Plastic-free groceries
Posted in: Healthy Living, Sustainability

Buy Plastic-Free Groceries With This Eco-friendly Shopping List

Say goodbye to single-use plastics and hello to plastic-free groceries on your next food run with this eco-friendly shopping list!

plastic-free groceries

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How many times have you left the grocery store with bags full of plastic-wrapped foods? Most likely, the answer may be always. So, how so we shop for plastic-free groceries? One effective way to minimize your impact on the environment is to say goodbye to plastic-wrapped groceries, and hello to real, whole food! While eco-friendly shopping can be overwhelming at first, there are some simple steps you can take to avoid products wrapped in plastic and to learn how to shop more sustainably with this eco-friendly grocery list.

I am showing you the best tips to help you reduce single-use plastics on groceries.

plastic-free groceries

This post is all about how you can help make less waste by buying food that is plastic-free.

Maintaining zero waste habits in your daily life can seem like a daunting task, especially if you have the busy schedule of an entrepreneur or work from home.

However, it’s not impossible to incorporate these principles into your shopping routine without too much extra effort on your part!

That’s why we’ve created this eco-friendly grocery list as a way to ensure that you avoid unnecessary plastic packaging and waste at the grocery store.

How to Shop for Plastic-free Groceries

plastic-free grocery

Make Plastic-free Groceries a Thing of the Past with These Shopping Essentials

In order to minimize your carbon footprint, you’ll need a few key items for your first plastic-free grocery trip. Here are my top recommendations. Aim for natural fibers like these cotton totes or sturdy hemp grocery bags.

Here is a small business worth supporting! The Hemp Go Green Store! Buy Once and Use forever!

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Plastic-free groceries

Tips for Shopping for Plastic-Free Groceries

Getting zero-waste grocery shopping down can be tricky. There are just so many products packaged in plastic! We’ve broken down some of our best tips for going plastic-free at home.

1) Don’t worry about it. It’s impossible to go 100% plastic-free, but there are lots of ways you can cut back on your consumption without feeling like you need a Ph.D. in alternative packaging options.

2) Carry a reusable bag: You never know when you might find yourself wanting (or needing!) more veggies or fruit than what’s currently in your fridge, and if that happens a fresh, unwrapped apple can come in pretty handy! Be on the lookout for greenwashing. Some companies use manipulative marketing to scam buyers into buying “eco-friendly products” that aren’t really eco-friendly.

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plastic-free produce

Plastic-free Produce isn’t just for Plastic-Free July!

Practice minimalist thinking when you are buying food. Keep it simple, fresh, and waste free as often as possible.

Whether you buy your produce from a local farmers’ market or from a chain supermarket, it’s best to purchase fruits and vegetables that have been grown or produced locally.

Produce shipped in from out of state or country often comes in plastic packaging that can be difficult to recycle properly. To ensure you’re reducing your environmental impact, choose locally grown produce whenever possible.

TFH’s Guide to Seasonal Foods
Buying seasonal foods can be a great way to support local growers, and get nutrient-dense produce. Here is the guide to shopping in season.
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Another reason to buy locally grown produce is that it helps you to eat in season. Eating foods that are in season is important. Not only do you get the maximum nutrients during peak season, but the flavors are at their best as well.

Foods grown out of season are picked too soon, stored for longer periods of time, and shipped longer distances. Choosing foods that are grown locally and eating them in season is a big part of sustainable living.

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plastic-free meats and seafoods

Plastic-free Meats and Seafood

Don’t be scared of fish and seafood—just buy them frozen! It’s cheaper, better for you, and often better quality. When buying fish at a grocery store, it will often be served on a Styrofoam tray with plastic wrap around it.

Instead of buying your fish like that (especially if you aren’t eating it right away), ask if they have any already cleaned. If they don’t, you can tell them what you are looking for (say sole or cod) and ask if there is any way they could save it for you wrapped in butcher paper or even tin foil.

Most local grocery stores have fresh local caught fish at the butcher’s counter. More grocers are beginning to look to local farmers for pastured meats, eggs, and cheeses as well. I recommend asking the butcher and produce managers for these items if your store doesn’t have these options.

The demand for fresh and local foods will benefit the community and farm families. It is a win-win!

bulk groceries

Bulk Plastic-free Groceries

Bulk grocery shopping is a great way to cut down on plastic waste and get your grocery fix for less. If you can’t find a store near you that offers bulk items, try buying online. For example, Sun Organic Farm is one of many companies offering gluten-free, organic ingredients in bulk.

While it may take time to buy more at once—you’ll have to portion them out into smaller containers—and they may not be as fresh as regular food items (bulk foods often aren’t refrigerated), it’s still good for your budget and better for your wallet!

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But, What about Plastic-free Packaged Foods?

It is very hard to pass up on processed and packaged foods 100% of the time. However, plastic-free shopping will help you resist the urge to consume so many unhealthy processed foods. Here are some tips for shopping for plastic-free packaged products:

Look for snacks, pasta, eggs, butter, etc. packaged in cardboard without plastic windows or liners. Opt for cans instead of plastic, and cardboard boxes instead of cans for tomatoes, soups, etc. Choose glass jars of sauces and condiments over their plastic-bottled competitors.

These tips will help you choose better quality foods, and therefore lead to a healthier, happier you!

Try This Healthy Grocery List to Cut Back on Plastic Waste:

This is a great go-to list for weekly grocery shopping. You will find that shopping with this list will stock your kitchen with everything you need to cook nutrient-dense meals every day of the week.

Whether you are a minimalist cook or enjoy fancier dinners, there are lots of options of meals with these basic, nutritious ingredients. Try to choose a variety of vegetables and fruits from week to week. 

Do you best to buy organic, seasonal produce whenever possible. If you buy in bulk, then this weekly grocery list will be shorter!

  • Organic Red potatoes
  • Organic sweet potatoes
  • red, white, and yellow onions
  • Garlic
  • Greens: Kale, herbs, Spinach, Romaine, Avocados, Asparagus, Broccoli
  • Reds: peppers, beets, pomegranate, strawberries, raspberries, 
  • Oranges: carrots, peppers, peaches, 
  • Blues and Purples: berries, grapes, blackberries, purple potatoes
  • Citrus fruits: Lemon, Limes, Oranges, Grapefruits
  • Mushrooms
  • Fresh fish and pastured chicken- We buy ours locally at Fuster Cluck Farm in North Carolina!
  • Beans, Rice, Quinoa, Popcorn
  • Nuts, seeds, dried fruits
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Coconut oil, Spices and Herbs
  • Canned Tomatoes
  • Gluten-free Pasta
  • Plant-based Milk or nuts to prepare your own

Here is one alternative to single-use plastics that you can use many different ways! Beeswax wraps!

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This post was all about how to make less waste and shop plastic-free at the grocery store!

Try this plastic-free food storage idea for storing leftovers and lunches!

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Learn More About Sustainability

Knowing your food and taking responsibility for how it is produced is the best way to make a positive ecological impact.

You are reducing waste and resources while relying less on conventional agriculture and its use of pesticides and herbicides like glyphosate.

Most importantly, you will be eating the healthiest way possible!

Find out how to be more self-sufficient by gardening for sustainability.

Are you on a self-sufficient journey?

Have you checked these essential gardening components off the list, yet? I would love to hear how it is going! Let me know about how gardening for self-sufficiency is working for you and your tribe by commenting below.


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We make decisions on the kind of life we want to live everyday.

Those decisions become habits. Create healthy habits today for a healthy mind and body tomorrow.

Learn tips to make better choices, live more sustainably, and make a difference in your health future and the health of our communities, country, and planet.

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