Over the past few years, I’ve become something of a health nut. Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate junk food now and then, but I increasingly find myself grocery shopping at the various health food stores around San Antonio.
I’m an athlete, and I typically eat a plant-based diet, so frequent trips to Central Market, Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, and more are usually on my weekend to-do list. You just can’t find ingredients like groats or nutritional yeast at stores like HEB, y’know?
Although there are only about five major health store brands in San Antonio, the good news is that most of them have two locations in the Alamo City. Most of these stores are concentrated in higher-income areas, so if you don’t live in Alamo Heights or Stone Oak, you can expect to make a 15+ minute drive.
Even so, my monthly outings to the health food store are always enjoyable!
Here are my top 5 favorite health food stores in San Antonio.
Map of the Best Healthy Grocery Stores in San Antonio
Most Affordable Health Food Store: Sprouts
I can’t believe it took me so long, but I finally shopped at Sprouts for the first time in 2019. It’s reminiscent of Trader Joe’s but with a larger footprint and bigger selection.
I really appreciate how affordable Sprouts is (for a health food store). Regular, everyday people shop at Sprouts, so it’s the best place to score better deals on healthy foods. If you’re trying to eat healthier on the cheap, I recommend checking Sprouts’ online coupons or creating an account with Sprouts. A few times a year, they also send me a $10 off coupon in the mail, which Whole Foods has never done.
On top of that, Sprouts has a lot of nice features in-store. They have a huge bulk bin section, which is where I like to stock up on stuff like chia seeds and nutritional yeast. There’s a butcher and seafood counter, so you can get fresh meat here. I also buy moisturizer from Sprouts because they stock the nice stuff for $5 – $10 less than Whole Foods.
- Address 1: 8101 Callaghan Rd, San Antonio, TX 78230
- Address 2: 22135 Bulverde Rd, San Antonio, TX 78259
- Website: Sprouts San Antonio
Best Store For Food Snobs: Central Market
I know I spend entirely too much money here, but I have to admit that Central Market is my favorite health food store in San Antonio. Do I have to spend 20+ minutes driving here? Yes. Is it worth it? Also yes.
My husband and I go to Central Market once a month as a treat. He likes the bulk bin coffee selection, while I always sift through the frozen section looking for new plant-based meal ideas. Central Market also has an impressive meat counter, bakery, and readymade meal area.
The only downside is that everything here is super expensive. It’s a running joke between my husband and I that we can’t leave this store without spending $100.
If you’re into wine, Central Market is the place to go. They have really knowledgeable employees, too! Just last week I wanted to buy an obscure mead; the employee not only helped me find what I needed, but explained the differences between all of the meads they carry in stock. Amazing.
Oh, and if you want to learn how to cook, Central Market does cooking classes! They offer classes almost every day of the week, both during the day and in the evenings. They’re a little pricey, ranging from $60 – $80 per class, but I’ve never walked away thinking that it was a waste of time. I’ve learned how to make macarons, cakes, and even homemade sausages here, and those are skills that you just can’t learn from YouTube alone.
- Address: 4821 Broadway, San Antonio, TX 78209
- Website: Central Market San Antonio
Best All-Around Health Food Store: Trader Joe’s
I didn’t know about Trader Joe’s until I was in college and one of my sorority sisters got a job here. I visited her while she was working and WOW, I immediately fell in love with this place. Is it any wonder why Trader Joe’s is the number-one grocer in America?
In San Antonio, we’re fortunate to have two Trader Joe’s locations. If you want my honest opinion, the location off of Loop 1604 is way less crowded than the one at the Quarry, where I always have to fight for a parking spot. The selection is about the same between each store, so you won’t miss anything if you go to the less-crowded 1604 location.
When you shop at Trader Joe’s for the first time, I recommend buying a couple of Trader Joe’s reusable bags. This will enter you into a drawing for a free gift card—and the bags are adorable anyway, so why not? (I told the TJ’s employee it was my first time shopping there and he actually gave me a bag for free!)
TJ’s is the smallest health food store in San Antonio, but don’t let that fool you. They have everything you need … and a lot of stuff you don’t need but want (lookin’ at you, Speculoos Cookie Butter). Whether you buy produce or packaged meals, a lot of the foods at TJ’s are organic, which is nice.
For beauty, I buy my hyaluronic acid from TJ’s because it’s dirt-cheap compared to other health stores. They also carry a respectable assortment of fancy cheeses, which I relied on heavily back in my event-planning days.
While I wouldn’t say Trader Joe’s is for wine snobs, their wine and beer selection is pretty good, too. As a broke college student, I lived off of their $5 bottles of wine.
TJ’s is obviously pricier than a regular grocery store, but it does try to keep its prices low. I recommend buying packaged meals, snacks, wine, and bulk flowers to make the most of your money here.
- Address 1: 350 E Basse Rd, San Antonio, TX 78209
- Address 2: 403 N Loop 1604 W, San Antonio, TX 78232
- Website: Trader Joe’s San Antonio
Best Packaged Goods: Natural Grocers
I actually went to the grand opening for Natural Grocers’ Military Highway location many years ago. It’s my least-favorite health food store in San Antonio, but it’s a valid option for folks who live in Castle Hills and don’t want to drive all the way to the Quarry or Stone Oak.
Surprisingly, Natural Grocers is the most expensive health food store in San Antonio. For that reason, I don’t shop here very often, but if you need to frequent a store without a long drive and it happens to be in your area, go for it!
I’m not a big fan of the produce here, which doesn’t always seem to be as fresh as the other stores. That’s why I recommend sticking with packaged goods, snacks, or household items if you shop at Natural Grocers.
With that said, they have a surprisingly robust number of choices for vegans. It’s really nice walking into a store knowing that I can find the random, weird, fake “cheese” I like.
(P.S. – Don’t miss our guide to the best vegan and vegetarian restaurants in San Antonio!)
If you’re into aromatherapy, Natural Grocers also has a big selection of diffusers, incense burners, and oils.
- Address 1: 13310 NW Military Hwy, San Antonio, TX 78231
- Address 2: 6514 N New Braunfels Ave, San Antonio, TX 78209
- Website: Natural Grocers San Antonio
Most Popular Health Food Store: Whole Foods
Last, but certainly not least, is Whole Foods. This is the health food store that most people are probably familiar with, thanks to its national expansion (fun fact, the first Whole Foods is in Austin!). It isn’t my personal favorite, but it’s the go-to health store for most San Antonians.
The Quarry location is infamously packed, although it tends to have a better selection. The Stone Oak location, on the other hand, is less crowded but has less of a selection. I hate crowds, so I usually go to the Whole Foods off of Blanco Road, but if you’re looking for something particular, the Whole Foods at the Quarry Mall is your best bet. (The employees at the Quarry location are also more helpful)
Whole Foods is known for being expensive, so you have to be careful when shopping here. I go to Whole Foods every other month to source foods that I can’t find easily at other stores, like vegan egg alternatives, specific grains, and prepared jackfruit.
All in all, Whole Foods is always a fun trip, but it can hurt your pocketbook. If you know what you’re buying, I recommend shopping around online to see which stores carry the item you’re looking for.
- Address 1: 255 E Basse Rd Ste 130, San Antonio, TX 78209
- Address 2: 18403 Blanco Rd, San Antonio, TX 78258
- Website: Whole Foods Stores