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 Post subject: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 15, 2012 9:29 am 
Drunk Dialed Ian MacKaye
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Okay, paradise may be an overstatement, but my Big Lots has been pretty awesome to me lately. I did a search and found minimal results so my apologies if this is a repeat. For me, personal care products seem to the priciest and most difficult to find part of veganism, so having a store 10 minutes away selling cheap stuff has proven very helpful since there have been a few rare occasions where I've run out of things and had to do without until I could make a 30 minute drive.

My last trip yielded non-tested, non-animal soap that cost $2.50 for two huge bars (which is far better than the $4 per single bar I usually pay, and I like the soap!), cheap St. Ives (animal free) lotion, a big-ass bag of Bob's flax meal for $5, 4oz of N-M vanilla for $4.75 and a few other really great odds and ends. They often have decent teas and a nice-sized selection of Bob's Red Mill for about 2/3 the price in other stores, including gluten-free stuff for you guys who need that. I've also found vegan-cruelty free shampoos and various other personal care products although I'm pretty limited on what I can buy thanks to allergies. Oh, and I noticed some Tom's toothpaste for kids but I skipped on it.

I just thought I would share because often Big Lots is NOT the first thing to come to mind when I need soap, flax, or other supplies, but they can have really good stuff. Has anyone else had any good finds there?


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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 15, 2012 10:30 am 
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Not so much in the personal care section but I usually find a decent amount in the food section. Sometimes their sweets will be vegan, cheap coconut milk, oils, pasta sauce, stir-fry sauce, pasta, etc. I have yet to find Bob's there, though.

Another great place is Ocean State Job Lot. I don't know if you have any where you are but I've been able to find a lot there. Agave for around $2, Bob's for around $2-3, and other various things.

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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 15, 2012 10:47 am 
Queen Bitch of Self-Righteous Veganville
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Yes! I have sung the praises of Big Lots many times, although make sure you know your prices because some things will randomly be really expensive (for example, those ELF mineral eyeshadow kits that Target had for $5, they had priced at $10). The last time I went, they had a whole shelf of chocolate peppermint soymilk for a little over a dollar a carton. One time, they had a bin of travel sized Nature's Gate lotions for .35 cents a bottle. Mine also has lots of tea and Bob's Red Mill most of the time, but sometimes i'm not sure how good the BRM prices are (I should write them down or something). I also got my first ever peanut chews from there.

My favorite thing though, is that (at least here) it's rarely busy because it's always a mess and all of the decor and fixtures are outdated. I know a lot of people who turn their noses up at Big Lots, so, more for me!

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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 15, 2012 10:55 am 
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I like that you can also find some of the weirdest things there. My friends and I once found Steven Seagal's Lightning Bolt Asian Experience Energy Drinks there.

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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 15, 2012 10:59 am 
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Mine is also hit or miss, (hey- it's Big Lots- that's half the fun of it)! but sometimes I can do really well. I usually hit Grocery Outlet here first, because if they get the same food items in, GO is usually priced a bit cheaper. But I've not looked at their personal care stuff in a long time...thanks for the reminder.

I also have a DVD player I bought there, and I almost always buy my printer paper there. It's way cheap, and a few stops ago, I scored paper made from sugar (!?), which seemed pretty sustainable to me. Sometimes you can find good, $3 DVD's there, too. And very occasionally they get in decent dog food for CHEAP. (It's not super high premium, but the ingredients look pretty good, and so we mix it with our premium stuff to stretch it a bit farther. Times are tough).

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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 15, 2012 1:37 pm 
Drunk Dialed Ian MacKaye
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Right now ours has a bunch of Nutrisystem stuff including cups of black bean and rice soup that my husband really loves. They also always have vegan salsa flavored tortilla chips that are Dorito-esque.

They have three packs of Color Mates nail polish right now too, which is just repackaged Diamond Cosmetics, and it's I think $2 for three bottles with some pretty cool colors.

I love Big Lots.

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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 15, 2012 1:38 pm 
Drunk Dialed Ian MacKaye
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Oh! And they always have Tom's of Maine toothpaste, Personna disposable razors, and frequently Mitchum deodorant. Score.

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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 15, 2012 2:10 pm 
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I always pass up Big Lots. I need to check it out and see what I can score!

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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 15, 2012 2:58 pm 
Drunk Dialed Ian MacKaye
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missmuffcake wrote:
I always pass up Big Lots. I need to check it out and see what I can score!


Yes! That's part of the reason I posted this. My Big Lots isn't out of my way, it's just off by itself in an old shopping center that I pass by almost daily but forget about, but when I remember to go I almost always find good stuff. I forgot to mention I got a Cuisinart miniprep food processor for $20 a few years ago! It was a refirb but I've used the shiitake out of it and it's been great, especially since it cost less than half of the standard internet price. So check the Kitchen Wares, too!


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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 15, 2012 4:58 pm 
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Big Lots, Job Lot and Ocean State Job Lot (and Building 19 for you yankees) are all places i hit on a trip home. My biggest scores have all been at Building 19- bags of japanese konnyaku sweets for 99c each ($10 at the asian store), bags of date sugar for 99c, cones of thread and yarn... OS Job Lot always has lots of accidentally vegan goodies. my faves!

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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 15, 2012 7:59 pm 
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My Big Lots frequently has cans of organic beans and other organic shelf stable goods. And you get to walk through the most amazing holiday crepe on your way to the food!

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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 15, 2012 8:46 pm 
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Wow, I have a Big Lots across the street from our new-ish apartment but I just assumed there was nothing worthwhile there! Totally going on my day off this week.

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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 15, 2012 10:38 pm 
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Sometimes there isn't anything worthwhile, but that's the fun part: it's like a treasure hunt every time. If there's nothing this week, wait a week or two and check again!

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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 9:14 am 
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i still remember my best trip to big lots, it was a few years ago, in the autumn: there was an end-cap FULL of kiss my face, jason, alba, and other vegan/cruelty-free products. i stocked up!! i was set on the kmf shave cream for a few years.

lately, my big lots has been hit-and-miss, with a lot of misses. i still like to go every few weeks, just to see what they have.

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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 9:45 am 
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Big Lots is definitely a place where I feel it's okay to look like a hoarder. I bought ten cartons of that soy milk and I was restraining myself.

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The tree is his penis // it's very exciting // when held up to his mouth // the lights are all lighting // his eyes start a-bulging // in unbridled glee // the tree is his penis // its beauty, effulgent -amandabear


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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 10:25 am 
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I love going there to buy Bob's Red Mill stuff, organic cereal, canned goods, and sometimes K-cups. Big Lots is one of my favorite places to shop. They also have these really neat storage containers with freezer gel built into them. I got one that holds a 6-oz yogurt cup with another container on top for fruit or granola. And another one that's a bowl with a cup for dip on top.


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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 10:41 am 
Drunk Dialed Ian MacKaye
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mrsbadmouth wrote:
Big Lots is definitely a place where I feel it's okay to look like a hoarder. I bought ten cartons of that soy milk and I was restraining myself.


I would do the same if I ever found soymilk in mine. Maybe I need to search the beverage section more often!

Also, I don't know if it's just the area where I live, or what, but I'm amazed at the way some things just don't move; I'm especially thinking of the Neilsen-Massey vanilla. I bought a few when they first got it in and usually one every time I remember to look for it and I'm convinced no one else is buying it because they always have about the same amount as before and the bottles just get dustier and dustier every time so I know they're not new. The Bob's stuff seems to do well, though.


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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 1:41 pm 
Lactose Intolerant...Literally
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I love big lots so much. I don't get there as often as I would like, but when I do I always load up. They had those keebler pb wafer cookies for $1.50/box. I only bought two because that's already two too many. They had all the newman o's flavors too, $2 each. They had a whole end cap of BRM, pretty rad! My fave thing I bought there was a dog bed from Target. It's pink and has hearts all over the trim, so girly and cute to embarass my dog. I got st. ive's lotion too. I think it was only $3. I wish I had found N-M vanilla. I see it at Marshall's but have never seen it at Big Lots. One time I found scharffen berger baking stuff there too. You just never know!

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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 5:35 pm 
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I just scored unsweetened so delicious coconut milk cartons for $.50 each. Needless to day my pantry is full. And it doesn't expire until August so that's awesome.

I used to buy loads of teas and energy drinks there. Always cheap and fun.

The best was a huge set of corning ware baking/casserole dishes with lids for.....$10!!!! There's like 16 pieces or something insane like that.

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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 8:29 pm 
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I'll join in on the Big Lots love. I go at least once a week and although it's a hit or miss, I do tend to always end up leaving the store with at least one item.

My last trip I scored a few boxes of Celestial Seasonings tea for $2 a box, drink mixes, vegan cookies, and NY deli mustard. I love the fact that they keep expanding their international food selections. I've gotten some really cool randomly vegan snacks, meals, condiments, etc. from other countries that I had never heard of before.

I also lucked out and was one of the fortunate ones to find the Westsoy Peppermint Chocolate Stick holiday milk along with some Maple and Brown Sugar Rice milk (which was phenomenal).

They do have the cutest , most random items. I even bought my Xmas tree from there. It's pink, fiber optic, and was only $10!


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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2012 4:39 pm 
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I def had no interest in Big lots until this past weekend. I went originally to see about a carpet runner for my hallway and ended up buying a boat load of stuff, notably a HUGE bottle of agave for $10, a massive bottle of olive oil for $6 and organic pasta sauce for $2. I might have to make weekly pilgrimages.


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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2012 5:23 pm 
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There is a Big Lots by my house and I've never been! Thanks for posting!

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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2012 8:57 pm 
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i found biscoff spread at big lots! (the stuff that's like peanut butter but is really made from cookies).

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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2012 10:54 pm 
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Big Lots is the only place I've ever seen Chick O Sticks.

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 Post subject: Re: Big Lots--Cheap Vegan Paradise?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2012 12:20 am 
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I went to a Big Lots and was kind of disappointed. Groce Out is still my all time favorite for discount shopping.


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