Winco is a store found on the West Coast that we shop at weekly. I love the produce and bulk food especially, but overall their prices are more budget-friendly than many stores. Though they don’t have as many Whole30 Approved items as Walmart, there are a lot of great prices on staples.
For clarity, I am going to divide my finds by category, depending on what your current dietary needs are. Please note these prices and availability are from my Yuba City, CA Winco and obviously can vary by location. Don’t have one of these products in your Winco? Let your manager know you would love to see it!
(paleo, gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free, sweetener-free)
I love Winco’s produce selection and prices. Keep in mind on a Whole30 almost all produce is compatible, with the specific exception of corn, and no labels to read – so load up!
I especially appreciate that I can find plantains at Winco, so I can make all things tostones – which I highly recommend as a delicious part of your Whole30. Plantains look like large banana, but are more starchy when green. I recommend buying green to make crispy tostones (these are a little too yellow for my needs).
Convenient bagged veggies – Though it’s usually easier to chop or rice your own veggies than to buy them pre-done, these are an easy option and some of them are even steam in a bag, like the Green Giant green beans.
The produce section also has several varieties of Wholly Guacamole guac – which are an easy and delicious healthy fat to add to any meal! I like to keep the mini’s in my fridge so I don’t have to worry about opening and eating a larger container of guac before it goes bad.
The bulk section is hands down my FAVORITE part of WInco. You aren’t paying for packaging here, so you get great deals on pantry staples. This includes 2 large walls of spices, which is especially nice if you are using a recipe with a new or pricey spice and you want to only buy 1 tablespoon of it, versus a whole bottle – only buy and pay for what you need!
The bulk section is also a great place to find Whole30 compatible flours. No real baking allowed on Whole30, see why here, but these come in handy for breading or thickening sauces. They do have bulk almond flour as well, but it’s pretty gritty, more like an almond meal, so I don’t recommend it. My favorite almond flours are finely sifted, like this one you can find at Sam’s Club or on Amazon.
The bulk section has an incredible selection of nuts, most of which are Whole30 compatible and some of the cheapest prices I’ve seen. Keep in mind some of the roasted nuts have been roasted in canola or sunflower oil, which per this Whole30 resource isn’t ideal but allowed on Whole30 as long as it’s not your main cooking oil.
The dried fruit in the bulk section mostly is not Whole30 compatible, due to added sugar. However, there are unsweetened raisins and bulk pitted dates that I love to use in my Whole30 Date Mustard. Apparently, I am not the only one who loves these, as they were mostly gone today but they are pretty good about refilling their bulk section regularly.
In the pantry items, there are a lot of fruit cups and applesauce that are compatible. Here are a few. For fruit cups, look for ones in 100% juice and applesauce watch that there is no added sugar.
I wasn’t able to find a canned chicken breast that was compatible, but there were some canned tuna. Canned tuna can be one of the most affordable proteins that is shelf stable and the pouches are nice and portable. The thing to look for with tuna is that there is no soy listed in the ingredients OR in the allergens, as sometimes the vegetable broth used to can it has soy in it. By law companies have to share allergens in their food on the label, including soy, so as long as there is no soy listed in the ingredients or “contains soy” in bold below the ingredients, you are good!
As far as condiments, Winco doesn’t have a lot of Whole30 compatible or Approved options – no mayo, dressings, BBQ sauce, etc. Again, I recommend Walmart for affordable options on those. But they do sell liquid smoke that I use for my Whole30 Brisket recipe and an optional add-in to my homemade Whole30 BBQ Sauce, as well as hot sauce and mustard. Note: Only the original flavor of tabasco sauce is Whole30 compatible.
Other Pantry Staples
Most of the broth had forms of added sugar, including sneaky ones like maltodextrin. I did find one vegetable broth and one chicken bone broth that were compatible though!
There were lots of canned tomato products that were compatible, the Winco brand being the most affordable.
Winco and Walmart are the only places I have found my FAVORITE coconut milk – the Thai Kitchen brand in the carton with a pour spout! It has the thickness of canned (vs. carton) coconut milk, but as a pour spout that allows you to easily stick it in the fridge and reuse it. I wish they had the Thai Kitchen coconut cream too.
In the same section as the coconut milk they have seaweed snacks. These two from gimMe are Whole30 compatible and similar to Seasnax, a Whole30 Approved brand. I’m not a seaweed snack fan yet, but I know some who love these as a crispy snack!
Winco has one kind of Whole30 compatible coconut aminos, this soy-free one from Braggs. Coconut aminos are a soy-free soy sauce replacement. No soy is allowed on Whole30, so make sure you only get the one that says “Soy free.” If you have a Trader Joe’s near you, the coconut aminos are cheaper there.
Salsa is an easy and familiar Whole30 sauce option. Make sure it doesn’t have any added sugar (for example, many of the La Victoria brand have sugar in them). We like the Pace brand, or we make our own with my 3-minute Salsa recipe here.
The spaghetti sauce isle can be intimidating, as unfortunately many spaghetti sauces have added sugar and are NOT Whole30 compatible. Here are four I found at Winco, with a range of prices. Top some of the cooked frozen zoodles or squash “noodles” with some cooked ground meat and one of these sauces = EASY Whole30 dinner. Wahoo!
Nut butters – There are two almond butters in the cereal aisle that don’t have any added sugar and are Whole30 compatible. For a more budget-friendly option, go check out the fresh nut butter grinders (right photo) in the bulk food section. No added ingredients – just nuts ground into butter and you can buy as much or as little as you want (note: the ground peanut butters are not Whole30 compatible).
Winco also sells olive oil, avocado oil and coconut oil – great Whole30 compatible oils. Again, visit the “Limit Vegetable Oils” section of this Whole30 website to learn more about oils on Whole30.
Lara Bars – Whole30 compatible, though not my favorite as they have no protein to help satiate you and really easily turn into a Whole30 candy bar…but compatible. Well, some of them are compatible – see here and read your ingredients to make sure you grab ones that are.
The fact that Winco sells Whole30 Approved nutpods is one of my favorite Whole30 finds! These coffee creamers taste amazing and have no added sugar. At only $2.45 each, such a great price for these!
These Teton Waters Ranch Whole30 Approved grass-fed beef hot dogs are also an awesome Winco find, at only $3.00 a pack! Only grass-fed beef and spices in these, which can be a great easy protein option on your Whole30.
Another fast easy protein option is pre-cooked hard boiled eggs. Though it’s more affordable to hard boil your own eggs, if you need a fast grab and go protein option, these are great!
There are not a lot of compatible sausage options at Winco and none as far as compatible deli meat (I read all the labels – all had some form of added sugar, dang it!). But, there are Aidell’s chicken and apple sausage, which is another easy protein option. Great to throw into your freezer and have on hand when you are in a time crunch!
The good news is there are SO many dairy-free milk options now. The bad news is that can feel overwhelming when you are on a Whole30. When reading nut-milk labels, make sure there are no added sweeteners (unsweetened) or unallowed additives. Here are a few I found that are compatible at my Winco, but here is an excellent blog post from Whole30 Certified Coach Bailey for more details on compatible almond milks.
There are a lot of compatible frozen veggies that can help having a plate full of veggies more approachable on a Whole30. Be sure to look for ones without seasonings or sauces that often contain dairy or added sugar. Here are some frozen spiralized veggies that can be a quick dinner option with some cooked ground protein + marinara sauce. Though noodle recreations with flour aren’t allowed on Whole30, single veggies spiralized into a noodle shape is allowed.
Frozen burger patties are another fast easy “in-a-pinch” meal option. There are quite a few beef burgers there that are just ground beef and compatible, as well as these two kinds of Jennie-O burgers.
Flavored drinks are tough on a Whole30 and sparkling water is one of the main go-to’s. Winco has a decent section of Bubbly ($2.98) and Whole30 Approved LaCroix ($3.98) drinks at good prices.
(gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free, refined sugar-free; not Whole30)
In addition to all the flours and nuts from the bulk section above, there are plantain chips (not Whole30 compatible due to this rule, but you can make your own plantain chips on a Whole30 with my recipe here), and monkfruit and coconut sugar at awesome prices!
These Birch Benders Paleo pancake mixes are an easy Paleo breakfast option, just top with pure maple syrup or my blueberry sauce.
You can also find the coconut sugar and monkfruit sugar in the baking aisle, but again, it’s cheaper in the bulk food section.
Our favorite jam that is only sweetened by fruit and fruit products!
These paleo Birch Benders freezer waffles are basically a Paleo Eggo and a quick and easy breakfast or snack option. Though, we prefer to make a double batch of my Paleo Crispy Waffles every week and freeze the extras for an even more affordable freezer waffle option.
Dairy-free & Gluten-free
(not Whole30 or Paleo)
I haven’t found a dairy-free cheese we love yet, but Daiya is the brand we most often use for pizzas and quesadillas.
Dairy-free cream cheese is often pretty pricey and hard to find. I love that Winco offers this dairy-free cream cheese that we use in my Oreo Truffles.
Bulk foods for the win again with these more-affordable bulk white or brown rice pastas, gluten-free oats, or oat flour.
This Daiya mac and cheese is gluten, dairy, and soy-free and an easy dinner add-on that is shelf-stable, at half the cost ($3.48) of this product at other natural food stores.
Also in the pasta aisle are these gluten-free pre-made pizza crusts and Banza pasta. The Banza pasta is a family favorite – tastes great and, as it’s made with chickpeas, has protein in it for a more stable blood sugar response and nourishing option. A steal at only $3/box! They also have the American Beauty low-cost GF past as well.
There are a few GF taco shell options, though my favorite is the Ortega cauliflower and corn ones! I know, sounds terrible, but my boys love them – you can’t taste the cauliflower and it actually gives them a great crispy texture. Use some ground meat + my taco seasoning for an easy GF/DF dinner!
The baking aisle has quite a few easy gluten-free, dairy-free mix options. My boys love the funetti cake mix for a “normal” birthday cake option at their parties. Unfortunately, no dairy-free frosting at Winco yet, I get Miss Jones Bakes brand from Walmart.
I appreciate that Chex is a mainstream brand that is gluten-free and dairy-free, so just a reminder of that easy to find option. The cereal aisle also has these Kind bars and rice crisps (not all flavors of rice crisps are dairy-free).
Dairy-free yogurt isn’t affordable for our large family, but I still appreciate that Winco offers these and we sometimes get them as part of an easy trip breakfast.
The freezer section has a few good GF/DF options with these Daiya pizzas (plant based), cauliflower crust, gluten-free chicken nuggets, dairy-free ice cream (not all the DF Ben & Jerry’s are GF, read your labels!).
Finally, in a freezer case next to the bakery, you can find our favorite GF bread – Canyon Bakehouse. We especially love the honey white. GF bread can be pricey, but this is the best price I’ve found on this brand.
YAY for all these options! Feel free to drop other finds you have discovered at your local Winco below!