Image Courtesy of CommunityImpact.com
There’s no argument: shopping at H-E-B is synonymous with the San Antonio experience. From the moment you’re welcomed out of the scorching heat and into the automatically-sliding arms of your local air-conditioned H-E-B, you’re treated like a part of the family.
Within these walls, you can find everything from the classic comfort foods of home to novelty items like Texas-shaped tortilla chips and whiskey-and-honey ice cream. The whole combination makes the H-E-B experience as nostalgic as mom’s kitchen and as whimsical as Grandma trying to spoil you.
Perhaps this feeling of familiarity comes from the fact that this Texas grocery chain was born just down the country road from San Antonio. With just $60 and a mind for business, Florence Butt lovingly crafted the “C.C. Butt Grocery Store” in her family home in Kerrville, TX in 1905. Over next 100 years and down the family lineage, the H-E-B headquarters moved around the state until finally settling back into its Hill Country roots. Today, H-E-B is based in San Antonio and claims 307 supermarkets in Texas and 53 in Mexico!
Image Courtesy of FreeFuninAustin.com
But while we could go on and on about the fine details of how H-E-B has changed the Texas shopping experience throughout history, we think it would be more fun (and more tasty) to show you: starting with San Antonio’s favorite products. Below, we’ve listed 26 favorites that we hope you never have to live without...
1. Mootopia Milk
In case y’all forgot, Mootopia is the Spurs’ favorite post-workout drink...and we’ve heard even lactose-intolerant customers sing Mootopia’s praises! Do you like reduced fat, fat-free, or chocolate?
2. Specialty Series Texas Barbeque Sauce
H-E-B’s Texas Specialty Series Barbeque sauce reminds us why our state’s version of BBQ is clearly the best. Sorry, Memphis.
3. Cafe Olé Taste Of San Antonio Coffee
In case living and breathing San Antonio isn’t enough for you, H-E-B is kind enough to let you taste it in your coffee, too. The San Antonio themed Cafe Ole roast has notes of cinnamon, chocolate, and vanilla.
4. Central Market Exotic Mediterranean Blend Vegetable Chips
Okay, seriously? H-E-B just transformed the entire “eating your vegetables” experience. Thank you, Central Market Vegetable Chips.
5. Central Market Hatch Green Chile Queso
According to their website, “All you have to say is Central Market Hatch Green Chile Queso, and people will come running to your table.” To summarize: who needs online dating anymore when you have H-E-B?
6. That Green Sauce
An absolute local classic, That Green Sauce is a spicy blend of jalapeños and poblanos perfect on tacos, eggs, fajitas, or whatever else you can think of.
7. Wild Alaska Seafood
We especially recommend the Fish Market’s Sockeye Salmon Fillet!
8. San-Antonio-Style Candied Pecans
For those of us who’d like to taste the glory of the holidays at the River Walk without braving the parking scene (or actually waiting for the holidays), H-E-B brings the food vendor cart experience to you with San-Antonio-Style Candied Pecans.
9. Mixla Tortillas
Life is too short to eat sub-par tortillas...which is why H-E-B-brand Mixla Tortillas have gained a following of their own. The best of both worlds, these puppies combine the authentic taste of corn with the flexibility of flour.
10. Whataburger-Style Products
In a San Antonio powerhouse move, H-E-B teamed up with Whataburger to release and distribute an exclusive line of drive-through-worthy products: Fancy and Spicy Ketchup, Jalapeno Ranch, Whatafries, and the forever classic Honey Butter.
11. Creamy Creations Ice Cream
When the Great Blue Bell Famine of 2015 struck H-E-B shelves, many Texans found unexpected solace in H-E-B’s Creamy Creations. To this day, we’ve heard would-be Blue Bell fanatics swear by Creamy Creations’ Texas Vanilla Seguin Pecan and Poteet Strawberry.
12. Finishing Butter
H-E-B is getting gourmet, y’all. Their most recent line of Select Ingredient Finishing Butter are velvety-smooth, including flavors like Tuscan Herb and White & Black Truffle.
13. Filled Pastas
For those nights when you have to be fancy in a hurry, these Filled Pastas are a lifesaver.
14. Sushiya! San Antonio Roll
Most folks don’t pair San Antonio and sushi, but we’re thankful for the genius who created the San Antonio Roll (obviously containing avocado).
15. Cookie Butter
We're addicted to H-E-B Cookie Butter. It has the consistency of creamy peanut butter and tastes like Christmas morning.
16. Pure Cane Sugar Soda
17. Freshly Ground Honey Roasted Peanut Butter
Available in the bulk aisle of most H-E-B Plus stores, fresh ground HRPB has captured the hearts of peanut butter lovers across the city.
18. Roasted Red Pepper Hummus
Did you think all hummus was created equal? Tell us that again after you taste this stuff.
19. Fresh In-Store Guacamole
If there’s one area San Antonio claims expertise, it’s guacamole.
20. Natural Uncured Applewood Smoked Bacon
If you’re partial to breakfast food, try H-E-B’s Natural Uncured Applewood Smoked Bacon at any time of the day.
21. Cranberry Pistachio Bread
According to their website, “If man had to live by bread alone H-E-B Cranberry Pistachio Bread would be our winner.” We’re inclined to agree. Pro tip: fry it up as a twist on French Toast.
22. Prime 1 Boneless Ribeye Steak
We wouldn’t be Texans if we didn’t mention Boneless Ribeye Steak: summer grilling, holiday feasting, whatever. Snag some.
23. Anything from Cafe On-The-Run
Have you ever made the mistake of grocery shopping while hungry? It doesn’t end well for your wallet. Next time, try out Café on the Run! Alon Market, 1604/Blanco Rd, and 281/Evans locations offer chef-prepared meals, snacks, and side dishes for your ready-to-eat pleasure.
24. Central Market’s Small-Batch Ice Cream
For the high-end ice cream snobs among us, Central Market’s small-batch ice cream includes Dark Chocolate Ganache, Whiskey and Honey, Saigon Cinnamon, Hazelnut Latte, Lemon Creme with Rosemary Shortbread, Coconut Ginger, and Chile Pepper Pecan.
25. Bare Bread Crustless White Bread
For those of us who don’t have time for crusts, Bare Bread is uber-convenient and super delicious,
26. San Antonio Spurs Diapers
These guys speak for themselves: H-E-B will let your baby proudly display the ultimate sign of Spurs patriotism with Spurs Logo Diapers!
Image Courtesy of Anna Crowder Photography
If you weren’t hungry when you started reading this post, we’re willing to bet you are now...and if you don’t live in Texas, maybe you’re holding back a few appropriate tears. After all, living near an H-E-B is kind of like being neighbors with a Texan Santa Claus: jolly and familiar, doling out a wealth of free samples (including wine!) and novelty food items like it’s his year-round job.
But never fear! Whether you’re a “Tex-pat” or an out-of-state novice, the great H-E-B City is ready to welcome you in at a moment’s notice...and we’ll be here to help you find a home when you decide the time is right.
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