At my hometown grocery store (HEB), there is a kiosk near the meats/cheese called the Cooking Connection. It’s basically a mini kitchen (oven, stove, the whole works!) where one or two chefs work handing out samples of delicious recipes and trying to get you to buy the store brand ingredients. I’ve made it a habit of stopping by the kiosk every time I go to the store because without fail, grocery shopping makes me hungry. I usually end up buying a ton of tantalizing and junky snacks that get devoured within a day or two. But, by trying a few samples instead, I save both my wallet AND my waistline.
About three years ago, after watching Food, Inc., and having an experience with bad chicken, I gave up meat. In fact, I went full-fledge vegan. Aside from honey and the occasional fish, I didn’t touch an animal product for over a year. I eventually returned to eating meat due to health problems (low body weight, not enough protein, etc), but during my time as a vegan, I had such a fun time exploring the world of animal-free recipes, products, and blogs. **Don’t get me wrong- it is definitely possible to obtain your complete nutritional needs while following a vegan diet, but at the time it just wasn’t working for me**