The Big Carrot Natural Food Maket

  • Health-food-store Health Store
    ( 10 reviews )

348 Danforth Ave, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, M4K 1N8

Canadian worker-owned co-operative specializes in organic, non-GMO, environmentally-safe products, foods, grocery. Has a vegetarian deli & salad bar by weight.

10 Reviews

First Review by Arby

big carrot has lost sight of its roots - Edit

I used to live in the neighbourhood and even then, it was starting to feel less like a workers' coop and more like a place trying to cater to the richy rich (of which i am not). Since I left, it has changed even more, with a complete reno to their deli - for the worse, in my opinion. One used to be able to get some food (and I loved getting the soup - quite reasonable, especially after getting the TVA discount) and hang out at a table or counter for a while. Now they have placed the counters by the checkouts/doors which is not at all welcoming AND they have signs saying you have a 20 minute limit. Not friendly, not neighbourly, puts me right off.

BC has always been overpriced compared to other places in the city (especially Kensington Market and Baldwin Naturals - so go to those places instead) but I appreciated being able to get several items that were decently priced as well as beautiful organic produce.

I can't get there much anymore and, sadly, it's not much of a loss. Too many snooty customers and some of the staff seem to reflect that... although some of the staff remain very very down to earth and nice.

That's it - it used to be way more down to earth. I no longer feel comfortable shopping there.

Pros: have some items at good prices

Cons: no longer down to earth, unwelcoming, old deli was WAYYYYYY better

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One of my favs in Toronto - Edit

Great staff, good selection of organic and natural food and products. They have a nice vegetarian deli with a good verities of vegan and vegetarian foods (however it's sometimes a little too salty). They have a very nice juice bar where they serve a nice selection of hot drinks (tea and coffee) as well and that's where you can get the best decaf coffees in town! Try their decaf mocha with almond milk, it's really good!

Pros: Great Staff, Good products

Cons: I wish I could find everything I need there but, that's not the case. Sometimes, I've to go , somewhere else for just 1 particular product!

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Expensive and Not Veg Friendly! - Edit

I used to love buying a lunch from the vegan deli and bought most of my vegan groceries here. Now there is SO MUCH MEAT it should really be a butcher shop. Ridiculously expensive supplements with very poor selection; the staff however love to stand around chatting about their cleanses and colonics. The store has fewer and fewer vegan foods; I only go there for a few things like Sheese cream cheese and Sophie's Kitchen smoked "salmon" but there's hardly anything else vegan to buy. Also - the dairy salad dressings are shelved beside and mixed with the raw/vegan dressings - twice I've accidentally purchased a dairy dressing by mistake. Really disappointing market unless you aren't vegan and love spending way more than you have to.

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Ridiculously overpriced - Edit

I come here the odd time if I'm in the area, but like Noah's, Big Carrot merch is so marked up it isn't funny.

If you want vegan food that isn't produce or deli-style, head to Panacea instead. It's Canada's only all-vegan food store.

That said, BC has a beautiful bulk section and is spacious and well-lit. It's also in a nice area.

Pros: expensive

Cons: lovely atmosphere, parking

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Protein Power - Edit

I love the fact that the Big Carrot has a vegetarian deli and I can pick what and exactly how much of it I want to eat. If I am craving protein I will get a plate full of different tofu and seitan dishes and it's so satisfying! It is really expensive though, and I also find that they often don't quite warm up my plate enough.

Pros: selection

Cons: price

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Good selection, but not cheap - Edit

There is an excellent selection of natural food products at this store. If you are not concerned about cost, it is a great place to shop.

Pros: Great selection

Cons: Expensive, Parking is difficult

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One of 3 favorites - Edit

I travel to Toronto twice a year and always stop at The Big Carrot, because they have things that I can't get in Detroit.

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Big Carrot, Big Fun! - Edit

I feel some of these other reviews place this supermarket/deli into a far-too negative light. I'm not the biggest fan of the deli, but I wouldn't say it's terrible. The market itself is fabulous. Having shopped mainly at Loblaws and Whole Foods supermarkets beforehand, I can say that I find the prices at the Carrot extremely affordable, and the staff has always been extremely helpful. The store does offer meats, but they are sectioned off in a manner that I find entirely innoffensive. Meat eaters are presented with a selection of healthy, organic, free range options that certainly don't overpower the store. Everyone I know who frequents this place loves it! They also offer vegetarian cooking classes, and are run as a co-op, not a juggernaut corporation. Go Carrot!

Pros: Well Organized, Fairly Priced , Great Selection

Cons: for some - carries meats

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Just Okay - Edit

Well, I've been to this deli a million times. It helped that I lived across the street for a year. I still shop regularly at the Big Carrot and so I eat at the deli on occasion.

The service, here and throughout the Big Carrot, is spotty. Some of the staff are great. Some are not.

I'm sort of shocked at the way so little of what they have on offer is appealing. Factor in being upleasantly surprised by items that 'look' good, but are not. I don't know whether it's just me, but over the years I've found that out of the few items that I really liked, few have survived. They had a killer seitan item that disappeared and never returned. They don't seem to have anyone around there who grasps the concept of 'tasty'.

And when they redesigned the deli, they screwed up the seating. If it's overly busy, you can sit at the bar and stare at a stranger who will be sitting directly across from you about 2 feet away.

I haven't noticed it lately (maybe because I now ask for 'extra hot' hot dishes), but I used to tire of having to go back and ask them to warm my dish more. Often portions of the food would be cold (actually). That's embarrassing. And they will never say sorry for it, making you look like you're being annoying.

The cooks at Big Carrot should all be made to eat for a week at Le Commensal and they should also be told that there's a reason for it. Because they could learn a thing or two from Le Commensal about tasty food.

Pros: quality, simple pay by weight system, clean

Cons: price, flavors and textures, spotty service

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It was okay... - Edit

I stopped by here while walking around town. The sandwich, some kind of veggie grilled sandwich on spelt with vegan honey mustard, was pretty good. However, the sandwich alone was $6. No sides, no drink, no nothing. Yes, everything is organic, but still...

I had a blueberry milkshake made with soy milk and vegan ice cream, which was pretty good, but a 16oz shake (not that big) was again $6. To top it off, I bought some kind of Ursa's vegan carob brownie (pre-made in the cooler for almost $3 for a brownie). It was the worst thing I've ever eaten. I like carob-- it wasn't the carob. It fell apart and tasted AWFUL. DO NOT EAT THE VEGAN CAROB BROWNIE UNLESS YOU LIKE THE TASTE OF DIRT.

Pros: Decent food, OK staff

Cons: EXPENSIVE, disgusting brownie

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