Food

Aldi vs Walmart: The Ultimate Price Comparison

Is Aldi really cheaper than Walmart? I went to both stores for the ultimate price comparison on over 85 items and I'm sharing it all on the blog!

Is Aldi really cheaper than Walmart? I went to both stores for the ultimate price comparison on over 85 items and I'm sharing it all on the blog today!

My Shopping Experience at Aldi & Walmart

I've been shopping at Aldi for over 15 years and at Walmart for as long as I can remember. I feel like both stores really have a lot of pros and cons (more on that in a future post) and recently decided to narrow down exactly how different they are in pricing.

My family and I are doing the Whole30 for the month of January so our produce and meat prices needed some special attention. I like to know if I'm getting the best deal when we're eating plenty of both at every single meal.

Obviously, your shopping experience with the quality of each store may be different than mine so please keep that in mind while reading this post. I've been to both wonderful and terrible Walmart and Aldi locations. I've purchased wonderful fruit from one, terrible fruit in another, and vice versa. You just never know!

Things You Should Know About My Grocery Comparison

There are so many details to take into consideration while going through this comparison.

  • With over 85 items included, my prices may be slightly different from your prices depending on your location
  • All compared products are Walmart's Great Value brand and the Aldi store brand
  • Both the Walmart and Aldi used in this experiment were located in Houston, Texas, USA
  • This experiment was performed and posted in January 2016. This may affect the prices of produce and other groceries
  • I did not include any sale prices. This was done in an attempt to give you the most accurate price comparison possible
  • I've included the total price for each item but as Walmart and Aldi differed on sizing for most of their groceries, I've included the price per unit as well. For example, Walmart sells apples in a 5 pound bag and Aldi sells theirs in a 3 pound bag. I list the prices as $4.82 and $2.99 but ultimately compare them as $0.96/pound and $1.00/pound, respectively (Winner: Walmart)
  • Price per unit was used to determine each item's winner

Lastly, many hours were put into this project. I put on comfy tennis shoes and walked around these stores with a giant legal pad, trying not to miss a single detail. Every effort was made to ensure accuracy in the making of this post. However, please expect that available items or prices may vary. With so many locations around the world, it's just bound to happen.

Download Aldi vs Walmart: The Ultimate Price Comparison

Click here or on the photo below to download the price comparison sheet.

Conclusion: Is Aldi Cheaper than Walmart?

Mostly yes, but not in every category! I really thought Aldi was going to blow Walmart out of the water on every single item. Obviously, it was far and away the winner all around. But it really failed in the meat prices, both frozen and fresh.

Here are the winners according to each section:

  • Produce: ALDI
  • Meat/Fish: WALMART
  • Snacks/Basics: ALDI
  • Condiments: ALDI
  • Cans/Jars: ALDI
  • Dairy: ALDI
  • Baking: ALDI
  • Miscellaneous: ALDI

Your savings may be dependent on what you and your family mostly eat. For example, Walmart was far and away more cheaper in the meat department. But if you don't typically eat meat, then Aldi would be a better choice if you're looking for one-stop shopping.

Overall, I'm incredibly glad I was able to do this because I can print it out and easily compare my normal stores (Walmart & Aldi) to other sales in my area (Sam's, Costco, Target, Kroger, HEB, and so on).

Do you shop at Aldi or Walmart? What do you like/dislike?

2 Ingredient Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken w/ KC Masterpiece Sauce

This is the easiest 2 ingredient slow cooker BBQ chicken recipe! #KCMasterpiece helps me keep things delicious with Sweet Honey and Molasses Barbecue Sauce.

This post is sponsored but I would highly recommend KC Masterpiece even if it wasn't. Please read my Disclaimer for more information. 

My BBQ sauce obsession just got better! There are so many things to love about Kansas City but it's their BBQ that really takes the cake. And nobody sells delicious sauces like KC Masterpiece.

This is the best slow cooker BBQ chicken recipe ever! The ingredients used in their Sweet Honey and Molasses Barbecue Sauce recipe is unmatched and makes it easy to just mix two ingredients in the Crock Pot and still have a meal that is jam-packed with flavor.

Ingredients: 

  • 4-5 chicken breasts
  • 18 ounces KC Masterpiece Sweet Honey and Molasses BBQ Sauce

(optional) toppings

Directions: 

This is the easiest 2 ingredient slow cooker BBQ chicken recipe! #KCMasterpiece helps me keep things delicious with Sweet Honey and Molasses Barbecue Sauce.
This is the easiest 2 ingredient slow cooker BBQ chicken recipe! #KCMasterpiece helps me keep things delicious with Sweet Honey and Molasses Barbecue Sauce.

1. Place chicken breasts on bottom of slow cooker. (For easy cleanup, line your slow cooker with a disposable liner.)2. Pour BBQ sauce over chicken. Rotate so they are all covered. 3. Cover and cook on high for 3-4 hours. Shred chicken with two forks, mixing in the BBQ sauce on the bottom of the slow cooker. 4. Serve with hamburger buns and toppings.

It's that easy! Personally, we like to compliment the tender chicken with crunchy cabbage, red onion, and a little bit of pepper.

We are a busy family, just like you. There isn't a lot of time to prepare an elaborate meal during the week. I love the ease of this recipe! The fact that it tastes so good just makes it even better.

What is your favorite BBQ recipe? 

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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of KC Masterpiece. The opinions and text are all mine.

Easter Feast on a Budget

Easter is one of my favorite holidays! It means that spring is finally here and you get to eat candy for breakfast. Can your week really get any better?

Related Post: How To: Thrifty Easter Basket

We're doing a tiny gathering in my home this year but I'm still cooking a feast, believe me. I don't want to break the bank just because the Easter Bunny stopped by though. I know a lot of you feel the same way!

Holidays are a joyful occasion that shouldn't leave you broke. But where do you start cutting corners? It wouldn't make any sense to skip the dyed Easter eggs but keep the four course meal planned. Using these simple tips will help keep your budget and your family happy at the same time.

Tip #1: Let the Guests Help

If you're having people over and they offer to bring something SAY YES! Better yet, save some money on the booze and ask them to bring a bottle of wine or their favorite liquor. 

Alternatively, are your family and friends willing to do a potluck Easter meal?  There's no shame in only cooking the protein or all of the desserts. This tactic will give you more time to relax and actually enjoy the day.

Tip #2: Trim the Appetizers

Keep the appetizers cheap and easy! We'll be using the dyed Easter eggs for deviled eggs. Why waste all of the cute eggs, right?

I'll also be setting out a large plate of cheese, crackers, and veggies. It's nice to have some light finger foods to nibble on before the ham gets served and it won't cost much. I'll be buying delicious cheese but nothing too foreign or fancy (i.e. expensive).

Tip #3: Buy an Affordable Main Course

You can have the full main course without losing all of your money if you plan it strategically. For example, sometimes it's cheaper to buy a plain spiral cut ham and to simply add the drizzle yourself.  I'll be using this recipe from Amy at Chew Out Loud. 

Good ole mashed potatoes are cheap, filling, and a must-have with ham! I like to add sour cream, rosemary, and garlic (in addition to milk and butter, of course!) to bring the flavor up a notch. It makes them a little more tasty without having to increase the budget.

Skip those overpriced prepackaged salads and assemble one yourself. Pre-made sides can be overpriced and you need to make your money stretch as far as possible. Buy all of the ingredients separately and then ask your handy partner or willing child to do all of the prep work.

Green Bean Casserole is an oldie but goodie and is very affordable. Green beans are cheap regardless of whether you buy them fresh or canned and the dish can be made ahead of time. It's a win win from all angles.

Lastly, don't forget to add a yummy bread to the table. Beth from Budget Bytes has AMAZING recipes and her Focaccia Rollsare no exception. Be sure to start these the daybefore! Trust me, they are worth it.

Tip #4: Have a Mini Dessert

You can almost skip dessert with all of the candy you received that morning. But I personally like to bake a little extra treat on the holidays so that why I've included it here.

I have to go back to Budget Bytes with this one because Beth has this Lemon Pudding Cakerecipe that I dream about. If you've got more than two people coming over just multiply the recipe and share...or eat them all by yourself, which is exactly what I would want to do. THEY'RE THAT GOOD!

Don't panic or worry about your bank account when you have a lot of hungry guests coming over. I've mentioned just some of the easy ways you can control the cost of a family dinner but I'm sure you can find even more, depending on your preferences and budget.

Be sure to let the guests help if they want to and don't go crazy with the appetizers. Put the bulk of your cash into the main course and keep those recipes simple, yet filling. If you feel like you can skip dessert and feast on Robin Eggs and Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, do it! Nobody will judge. But if you really want a dessert, try to keep the ingredients down to a minimum. Your Easter celebration can be a success without going broke!

What recipes do you use for your Easter meal? How do you save money? 

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How We Save Over $6,000 a Year

If you're worried at all about your budget and are not sure where your money is going, start by taking a good look at the amount you spend on restaurants and eating out. I did a complete overhaul with our budget by using the 50/20/30 Rule.

Long before diapers and midnight feedings we were a married couple who liked to eat out a lot. We were foolishly living in a bubble where we didn't plan a budget or pay much attention to either building or contributing to our retirement accounts.

Then my husband and I made the big move to Downtown Houston right after we graduated from college and things just got worse with our spending habits. The food! The culture! We couldn't throw away our paychecks fast enough.

Reality Check

At the end of the year I was astounded to see that we had spent more than $6,700 in restaurants ALONE. Yes, you read that correctly.

$6,700! That's over $550 a month for two people!

This number doesn't include our grocery budget either. I was overwhelmingly sickened by the amount and determined to change. Thankfully, we had recently found out we were expecting (hooray!) and I quite literally became too sick to eat anything but Cheerios and saltine crackers.

The Meal Planning Begins

Eventually, morning sickness wore off and I started cooking at home like a madwoman. There are so many free resources online that it was easy to plan a week's worth of meals without putting in much effort.

And we instantly limited our eating out to only 2x/month. THIS WAS REALLY HARD! We went in cold turkey so there was no gradual transitioning involved. But we saved a little over $500 the first month and that just got the ball rolling.

The two times we ate out that first month were hardly fancy or expensive. Taco Bell starts to look reaalllly luxurious when you go from eating out multiple times a week to only 2 times a month!

Avoiding a Burnout

I still follow the 2x/month rule because I feel like rewarding myself every know and then. And if there's a really special occasion we don't count it as one of the two.

For Valentine's Day we got a babysitter for the first time and went to an actual sit-down restaurant. Anyone with children knows what a rarity that is! We spent $50 and felt like it was a fortune but it'll tide us over until our anniversary in the summer.

Thinking back on our lack of preparation and awareness is astounding to me. We didn't know how much we were spending on any category and didn't care. All that mattered was that the bills were paid every month.

We are not the same people today! I sit down every week and plan our meals so I can make sure we have a good chance of actually retiring one day.

How often does your family eat out? How do you save money when you do?