Let’s talk about Aldi! I do the majority of my grocery shopping at Aldi; the other 30% I do at a couple local farmer’s markets. When I tell people about my Aldi trips their reactions are usually split right down the middle – half clap and say they love Aldi as well, while the other half sneer and can’t believe I shop there as a dietitian. Hey, I love Whole Foods and Sprouts as much as the next person; but I just can’t justify spending $90 on 5 items. Here are some of the reasons I personally love Aldi:
- They don’t use plastic bags – if you are like me, you probably have 15,652 re-usable bags sitting around your house. Literally, I have a bag stuffed with bags… Aldi is the perfect place to use them!
- Cheaper prices – the majority of items sold at Aldi are their own private-label products, which cuts out the middleman (popular name brand items) and keep costs lower.
- I can get in and out in 30 minutes or less – honestly, I hate grocery shopping. I cannot stand spending hours in large grocery stores. I usually know what I’m going to get and don’t often stray from those items. Aldi carries what they call “the weekly must-haves” (somewhere around 1,300-1,500 products), compared to 30,000 + items in the bigger stores, which means Aldi stores are smaller and items can be found easily and quickly.
- You can buy inexpensive organic and specialty items – I don’t always strive to buy organic, but I will buy it from Aldi when it’s available because it’s the price of commercial produce at bigger stores. Also, you can get specific seeds and nuts, a plethora of cheeses, dips, and other specialty items much cheaper as well.
- Aldi has similar practices and is tied to Trader Joe’s – Anna Albrecht started a small food store in 1913 in Essen, Germany; her sons took over the store in 1948 and expanded to 4 locations. In 1962, the name Aldi was founded by shortening the name from Albrecht Discount and expansion continued to more than 200 locations. In 1976, the first U.S. location opened in Iowa; expansion continued yet again to Great Britain, Ireland, Australia, Slovenia, and Hungary in the 1990’s – 2,000’s. Today, Trader Joe’s and Aldi are owned by sister companies Aldi Nord and Aldi Sud. Aldi Nord owns Trader Joe’s and operates Aldi stores in Europe. Aldi Sud operates Aldi stores in the U.S
I did a quick grocery trip to Aldi today and thought I would share some of the products and prices. Note, I did not buy any meat or much produce, as I went to the local farmer’s market yesterday for those items.
1. Cereal – these bran flakes were $1.79, compared to $2.99 at a larger grocery store chain.
2. Bagels and Bread – the bagels were $1.59 and the sandwich thins were $1.69, compared to $4.29 and $3.29, respectively.
3. Tortilla Chips and Crackers – the tortilla chips were $1.69 each, compared to the 2 for $5 or 2 for $6 deals you can get at other stores. The crackers were $1.29, compared to $2.77 for name brand.
4. Chia Seeds and Flax Seeds – the chia seeds were $3.49 and the flax seeds were $2.49. This is an example of specialty items you can get cheaper. At a larger grocery store these would cost you anywhere from $5.99 to $16.50.
5. Cashew Milk – this “milk” beverage was $2.48, compared to the name brand price at $3.29.
6. Peanut Butter – this peanut butter was higher price than other available options, because I got the organic, natural one at $3.39. Organic and natural peanut butter at other stores can run you anywhere from $3.50 to $5.99.
7. Cheese – I bought the 12 ounce shredded cheese bags at $2.69 each, compared to the 8 ounce bags at $3.19. The sliced cheese was $1.79, compared to $3.49 at other stores.
8. Cottage Cheese and Cream Cheese – the 24 ounce cottage cheese was $1.99, compared to $3.99 and the 8 ounce whipped cream cheese was $1.49, compared to the brand name whipped cream cheese at $2.69.
9. Produce – the total for the produce I bought was $5.47. At a larger grocery store for the same produce items, this would cost you close to $8.00.
10. Frozen Fruit – these frozen blueberries were $2.29. At a regular grocery store these are $3.99.
11. Frozen foods – these frozen burritos (my husband’s guilty pleasure) were $2.79 for 8 burritos, compared to $3.69.
12. Salsa and Dips – the salsa was $2.49 and the hummus was $1.99. The salsa is right on par with other stores; however, hummus at larger stores can be as much as $4.99 for the same amount.
13. Random Items – I also bought a couple flavored waters at $0.59 each, this water flavor enhancer at $1.89 and deodorant at $2.47. At other stores, similar flavored water is $0.99, water flavor enhancer can be $3.99, and deodorant is typically $2.49 and up.
In total, I paid $49.39 and saved approximately $37.38. More importantly, I saved probably 40 minutes of my life! I do not work for Aldi or have any affiliation with them at all; I just wanted to share some of my reasons for shopping there. You can decide for yourself!