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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Couldn't find a similar thread, apologizes if I've overlooked something similar.<br><br>
I live in a very small, rural town. I have access to a Food City and Wal Mart, along with other smaller, local grocery stores. I can make due with the fruits and veggies I find but there are some products they just do not have. I've searched endlessly for nut butters, but aside from peanut, I've come up empty handed. Also can find morningstar brands and some Boca stuff, and one variety of tofurkey loaf. For the most part I don't eat many faux meats now though.<br><br>
I've been thinking for a while that I need to go to a larger town (closest with a Whole Foods is over two hours) but have put off a special trip just for food because I wanted to make sure I had a concise list of what to look for.<br><br>
So, if you were me and could only make one trip to a speciality store which vegetarian/vegan items would be on your must have list?
 

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Since I am in a situation like yours - I live about an hour from the nearest vegetarian friendly store on a good day. I would suggest 3 things in addition to the list I will be adding at the end. These suggestions assume you are brand new to the matter of vegetarianism. If not skip down to my list.<br><br>
1. If you haven't already done so, Invest in some good vegetarian/vegan books which teach you how to make stuff from scratch(i.e. The ultimate uncheese cookbook by Jo Stepaniak for nut butters being a good example) and then add the exotic ingredients for the recipes to your "day trip" shopping list so that you can hunt for most of what you need in one trip.<br><br>
2. barring any books you may order online, you also might search online for recipes(like here on VB) which will permit you to make from scratch foods that you can get ingredients for locally.<br><br>
3. Acquaint yourself with online grocers like the following(asianfoodgrocer.com) to get things like nori, miso, and some others shipped to you. The price with shipping will be higher than going on a 2 hour trip to a store that would have these things in some cases but if you are careful it may save you at least a few trips over time.<br><br>
As to what to get, I would say I'll give you my wish list.<br><br>
1. Nutritional Yeast(fortified with b-12)<br>
1a. Vegan friendly b-12 supplements(not as easy to find in a rural area as you might think)<br>
2. chickpea flour(assuming you don't figure out how to make your own from chickpeas)<br>
3. Agar agar powder<br>
4. miso(any kind)<br>
5. Tofu, tempeh, and/or TVP (if you can't get one or all locally.)<br>
6. Arrowroot powder<br>
7. Tamari (if you can't get it locally)<br>
8. bragg's liquid aminos(I use a lot of that but I got lucky and found it local,so you may not be so fortunate).<br>
9. Ener-g egg replacer<br><br>
Hmm, can't think of anything more but I hope that hits the high points of a usual list of difficult stuff. I'm sure others here can chime in on anything I've forgotten. Those listed however will likely be the hardest to get your hands on so be watching.<br><br>
Best wishes to you.<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/grin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":D">
 

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When I make a trip out to Whole Foods, it's for a few select things.<br><br>
1. My favorite meat substitutes. Field Roast is my favorite brand - they have sausages, frankfurters and deli slices made from vital wheat gluten and natural seasonings.<br>
2. Earth Balance margarine (some regular grocery stores carry this, but no such luck for me).<br>
3. Non-animal-tested products like shampoo and toothpaste.<br>
4. Sometimes I get pure almond butter with no additives or other ingredients - just the almonds. It's really good.<br>
5. A few frozen, organic quick meal items from the brand Amy's Kitchen. Their burritos are good when you're in a pinch or just plain exhausted.<br>
6. Vegenaise mayo substitute.<br><br>
That's about it for me. I don't like to buy too much there because it's so expensive, but the veg*n selection really is wonderful so I'm willing to make the drive occasionally.<br><br>
Have fun! I think you'll find Whole Foods is worth the trip <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)">
 

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If you can find other varieties of nuts, you can make your own nut butters with a food processor (or perhaps a very good blender).<br><br>
What kinds of foods do you like to cook? An Asian grocery might be better than Whole Foods for some specialty items. My local Whole Foods does not carry agar, for example, but the Asian grocery has it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the answers, I've found this really helpful.<br><br>
DF - Great suggestion with finding recipes, I've actually gotten a couple veg cookbooks and love the Whole Foods iPad app because you can search by vegan/vegetarian and have been stumped by recipes with ingredients I just don't have local access to. I've been meat free for almost ten months now! I've done my research but at times it all gets too overwhelming, so I welcome the concise list from an experienced veg*n.<br><br>
YR - Field Roast is a brand I haven't came across before, will definitely look for that. We do have a limited variety of the Amy's brand here but not a lot of their vegan stuff, and it's so expensive it's been like why buy that when I can get something else similar cheaper. But have some quick & easy options is nice for lazy days.<br><br>
RV - A co worker has been encouraging me to go the make your own nut butter route, but it just seems so pricey. Is it cheaper to buy pre made nut butters or is the cost about even? I love Asian foods actually, thanks for the suggestion, I'll have to see what ethic type grocers are in the town I'm going to.
 

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<a href="http://store.veganessentials.com/food-sweets-and-beverages-c1.aspx" target="_blank">Vegan Essentials</a> is awesome.<br><br>
Depending on where you're at, you may have to shell out a bit for shipping, but they'll ship frozen/perishible stuff like Daiya cheese, Field Roast, etc. Definitely worth a look. I use them all the time.
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>Bailey2</strong> <a href="/forum/post/2970281"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style=""></a><br><br>
RV - A co worker has been encouraging me to go the make your own nut butter route, but it just seems so pricey. Is it cheaper to buy pre made nut butters or is the cost about even? I love Asian foods actually, thanks for the suggestion, I'll have to see what ethic type grocers are in the town I'm going to.</div>
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Pre-made nut butters (other than peanut butter) can be pretty expensive as well. I think it is generally cheaper to make your own, provided you can find a relatively inexpensive source for the nuts. If you google you might find a conversion for what volume or weight of nuts will make what volume of butter so you can calculate the cost.
 

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just make sure you have a lot of money and room in your freezer to stock up <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)"><br>
there are a few things that i ALWAYS get every single time i go to whole foods<br><br>
*almond milk<br>
*soy-tein with spinach<br>
*macro vegetarian thai chicken<br>
*365 vegetable pizza (vegan)<br>
*tofutti icecream bars
 

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I live in a small town too so I feel you on not being able to find a lot of ingredients recipes call for. I agree make as much as you can from scratch. Also online shopping is your best bet for none parishable things. I buy my nutritional yeast, vital wheat gluten, tapioca flour, chickpea flour ect on amazon. Cast alot oup from $50-$100 depending on what else I'm buying but then I'm set for at least 3 months. Also you said you have a Wal-mart. They have some stuff I never would have considered like soy ice cream and more kinds of none dairy milk then I know what to do with.<br><br>
HTH<br>
Audrey
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
No Kroger within one hundred miles. When I first went veg though I made a trip there that helped get me started. Their selection is pretty good but if I'm going to have to travel I'd rather go to the best option if I can.<br><br>
Yes, Wal Mart does have a good non milk, milk selection. Lol. I actually switched to soy milk before I quit eating meat, but that was because I don't like the taste of cow's milk, and I love that the soy lasts so much longer.<br><br>
Herb B.I.G. I looked into the price of nuts, and for the smallest container of almonds it was over seven dollars. Since I'm afraid I might mess up at my first try of making my own, I'd hate to make such an expensive mistake. Maybe I should practice with peanuts first. Lol.<br><br>
Thanks again all for your help, I'll be sure to update after I go shopping. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)">
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>Bailey2</strong> <a href="/forum/post/2970281"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style=""></a><br><br>
YR - Field Roast is a brand I haven't came across before, will definitely look for that. We do have a limited variety of the Amy's brand here but not a lot of their vegan stuff, and it's so expensive it's been like why buy that when I can get something else similar cheaper. But have some quick & easy options is nice for lazy days.</div>
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<br><a href="http://www.fieldroast.com/" target="_blank">http://www.fieldroast.com/</a><br><br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)"><br><br>
It's the most delicious meat substitute I've ever had. It tastes really fresh and uses natural ingredients, not yucky additives. They have a "Where to Buy" section on the site that may be of use to you.
 
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