Pick 'n Pay is a great store to shop at if you're Vegan! It has all sorts of wonderful products aside from some good produce. They've suddenly started to stock a whole new range of oriental vegetables. Time to learn how to make Lady Fingers! The following are some of the lovely things I've found at Pick 'n Pay since I've been Vegan, in no particular order of importance. I will also keep adding more photos and products to this list so keep checking in if you're curious.
Life products are imported from the United Kingdom which means it's not a particularly environmentally friendly choice but for every now and then it's great! I also like to support the efforts of retailers for stocking products that are Vegan friendly, as the less we buy, the less they stock! Some of those that I've tried and seen are the Life Worcester Sauce which is fish extract free, Life Ketchup, Life Parmazano (which I found with other grated parmesans in the cheese section - I always look in the cheese section in case I find vegan goodies!) and Cooking Sauces.
SOYA MILK AND DESSERTS
Pick 'n Pay doesn't stock any liquid Rice Milks yet but you can find them at Woolies.
Alpro stocks the following products at all of the Pick 'n Pay stores I have been to:
Alpro Soya Milks (All sorts of wonderful flavours)
Alpro Soya Desserts
Alpro Soya Custard
There are also a few local brands of Soya milk stocked, such as Good Hope Soya Milk which are much more affordable than Alpro, which is for special occasions in our house. Like dunking Vegan Oreos I found in Hong Kong. I am quite serious when I say that I check all the labels of my non-vegan favourites often, just in case!
It's very likely that you will find Vegan Chocolate Chips somewhere by the baking goods. I often find those.
The Killarney Pick 'n Pay recently had Barney (The Purple Dinosaur) Vegetarian Jelly in the Kosher section and they use natural colourants and flavourants which is pretty awesome!
NO NAME BRAND
Pick 'n Pay has labels on its No Name Brand foods that say whether something is Vegan or not. They don't always get it spot on so always check the ingredients, but it's great that they're trying! There are some surprises too, things you may not expect to be vegan!
They have some Vegan cookies, which is very exciting! Their No Name Brand Lemon Creams as well as their No Name Brand Ginger Biscuits are labelled as Vegan with corresponding ingredients. There are also cookies called Merba Apple Pie Cookies. We go through a lot of those with our tea in the mornings. The Baker's Plain Digestives are also Vegan! They're great for cookie bases in desserts, a sweet and salty biscuit. There are plenty of others that I see every now and then, such as the Weigh Less variety and some varied others come across no more than once. The Weigh Less cookies are okay, they taste a bit like cardboard, but kudos to cutting down on sugar in cookies.
Many cereals are Vegan including lots of Kellogg's Cereals among others; Coco Pops and Strawberry Pops! I think that's one of the things that made becoming Vegan a lot easier for me was that I could still feast on Chocolate cereal without feeling too guilty.
Loads of Muesli is also Vegan and healthy so keep a look out for them and beware of honey if you're so inclined. Manufacturers love to put honey in cereals and especially muesli. The Vital Muesli range is wonderful and some of them are also wheat free.
This may not apply to everyone, but I have somewhat of a wheat intolerance. My brother says that I'm making it up but I swear my body just hates me every time I let wheat or yeast anywhere near it! Pick 'n Pay stocks a whole lot of different wheat free pastas which makes me super happy! They have reasonably affordable Puccini Maize Pasta too, at under ten Rand a packet the last time I bought some. Those aren't gluten free though. There are also the more expensive and gluten free choices of Orgran and Sam Mills Pasta D'Oro maize pasta among others, but they have plenty of interesting egg free, Vegan pasta available.
Pick 'n Pay have several varieties of Vegan Mayonnaise available. The one we buy most frequently is All Joy. Always check the labels, but the one we buy has a bright, darker blue label and it clearly states that the mayo is egg free on the label. There is also Trim Mayonnaise which is egg free. I also came across a brand that is new to me called Tiger Tiger which had three varieties of flavoured mayonnaise. The last one that I know of is the Life Mayonnaise, but I haven't actually seen it in stock yet. Judging by the fact that Pick 'n Pay seem to have all the other Life products, I would like to assume that I will find the mayo at some point.
I've mentioned in a previous post that there is sometimes Cheezly available at select Pick 'n Pay shops. Make sure it's well before it's sell by date, as I've bought it expired several times from Pick 'n Pay as well as Shoprite Checkers. They're very good at refunding you for foods that are no longer edible, but what a mission! Of course there are also the fake Parmigiano: Nature's Choice Mock Parmesan as well as the previously mentioned Life Parmazano which are both great.
VEGAN SANDWICH SPREADS
The Pick 'n Pay house brand Peanut Butters are all vegan to my knowledge. We always get the super large jar of the No Name Brand Crunchy Peanut Butter.
I mentioned it briefly earlier but Pick 'n Pay stocks some nut butters as well that you may want to try. They're rather expensive, as nuts are so ridiculously expensive, so use conservatively. It's an easy thing to make yourself with nuts and an oil of choice.
INA PAARMAN PRODUCTS
Ina Paarman Chicken Flavour Stock is Vegan, so are most of her other powdered stocks. The liquid stocks are not vegan, but invest in a little pot of Chicken or Beef Flavour Stock Powder as they really add some wonderful veggie flavours to your food. There are also several Ina Paarman Sauces and Dressings that are Vegan if you want a quick pasta sauce to keep in your cupboard. Many of their pre-packed baking kits are also vegan, so you can just add your own wet ingredients to make biscotti or cake. As usual, check all the ingredients as companies can change them without warning!
|NB: THE WHITE SAUCE POWDER IS NOT VEGAN - THIS IS AN EXAMPLE OF PRODUCTS AVAILABLE|
There's also this thing called JD's Bacon Salt - I bought it for a friend as a joke, the Peppery one is Vegan, but it's full of all sorts of chemicals and the 'Natural' one has whey powder in it so it isn't Vegan. It's a bit of a toss up, but smokey flavoured salt is something that's worth getting if you really loved smoked foods. It's a fun find, seeing as I'm yet to find the Liquid Smoke that is in so many of the US recipes that I read in Vegan cookbooks. The JD's website is a bit gross with their catch phrase 'Everything should taste like bacon', making my stomach churn as I was never that into bacon or smokey stuff, so you may also find it a little revolting. Even if you love the taste and smell of bacon the lip balm is a bit much.
TEXTURED VEGETABLE PROTEINS
Fry's, of course, is also fully stocked in almost every single Pick 'n Pay countrywide. There may be one or two variations that aren't in the shop but most of them will be there. Nature's Choice will definitely have soya chunks and soya mince, of which both are great. I bought some of Pick 'n Pay Soya Mince but haven't used it yet. Read the ingredients because these aren't all Vegan. The two I have posted photos of are suitable for Vegans. I stay clear of it, but Pick 'n Pay has Knorrox Soya Mince as well. It's too powdery for my liking, and it has all sorts of chemicals in it.
Some Pick 'n Pay stores stock Vegan ice creams from Bassets. The Victory Park Pick 'n Pay is a good bet for that, as I don't recall seeing it at many of the others. VeganSA writes: "Tofu Treats from Basset's Ice Cream Company is a non-dairy, low fat, soya based ice cream-style dessert, sweetened with sucrose, free of preservatives, additives, animal products, eggs, alcohol and gluten. It is smooth,
rich tasting, and is Kosher and Halaal approved." The Craighall Spar also stocks Bassets.
Tofu is also something you should be able to find in the section with Asian foods and spices, Moringa is the brand, should it be available but it's ridiculously expensive. Best to buy tofu from Cyrildene or Fresh Earth.
NON DAIRY CREAMER
Alpro has a soya cream that is stocked by Pick 'n Pay. It's sometimes on the shelf with the custard, sometimes with the baking stuff, sometimes with the soya milk - scratch around or ask the manager for it. Obviously it's rather pricey. (I'm saving this for my Woolworths article, but as a deviation, there is an Organic Soya Cream at Woolies that's similar to the Alpro.)
Coconut Cream or Coconut Milk are my favourite creams to use - you can use them to make almost anything you would have used normal cream for. My brother makes the most amazing vegan milk tart using coconut cream, coconut milk, corn starch and vanilla. It's just as good as the real thing, if not better because it has a mild hint of coconut in it. I use coconut cream for creamy pastas, for curries and for desserts. Savory and sweet, it always works. I've even used it in Lasagne instead of Béchamel.
Orley Whip is a non-dairy cream that is also available at most Pick 'n Pay stores. It comes in a little blue box in variations of Dessert, Unsweetened Cooking Creme and Lite Creme, as memory serves. The creamer is fantastic and you can whip the dessert version. The Orley whip expires quickly, and often long before the use by date, so buy it when you need it as it doesn't keep well. You'll find the Orley Whip in one of the fridges, probably with the Hummus.
Wooden Spoon is NOT Vegan anymore. That needs to be said first, because I know several vegans who religiously used white wooden spoon margarine for baking before they changed the ingredients. There is only one baking margarine that in any way resembles something Vegan, and that is the normal Blossom Baking Margarine. I am not sure though if it is truly Vegan or not. The only other margarine that are supposedly vegan are not for baking but they are Cardin and Ole. The others have vitamin D3 in them, an ingredient which has contested origins, so I just stay away from it.
VEGAN SOFT DRINKS
IOL article for some information. I always have a soft spot for the underdog. Storify also has a breakdown of what is going on.)
[UPDATE ON FRANKIE'S vs WOOLWORTHS saga: ASA ruled that Woolworths must remove their products from the shelf by April 2012 as they cannot prove that it was a coincidence that their packaging was basically identical to Frankie's.]
BEAUTY AND HYGIENE PRODUCTS
JAM AND MARMALADE
CHOCOLATE AND SWEETS
There are many other products available at Pick 'n Pay that you may find exciting, and I may have left them out. Always read the labels on things if they catch your eye. Most of the time they probably won't be vegan but I've found lots of surprises and awesome things to eat by picking up something unlikely off the shelf. As a disclaimer, I am not endorsed or sponsored by Pick 'n Pay or in any way related to employees of the company. I do not benefit financially from this post in any way. Ingredients in products and product availability can change at any time and I will not be held liable for any such changes.