Grocery Shopping GuidePreparing for or doing a Whole30® challenge, or even purchasing foods for alternative nutrition plans like Paleo can be tough when you live in a rural area and have at least a 45 minute drive one-way to a store that offers a large variety of health food options with its mainstream groceries. Even with the 3 grocery stores we have in town, running from one store to the next to find items that meet W30 standards is not desirable, especially when you have a toddler or a limited amount of time to do your grocery shopping (which we all do, I’m guessing).

Although I am not doing another Whole30 challenge right now with just under 3 weeks left until my due date, I do plan to do another one after baby arrives, and wanted to be able to have more access to foods that are either W30 compliant or fall into the Paleo-friendly categories. I also know a great many of you have considered or tried this challenge, or at least have begun making some of the diet changes that go along with this way of eating, and have possibly found it a bit overwhelming to shop for some of the ingredient-specific foods that are required. Thus, the birth of this blog post. Since there are rules with W30 that are just not that easily sustainable for every situation when you are not doing a challenge, it’s necessary to find a balance or food path that works for you and your family that mostly eliminates the foods you find to have the most adverse effects on your body. As you’ll quickly learn, these are most likely highly processed foods with higher sugar contents, but could also be those common inflammatory food categories like whole grains and dairy.

I primarily do my grocery shopping locally at Fareway and out of town at Costco. I don’t always have time to get to Costco and in some instances need things (not in bulk or that Costco doesn’t carry) in between monthly trips, so I spoke with our local Fareway team about beginning to carry some options that are in line with Whole30. This post is dedicated to helping you create a list of healthier foods and where to find them so that the thought of shopping to incorporate more whole foods into your diet may cause so much stress in your life. Not all the foods can be found locally, but if you at least know where you need to go to get them, it can help reduce your search time.

With Fareway’s recent remodel they have begun to carry a significant amount of healthier choices, but there were still some staples that I would have to go to other stores to find. They have been extremely receptive and have been able to work with me to get many of the products I requested in. I must also mention that our local Hy-Vee’s recent remodel has also been positive in the wake of carrying a greater variety and creating a small-scale Health Market within their store. There are still items that one store may be able to carry that the other isn’t, so this post will encompass products found at both places as well as other go-to foods or snacks that could help you make it through a W30 challenge or simply make better choices about what you are putting into your body.

*If you are not in the Knoxville area, but have a Fareway and Hy-Vee and want your store to begin to carry some of these products, all you have to do is ask!  They generally work very hard to serve their customers, and if they carry the product in another store will be able to get it in yours.

**By choice I do not shop at Wal-Mart so cannot attest to what products they have or if they are a better value than what I will be mentioning in this post. If you do shop there and find something to be a better value there, please share in the comments of this post for others.

Convenience Dinner/Lunch Meats (Whole30)

Applegate Organics Natural Uncured Beef Hot Dogs

Found at:  Hy-Vee, Trader Joe’s (best value)

Natural Beef Hot Dog

Applegate Organics Fire roasted Red Pepper Sausages

Found at:  Whole Foods

Roasted Red Pepper Sausage

*Our local Hy-Vee is checking to see if they can carry this product.

These are great options to have on hand for a quick meal or for grilling this spring! Just be sure to use compliant condiments if you are doing the challenge.

Plainville Farms Organic Oven Roasted Deli Turkey Breast

Found at:  Costco

Plainville Deli Turkey


Found at:  Trader Joe’s

TJ's Prosciutto

Coconut Oil (Whole30, Paleo)

Kirkland, 2-pack

Found at:  Costco

Kirkland Coconut Oil

Tropical Traditions (multiple size options)

Found at:

Tropical Traditions Coconut Oil*You can find coconut oil at any grocery store, but I have found the best value to be one of the options above.

Avocado Oil

Found at:  Many grocery stores, Costco is the best value

Avo OilAvocado oil can be used in place of any other cooking fat and has a higher smoke point so can be used safely at higher temperatures without releasing free radicals.

Ghee (clarified butter) (Whole30)

Organic Valley Purity Farms

Found at:  Fareway, Hy-Vee (alternative brand locally), Trader Joes (TJ’s brand), Whole Foods

Purity Farms GheeThe pictured brand is my favorite, but other brands are available locally as well.

*Ghee can easily be made at home from unsalted grass-fed butter as well; I prefer the convenience of purchasing it at this point in my life.

Ghee is recommended by multiple nutritional paths for many reasons, with one of the main being that it has 0 to minimal lactose & milk protein making it less inflammatory within your system than traditional butter. It is shelf-stable, promotes a healthy digestive tract and has a higher smoke point than other cooking oils reducing harmful free radicals that other oils can release when cooked at high temperatures.

Grass-fed Butter (Paleo, Whole30 if being used to make ghee)


Found at:  Fareway, Hy-Vee, Costco


Kalona Super Natural Organic Unsalted

Found at:  Hy-Vee

Kalona GF ButterAlthough grass-fed butter is not W30 compliant, it can be used to make your ghee, so I’m including it so you are aware of where it can be purchased.

Dressings & Condiments (Whole30)

Tessemae’s Dressings & Sauces (select varieties–check ingredient labels)

Found at:  Whole Foods

Tessemae'sCondiments & dressings are a must for most everyone, and finding them without additives and sugar is next to impossible unless you make your own. Again, sometimes convenience outweighs time. So this brand provides you some really good options for convenient salad dressings and sauces. Although making your own ketchup and balsamic vinaigrette is super easy and quick, so those are great ways to go for those 2 items. I found that the homemade BBQ sauce isn’t quite as close to BBQ sauce as I would prefer, so Tessamae’s won out in my book.

Coconut Secret Coconut Aminos

Found at:  Fareway, Hy-Vee

20151107_104803This is just like soy sauce, but without the soy and all the sodium. Great addition to easy stir fry dishes with fresh veggies and meat.

Frank’s Original Hot Sauce

Found at:  Any grocery store!

Frank's Hot SauceI used this often on about everything before I was able to get my hands on Tessemae’s, but even then, I still used it for quite a bit. Totally compliant and easy to find!


Tex Mex Fire Roasted Salsa

Found at:  Fareway

Tex Mex Fire Roasted Salsa

Salsa Verde

Found at:  Trader Joe’s

TJ's Salsa Verde

JD’s Salsa in Seconds

Found at:  JD’s Salsa

JD's Salsa

This salsa mix is so easy and nice to have on hand because you just mix a scoop with a can of diced tomatoes (I prefer petite cut), refrigerate, and it’s ready!  Aside from their website you may also be able to find it at vendor shows or farmer’s markets.  And of course, there are varying degrees of heat to suit your tastes.

Spaghetti or Marinara Sauce (Whole30)

Classico Spicy Red Pepper & Classico Garlic Onion

Found at:  Hy-Vee, Fareway–potentially, they carry this brand, but I haven’t seen these flavors on the shelf yet
Spaghetti Sauces

Victoria White Linen Marinara

Found at:  Costco

Victoria Spaghetti Sauce

Nut butter (Whole30)

Kirkland Almond Butter

Found at:  Costco

Kirkland Almond Butter

Justin’s Classic Almond Butter

Found at: Fareway

Justins ABSunbutter and Cashew butter are also good options and can be found at other retailers, but I’ve found these to be the best value in alternative nut butters.

Frozen Root Vegetables (Whole30)

Pure Nature Organic Rustic Roots

Found at:  Costco

Pure Nature Organic Rustic RootsYou can easily chop up fresh root veggies and create this same mix; however, sometimes when you’re in a pinch, convenience wins out. This is a great option to have available for those nights you just haven’t had time to plan or prep anything else for a side dish.

On-the-Go Foods (Whole30)

Local Beef Sticks—Cory Family Farm

Found at:  Cory Family Farm, Des Moines Farmer’s Market, both Hy-Vee stores in Ankeny

*If you live in the DSM metro area, they make regular home deliveries on Wednesdays, otherwise, you can have products delivered directly to your home or visit their farm right here in Iowa!

Cory Farms Beef SticksThese are a great snack to have on hand and completely free of chemicals, hormones, soy, sugar and other additives. I ordered them in bulk to save a little bit and just kept some of the bundles in the freezer until we were ready to use them.  They also have other beef, chicken and lamb products available.


Found at:  RxBar, use discount code Whole30 at checkout to receive 10% off your order; AmazonRX BarsBe sure to get the Whole30 compliant bars if you’re doing the challenge; not all the bars they offer are compliant.

Kombucha (Whole 30)

GT Dave’s

Found at:  Fareway, Hy-Vee

GT's KombuchaKombucha tea has a whole host of benefits, but the primary one being that it is a probiotic and helps to bring the body back into balance in many ways. Can be an option for a different beverage to drink if you are doing W30 and have gone cold turkey on cutting out sugary beverages that aren’t allowed on the plan.

Nuts (Whole30)

Kirkland Almonds & Pistachios, 3 lb bags

Found at:  Costco

Almonds Pistacios

Cashews—Raw, unsalted or salted (be sure to check labels for Whole30 compliance)

Found at:  Trader Joes (Best Value), Hy-Vee

Sugar Free Bacon  (Whole30 compliant)

Found at:  Whole Foods

*I have yet to find a local store that can carry either of these brands, but have an inquiry into our local Hy-Vee.

Pedersen’s Uncured No Sugar Hickory Smoked Bacon


Wellshire Sugar Free Dry Rubbed Bacon

20160224_192336When I first started Whole30, I was kind of amazed to find that most meats you purchase, especially bacon & lunch meat (even the natural lunchmeat that is common in our stores) has added sugar. And the bacon we have in our freezer from the locker has added sugar as well. Since we eat eggs & bacon or sausage nearly every morning at our house, I knew I needed to find compliant bacon or meat to fill in. Yes, it’s hard to find and expensive, but it’s worth it if this is one of the staples in your diet as well.

Coconut Milk (full fat) (Whole 30)

Found at:  Fareway

Thai Kitchen

Thai Kitchen Coconut Milk

Ka Me

Ka Me Coconut Milk

A Taste of Thai

A Taste of Thai Coco MilkCoconut milk is generally found with the Asian foods. The full fat version is what you want if you are using it as fat to burn for energy for your body. This may sound counterintuitive if you are not familiar with Whole30 or Paleo, so do your research if you are skeptical about beginning a high fat diet to fuel your body.


These are just a few of the products you may want to have on hand if you choose to give the Whole30 a try, or even if you are simply being more intentional about changing the way you eat.  Yes, it may be different from what you are used to and what you have learned or been taught over the years and it may be a bit more expensive, but so is living with chronic illness.  Incorporating foods into your diet that are more natural and have fewer ingredients is indeed a way to increase your longevity and vitality while on this earth, and perhaps thinking outside the box and trying a different path to nutrition could be just what you need to reduce fatigue, feel fewer aches and pains, move more freely, and have a clearer mind.


Pin It on Pinterest