Reusable Grocery Bags – Small enough for your pocket or purse

Ranked #213 in Healthy Living, #4,737 overall

Get greener with folding grocery bags - an excellent Christmas stocking stuffer idea!

Here in Maryland, we're being charged $.05 for every paper or plastic grocery bag we use in a store after January 1, 2012 so reusable bags are flying off the shelves. If you're anything like me (and, on a lot of levels, I hope you're not...for your own sake...), you might fill your car with reusable grocery bags with the best of intentions. Yes, I know...something about the road to hell....

Read more about the paper and plastic bag laws for each individual state: The retail bags report - list of retail bag laws in the US.

Anyway, I almost always forget to bring these reusable fabric grocery bags into a store with me! In the trunk or back seat is where these folding shopping bags remain..ostensibly forever. I even have some reusable grocery bags stored in my glove box and trunk and I still forget them!

If I don't change my ways, a trip to the grocery store and the Chinese market where I load up on vegetables is going to cost me approximately $1.00 a week, and that doesn't include trips to the local mall where single use bags will also be taxed. All told, I'll probably use around 30 paper or plastic bags a week which adds up to $1.50 per week. Now, that might not seem like much to you but it adds up quick - I'll spend an additional $78 a year just to tote my purchases home.

And, that's why I started to research folding grocery bags small enough to fit in my pocket or purse. I've come to determine that I need to have grocery shopping bags that are attached to my person - either hanging from a wrist or, more preferable, folding grocery bags which can fit in my jeans pocket or in my purse. I know it's not the most mature of decisions but it just has to be.

I've found what I think are the best reusable grocery bags which can be folded into a small package. One of these folding grocery totes even folds up into a strawberry. How cute is that? In fact, a strawberry folding shopping bag would be an ideal present for Valentine's Day - perhaps not the sexiest Valentine's Day gift ever but it sure would be welcome in my sorry little world...perfect for a Mother's Day gift also but I'd suggest filling it with a piece of nice jewelry or two...

Reusable grocery totes / grocery bags / recyclable grocery bags / grocery tote / tote bag / Christmas stocking stuffer / Christmas / reusable grocery bags / reusable bags

Edited 02FEB13

The Reisenthel Collapsible Bag

The coolest reusable grocery bag ever!

I just bought this thing when I found it on! It’s exactly the same size as those little carry around grocery totes in the grocery store which I think is just perfect for a quick trip to the grocery store or, even better, I’ll be sportin’ this thing at farmer’s markets this coming summer. With an aluminum frame, this little basket will hold its shape and not squish a loaf of bread. It also collapses down for storage. This is a must have reusable grocery tote if you ask me.

Update: 26FEB13 – I received my Reisenthel Collapsible Grocery Tote last week; need I say that it hasn’t left my side? I’m actually thinking of taking this on a plane for my next trip to Arizona. I think it will fit right under the seat and would make getting items in and out so much easier than the tote bag I normally carry. This reusable grocery tote is just a class act!

Update 18MAR13 – Well, when pitted against the front seat of a Mercedes, my poor Reisenthel bag couldn’t hold up to the pressure. I had it on the floor board of the front passenger seat when I put the seat forward to load a suitcase into the back seat. On my car, if you lift a lever to move the seat, it automatically goes forward and, evidently doesn’t stop, even when crushing my poor bag (good to know! At least my dog wasn’t down there!). Anyway, I was so saddened by this event that I gave my beautiful Reisentel to an elderly neighbor to use (it’s still quite functional – just a bit bent) and bought another one yesterday. Lesson learned. This bag is collapsible…

Carry Bag - Reisenthel Germany Collapsible Bag Carybag or Market Basket Carry Bag – Reisenthel Germany Collapsible Bag Carybag or Market Basket CHECK PRICE

Some other pattern choices for Rosenthel Market Baskets

I truly love my Rosenthel market basket and have a few other of the below on my wish list. I plan on using on to leave on my steps to fill with items to go upstairs or downstairs.

 Red Dots Reisenthel Anniversary Carry Bag Limited Edition Black Orange Marigold Reisenthel Anniversary Carry Bag Limited Edition

Envirosax 5 bag sets

Reusable bags with flair

These reusable grocery bags are among the leaders on Reviewers like the wide shoulder straps and the fun prints on these Envirosax bags. Reviewers also comment that these bags hold up well, hold about 4 grocery bags worth of goods, and can be thrown right in the washing machine without any fuss. Envirosax takes great pride in the fact that these reusable grocery totes are printed “using vegetable and soy based dyes which are environmentally friendly.” If you’re going ‘green’, there’s no greener reusable grocery bags out there.

Edit: 2FEB13 – I bought this set of 5 reusable grocery totes and couldn’t be happier with them. They’re extremely sturdy – much sturdier than cheaper bags. I think, in the long run, these grocery bags will be well worth the additional cost.

 Envirosax Rosa RO.P Shoulder Bag,Set of Five

This pocket shopping bag is a perfect way to shop 'green'

Pun fully intended....

Reviewers on love this little frog shopping bag – they note that the material, though, does not seem as heavy as they expected but, they also note that, for the price, it’s a good buy. They also note that this small folding shopping bag goes easily back into it’s frog pouch when not used.

Reusable Shopping Tote Bag - Folded into a FrogReusable Shopping Tote Bag – Folded into a FrogCHECK PRICE

Single Envirosax reusable grocery bags

If you don’t need a set of five Envirosax, here’s singles on Although these are not cheap reusable grocery bags, they will last you forever. And, they wash up really well – I’ve washed mine at least five times since I got them in February; they come out perfect!

 Envirosax Savanna SA.B1 Shoulder Bag,Multi B1,One Size Envirosax Bloom Shopper,Cherry Camellia,one size

ChicoBags makes some very nice reusable shopping totes around

Nylon bags that fold into themselves

These bags have some of the highest reviews on One reviewer has used these reusable shopping totes for TWO years so they’re sturdy all right! And, it seems like reviewers like ChicoBags as they stuff right into their own attached bag – there’s no folding or fiddling with them to try and get these grocery bags back into their original format.

 ChicoBag Vita Design By Humans Reusable Shopping Tote/Grocery Bag, Surf Break

Another set of highly touted large, pocket-sized , collapsible shopping bags

The b.b.begonia bags have excellent reviews on Any of these would be a great Mother’s Day gift but, remember, fill it with jewelry! These fold up shopping bags are quite easy to refold also.

b.b.begonia Zen Reusable Shopping Bagb.b.begonia Zen Reusable Shopping BagCHECK PRICE

b.b.begonia Yin and Yang Reusable Shopping Bagb.b.begonia Yin and Yang Reusable Shopping BagCHECK PRICE

Waste-less Variety Pack Reusable Shopping Bags

These reusable shopping bags come in a quantity of 6 so you'll have plenty on hand - always!

fold up grocery bags These Waste-less reusable folding grocery bags were first on my list when I searched Amazon. I love that these cloth grocery bags have a bit of style to them – not that I do but I can use all the help I can get. Reviewers also love these folding grocery bags as they will fold easily to fit right inside your palm. And, they each of these reusable shopping bags holds approximately twice the volume of a normal grocery plastic sack.

You can find the Waste-less reusable folding grocery bags at different places on the internet but, for the best price, click on the above reusable shopping bags above.

Some of the 'Trendiest' Reusable Grocery Totes Around

These Trendy Shopping Tote Bags open up to be 15×15 which is pretty good size. Some of these bags have clips so you can attach them right to your purse – no more leaving your reusable grocery bags in the car (unless you forget your purse – it’s happened, trust me….).

 Trendy Shopping Tote Bag – Gold Trace Flowers Pattern

Folding shopping bags...

...for the strawberry lover

I just had no clue at all that there was a plethora of folding grocery bags that fold up into the shape of a strawberry. I think these are very cute and, if I were a strawberry lover, I’d be all over these reusable grocery bags. If you have a strawberry lover in your life, you might want to consider filling a basket with a few of these reusable grocery totes, a few chocolate covered strawberries, a bottle of wine (Strawberry Hill, of course) and 2 wine glasses as a great Valentine’s gift.

 SODIAL- Strawberry Folding Fold up Reusable Compact Eco periodic duty Recycling use Shopping Bag Unique Strawberry Nylon Foldable Reusable Shopping Bags

Flip and Tumble reusable grocery tote

This reusable grocery bag is big and stretchy! Measuring in at 12x14x5, this stretch grocery tote has long handles – 26″ long! Stuff it as full as you can and, when you’re done, roll it back up into a little ball about the size of a peach. This is the perfect grocery tote to throw in the glove box of a car or keep in the trunk for weekend yard sales.

Flip and tumble stretchy reusable grocery tote pouchFlip and tumble stretchy reusable grocery tote pouchCHECK PRICE

Blue Q Shopper Hummingbird

One of my favorite reusable shopping totes, this hummingbird tote is large (measures 16-Inch wide by 15-Inch high by 6-Inch deep). Take it along when buying your bird supplies.

One of the nicest things about this reusable shopping tote is that 1% of the sale will be donated to The Nature Conservatory. So, while you're doing something nice for the environment (not using plastics which fill landfills, you're also donating to a very worthwhile organization.

A poll about paying for paper or plastic bags

reusable grocery bags

How do you feel about having a tax imposed on paper or plastic bags?

  Show the poll results

Eco Shopping Bag - 5 Foldable Rose Set

For the rose lover in your family

Everyone loves roses, even if they're adorning an eco friendly shopping bag. And, the fact that there are 5 foldable rose shopping bags means that you'll have plenty of space when you go on a shopping spree.

Got paper or plastic?

Please leave me comments

I’m a bit saddened to find that we now have to pay to tote our already groceries home but, I suppose in the interest of ecology and recycling and saving the earth and all that jazz, it’s a necessary evil.

Please leave me comments if you’ve stopped by.
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  • im2keys Oct 16, 2013 @ 7:48 am
    We take our own bags here as well, and I'm always looking for new and better grocery bags- great lens!
  • Steve_Kaye Aug 29, 2013 @ 10:35 pm
    Great idea. I have a collection of cloth bags that I use all the time. These bags are strong and reusable.
  • Marias_Stuff Jun 08, 2013 @ 12:48 pm
    Always finding great stuff on your lenses. Trunk organisers make so much sense for stopping the groceries flying around in the car!
  • skiesgreen Jun 04, 2013 @ 6:43 am
    Priced plastic is a deterrent and I have my own little bags made from material that fit nicely into the pocket of my shopping trolley. They are in different sizes and the material is very light weight and easy enough for anyone to make. I rarely have to take plastic carry bags from shops these days. Great lens and love the ideas you put into it.
  • kindoak May 18, 2013 @ 9:10 am
    Anything re-usable gets my thumbs up! Good incentive lens.

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