Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Store to Store

When Fresh and Easy Market's popped up all over the place I was very excited. I heard it was like Trader Joe's so my expectations were high. My first experience was a huge letdown. I left without buying a thing, I was revolted by their packaging and the "cafeteria food" look everything had. Their produce was expensive and the grocery section was VERY limited, I've seen gas stations with better selections. It was all very ordinary from Heinz Ketchup to Honeycombs Cereal.

I thought I would never be back, but then I started hearing things like $2.99 for a case of 24 water bottles - that's cheap! And cans of beans for a great price with nothing added- not even salt! I heard about their discounted produce and was a little skeptical because I am a freshness freak and didn't want wilted lettuce and brown bananas. But I found things like pears and avocados that were perfectly ripe. Why not let them ripen on the store shelf instead of my counter?

The best part are the coupons that are EVERYWHERE. Most of them end up being twenty percent off if you spend the right amount. This makes each water bottle only ten cents a piece and perfect for food storage. Now that I go back fairly regularly I have learned to accept the store's quirks and embrace the good deals. My latest find is their organic heavy cream. I love to whip fresh cream for waffles and the only kind I liked was at Trader Joe's- a ways away for me to skip on by. The Shamrock Farms and store brands all have a nasty plastic taste to me. Fresh and Easy has pint sized carton of cream that tastes great and is comparable in price to the plastic kind.

Please leave a comment if there is anything else I should be checking out at this green market chain. If there is a place where you have come across some great finds, shoot me and email, I will check them out and report back.


  1. Awesome post Kara. i love Fresh & Easy, but I had not discovered the organic whipping cream! How had I missed it? Thank you for making me happy: )
    Umm...i'm not the guru (you are), so i don't have much to add--but i do like Superstition Ranch Market. i think you've posted about that already?

  2. Hi! I love you blog and I also love fresh and easy! Nothing nutritious about it but they have the best price on Nutella around. Also they discount all their foods 50% on their sell by date, breads, meat, dairy, cheese, even their flowers. Best time to go is around 10 am, after they have had a chance to mark things down but before all the good stuff is gone.

  3. Fresh and Easy is growing on me also. The price of their Nutella is great. I just don't like how dimly lit it is in their parking lot at night. They are trying to save energy, but it looks closed to me when I drive up. I was just their last night and got 5 lb bags of rice for $2.00- that's cheap!

  4. i love that you posted about that place. i wondered what the draw was.
    i too had a very dissapointing experience, but since i dont live there , i didnt give it a second thought.

  5. I love this store and shop there regularly. I don't like their meats but that is really my only gripe. I love their sauces because there is nothing added and they taste great. Their pizza dough is great for when you are in a hurry, even the whole wheat. The whole wheat naan , lunch meats without nitrites, organic chips, juices, canned foods without added stuff, etc. I also love the heavy cream. The more I go, the more great things I find.

  6. Hey Kara!

    SallieB from F&E here. Just wanted to say thanks so much for giving us a second chance. It means so much to us!

    Personally - my fav products have to be the granola (esp. the french vanilla!), the entire sorbet selection, and also the creamy cilantro dressing.

    Please stay in touch, and again, thank you!


    (ps...Hi Shari!!) :)

  7. Thank you for all the great feedback. Whole wheat naan-yum! Does it really stand up to the awesome stuff in Indian restaurants? And I WAS wondering about when the best time to get a good selection on the markdowns. Now I know, I can stop by after the gym, that will work perfect.

  8. With all of the terrific information on health and nutrition that you share I was really surprised to see that you are pleased by the price of bottled water. I recommend that you investigate the subject of bottled water further to learn how tap water is regulated better, how the plastic bottles can leach chemicals into the water at high temperatures (something we desert dwellers encounter more than others), and how the economics just don't pan out no matter how "cheap" this price may feel. The chemicals found in plastic bottles also line most canned food products. I've taken to bulk, dry or bottled in glass to keep BPA out of my kitchen and wanted to share this find. Thanks for the great site!!

  9. I am working towards storing 24 cases of bottled water for food storage, in case of emergency and the water system shuts down. I keep it indoors to keep it away from the extreme heat of AZ summers. I also store the canned beans for the same purpose; they take no fuel or water and are great for emergency sustenance. I don't know what it will be like in an emergency, so I try to cover myself from every angle without going broke:)

    I agree that using plastic water bottles on a daily basis is not the best way to go, but I have a problem with the chlorine and fluoride that is in the city water too. We have a reverse osmosis system which is our most frugal alternative right now.

    Oh, boy Kari; canned food products, don't get me started. Too late. I feel a canned goods post brewing for the future.

  10. I LOVE Fresh&Easy!!!;)I am coming @ it from a diff. angle because I'm single,but I LOVE their produce,their chicken,their brown rice,& I think EVERYONE should try their Hickory BBQ Sauce...FABULOUS!!!;) Oh...& if anyone has an Ice Cream weekness(not saying that I DO..but, you know...)their price on Ben&Jerrys..REG. $2.50...OUTSTANDING!!! mmm...


It's rude to eat and run. Humor me with conversation please!

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