Shopping Small and Shopping Smart: Good for You, Good for Them, Good for Everyone

I love shopping small business. Especially in today's environment, it is super important to support small businesses and make sure they are able to continue to do what they love while supporting families and their local communities. As the holiday season is here I wanted to take some time to point out some of my favorite smaller businesses and companies that do a lot for communities or the environment. I have used the products from all of these companies at home and I have gone back to them again and again. I'll make sure to point out what I use from each one but besides what I use they have other items that you may be interested in. Since I love some of their stuff I'm positive their other items will be great as well. Before we dive in though I want to point out that I am not being paid by any of them for listing their names. Personally I know how great it is to be able to do what you love without working for a larger company and being able to support these companies in any form is all I care about. I love them so much and I want others like you to love them with me. So let's check them out!

For the Home Baker - Central Milling Flours


Central Milling is a small flour miller based in Utah. They have been in the business of flour milling for over 150 years so they know what they are doing. I love this company because they are employee owned and have a mission to work from the land to the baker to produce high quality flours and other grains. As someone who strongly supports the farming community and building a better agriculture industry to protect the environment, Central Milling aligns perfectly with me.


My Favorite Items: I love their wide range of flours to choose from. They have classic varieties but also have a lot of ancient grains to experiment with for those looking for newer flavors and challenges with bread. They sell a Steel Cut 9-Grain Blend that I soak and mix into doughs for added flavor, crunch, and nutrients. I also keep going back for their Type 00 flour, prefect for pizza at home. I recently purchased some Khorasan Flour to play with in the coming weeks and can't wait to see how it turns out.



For the Spice Nut in Your Life - The Allspicery and Soulard Spice Shop


So this one actually has two shops! I love using fresh spices and I have talked about these shops before. First, The Allspicery is a great Woman-owned shop based in Sacramento, California. They provide a wide range of spices, herbs, salts, sugars, chilies, and even teas! I love how diverse their selection is, especially for specific spices and herbs I can't easily find at other places. (only place I get Nigella) Their spices are always super fresh and flavorful and if you live local you can do a curbside pickup to skip the shipping costs!


Soulard Spice Shop is my new favorite spice shop since moving. They have been in St. Louis for over 100 years and are still family owned. They have a huge selection of spices, herbs, coffee, and tea! If you live local their shop also has meat and cheeses and other products only available in the store.


My Favorite Items: Spices of course! I love using high quality spices and herbs and both of these shops provide my favorite ones to use all the time in my cooking and baking.



For the Coffee Lover - Portrait Coffee Roasters


Now I love coffee. I actually did it the "wrong" way by loving espresso and then falling for pour over style. The important thing for me though is quality beans. Portrait Coffee Roasters is a new favorite of mine. They are a Black-owned coffee roaster based in Atlanta, Georgia. They have various blends that you can buy but my favorite option is the subscription plan. If you or someone you know drinks coffee daily, a subscription is the best way to get new coffees and making sure your supply is stocked regularly.


My Favorite Item: Coffee Subscription! The beans always come dated the day of or before shipping so I know I'm getting some fresh coffee to enjoy at home every day! I never have to worry about running out when a new bag is on its way whenever I'm getting low and I don't have to do anything.



For the Snacker - Love With Food


Love with Food is a monthly snack box subscription that not only sends you a box of some healthy focused snacks but also donates meals to fight childhood hunger! I have been a subscriber to these boxes for years now and even do small subscriptions for my nephews to get snacks too. You can change your subscription for size and they even have a gluten free option! With each box they donate a meal in partnership with Feeding America, in total they have donated over 1 million meals with their Love with Food Community.


My Favorite Item: I've been getting a Monthly Tasting Box for over three years and I love them so much. I get a selection of snacks and can earn points for reviewing them online. I've used the points to get free snacks that I love after trying them in the box! Use the link above to get 50% off your first box to try out or get a 3-month subscription for someone this holiday season!



For the Cookie Lover - Maya's Cookies


Maya's Cookies is a Black, Woman-owned bakery based in San Diego, California. They make a large selection of vegan cookies and sample packs that you can easily ship anywhere in the US. I tried these cookies and they were so soft and tasty and they are perfect to send to family or friends since it's so hard to come together this year. They also do a subscription plan to get cookies delivered to your home every month!


My Favorite Item: I loved their Everything Cookies and S'mores Cookies. The marshmallow is soft and delicious and the mixture of salty and sweet in the everything cookies are to die for.



For the Lavender Lover - Araceli Lavender Farms


Now I've talked about Araceli Farms before. We have a great partnership, I create recipes for her to post and I get lavender to use and make stuff with, but she doesn't just have lavender to use in cooking. A POC and Woman-owned business, Araceli Farms distills their own lavender oil and hydrosol with the buds and then makes multiple products with the oil. Scrubs, body oil, shampoo, these gorgeous lavender wreaths, there are so many great things you can get to pamper yourself or someone you love with calming and soothing lavender. If you are into self-care as much as I am you will want some of the amazing products sold by Araceli Farms.


My Favorite Item: I mean of course the Culinary Lavenders are my favorites. I also constantly have one of their lip balms in my pocket (eco tubes as well, so great for the planet!) and I love the lavender bud pillow. Place it under your pillows for some of the best sleep in your life.



For the Herbalist - The Herbal Scoop


More recently I have gotten into herbal medicines and using natural remedies to help the body with better health. The Herbal Scoop is the first place I found to get my hands on some out there herbs and I fell in love immediately. A Black Woman owned business, they have a wide range of herbs to buy and they come with ideas and suggested uses, along with tea blends and tinctures to have something already for you to use at home. Follow them on instagram for ideas and more information on using their herbs in your daily life.


My Favorite Item: I love astralagus root in my tea to help with respiratory health and dandelion root for digestive health. I already have a collection of a dozen herbs that I use in tea every day and have started a couple tinctures of my own!



For a Greener Routine - Wander Lightly


I have been following Sara for a few years on instagram now. She is an eco-warrior down in Australia that has a passion for a greener future. She makes many products to create less waste and a better planet like her balms, scrubs, deodorants, and on the go utensil sets. She also hosts workshops to learn more about her green products and how to make items like bee's wax food wraps!


My Favorite Item: The first thing I bought was the reusable utensil kits. They are perfect for a backpack or purse to reduce plastic waste from the ones you get with take-out. I also love the washable face scrubbers, perfect for cleaning your face and get a nice glow to the skin.



For the Foodie - Wild Foods Co.


Wild Foods Co. is a great place to find some new ingredients to use in the kitchen or to find the best quality in something specific. They have a HUGE selection of products to look at and to mess around with. I have been using their vanilla powder for years to get a beautiful vanilla flavor along with the gorgeous speckle of vanilla bean in my pastries. Plus, it's a lot cheaper than vanilla beans. From high quality, organic, good to the farmer, they are a great company that I'm surprised hasn't blown up yet.


My Favorite Items: Like I said, the Vanilla Bean Powder I have used for years. I also love their cocoa butter since it has almost no flavor so I can use it in so many creations and their cocoa nips are delicious and perfect for a chocolate flavor.



For the Book Worm - Subterranean Books


Subterranean Books is a Woman-owned and run bookstore local to the St. Louis area. They are right down in an area called the Loop. It reminds me a lot of Thayer Street in Providence with a lot of cute shops and places to eat. I love a good local book store that you can use to find something new or if in search of a book they will get you a copy. Independent bookstores are in need of help, so I love supporting any that I can.


My Favorite Items: Books, duh. But they do have so many available and you can always reach out to get something. Support independent bookstores.

Hope you find some great gifts and maybe something for yourself with these amazing companies. If you purchase anything leave a comment and share so we can indulge on some of the great products they all have!

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