Thursday, February 10, 2011

One hour in the health food isle

So last Saturday I decided to take the plunge and check out what to expect during my week of veganism.  The Kroger two blocks from my house does not have a huge selection so I decided to check out the Barboursville store, which has an entire section dedicated to health food nuts. 

At first it was overwhelming, surprisingly there were a lot of options for different products for people on special diets.  Some things didn't contain milk, some didn't have meat products, others gluten free, etc.  The trick was to figure out which didn't contain animal products, and to my dismay most of them didn't say VEGAN in big red letters across the front of the package.  So I started off easy with some plain old low fat soy milk, which I have had before and it's not too bad, lasts a really long time, and works great on cereal.  I also picked up some soy coffee creamer and then headed over to my favorite.....the cheeses!  Next came the frozen food.  After reading the labels very carefully I did find several frozen meal type thing like burritos and pizza.  I also spotted a coconut milk vegan German chocolate cake ice cream which I was extremely excited about, even though it was close to $6 for a pint. 

The dry goods were a little easy to spot because they contained less ingredients, and to my delight some products like Annie Chun's had a fancy line of symbols on the bottom of the box.  So I went on looking for the "vegan mark" and filled up my basket.

Towards the end of my shopping trip spotting products was already becoming easier and I did pick up a few things that I would have probably wanted to try without even considering that they were vegan.  So I headed to the self check out isle, I didn't want a cashier to think I was some kind of freak, and my bill totalled right around $70 for the "base" groceries for my week of eating vegan.  Once we set a date I will head back for fresh produce, which will hopefully be a pretty easy shopping trip.

When I got home the first thing I did was taste a slice of the "cheddar" vegan veggie cheese, and to my surprise, while it did not at all taste like cheddar, it did taste just like a plain old slice of American cheese with just a hint of "veggie" at the end.  If you put it in between two slices of bread, which is not vegan, you probably would think you were eating a regular old grilled cheese sandwich.  I put off trying anything else because I didn't want to scare myself, because now, with a $70 investment I am dedicated to trying this!