Zero Waste Grocery Shopping at HEB Plus!

Hey everyone! I have been gone for awhile but I talked to a food blogger today and felt inspired to share my shopping trip with you here. I usually do my family’s grocery shopping on the weekend, and this time I was determined to really do it zero waste. One of the best practices in zero waste grocery shopping is to go prepared- know what you’re going to make for the week, know what ingredients you need to prepare those recipes, and of course bring your reusable bags!

One thing that frustrates me to no end is that most of the zero waste bloggers I follow live in cities like SF or Vancouver- even Austin has a zero waste store. But San Antonio doesn’t have a dedicated zero waste store. Whole foods is actually about 45 minutes away as well, which makes it not an option for weekly shopping. With a google search I found out that HEB off 1604 and Bandera has a bulk section so I decided to give it a shot!

I documented my entire trip in photos so that you can both see and read about my experience. Would love to answer any questions you may have 🙂

My trip wasn’t completely zero waste but it was about as close as you can get at HEB anyway.

Come along and experience HEB from a zero waste lense with me!

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HEB Plus on 1604 and Bandera Rd. in San Antonio, TX
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First thought: This place is huge! Nice landscaping 🙂

 

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Don’t forget your bags!
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I have them all separated neatly in one bag so they’re easily accessible
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got my produce! Putting them at the end so they don’t get crushed at the bottom of the cart! Some things didn’t have stickers like the tomatoes and potatoes. They also had heads of broccoli without stickers as well. My bags are hodge-podge and all different sizes and materials, some I sewed myself with scrap fabric.
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plenty of good bulk options, be sure to look on both sides because their bulk section spans two separate aisles which I didn’t realize at first
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lots
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plenty of bulk coffees as well
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Kambucha on tap- it was out of order when I was there
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Dr. Bronner’s bar soap in paper packaging
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Washing Soda and Borax for making your own laundry detergent (they also had citric acid in the bulk section with the spices)
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home!
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unpacking all the bags within the bags 🙂 This time I actually got complimented on the bags by another shopper and the checker thought my avoiding plastic was really cool as well!
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unpacked all the little bags. Some things are in paper/cardboard packaging or glass like the vinegar as HEB doesn’t have wet bulk items 😦
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this is how I store my ingredients – Mason jars or empty jam, sauce or spice jars
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Sometimes you have to get creative with storing odd sized items, the lid it’s sitting on will seal them up so they won’t get stale.
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Unfortunately you have to print out the sticker for you bulk items at HEB, but this is still way less plastic than buying everything in packaging completely. Also shown are the stickers for the produce, the beets and the kale ties and rubber bands, as well as the plastic lid from my Kambucha I bought in a bottle. I plan on using the stickers instead of tape.

There you have it- $128 to feed, shower & launder a family of 3 for a week (almost) zero waste at HEB! If you don’t have a zero waste store close to you this may be a good option for your family. Hopefully one day HEB will not require you to print out stickers for the Tare on the bulk items. If anyone knows a way they have gotten around this let me know! I will make a separate post with my ingredients and recipes so you can replicate this weekly shopping trip and grocery run soon 🙂

 

Thanks for reading and let me know what you think!

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