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Plastic-Free Food Shopping

Plastic-free grocery shopping in a supermarket can be a challenge and you can feel overwhelmed that everything is in plastic or packaging. Here are some tips to overcome this which will require some changes in your shopping habits and to try different things out:

Pace yourself.

First of all go shopping and buy what you usually do, then identify all the items that come in plastic and see what switches are possible doing a section at a time- don’t try and do it all at once as it is overwhelming.


Fruit & Veg


  • Is there a local fruit and veg shop in your area or a veg box scheme? 
    • If these are too expensive what does your supermarket or shop sell that is plastic-free? Go and look what is available and then plan your meals around this rather than vice versa which is harder?

Meat, fish & cheese 

Many people think eating fish is better for the environment and their health than eating meat


It is not just the plastic packaging on fish which is problematic. Industrial fishing has a very bad record for dumping fishing nets in the ocean. These are known as ghost gear. 

Ghost gear is estimated to make up 10% of ocean plastic pollution. One study found that 70% (by weight) of macroplastics (in excess of 20cm) found floating on the surface of the ocean was fishing related.


And in terms of health, Fish also has traces of plastic in it due to the volumes in the ocean. 

  • Tip: Cut done on you fish consumption or ask for line-caught fish where possible

Worldwide listings:


Hippie Haven

  • Take your jars with you to the zero waste shop to save you time putting the bags into jars when you get home and spilling it everywhere (maybe that is only me)


Dried Goods 

Zero waste shops are the best place to find dried goods from rice and pasta to lentils and spices. 

  • Look for a zero waste shop near you on these sites:
  • And if you don’t have one in your area, ask your local health food shop to see what they can stock
  • There are many even online now too 

UK listings

UK zero waste shop map

Zero waste near me


Milk, Juice & Bread 

  • Do you have a local milkman who can do a delivery of milk and fruit juice? 
  • Is there a local bakery to buy bread loose
  • What about trying out making your own?
  • Here are some plant-based mylk recipes – once you get the principle of it (soak the grains, nuts or seeds in water- drain, blend with water and sieve you can get experimental and try different combinations). Try oat milk like Oatly or other dairy-free milks.
  • Look into a second-hand bread-maker for easy bread baking or I like making flatbreads which don’t require the kneading such as this buckwheat flatbread or this easy flatbread recipe.

Want these tips all in one place? Ready to try a 30 day plastic challenge so you can  reduce plastics gradually and not feel overwhelmed? Download the free 30-day challenge.

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