fruit (apples, bananas, pomegranate)

- Frozen fruit (strawberries, peaches)

- Bread, Bagels

- Vegetable broth and Knorr Vegetarian Vegetable Boullion

- Oil (Extra-Virgin Olive Oil, Safflower oil)

- Sunflower Seeds (walmart has a brand called Goodsense, if you find it get the roasted/no-salt)

- CousCous (whole wheat if I can find it)

- Multi-grain Pasta



Now, the problem is that you really REALLY have to check ingredients when it comes to bread, bagels, vegetable broth (who'da thunk it?), and multi-grain pasta. Some pastas have milk or egg type products in them. For bagels I always get one thing of Thomas new york style bagels in plain and one in blueberry (both are vegan). I also get strawberry poptarts without frosting (vegan as well) for those days when I need to get out of the house right after breakfast. If you go here: http://www.vegcooking.com/shoppingGuide.asp

It gives you a guide of what things you can buy in the store (convenience food/bread/etc wise) that is vegan. That's where I found out about the bread I eat, the bagels, poptarts, and also where I found out about Knorr veg.bouillon. Hopefully all this helps. I feel like I'm missing things on my list but can't figure out what they are lol.

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#30 Old 11-24-2007, 03:07 PM
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Oh, I also wanted to add that remember that too many people over-complicate eating vegan. Sure you can make recipes from www.fatfreevegan.com every night (I do them occasionally), but most nights are like tonight...

I was in a rush so I opened a can of no-salt-added corn, cooked it with some frozen okra (that I cooked by the directions first then drained and added to a pan). Then for my protein I had some canned black eyed peas. Simple, cheap, and didn't taste bad lol
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