I'll try to list where we buy these essentials in NWA. If you're really serious about going raw, your shopping list should look a lot like this. If you're still buying packaged foods along with a few fruits and veggies, and you wonder why they go bad.. it's probably because you know you have those packaged foods to fall back on.
Try going to the grocery store and only shopping in the fruit and veggie section. That's it! See what you can come up with.
Raw nuts and seeds (in bulk at Cooks, Ozark Natural Foods or the local natural market in Rogers)
Dates (local natural market in Rogers or sams)
Cold-pressed olive oil by the gallon (Whole Foods.. we use so much of this stuff!)
Raw nori sheets (not available here.. We buy from Whole Foods or online)
If you want fresh, organic foods.. go to the farmer's markets! We thought there was only one good market in this area but actually we found several. Bentonville's market is actually great. Rogers' market is kind of small but respectable. Fayetteville's market, of course, has a much bigger selection (but we don't like to drive that far often.) Either way, you know your produce is local and organic. Support your local farmers whenever you can!
Weekly or bi-weekly buy:
your favorite fruit and veggies
Some of our usuals:
Herbs: cilantro, basil, parsley and mint (from the Asian market in Rogers.. so cheap!)
Butter lettuce (hydroponic and organic)
Romaine lettuce (organic in a bag)
Tomatoes (the only organic veg we can find at Sams)
Zucchini (for noodles)
Strawberries, blackberries and/or blueberries
Apples (prefer from farmer's market)
Pineapple (great fresh or dried.. Sadly, I've never found organic.. only stupid Dole.)
We vary fruit and veggie selections as they go in and out of season. Don't be afraid to try something new. Your meals don't have to be fancy to be tasty. Simple veggies with a raw pate can be very satisfying! Try a raw cheese or raw nut pate. Slice up some veggies. Voila... you'll have an easy dinner. Plus, these raw pates and cheeses can last for several days in the fridge. So, make a big batch of your favorite so you'll have it ready at all times. (Like today I'm having leftover sushi from yesterday. Yay!)