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Discover Bulk Foods - Ingredients Worth Their Weight

This week, all items in the Bulk Foods Department are 20% off. Now is the perfect time to stock up on your favorite items, as well as try a new product or two!

There are a wide variety of reasons for why you should shop the Bulk Department at Oliver's Market.

Packaging and Cost: According to the Environmental Protection Agency, packaging materials make up more than 30% of all consumer waste. Buying in bulk eliminates much of this waste. Without the packaging, you're only paying for the product, which is great for the environment and your wallet!

Freshness: Our bulk foods are fresher than what you get in pre-packaged products. We source items like honey, grains and peanut butter as locally as we can. This allows us to bring them to you quicker with optimal freshness.

Quantity: Buying in bulk allows you to get as little, or as much of an item as needed. Does a recipe call for a small amount of an exotic spice? Grab a little! Do you need to provide snacks for a large group of kids? Grab a lot! With bulk foods, the choice is yours.

We invite you to check out our Bulk Foods Department next time you shop. From conventional and organic nuts, dried fruits, snacks, and beans to rice and grains, cereals, and much more, we're sure to have everything that you need. Check out our selection of containers for storing your purchases, too!

Here are two recipes containing ingredients that can be found in our Bulk Department. Try one of these tasty treats today!

Cinnamon-Scented Breakfast Quinoa

Serves 4


1 cup quinoa (all red or a mix of red, white, or black)

1 1/2 cups water

2 cinnamon sticks

1/4 teaspoon salt



Broken or chopped walnuts, pure maple syrup or honey, milk, and flaky sea salt such as Maldon



Wash quinoa in several changes of water in a bowl, rubbing grains and letting them settle before pouring off water (if quinoa does not settle, drain in a large fine-mesh sieve after each rinse), until water is clear.

Drain washed quinoa well in a large fine-mesh sieve.

Combine all ingredients in a heavy medium saucepan and bring to a boil, covered. Reduce heat to low and cook, covered, until water is absorbed and quinoa is tender, about 20 minutes.

Remove pan from heat and let stand, covered, 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork and keep covered to keep warm. Remove cinnamon sticks.

Divide quinoa among bowls and top with walnuts, maple syrup or honey, milk, and sea salt.

Red Lentil Soup

Serves 6


1 large onion, chopped

1 tablespoon olive oil

4 garlic cloves, finely chopped

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 Turkish or 1/2 California bay leaf

1 sprig fresh thyme

1 cup red lentils (7 ounces), picked over and rinsed

3 1/2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth

3 cups water

2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley


lemon wedges


Cook onion in oil with 1/2 teaspoon salt in a medium heavy saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 8 minutes.

Add garlic, cumin, bay leaf, and thyme and cook, stirring, 1 minute more. Add lentils, broth, water, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper and simmer, partially covered, stirring occasionally, until lentils are very soft and falling apart, about 30 to 45 minutes.

Discard bay leaf and thyme sprig, then purée 2 cups of mixture in blender (use caution when blending hot liquids) and return to pan.

Stir in parsley and season with salt and a squeeze of lemon.


About the Author: Matt Rice

Matt Rice

Matt Rice is Oliver's intrepid blogger on all topics related to wine, beer, cider, spirits, and other gourmet products.


Where "Local" Means Sonoma County

To us Local means Sonoma County -- period. Not Marin, not Napa, and definitely not the state of California, as some of our competitors define it.

From the day we opened our doors in 1988, we’ve built our business on the simple premise that the best food and wine in the world are produced here, in Sonoma County. We didn’t feel like we were pioneers at the time, but as people have come to understand and embrace the value of locally grown and made food and the value of shopping locally, we realize we were part of the early days of the movement.

As a Sonoma County business, we’ve built enduring relationships with local growers, makers, and manufacturers, because they make the foods and wines we love. Many of them were getting started when we were. Now they are nationally known, but for us, they are still old friends who often delivered products to our Cotati store in their cars back in the late 1980s.

Along with local products being excellent choices for taste and quality reasons, buying locally also improves our local economy. The dollars you spend at local retailers buying local products support other local businesses and our tax base, too!

Tasting Notes

Matt Rice

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