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The Latest News from Wheatsville

Grocery News

Our grocery shelves are packed with food you love. We know you love them because you are ones who have helped choose what goes on our shelves. Yes, we carry a wide selection of raw, gluten free, vegan, paleo friendly, and alternative items but we go to great effort to stock traditional favorites and pantry staples. We want this to be your one-stop grocery.

We work hard to offer great prices on high-quality products – look for Co+op Deal signs for items on sale and Owner Deal signs for special prices just for Owners. On a budget? Look for the purple Co+op Basics signs on products at rock bottom prices. Didn’t find what you needed? Make a request on our wishlist or ask us to place a special order for you. Your interaction determines what we buy - so speak up! We love to hear from you.

MACARONI AND CHEESE!

At my house, our favorite go-to easy dinner on a busy night is always boxed macaroni & cheese.  Wheatsville has something for EVERYONE!

  • Daiya Cheezy Mac is free from dairy and gluten.  This deluxe style is the easiest to prepare, the cheese sauce is in the pouch, just add to cooked pasta.  We have Deluxe Cheddar and White Cheddar with Veggies!
  • Earth Balance mac & cheeses are the closest vegan versions of that classic dinner.  Available in Cheddar, White Cheddar and Gluten Free Cheddar.
  • So Delicious is the newest player of vegan boxed mac & cheese. They're now making Cheddar and Pizza flavors!
  • For dairy lovers, we have new Field Day mac and cheese in White Cheddar and Mild Cheddar.
  • Back to Nature makes a darn good mac & cheese with fun shapes like Alphabets and Crazy Bugs.  This is my school aged daughter's absolute favorite!
  • Of course we couldn't leave our beloved Annie's Homegrown Mac & Cheese with dozens of varieties.

...I think my water is boiling, time for a mac & cheese dinner.  Time to heat up the veggies and get that macaroni cheesy!

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Paleo On the Go Made Easy

One of the biggest food trends to grain traction over the past couple of years, “Paleo” is a nutrient-dense diet focused on the consumption of (preferably) pasture-raised meats; fish; seasonal, organic, and local vegetables and fruit; starch in the form of roots and tubers; and fats from non-industrially-processed seed oils (refined sugars or grains are out).

Paleo is a diet with a very heavy emphasis on whole food eating, to the near complete exclusion of any processed foods. It’s an “inconvenient” diet by nature; working from scratch with whole ingredients often means a fair amount of time spent planning, prepping, and cooking. While a worthwhile dietary endeavor to undertake, one trade-off is that it can be time-consuming.

Followers of Paleo-style diets have learned to primarily shop the grocery store perimeters (where the heaviest concentrations of whole foods, especially meat and produce, can be found), shunning the center store aisles, which have traditionally been filled with the types of processed products that fall outside the guidelines of this type of diet. However, Paleo-friendly foods have recently begun to emerge in packaged forms; foods which— whether you’re a Paleo purist or maintain a little more wiggle room in your diet— can considerably ease the convenience factor and even enhance the variety and options in your diet.

Wheatsville recently added dedicated Paleo sections in each of our stores’ Grocery departments (our over-aisle signs can assist in locating these sections); what follows are some highlights from the unique selection of items that can be found on those shelves:

Local! Hopper Crunch Granola
Cranberry Almond, Toasted Coconut, Cacao Cayenne

Unlike traditional granola, these crunchy treats are grain-free and instead utilize a base of crunchy nuts, seeds, and fruit. Uniquely, Hopper Crunch is made with cricket flour: a fantastically sustainable alternative source of protein and micronutrients offering  9 grams of protein per serving.

Local! Must B Nutty Almond Flour Tortillas
So soft, fluffy, and pliable, these nut-based wraps give even the best traditional flour tortillas a run for their money. Pair with some local cage-free eggs and local sugar-free bacon from Pederson Farms (in our Meat department) and quit missing breakfast tacos. (Must B Nutty tortillas are perishable and can be found our Refrigerated department.)

Local! EPIC Snacks
Grass-fed, Pasture raised, and Free Range Protein Bars, Bites, and Trail Packs
EPIC offers a variety of snacks primarily composed of responsibly sourced proteins, including Bison, Beef, Pork, Chicken, Lamb, and Turkey, perfect for snacking on the go. The new Chicken Sriracha Bar quickly became a staff favorite.

Pacific Foods Organic Bone Broths & Stocks
Turkey, Chicken

When short on the hours required to make a rich bone broth from scratch, Pacific’s ready to use versions are a great stand-in. Use in recipes as you would normal broths and stocks, or drink as a rich, warming beverage for a light meal or snack.

Bob’s Red Mill
Almond Meal, Coconut Flour, Hazelnut Meal
Skip the hunt through the crowded baking aisle with our top-selling grain-free flours all in one spot.

Purity Farms Grass-fed Ghee
Ready-to-use clarified butter perfect for a variety of applications. Tip: since clarified butter has had the milk solids removed, it doesn’t require refrigeration, even after opening.

Raw Organic Grassfed Whey
Add a punch of protein to smoothies, grain-free pancakes, and more with this high quality, super clean whey protein powder.

Coconut Secret
Garlic Sauce, Teriyaki Sauce
Completely soy-free, these sauces get their familiar soy-like flavor from coconut aminos instead. Perfect for a quick stir-fry.

Fatworks Foods
Grass-fed Beef Tallow, Pasture-raised Pork Lard
High quality humanely raised animal fats ideal for sautéing, frying, and other uses. Where the flavor of coconut oil might be intrusive, Fatworks Foods offers excellent alternatives.

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Local Vendor Focus: Good Flow Honey

How long have you been in the honey business and what prompted you to start?
We started selling honey in 1975. We only had a few hives, but they produced enough of a surplus for us to be able to sell some honey.

Do you have a favorite variety of honey?
The best honey is the stuff you get to dip into when you are extracting it fresh off the hives.

What is your best selling honey?
Wildflower.

How long have you been selling honey to Wheatsville?
Wheatsville has been carrying our honey since the beginning. We used to take in a drum, turn it on its side and let people bottle out of it. Wheatsville and Woody Hills Co-op were our first customers. And as I recall, our very first customer was a food-buying club started by the same people who started Wheatsville. We used to deliver to them on a street corner.

How often do you get stung?
It depends on what we are doing, but it usually happens in the spring when it is still cold. They don’t like having the roof taken off and if you get someone mad at you there is a good chance you’ll get a lot of stings from that one and friends.

Does it still hurt a lot after all of these years?
No, it is just a minor irritation. Old-timers used to come in for stings to help with rheumatism and arthritis, but if you are allergic you better stay away.

What is the most unusual way that you’ve heard of Good Flow honey being used?
Some people use it in their hair or as a mask on their face. One person who is a pedicurist uses it for his treatment on feet.

What is one thing about honey or bees that most people might not know?
They have an incredible communications system based on the chemicals in their pheromones.

Will Good Flow Juice ever be available again? (Shoppers still ask every few weeks when your juice will return!)
Perseverance furthers as they say. We have been working at it steadily since we were forced to shut down because of new FDA regulations in 2008, and this might even be the year when it happens. We are getting close.

What’s your favorite recipe that features honey?
Bar-b-que sauce!

EZ BBQ Sauce
1/2 cup organic ketchup
1/4 cup Good Flow honey
1 TBS Bragg’s Liquid Aminos or soy sauce
1 tsp yellow mustard
1 tsp chili powder (or more to taste)
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper

Directions
Mix all ingredients together. Baste onto meat, tofu or tempeh before cooking or use as a dip. Serves 6

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Local Vendor Focus: SRSLY Chocolate

SRSLY Chocolate (pronounced seriously) is our Vendor Focus for February, just the right company to see more of during the Month of Love. Bob and Robin Williamson are the owners of SRSLY Chocolate, a bean to bar chocolate company located right here in Austin, TX! Bob and Robin were nice enough to answer some questions about their lovely chocolates!

How did you get started making chocolate?
Bob used to bake baguettes and pastries for the farmers markets in Tallahassee, FL. One day, he decided to make chocolate from scratch for a croissant recipe. After pulsing cacao nibs in a food processor and watching the transformation to chocolate, he was hooked. From that moment onward, we’ve focused on making really great handcrafted bean to bar chocolate.
With a commitment to produce the finest chocolate in a sustainable manner, we use organic & fair trade cacao and cane sugar to handcraft each bar. Our cacao comes from a cooperative in the Dominican Republic that reinvests back into the community, building roads, clinics and schools. Our cacao beans are sorted, roasted, cracked, winnowed and stone ground in granite mills to produce an elegant and assertive chocolate. Gentle, low and slow roasting develops great flavor while preserving delicate aromas. Stone ground chocolate has a rustic texture that reminds us of its origin. Each bar is hand wrapped with love We’re serious about what we do!

What is your favorite flavor?
Bob: Oaxacan Espresso. Cacao and chilies have been used together for millennia. This ancient combination is exciting and intriguing in our bar. Add a little locally roasted coffee from our friends at Third Coast Coffee and you’ve got a really fantastic chocolate bar that incorporates and highlights its rich Mesoamerican history with local ingredients.

Robin: 70%. Honestly each flavor has gone through a phase of being my favorite at one point or another. I’ll get stuck on one for about five months and then rediscover a new one and then get hooked on that! Right now I’m finding myself reaching for the 70% plain dark a lot more. It’s a perfect match to whatever mood I find myself in. It’s rich, dark slightly malty fruity flavor really hits the spot!
 
Is there an unusual way to use your chocolate bars?
I think there’s someone in Austin that does chocolate massage… whatever that is. So yeah, I’d think that qualifies as unusual. But really, chocolate is an amazingly versatile thing. You can eat it in so many forms from a simple, elegant chocolate bar to rich luscious hot chocolate to chocolate brownies. Chocolate is great with anything!
 
Are there any new flavors on the horizon?
Yes... too many really. In a perfect world, I’d release a new flavor every week, ad infinitum. But really, a new flavor every few months is the way to go. We’ve been working with local Texas olive oil for a bar. Local is a big focus for us. It’s really hard to take cacao that’s grown two thousand miles away, preserve its sense of terroir and try to synthesize it with its production here in Texas. What else? Halvah. Cardamom and Pistachio. Texas Lavender. Keep your eyes peeled for some really interesting stuff.
 
Why did you move from Florida to Texas?
Because everything is better in Texas! But really, Robin used to live here in Austin about six years ago. She loved it and when I came to visit, I fell in love instantly. No offense to our Floridian brethren. Austin’s got a great food scene and really great citizens who help foster a supportive environment. It called out to us like it has to so many new residents. We’re pumped to be a part of it!
 
Where do you see SRSLY in five years?
We see ourselves as a regional chocolate maker with deep Texas roots providing one of a kind handcrafted chocolate made with organic and ethically sourced cacao. Our vision has us doing a couple of really great things in 2019: working directly with cacao farmers, building our own facility, employing fellow Austinites. It’s a long road but we’re up to task!

CLASS:  Chocolate Making
Instructor:  Bob Williamson
DATE:  Saturday, February 7
TIME:  1pm-3pm
COST:  $35
WHERE:  4001 South Lamar Community Room
RSVP:  http://wheatsvillechocolatemaking.eventbrite.com

Ever wondered how chocolate was made? Learn how cacao is transformed into chocolate with SRSLY chocolate’s own Bob Williamson. Watch as cacao beans are cracked, winnowed and refined into chocolate. Taste some fantastic chocolates from SRSLY chocolate while we learn about cacao’s history and impact, past and present. Learn the basics, ask some questions and go home with a bar of fine flavor craft chocolate!

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Cooking Wings for Your Football Party

Click for Game Day Party Planner and Snack Ideas!

Wings Know How

Few things in life say football and party like chicken wings. Hot wings are a staple menu item in sports bars all over the US and deep frying or roasting are the most popular methods of cooking wings. Some BBQ joints offer smoked wings.

I think wings have been relegated to sports bars and wing shops for far too long—wings are amenable to many flavor profiles and cooking methods. I don’t see any reason why you couldn’t braise them and let them crisp up in the pan! I don’t follow a recipe but boldly mix flavors and techniques to achieve wings that are specialized beyond the humble sports bar wings. Here are some ideas to fix wings your own way.

Rubbing and Marinating

The great thing about chicken wings is they can take more intense flavors. You can easily use rubs and marinades that are designed more for red meat and pork rather than poultry.

Rubs

Tony Chachere’s Original Creole Seasoning  is what I use the most for a wing rub. It has great flavor, no MSG, and it is always in my kitchen. Also carried here at Wheatsville, The Paleo Powder is a no-gluten no-MSG product made here in Texas, and the Salt Lick makes a couple of rub options. Lemon Pepper is another great flavor.

Marinades

Like rubs, you can use just about anything for marinating wings. Try one of the Wheatsville Marinades like Teriyaki or Mojo. Howard Miller, S. Lamar Meat Dept. Supervisor, likes to mix ranch dressing or buttermilk with Yellowbird Sauce.

Sauce

I like to make a kitchen sink sort of sauce, but Sriracha is pretty much always an ingredient. Vinegar is always a good addition, along with some sort of fat. I usually use a mild oil like canola, but butter is the traditional way to go. I then add a little mustard and honey and start adding hot sauces like Yellowbird.

If you don’t want to make your own sauce, there are plenty of excellent premade sauces. I really like the Stubb’s Wing Sauce. The Texas Texas Dang Good Sauce is an all around good sauce for anything and goes well with wings.

Bringing It All Together

If you are deep frying wings, use a rub, fry them, and then toss them in sauce,
but I usually roast them. I rub them and put them in the oven without sauce until they start to dry out, about 10 minutes, then I start basting them. I remove them from the oven and toss them in sauce several times during cooking. 
You can also dredge them in a flour and rub mixture and just let them be in the oven. The flour gives them a nice crust that is like fried chicken. The rub added to the flour kicks up the flavor.

I cook them for no less than 45 minutes at 375°– 400° F, but I open the oven four times to baste and my family likes a little carbon on their wings. If you leave the oven closed, use the lower temperature for a few less minutes.

Sometimes having loose suggestions rather than a set recipe is intimidating but wings can be a great way to stretch out and share some adventure with your family and friends—especially with beer and sports!

Howard’s Yellowbird Buffalo Wings

1 lb chicken wings, separated at joints, discard the tips
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/3 cup ranch dressing
several squirts of Yellowbird Habanero Sauce
¾ cup flour
½ teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon onion powder

Mix the butter, ranch dressing, and Yellowbird sauce. Coat the wings and let the wings marinade in the mixture for a couple hours in the fridge in a large storage bag.

Preheat Oven to 425°F.

Coat wings with with seasoned flour (flour, salt,  black pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder) and arrange a single layer of wings on a lightly greased baking sheet. Adorn each wing with a little melted butter.

Bake in the preheated oven until the chicken is no longer pink in the center, and crispy on the outside, about 35-45 minutes. Turn the wings over halfway during cooking so they cook evenly.

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Local Connection: Yellowbird Sauce

Having been born in August in Texas, I am well aware of how high the temperatures get around here. I have always spent my birthday in pursuit of cooling down in a chilly pool or movie theater. However some people prefer to chase the heat all the way to the world’s largest gathering of heat-seekers: The Austin Chronicle Hot Sauce Festival. Established in 1990, the event draws as many as 15,000 spectators and more than 350 entries every year. This year The Austin Chronicle Hot Sauce Festival will take place on Sunday, August 24 at Fiesta Gardens on what is sure to be a scorching hot summer day. George Milton, the hot sauce mad scientist behind Yellowbird Sauce, will be there representing what has become the most popular hot sauce at Wheatsville.

Since we started carrying it in spring of 2013, the fanaticism for the sauce has been a force to be reckoned with. People love the well balanced flavors of carrots, garlic, onions, limes and tangerines with a nice kick from spicy habanero peppers. Multiple sriracha shortages and an increased interest in foods made without preservatives, meant that the arrival of Yellowbird in Austin couldn’t be better timed.  With his tireless girlfriend, Erin Link, by his side creating the brand design and managing all the behind the scenes work, Yellowbird George has built the business from the ground up thanks to support from the enthusiastic community of pepper fanatics. After media nods from Thrillist.com and Bon Appétit magazine, the Bird enjoyed a new audience eager for a spicy bottle of Texas goodness to be shipped directly around the country.

At Wheatsville, we appreciate the thought and care that George puts into his company and product, despite his extremely full schedule. Several months ago he had to make a tough decision on whether to keep the sauce in plastic bottles but add preservatives for health code reasons or to move to glass bottles and maintain the integrity of the ingredients. Fans were relieved that the formula stayed the same and I have to say, the glass bottles are snazzy! Based on feedback from customers and retailers like us, George recently rolled out a “baby bird” sized 5 oz bottle of sauce to compliment the larger 12 oz size. There are other plans in the works, so keep an eye out for new developments. In the meantime, enjoy the heat if you can and we’ll see you at the Hot Sauce Festival! (I will be at the ice skating rink).

Salty Bird

Recipe by Addie Broyles

1/2 cup kosher salt
5 tsp Yellowbird Sauce

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a small bowl, thoroughly mix together salt and hot sauce. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spread the salt/hot sauce mixture in a thin layer.
Turn off the heat and place the baking sheet in the oven. Every so often, stir the salt to help break up the clumps. Leave for several hours or overnight. Once the salt is dry, store in an airtight, glass container. Turns a Salty Dog into a Salty Bird— plus the jars of spicy salt make great gifts.

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Hemp History Week Recipe from local author Mariann Garner-Wizard

In support of Hemp History week, consider ordering a copy of Austin author Mariann Garner-Wizard’s book Hempseed Food: the REAL Secret Ingredient for Health & Happiness. More than a cookbook, Hempseed Food provides historical and nutritional information on the versatile hempseed along with delicious recipes. To order Hempseed Food visit Lulu.com

Mariann is a longtime Wheatsville owner who was delighted to share one of her favorite recipes from her book with us.

Freedom Fighter Zucchini Hemp Casserole (great for garden vegetables and herbs)

  • 3-5 zukes, sliced in 1/8 in rounds:
  • 2 T. safflower or sunflower oil
  • salt & black pepper to taste
  • 1/4 large onion, coarsely chopped
  • 2 T. ground toasted Hempseed
  • basil, oregano, thyme and/or marjoram to taste
  • 1/3 C. Italian-flavored bread crumbs
  • 1 large tomato, or one can cooked, peeled, no-salt-added tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/4 Bell pepper, diced
  • 1 T. dairy butter

Put oil in ovenproof casserole dish. Cover bottom with a layer of sliced zucchini. Season lightly. Sprinkle chopped onion over zucchini. Add another layer of zukes and more seasoning. Cover with tomato pieces. Sprinkle ground toasted Hempseed and more herbs over tomato. Add a third layer of zucchini, season sparingly. Layer with Bell pepper pieces and more salt, pepper, and/or herbs. Repeat until all ingredients are used. Cover and bake at 350°  for 35-40 minutes (until zukes are tender). Remove cover, top with bread crumbs, dot with butter, increase heat to 375°, and bake 5 minutes more to brown.

Alternatives

  1. For a main dish, add 1 C. cooked, chopped chicken to first layer, 1 C. fresh, frozen or drained canned corn to second layer, and 2 chopped Serrano peppers to third layer. Spicy!
  2. Substitute yellow or white squash for zucchini or use them mixed together.
  3. Omit tomato. Add 1/2 C. shredded cheese to each layer (cheddar mozzarella, and/or Colby are good).

recipe reprinted with permission by the author

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Local Vendor Focus: Thunderbird Energetica/EPIC

I recently interviewed Taylor Collins and Kate Forrest, founders of Thunderbird Energetica and EPIC.As well as producing healthy, nutritious foods, they are two of the nicest people you’ll ever meet!—Adrienne

Tell us about how Thunderbird Energetica got started.

The first Thunderbird Energetica bar was created to help Katie heal from a serious inflammatory injury of her knee. She was training for the Kona Ironman World Championship race and unable to run or bike due to pain. We took a step back and considered what types of food we were consuming and how this might contribute to inflammation. We ended up eliminating inflammatory foods from our diets and created the Cherry Walnut Crunch bar. We loaded it with natures most potent anti-inflammatory ingredients (Turmeric, Cherries, buckwheat) just for Katie. Within a few weeks her knee was significantly better and she was 100% back to training. We were so excited about this amazing creation that we decided to start selling the bar locally.

What is your favorite flavor?

Katie’s favorite flavor is Bison Bacon Cranberry. Taylor’s  favorite flavor is Almond Cookie Pow

How did Epic Bars get started?

The EPIC bar idea came to us during an extended camping trip in West Texas. After days of eating only sugar based, high carb camp food, we were craving something savory and high in protein and fat. We were frustrated that all the “protein” bars we carried were made of heavily processed isolates and syrups. We wanted to make a high quality, portable protein snack that was made of whole foods. We decided that the best way to do this was through grass fed animal protein (just like our ancestors ate). We started experimenting with making bacon jerky for 100 mile bike rides and we really liked the way our body felt. It was clear that we needed to invent this bar that could only be described as EPIC.

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