DAY 1: Bulk Buying 101 Crash Course | Vegetarian Times Skip to main content

DAY 1: Bulk Buying 101 Crash Course

DAY 1: Bulk Buying 101 Crash Course

Today officially kicks off VT's 7-Day Bulk Buying 101 Crash Course right here on the Veg Daily Blog! Even if you’ve never stepped foot in the bulk bin aisles, seven days from now you’ll be shopping—and cooking—smarter than ever before.

Seeing that you showed up on time for the first lesson, you probably caught the Bulk Buying 101 feature in the November issue of Vegetarian Times. Just in case you missed it, you can catch up by reading the story online. To get the most out of this crash course, pretty please with an organic cherry on top don’t skip this required reading, which includes 6 essential dos and don’ts to help you make the most of your next bulk foods shopping trip, plus four bulk-friendly recipes to inspire your cooking. (Hint: there may even be pop quizzes along the way—wink, wink!)

Before we get started with our first lesson—a super fun Bulk Buying 101 video starring the celebrated Spork Foods sisters Heather Goldberg and Jenny Engel—here’s a quick look ahead at our 7-day agenda:

Day 1     VIDEO: Bulk Buying 101 with the Spork Foods sisters
Day 2     Gems of the Bulk Foods Aisle
Day 3     VIDEO: How to Store Bulk Bin Ingredients with the Spork Foods sisters
Day 4     5 Creative Reuse Ideas for Plastic Produce Bags
Day 5     VIDEO: How to make Creamy Vegan Pistachio Pesto over Brown Rice with the Spork Foods sisters
Day 6     Organic chef Ani Phyo’s Bulk-Friendly Fudge Brownies Recipe
Day 7     No Expiration Date, No Problem: Shelf-Life Recommendations for Bulk Ingredients

Ready for today's vid? Sit back, relax, and tune in below to learn all about Heather and Jenny's favorite items to buy in the bulk bins, how to navigate the bulk bin aisles, the cost savings and eco-benefits of buying in bulk, and the 4 rules of bulk bin etiquette. After watching, be sure to join our class discussion below!

We hope you enjoyed Day 1 of our 7-Day Bulk Buying Crash Course!  Check out today's discussion questions, and don't be shy about asking any question you want answered during our crash course below!

Today's discussion questions:

1. Have you been shopping in the bulk bins for years or are you a bulk-bin newbie?

2. What are your favorite items to buy in the bulk bins?

3. Do you have any additional bulk bin etiquette tips to share?

 Join the conversation below!

Comments on this Blog

I shop bulk bins frequently. The ladies did a great job of introducing newbies to the scenario. Looking forward to more tips as we go through the week.

I love to buy raw almonds, quinoa, walnuts, lentils, and beans in bulk. Also, I buy spices in bulk. I love that I can make recipes with lots of spices without having to buy bottles of each spice.

I have been shopping in the bulk bin section for a long time! My favorite/most frequently bought items are rice, beans, nuts, and raisins! I don't like to use the tags in the bulk bin section because I will just accumulate them at my house and I don't use them very often afterwards. So what my family does is bring a Sharpie or a permanent marker with us when we shop at the bulk bins to write on the bags (we also reuse bulk bin bags).

Love buying in bulk! I bring along a sharpie, some sticky labels, reused ziploc-type bags, reused plastic and glass containers (have containers weighed and labeled at checkout first). Love this blog!

I wished I could go to that store! But unfortunately I live in the netherlands and I´ve never seen a store like bulk anywhere...

I'm a newbie. I usually buy almonds, walnuts and pecans. Now that I am into healthy eating I will visit the bulk bin more often. Trying to get my family to eat quinoa now. When I try something new I integrate it into my recipe w/o letting them know. Than I tell them what I tried out and they really like it.

I love bulk bin shopping! I normally buy my beans and popcorn in bulk but I always try a mystery item that just looks good. I agree with what the ladies presented concerning the rules of etiquette. Nothing turns me off more than someone letting their child reach into a bin and grab what they want. I also want to add, do not rush people in the bulk section, be patient and kind when the bin you need is being used. They may be a bulk-bin newbie and it takes time to get used to some of the free flowing bins and figuring out how much product you may need.

I rarely buy in bulk because I think I won't use the items before they go bad. This was very informative, looking forward to the rest of the series...Thanks so much.

Don't hog the pen or pencil the store puts out to mark down item numbers.

I used to love shopping the bulk bins, until I watched a woman reach into the bulk bin with her bare hands, grab a dried mango and eat it. I was suddenly aware of the germs that could be lurking in the bulk bins.

Never forget to write down your PLUs! There's literally thousands of PLUs in the store and the ones from the bulk bins are the hardest to memorize! It drives us cashiers crazy when you bring bulk items to the register with no PLUs and you've forgotten the name of the item you grabbed! Please be kind to your Whole Foods cashiers :)

Also you can usually BYO container (and tare at the register first) to avoid the single use plastic all together!