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Q&A Tuesday: What do you buy at Aldi?

I have a question. I noticed you do a lot of shopping at Aldi. We have one where I live, but for some reason I am hesitant to shop there. I was wondering if you could go over what you do and do not buy there, or if it does not matter at all. -Chelsea

Before I got married, I’d never been inside an Aldi store before. And I was hesitant to do so as I’d always had this impression that it was a dirty store with low quality food. However, since my husband and I had such a meager budget in the early years of our marriage, I quickly decided to get over my inhibitions and just go check out the store to see what I thought.

I was pleasantly surprised to discover Aldi wasn’t anything like I thought it would be. Sure, it doesn’t have the bells and whistles that a traditional grocery store has, but I’ll gladly give those up for the money I save by shopping there.

Here are a few tips for successfully shopping at Aldi:

1. Shop in a Nicer Section of Town

If possible, find an Aldi nearby that is in a nicer section of town. The Aldi stores in more run-down areas tend to be less clean and the food does seem to be poorer quality (it might just be my imagination–or the fact that it’s a lot more picked over many times!).

2. Shop With an Open Mind

Go to Aldi with an open mind (and a strict cash budget) and start carefully looking over all they have to offer. Right away, you’ll probably find some things you wouldn’t buy there, but you’ll probably be surprised at how similar other items look to things you usually buy at the grocery store.

Buy a few items to try and take them home and see what you and your family think. You’ll probably find some things you don’t care for, but you’ll probably also discover that you actually like some of their products better than the name brand products at the grocery store (for instance, we think their canned green beans are better than name brand green beans!).

The one thing I’ve found that varies the most at Aldi is their produce. At times, their produce will be great. Other times, it’s downright awful. You can always price-match their weekly deals at Walmart, so don’t feel like you need to buy produce there if it looks less than ideal. Stick with what looks fresh and high quality and skip the rest–no matter how inexpensive the price.

3. Stick With Staple Ingredients

In most cases, you’ll save the most at Aldi if you buy primarily staple ingredients there. Many of their processed foods aren’t much less than you’d pay at the grocery store (they can actually cost more than what you’d pay when combining a coupon with a sale!).

However, their every day prices on baking supplies, canned goods, frozen fruit and vegetables, peanut butter, oatmeal, eggs, milk, and butter will be at least 20% less than you’d pay at the grocery store. Plus, while you’re family might be able to tell a difference in ketchup brands, they probably won’t be able to tell if you use Aldi baking soda!

Do you shop at Aldi? If so, I’d love to hear your thoughts on what is best to buy there and what items you won’t buy there.

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218 Comments

  • Sarah says:

    I do a lot of shopping at Aldi. The amount of staple pantry items I come home with for under $20 is amazing. Things that are definitely cheaper at Aldi with similar quality to “regular” grocery stores: Eggs, Milk, some cheeses, baking items (sugar, flour, etc) and spices.

    I have only bought produce at Aldi once, and that was because they had semi-local fruit. Usually it looks scary.

    • Beth says:

      That’s too bad, because the produce at my ALDI is great. The strawberries usually aren’t good, but the rest has been up to par with our other grocery stores. Other things I like are yogurt, fresh salsa, canned beans, and wine.

    • Kristine says:

      The produce at our Aldi is wonderful. I guess it varies by store.

  • Amanda says:

    When I went to school in Kansas the Aldi there was okay. I felt like ever barely had anything. But I recently started to go to the one in Illinois. I feel like it is a lot nicer. I do not notice any difference in their chicken or ground beef or things like that.

    Around here the grocery stores don’t double, and have strict coupon rules and higher prices. So Aldi’s is a great alternative.

    • Amanda says:

      Oh yeah, if you do want produce and it’s at a good price, make sure you get there Wednesday (of first day of the weekly sale?) because it goes fast!

      • I’ve never shopped at Aldi, but I know many people who do their primary grocery shopping there. I do see some really great produce prices advertised, and have been tempted to check it out. I’ll keep that Wednesday tip in mind! Could it be that they only have produce delivered once a week? Yikes, after the first few days it probably does look a little scary… I suppose it depends on the store location, though.

        • Jessi says:

          Our Aldi’s has produce delivered several times a week. I have noticed that on the last day of the sale they stop putting new produce out and wait until the price goes up the next day.

  • I love shopping at Aldi’s! Our store has a fabulous produce selection and I always buy cheese there too!

  • Amy J says:

    I use Aldi for baking supplies! My second job (which may just become my primary income, since they cut my music teaching job last week) is as a bread baker, and I sell at the local farm markets. Most of my standard baking supplies (flour, sugar, eggs, milk, walnuts) are much cheaper at Aldi. I tend to buy most other staples at places like Kroger/Meijer, since I can usually get a good sale on things like cereal.

    I enjoy the looks that the cashiers give me when I come through with the plastic wrap still around the 8-ct of flour (it’s easier to carry into the house that way), and watch their double-take when I buy 16 bags of flour and 10-dozen eggs at a time. 🙂

  • Alyson says:

    I love Aldi’s! And I think it is important to mention that they will refund your money for anything that you are not pleased with the quality of.

    • Mary Ann says:

      Yes! In 7 years of shopping at Aldi, I’ve only returned one thing– a bunch of bananas that was completely rotten a few hours after I got them home from the store. They were awesome about it and gave me my money back plus another bunch of bananas.

    • Lana says:

      I got a spiral ham once that was not cut but only scored around the edges. They refunded my money and gave me another ham even though we had eaten the uncut one for Christmas dinner. My daughter and her hubby shop almost exclusively at Aldi and they return anything they don’t like without a problem.

    • Amanda says:

      Thanks I didn’t know they refund.

  • Ellen says:

    Aldi is more than 10 miles from my house and Walmart is less than a mile, so I price match the produce there.

    • Wendy says:

      I know what you mean. Aldi is 20 miles from my house 🙁 I don’t usually get to shop there as I don’t go in that direction often. I wonder if Walmart would price match since it’s in a different town? (But rarely does an Aldi sales paper come in my local paper anyway so I guess it wouldn’t matter.)

      • Ellen says:

        I do not get their ad in my paper or mail, so I look up their ad online at aldifoods.com and then under the weekly offers link, you will see weekly ads. I write down the prices on my shopping list and let the cashier know about the price match when I am checking out. Haven’t had a problem checking out without the ad yet, knock on wood.

      • Ellen says:

        Try checking with your local Walmart to see about their policy on how far or close their price matching will cover, they may or may not allow it. Never hurts to ask.

    • Amanda says:

      Where do you get the ad? I have only seen the ad once in the paper?

      • Ellen says:

        I do not get their ad in my paper or mail, so I look up their ad online at aldifoods.com and then under the weekly offers link, you will see weekly ads. I write down the prices on my shopping list and let the cashier know about the price match when I am checking out.

    • Megan C. says:

      My Walmart (in PA) won’t price match Aldi produce – they say it is a “discount store” and so therefor don’t have to honor a price match. Grrrrr….

      • Ellen says:

        Megan have you tried to talk to the store manager about it or have you tried showing their price matching policy to them? It does not state that they do not honor certain store ads and such, but I have heard each Walmart kinda makes up their policies to suit their stores.

  • Amy Cooper says:

    In doing our price comparisons where we shop in Ogdensburg, NY – Aldi CONSISTENTLY has the best price on whole milk. We like their refried beans, yogurt and summer sausage. I agree that many of their processed foods aren’t that great of a deal; however, their staples/ingredients are just as good as “name brand”. I have to admit, we don’t buy frozen there – we actually live an hour away and I’m not sure that the cooler will keep things frozen enough all the way home.

  • Lori says:

    I buy the meat, most especially the 93% lean beef and lean turkey. It is always cheaper there then any where else. It is great meat, cooks up nice.

  • Kimberlee says:

    Using the Aldi ads to price match at Walmart is a great idea! The produce at my local Walmart is usually a much better quality and I can price match other items at the same time, which saves me time and gas driving to the other stores.

    • Kristine says:

      I guess it varies by store. Although Wal-Mart is closer to us than Aldi, our Wal-Mart has terrible produce, but Aldi’s produce is great, so price matching wouldn’t be worth it to me.

  • Amanda says:

    I love Aldi! I got there each week to get my perishables (milk, eggs, bread, etc) and I get whatever produce they have on sale (that store pretty much single handedly made us able to start eating fresh produce again). I will also pick up whatever things I need for the week that I havent been able to find a sale and get cheaper with coupons.

    I love that the store is small, so its not like dragging my kids to the back of walmart for milk and then waiting in a 50 mile long line to check out. Their workers are actually friendly too!

    I also get some of the costlier things on my list there too, like toilet paper, a pack of diapers (i was using cloth and only needed them once in a while and they were $5.49).

    We like their chicken nuggets better than Tyson, and their ritz crackers as well. I actually haven’t found anything there that I didnt really care for except their baby wipes, which were very thin, but no worse than any other store brand wipes. We also can’t get their cat food anymore because they don’t have an indoor formula and the cats were getting bad hairballs, but other than that I’ll get anything I need there.

    • Lee says:

      So glad you mentioned this. We’ve been brand-loyal to Tyson for nuggets but I rarely buy them anymore because they are so expensive and rarely have coupons except for the Anytizers.

      • Amanda says:

        They are like $3.69 a pack there, but we only like the normal shaped ones. They have jungle creatures and rings and chicken fries, but those dont taste as good to me =)

        • Katie says:

          I must say that the Target brand chicken nuggets are by far the best tasting of them all! I swear up and down they are the exact same chicken nuggets that McDonalds uses. They taste a LOT better than Tyson’s.

    • Kristine says:

      I love the fact that Aldi is small, too. It’s much less complicated and time-consuming shopping there than shopping at Wal-Mart, besides being cheaper for most things. I really hate shopping, so the more I can simplify my shopping trips the better.

  • Judy says:

    I buy most of my produce, especially veggies there. Love their string cheese and deli meat like turkey or ham. at lower prices. Milk is a good buy and it keeps better than many of other stores as well. Graham crackers , snacks are all good choices, I did not like canned veggies like beets and beans had a funny taste.Tilaipia and shrimp, chicken and meats are good too.. But watch and make sure not a special other places. Fruits i check over good and as they said Walmart matches price. They bring things in that are to die for then never get again as well.. So try some things yourself and I think you will go back.. My only problem is they wont accept check and its hard to have cash,, I don;t use debit card.

  • Naomi says:

    I get all the stuff mentioned above, plus our meat. I know when I was a kid, my mom NEVER got the Aldi meat bc it looked bad, but they have really upgraded in this area over the years (at least where I live). They actually have lots of meat that looks better than some of our other grocers in my town. I agree w/ the fruit, go on the first day and it’s best.

    Also, we get frozen veggies there, tomato sauce, chicken broth, and bread. Their whole wheat bread is great at 1.69/loaf and the best deal I can find in my area, even w/ coupons.

    Things I don’t purchase there bc I can get better deals elsewhere: toiletries, eggs (I can often get eggs for .99/doz. at other stores on sale, and I just stock up at this time), cereal (again w/ better deals), pasta (quality is good but again cheaper elsewhere), pasta sauce (yuck!), cookie dough (yuck!),

    • Sue says:

      Wow 1.69 for Wheat bread? I just got ours there this past weekend and it was .99 a loaf..
      I know 1.69 is better than the regular store though !
      Sue in NJ

      • Naomi says:

        I said 1.69 for 100% WHOLE wheat bread, the kind that is not just the ‘sandwich’ size bread, but makes for a hearty sandwich. This is equal (often better) than the good brands that are often $3-4/loaf in stores like Kroger, Meijer, etc.

        • Heather says:

          That is a good deal! I see Wheat bread at Wegmans for .99 cents but never 100% Whole Wheat in a big size. That does make a difference. Great price you found. Too bad no Aldi here – I would be willing to give it a try for sure!

          • Shannon says:

            The whole wheat bread from Aldis is our favorite too! It tastes better than any of the more expensive brands we use to buy. With four children we go through bread fast! I always buy a few extra loaves and throw them in the freezer. I take it out in the morning and by lunch its perfect too:)

        • Sue says:

          Oh, sorry I miss understood. The one place to look out for, we just got one near me is this store called Bottom Dollar. They are owned by Food Lion. I have noticed Aldi’s prices going up. ie 5lb bag of sugar is up to 2.49. Bottom dollar. 1.88! They are just like aldi. bring your own bags etc.
          HOPEFULLY you ladies will get one of these opening in your area.. The prices are great.
          Sue in NJ

  • Mary says:

    We moved to Iowa from Georgia and was so happy to see an Aldi in town! We buy eggs, milk, p.chips, flour, sugar (still have 5 lb bags) as well as produce specials~cukes, strawberries & pineapples at lowest prices in town. Clean store & cleanest bathroom I have seen in a long time ~ love our Aldi’s 😉

  • Christine says:

    Their fit and active line is pretty good. I get the fruit crisps as a treat for my kids and don’t feel guilty about it at all.

  • My local Aldi’s has BETTER produce than my local WalMart – so (most) of our produce is bought there.

    I’ve also “made friends” (think: be nice, talkative, patient, etc) with the workers there – so they are great about telling when the next truck will be there (ours is on M,W,F at 8 a.m.) and if they ordered LOTS of the “specials” or not – this lets me plan to be there right away on a truck day, if I need to be!

    • Krystal says:

      Ditto here! Our Aldi produce on the “other-side” of town has better produce and better selection than both of our Wal-Marts. However, the Aldi on the “nicer” side of town is usually picked over/bad looking or sold out. (My theory is people in this town that have money like to keep it- so they shop at Aldi!).

      I’ve gotten to know all of the cashiers/stockers at my Aldi (and all about their families and such). They usually tell me when the next truck is coming and will even check the back for the “stuff they will put out tomorrow” just for me 🙂 The great part about Aldi is it doesn’t take long so a pleasant conversation is never an inconvience. Its almost like a small town grocery store with WAY better prices!

    • Angie says:

      I haven’t been to Aldi in awhile (I will be trying it again after reading this post!), but I am NOT impressed with WalMart’s produce. It’s usually very low quality!

      In other words, I’d try Aldi before price-matching at WalMart :/

    • Kristine says:

      Our Aldi has better produce than Wal-Mart, too.

  • Debi says:

    Aldi items we love: Mama Cozzi rising crust pizzas, brownie mix, fruit(look it over though, sometimes it may have bad spots) cereal, Jive bars(my hubby’s addicted) pancake mix and syrup, frozen juice, chili beans, diced tomatoes, taco and chili seasoning, spaghetti sauce, whole chickens, frozen sausage, ground turkey, ground beef, microwave popcorn, baby carrots, celery, potatoes, salad, cheese, milk(it’s hormone free!!) Aldi brand oreos(I can’t tell the difference) frozen fruit, chocolate bars, and semi-sweet chocolate chips.

    Items we don’t love: yogurt, gravy mix(never gets thick!!), Aldi brand sun chips, bread, and bagels.

    And why oh why don’t they sell lasagna noodles!!!????

  • Heather Finnegan says:

    I buy cheese, chips (love the multigrain tortilla ones!) hummus, and their garlic and artichoke salsa the most. We have also bought frozen salmon-and it was really good! I am fussy with our foods as I don’t like food with MGS or HFCS in them, nor any artificial sweeteners, so that does limit me a lot. We also tend to not use canned veggies much. Though use lots of canned tomato products. I also buy their yogurt raisins-cheaper than Sunmaid. Many of their fit and active products are good too. I also shop another store that has low prices, and can have questionable produce. We don’t have a Walmart stores with produce so I have to go to Meijer or the local grocery stores for those. Like anywhere you REALLY have to know your prices. This week Target had cheaper milk than most (only .10 less than Meijer-and Target is 5 miles closer to my house, saving me gas). We eat mostly “store-brand” foods anyway, with a few exceptions. I think it helps that our store is newer-less than 2 years old 😉

  • Katy says:

    I LOVE Aldi! Since I have a toddler I buy a lot of milk, and my Aldi has it for $2.69/gallon, which is great. Staples are always cheaper, and we find that we like the Aldi brand of many prepackaged items. My dad ADORES their Belmont Brand pies! My favorite item is the “Donut Shop” blend coffee, which tastes a lot like Dunkin Donuts coffee. It’s under $5 a bag, which is cheaper than buying name brand with a coupon!

  • Heather Finnegan says:

    Oh I forgot-they have the best everyday price for ground turkey!

  • Bekki says:

    I do the majority of my shopping at Aldi’s. When my boys were younger we lived in Northern Michigan and they don’t have one so we shopped at Sav A Lot. My children actually prefer the Aldi and Sav A Lot brands over name brands. I am very picky about my meats and buy them at Sav A Lot because I know the butcher. And if the produce is good I will buy it but mostly I go to a farmer’s market called Blocks. Very good produce usually at discounted prices.

  • Dawn says:

    I disliked Aldi for a long time because the nearest store was somewhat dirty. Big turnoff. A new store was built about a year ago about the same distance away, and I’ve ventured back. Sometimes the produce prices rock ,other times they are not so good. Milk in Indianapolis runs about 2.29 a gallon on my side of town–with recent dairy price increases, this is a good price. We also like to buy roasted red pepper hummus (LOVE this!), canned black/white/kidney beans, baked beans, applesauce, the occasional box of fruit snacks, tortillas, and pre-shred parm/asiago cheese. Oh, and “petite baby peas”. Oddly, we love these but not the regular ones. Did not like the lunch meat we bought there. Bread was okay, but we have an Aunt Millies/Enteman (spell) nearby and its usually cheaper.

  • CC says:

    I do go to Aldi, but not for groceries! I shop there for the weekly non-grocery specials which I’ve found are great quality at amazing prices. Like this week, starting Wed August 17, they have memory foam pillows (contoured or not) for $14.99. These pillows are totally worth it and can cost upwards of $100 at Kohls!

    • Lee says:

      I buy tons of groceries there, but often it’s the non-grocery items that draw me in. They only get a limited amount of the advertised items, so make sure you get there first day. I have gotten mini veggie chopper, off-brand Dustbuster , stick vacuum, Thinsulate gloves, Bed-in-a – bag for peanuts and there have been many more items that I wanted but didn’t have the money or they were sold out.

    • Mary Sunshine says:

      Thank you for mentioning the memory foam pillows! I just bought two of them at Kohl’s today. With a buy-one-get-one-50% sale, plus my 30% off coupon, I “only” paid $60 for the two … but I may have to return them after a stop at Aldi! (The funny thing is that I usually go to Aldi every Monday, but I didn’t this week. Go figure!)

  • coleen says:

    hi there,
    oh, we love our aldi too! my experience supports the comments surrounding the fact that NOT all aldi locations are comparable. we have 4 within a 25 minute driving distance and, after trial&error, will only shop at 2 of them. it is true that staples (ours are: milk, eggs, cheeses, spices, cereal, juices, chip-type snacks, dried fruit/nuts, chicken/beef broth) are much cheaper. some produce items are always good (bagged salads, bananas, grapes, lemons/limes, peppers), and others you simply have to check over. don’t forget to grab a copy of the next week’s flyer when you are there as well as checking the aldifoods.com website as you plan your menu & shopping list. i am very thankful that we have the option of aldi!

  • Joy says:

    We buy tortilla chips there ($.99-$1.29 a bag). I also buy veggie chips there (under $2). Aldi’s bananas and kiwis are also pretty good quality. I sometimes buy hamburger rolls there, too ($.79) because they are the cheapest. I don’t go there a whole lot, but when I do this is usually what I buy.

    My boys did not like the Aldi’s version of go-gurts though.

  • I was very hesitant with Aldi’s too. However, I did go to check it out once because my sister in-law shops there. I was surprised. Even before I really got into reducing our grocery budget, I would go there just to get their Kirkwood Chicken Nuggets, we love them! I now shop there for quite a few things. When our Dillon’s is not running sales on things that I need, then I make that an Aldi’s week and stock up. I routinely buy: tortillas, chips (we we have them, I love their Peppercorn Ranch chips), milk, eggs, butter, chicken/beef stock, canned veggies, pepperoni, chicken nuggets and breasts, refried beans, bananas, and many times produce. I love how I can get a weeks worth of fresh fruit for my kids and spend around $10!

  • Willing Cook says:

    Aldi is connected with Trader Joe’s (brothers that split up into 2 stores), so you can find similar items on occasion. I did a post a while back on my food allergy blog discussing the items that my food allergy home purchases at Aldi. I love Aldi and have found the fit ‘n active brand to be food allergy-friendly on some products. You can read my full list here http://willingcook.com/food-allergy-shopping-aldi/

  • Meg says:

    I’ve always hesitated buying produce and meats there, but I do make a special trip and stock up on flour, salt, spices even lightbulbs and plastic zip loc bags. My favorite is their liquid laundry detergent. It smells so good and works so much better than some other brands I’ve paid way more for. Our store also rotates in some name brand items at great prices so I look out for those too.

  • Jessica says:

    ditto the comment about quality guarantee, i don’t know if this is a universal policy or not, but ours actually does a double back guarantee on things you aren’t happy with; when something we bought wasn’t up to par we got double in exchange. 🙂

  • Jodie says:

    We really like Aldi, but don’t shop there often because there isn’t one really close by. We love their coffee, and stock up on it when we can. What a lot of people may not realize is that Aldi is the parent company that owns Trader Joes!

  • Christie Jester says:

    Our closest Aldi’s is about 40 minutes away, so I only get there every few months… I stock up on frozen chicken breasts (I bring a cooler for the trip home)- you can buy a 4 lb. bag for $5.99, which is by far the best price I’ve found for chicken breasts. The pieces are all different sizes, but usually I cook them in the crockpot with some salsa for taco meat, so it’s not a big deal. I will also get whatever produce looks good and that I need- cucumbers were less than half of what the grocery stores charge around here, peppers were also priced well.
    We did try their bacon once and it tasted fine, but like the chicken, the strips were all different thicknesses, making the bacon hard to cook. (It was fine when I needed to chop some up and add to a recipe, but the strips all cooked at different rates.)

  • Vieve says:

    Really like Aldi. Nuts, raisins, spices, rice krispies, animal crackers, milk, eggs, sour cream, cream cheese, cottage cheese, 8 oz. cheese bricks, center cut bacon, frozen chicken breasts, bell peppers, broccoli, potatoes, onions, bag apples, diapers, diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste, frozen fruit, tortillas, zip bags, trash bags, aluminum foil, plastic wrap, paper towels, paper plates, napkins. That’s what we buy. I don’t shop at Walmart, so this is a really nice option for me. I’ve stayed clear of the fresh meats besides the bacon. A few years ago a local TV station did a story on how they repackage their meat with a chemical to make it look fresh. It does look a little “too” beautiful to me…does anyone know more about this?

  • Meagan says:

    I love Aldi! I buy all my gorcery staples there. No one can beat their prices for butter, eggs, milk, flour, etc. Alsi also carries seasonal items, such as canned pumpkin and yeast packets. I find these items are significantly less expensive than other stores, so I stock up. They have a mark-down section where I’ve been able to get really good deals on cake sprinkles, cake mixes, and other random items I don’t buy very often.
    Their wine and beer is horrible, so don’t waste your money on that!

  • Nicole says:

    I LOVE ALDI! I am a wife and mother of three, and I first discovered Aldi when a friend of mine from Germany was visiting and she noticed we had an Aldi store. She was pleasantly surprised. She said they were very common where she lived in Germany. (check out Aldi.com) I trusted her taste and decided to give them a try. I can’t think of anything so far that I haven’t liked.
    I think some people are nervous to try them because they don’t “look” like the ridiculously BIG chain stores. They are very minimalistic, which is just fine with me. I don’t need a “glamorous” experience when I am buying my cheese and canned beans. 🙂 Their prices are great. They have always been super fast in the check out. You do your own bagging. (my kids love to help) You bring your own bags (very green) or you purchase them for .05 -.10 cents if you forgot.
    They usually have cardboard boxes to pack your groceries also . In the parking lot area, you deposit a quarter for your cart and get it back when you put your cart back…
    I could keep on complementing them…. but really you should just check them out.

  • Jill says:

    I love buying their frozen veggies….broccoli, peas, etc. At $.99, you really can’t beat 16 oz. of veggies! We also like their 12 grain bread.

  • Rebecca says:

    I have to admit there is an Aldi not too far away in a questionable part of town and I didn’t like it. Then last year they built a new one close to us and I LOVE it. My husband is an OJ snob and their’s is great. I am like everyone else pretty much and buy the staples too. Milk and eggs are always good. I have bought the ham steaks, canadian bacon and cheese there as well. My kids like the Cooper’s brand hot pockets. I did buy some little debbie knock offs that we didn’t like and I got some coffee that I didn’t care for too. Most of the stuff there I have been quite happy with. It’s nice to buy there and then supplement with sale stuff from other stores. Oh one thing I really don’t buy much there is meat except the ones I mentioned, I prefer my local butcher.

  • I love Aldi! I have made friends with the cashiers…probably because I am there a few times a week. They have the best price on milk, eggs and produce! I have also found some great deals on “Special Buy” items even without the coupons. Example: Hebrew National Hot Dogs! I would have never thought they would have something like that.

    Aldi has helped my family stick to a budget of $150 a month. I do shop other deals at Publix, Walmart and Target but it usually has to be very cheap. 😀 This month our budget is $100 and I am doing quite well with it!

    Hope this helps you! simplylivingmommie.blogspot.com

  • Diana says:

    Yeah, I used to be an Aldi’s hater too. But, actually, I figured out that it was completely based off of what I had heard other Aldi haters say. When I actually went to Aldi’s, I was pleasantly surprised. And after several years of shopping there, I like it even more! I made a list…
    Things I buy at Aldi’s because they’re a better price : Shredded Cheese, Milk, Eggs, Baking Items, Meat, Chips, Bread, Applesauce, Brownie Mix, canned veggies and beans

    Things I buy at Aldi’s because I like them better than any name brand I’ve ever tried!: Chewy Granola Bars, Fit and Active Cheddar Rice Cakes, Deli Pizza, Mozzarella Cheese Sticks, Frozen Broccoli

    Things I will NOT buy at Aldi’s: Anything with processed cheese (i.e. Mac and Cheese, Boxed Cheesy Potatoes, Hot Pocket type frozen sandwiches – definitely not worth it!

    Give it a try – it will save you a LOT!

  • Haila says:

    At my Aldi, I do have to check the expiration dates – I’ve found frozen meats, for instance, that were months past their due date (they weren’t marked down either). Now, they’re probably still OK since they’re frozen, but I generally don’t like to buy something after its due date.

  • Marie says:

    Aldi’s is owned by the parent company that owns Trader Joe’s, at least here in MN.
    Another great thing about Aldi’s is there double guarantee, where they will replace the item plus give you your money back on the original item!!
    For the most part the produce is great at the Aldi’s I shop at. But when it’s not I price match at Walmart.

    • Lea Stormhammer says:

      Where in MN are you? The produce (which is mostly what we buy each week) is TERRIBLE at the Aldi near us – so I only go there very, very rarely when I need a lot of stables (flour, sugar, etc.) and don’t have a lot of cash. I’d love to find an Aldi with decent produce!

      Thanks,
      Lea

  • dena says:

    produce! cream cheese seems to be the cheapest around. only place with cheaper milk (not counting sales) is trader joes. i buy their 12 grain (whatever it is called) bread, because it is all whole grains and no high fructose corn syrup, and is cheaper than anywhere else!

  • Bre says:

    I do my major grocery shopping at Aldi every 2 weeks. I spent roughly 170.00 each time, so you know I get a lot of food! I have tried almost everything they have at one point and there is very little I wouldn’t buy again. I love that the snacks, fruit cups etc are inexpensive and the kids love them. I wish they had a larger selection of flavors of yogurt. I buy all my dairy products there and most of my canned goods. This week I paid 2.69 for a gallon of milk and it was 3.98 at our local Walmart. You can’t beat that! Give it a try, it’s definitely worth it!

  • Amanda says:

    Just curious– I’ve never been in or seen an Aldi… what makes it different from a regular store? Is it a bulk foods place?

    • Betsy says:

      It’s a smaller, no-frills grocery store. Almost everything in the store is generic brand. They don’t bag groceries for you (and you have to bring or buy bags for them). You have to “rent” the grocery buggy by inserting a quarter in it when you get it (you get the quarter back when you return the buggy). They usually only have 2 people working at a time, so the lines get long, but they move very, very quickly.

      It’s a great store, but there are definite quirks.

    • Rachel says:

      The food is often on a skid too (no shelves, saves time and money because they don’t have to pay workers to stock shelves. They just wheel in another skid of product when low).

      There are also bar codes on every side of the product, so checkout is very fast. The cashier doesn’t have to worry about what side the bar code is on, so this speeds it up.

      My Aldi will also let you take the empty boxes in the store for packing groceries. We like this because the boxes are sturdier for carrying in our large grocery trips.

    • Emily says:

      They also do not take credit cards. Only cash or a debit card.

    • Amanda says:

      Thanks everybody! Sounds like a neat concept.

  • Emi says:

    I use Aldi as my primary grocery store – you’re right about inconsistencies in produce. I have gotten some excellent peppers, cucumbers, etc. there at times though. I don’t care for their beef as much but still buy it sometimes as it’s cheaper than anywhere else. I can fill my cart for $75 (that’s the entire budget for our family of 4 every 2 weeks)! We especially like their cheese curls, yogurt, cottage cheese, and block cheese. Super cheap and tastes great! Try their take ‘n bake pizza. I’ve only bought it once but it was good!

    • Emi says:

      Oh, and with frozen foods . . . I live 45 minutes away from EVERYTHING so I take 2 coolers and fill them to the brim for the trip home. Nothing has ever thawed enough that it can’t be used!!

  • Shannon says:

    Aldi is totally worth the drive for me and my family. PA regulates milk prices, so I have to pay $4.10 for whole milk regardless, but they always have the best prices on other dairy products. I love that I can find cheap goat, parmesan, and feta cheeses as well as things like hummus. My standard purchases are dried fruit, canned black beans, canned tomatoes, dairy, grapes (they are always good!), bagels, baking supplies, marinara sauce, and chips. I don’t eat a lot of processed food so I haven’t noticed the price differences.

  • Katie says:

    Their cake mixes and other baking supplies can’t be beat I get compliments on them all the time. Their Vanilla yogurt with their granola and some strawberries are a daily treat in our house. So many great items there although you will come across a dud every now and again (Their Cherrios for instance 🙂 splurge on the real ones) My only conplaint is sometimes they will have great items but they are only seasonal.

  • JRFrugalMom says:

    I love their weekly produce price cuts! I also buy my baking supplies, milk, eggs, oj and tortillas at Aldi. I actually have a huge Aldi price listAldi price list, where I compare Aldi prices to the competitors, and I always have it with me so that I can see if I need to buy something at Aldi, if I do not have a coupon.

    JR

  • Lisa says:

    I just went to Aldi the other day and was very pleased to find out that there are now many organic and gluten-free items. Other items of note: their chicken broth is MSG free (the only one I usually buy is Swanson because others tend to have MSG), their sour cream is wholesome and has no modified food starch (the only other brand I’ve found without it is Daisy). I have found organic blueberries, locally grown tomatoes, organic pumpkin seed granola, fresh mozarella, havarti cheese, and sweet potato chips. I also love their fresh salsa – it’s my favorite. So, I really think you can find wonderful things at Aldi. I avoid prepackaged and processed foods anyway, so I have great luck there. Also, I usually don’t have a problem with produce being gone. I’m in the Kansas City area (Kansas side).

  • maggie says:

    I tried their soy milk once and it tasted so different and off that I will not buy it again. My hubby likes their version of Chex.

  • Casey says:

    Aldi is AWESOME! Love the whole concept. The quarter to “rent” a cart to entice people to return them so they don’t have to pay an employee to do it. Charging for bags encouraging people to bring their own or use empty boxes. I’m totally a GREEN girl. Reduce, reuse, recycle!

    Buy regularly at Aldi: bananas, milk, eggs, fruit strips (SO GOOD!) Mini Bagels (way better than Meijer or Kroger brands) The special produce when looks good. It’s hit or miss for me-sometimes produce looks great, sometimes not. Chicken boulian cubes for making broth.

    The employees are great and friendly. I mentioned having bought both a cantaloupe that was horrible tasting and a pint of blueberries that weren’t up to par (have bough both items there previously and they tasted great.) I didn’t have recipt or the bad fruit, nor did I even ask, but the cashier gave me a free cantaloupe and then refunded my money for the blueberries! Very nice lady!

    Whenever I shop elsewhere I compare back to Aldi. If I can buy an item with a sale + coupon elsewhere I will, otherwise I will buy it at Aldi.

    I have a “pricebook” which has post it notes to divide sections for each store I regularly shop at. It’s just a little spiral notebook, like 3×5 size. INVALUABLE! I take it whenever I grocery shop. Needed cheese recently and no good sales around, glanced through pricebook and found the current price at Aldi and found it lowest, so bought cheese there.

  • Stephanie says:

    My mom is a frugal pastor’s wife who is not into couponing. Growing up, I was always amazed by the meals she could prepare on such a limited budget. Whether she was feeding five or fifty, Aldi helped her get the job done. I have continued to use Aldi, and find incredible deals. One of my favorites is their spiral glazed ham. Tastes so much like a Honeybaked ham. Dairy products are usually much lower in price, and my 7-year-old daughter loves to choose her favorite bouquet of flowers for $3.99. 🙂

  • MK says:

    Aldi’s spices are a great deal – rarely can you find them for near that price! What I love most, however, is knowing the “bottom-line Aldi price” for things. By this, I mean that if I see a sale going on for things Aldi regularly has, I compare it to the Aldi price. If it’s cheaper, sure I’ll get it, but if not, then I know that I won’t have to predict the next sale when I need it. It gives a sort of peace of mind, in a sense, because I don’t worry about getting all the flour (or sugar, butter, crackers, etc.) I’ll need until the next time I can find it at a good price.

    Also, for us, their wheat bread is always about the cheapest, around $1 for a big loaf.

  • erin says:

    My parents have an Aldi where they live in PA, when I lived at home we got lots of staples there. It was a great way to save money with 5 teenagers. I remember in college when i would go home for breaks i would go to aldi and load up on non perishables and cheap snacks for my dorm room and the ride back to school : )

    Sure wish we had one near us in VA.

  • AD says:

    I’m a huge Aldi fan. It’s a little farther from my house than Publix and Kroger, but not too far. So I make an Aldi run every week. I routinely buy: tortilla chips, fig bars, flour, sugar, canola oil, olive oil, olives, mayo, spices, chocolate chips, raisin bran cereal, tuna, tortillas, applesauce, canned pineapple, canned apricots, canned tomato products, canned beans, dry beans, ramen, cooking soups, frozen veggies (corn is 65 cents!), frozen salmon, shrimp, and tilapia; frozen skinless boneless chicken breasts, whole chickens, frozen burger patties, ground beef, eggs, milk, sour cream, half and half, bacon, cream cheese, deli parmesan cheese, chicken weiners once in a while, whole wheat bread, bananas, potatoes, carrots, cukes, fruits when they look good, frozen lemonade concentrate, tissues. Also seasonally: cran sauce and canned pumpkin. We have loved some of their special items such as sorbet (best we’ve ever tasted).
    We even bought 10 lbs or so of frozen cooked deveined shrimp for our daughter’s wedding reception. No one knew it came from Aldi.
    What I don’t buy there: We didn’t like their fancy cheeses or salad dressing.

  • Kim mayfield says:

    I had never heard of aldi or trader joes till one came to my area. They were running a special on gallon milk for .99 for a long time and we found we actually like theirs bettermthan what we were getting elsewhere. We do staple shopping there as well as a few other things howeverni am not a fan of their chips or snack foods somimget those other places.

  • Jenny says:

    I’ve shopped at Aldis for years. I buy all my milk and eggs their, mine has milk for 1.99. I buy canned tomatoes and other tomato products, fresh mushrooms, low fat ground beef, waffles, chips, cheese, lettuce, jelly, cat litter, crackers, tea, sweetener, cereal, syrup, oatmeal, hotdogs, and lunchmeat there. I don’t tend to like their cookies and snack cakes, but my kids don’t mind and I don’t need it. I have had really bad luck with their veggies lately, was complaining when I was there tonight actualy. Their fruit is usually fine, except I’ve had bad luck with bananas. I’ve found the meet to be hit or miss, but their markdowns at my store are amazing if I go in the morning. I definitely get flour and sugar and oil, etc there. Love Aldis.

  • Jennifer says:

    If I listed all the things I like about Aldi’s, I would take forever. Recently, I found out that they sell an organic blue tortilla chips and they are amazing! They are $1.69 a bag, and you can’t get them for less than $3 a bag anywhere else that I have found. I found a recipe to make the Smoky Spicy Peach Salsa from Trader Joe’s – many ingredients I get from Aldi, and I can make 4 quarts for $10 – the Trader Joe’s version is $2.69 a 12oz. jar, so it’s quite a treat!

    • Ruth says:

      Jennifer,

      The Smokey Spicy Peach Salsa sounds great. Would you please share your recipe? Thanks!

    • Jeannie says:

      Love the organic blue corn chips too! Thankful that Aldi’s is on my way home from work and is very clean and the employees are always on task and crazy like fast. Love that I don’t have to worry about stray shopping carts hitting my car. I also buy their ‘ziploc’ bags, pineapple, avocados, and broccoli are usually good. Other produce is hit and miss. The frozen fish except for the whiting is great as well as the chopped garlic.

  • Kadee says:

    I love getting all my staples there. One thing I’m not sure if anyone mentioned yet is their trash bags. I hesitantly bought their boulder kitchen bags, and found that I love them. They are cheaper, but they seem stronger than the name brands. I used to have to drive 20 minutes to get to one, but one is being built less than 10 minutes away. So excited!

  • Nancy says:

    When we lived in another town Aldi’s was VERY inconvenient and in a not so great area of town. I never went there.
    Since we have moved they have opened a new store and had a grand opening. Of course I went and they had TONS of samples.
    European Chocolate (German and Swiss are best) are to die for. Aldis has brands similar to Milka and they are fabulous.
    Ice cream bars are great and cheap compared to Kroger. They even make some fancier ones at great prices. We had friends over for dinner and we live in Middle Georgia and I didn’t want to cook supper so we had ice cream bars. Everyone loved it!
    I agree with the baking products. Great regular price but if you watch for coupons you can get a better deal somewhere else.
    Produce is hit or miss.
    They do have some “fancy” cheese that is flavored and it is very good and really reasonable.
    Meat is good.
    Frozen asparagus is cheaper than Kroger and great on the grill.

    Try a couple things…especially the chocolate. You won’t be disappointed.

    Don’t forget your quarter for the buggy! (shopping cart)
    Nancy

    • lacey says:

      isnt their chocolate amazing, seriously everyone i have try it goes back to aldi’s just for the chocolate. it really is the best ive ever had. try it people

  • stephanie says:

    FOr some reason, the aldi’s by me has iffy produce & I live in a good area. We do have better sales most often at the produce markets. That could be why & their produce doesn’t get used quickly. However, for those who need those prices, walmart will price-match * you may find better produce at walmart by doing that. I often find that I can do better with coupons for most stuff.

  • Marty says:

    I like most all of their stuff. My Aldi is one of the ones that the produce is almost always great. On a weekly basis that is what I consistently buy there. I know most things I can get on sale some place else cheaper with a coupon. I do use them if I do not have a coupon or a sale because then they are almost always cheaper. I buy the big cans of coffee for my husband to take to work to share. Everyone there likes it. They have a great price on instant oatmeal packets so I get those there a lot and the canisters of regular oatmeal as well. They normally have the best price on eggs unless someone else has a sale and I can get coupons. I used to buy our milk there but found out that Smart Balance lasts a lot longer and since we don’t use much and I can get the SB for super cheap with sales and coupons I buy it and just freeze it. I think their meat prices are high but when they do markdowns I sometimes buy it and like it. The chicken is normally a good price though but I have started buying bone in when it’s on sale because I figured out how to use it and save a ton of money. I buy frozen veggies there and really like those. We also buy the refried beans for when I don’t get around to making my own. I also buy pinto beans there cheaper than even Sam’s club prices to make my own refried beans. The other things I buy there a lot are chips mostly tortilla chips but we buy the others too, graham crackers, cheese peanut butter crackers, this time of year ice cream cones are super cheap and very good, Ketchup when there are no sales during the winter, baking soda, Strawberry jam, flour, sugar, cooking oil, cooking spray, spices, marshmallows, used to get tuna before starkist gave me a million coupons that made it free now I have a lot on hand, canned salmon, flour tortillas but I found out I can get whole wheat ones at Kroger for just a few cents more so I get those now, Romaine lettuce, bread and buns. So many great things!

  • april says:

    I do a once a month trip to Aldi’s..usually stocking up on canned goods, baking supplies, pretzels($0.99 a bag vs. $3 or more at other stores), eggs($1.09/dz vs $1.63 at walmart), bacon, produce, pasta(if I dont have coupons and can find a sale), 93/7 hamburger(again, unless I can find it cheaper somewhere else, which is rare), bread, and more.

  • Meredith says:

    I usually buy things like beans, tortillas, mandarin oranges, cooking spray, fresh mozzarella ball, hummus, and some produce….depending on how it looks. If I am on snack duty at my daughters play school, I get some animal or Graham crackers there. The things I stay away from are milk, eggs, flour, and of course meat. We drink organic milk, the eggs are from farmed chickens, the flour is bleached, weaned we eat organic meat 2 or so times a month. anything else can be game based on what I am cooking that week.

  • Julie says:

    I don’t know if someone’s said this, but my mother-in-law recently found out that Trader Joe’s and Aldi have the same owner. I thought that was neat! Now that I know that, I do recognize a few items have pretty much the same packaging but different labels as Traders. I have been shopping at Aldi for years, I think you have to be picky but sometimes their produce is great and it really helps our family get tons of fresh fruit and vegetables. My Aldi is in a nice part of town, so my produce looks good more often than not. Also, like someone said above, with kids you can just run in and out really quick.

  • Terri R. says:

    I love ALDI, I have to drive 45 min. with coolers so I try only to do this once a month, by making great list. I know from traveling that different areas carry different things like the bread in Gulf Shores Al. was not the same as in Cleveland Tn. I love their hearty soups they are so much like the big C my kids say they like it better and less than 1/2 the price, the frozen pizzas and snacks are great deals usually better than anything I can do with coupons, especially since I usually have a house full of teen-agers. We don’t care for oreo like cookies, but like choc. chip, and most of the others, chips are really good and the price is great. Love the pancake mix, but not the syrup, jellies and jams are good, don’t care for peanut butter or mayo. Milk and eggs, cheese always best buy. I buy their bacon, but the sausage my family will not eat. Overall my family enjoys the savings we get from Aldi’s.

  • Melanie says:

    Aldi is the first store I take my shopping list to every week! We’re pretty much a staples diet sort of family, and we only do organic meats, so that’s an end of the store I know virtually nothing about. But we get salsa, flour, and sugar there, as well as their store-brand organic soy milk (the price is unbeatable!). Also rolled oats (we make our own granola), toilet paper, cottage cheese, tomato paste (other discount stores don’t seem to carry this) and canned mushrooms. Their produce sales are also fabulous and I frequently buy their bananas (although Target has been beating their price lately by quite a bit) and watermelons during the summer.

    I will say that you can’t count on Aldi at all for frozen vegetables, which are a necessity for us. Bags are small, selection is limited, and prices are not competitive. So I always shop Aldi first, but it’s never my only stop.

  • Elizabeth says:

    We do not have one in our immediate area, but there are some in areas we go to sometimes (such as one in the tiny town our dentist is in). We always try to go sometime in late October to early November. Friends here are German and Swiss and we get them special holiday foods. My uncle is German and loves the holiday bread, chocolates, etc. that they import from Germany and other parts of Europe at that time. And VERY excellent prices too. Yes, we have another store in town that has the same…but you will pay a whole lot more. Last year we tried out some egg noodles from Germany…my husband who does not like such things LOVED them. And my uncle was VERY happy with them. We always find some things there, especially fresh and canned. If we were living on next to nothing and lived near an Aldi’s I would make it my first place to shop. Even at the income level we have now, I would still shop there regularly, if I could.

  • Jaime C says:

    I noticed a lot of people do price matching with Walmart. I haven’t had luck with that with Aldi produce. My Walmart said they will not price match Aldi because they have low quality products. Has anyone else had this issue? It’s really frustrating, because sometimes we go to Aldi the first day of the sale and everything is sold out! I’d love to be able to price match the fruit at Walmart.

  • Caroline says:

    I just recently started shopping at Aldi’s this summer. I buy their bread $.79,
    frozen burritos .$29 each, produce because it is the best in town, milk still under $3.00 at Aldi’s, and frozen veggies $.79. I usually plan on spending $20 per week here. If I bought all of the above at my local grocery store, I would spend $40 plus.

  • Cheryl says:

    I do buy the crackers and snacks at Aldi. They are much cheaper than the grocery stores, and most of them are free of hydrogenated oils and high fructose corn syrup. I try to get to Aldi at least twice a month.

  • Audrey says:

    Finding the right items to buy at Aldi can be a challange, but over time you can save money when you figure out what works for your family. The Apple Juice there is a great price each week. They have a wide selection of different types of cheese at a good price as well as a good selection of refrigerated baking items that often come under the store price even with a coupon. I shop for staples there as well.

  • Stephanie says:

    Agree with above, although didn’t read all posts. Breads, cereals, produce and dairy are great. Meat not so much. Their coffee, Beaumont I believe is nasty and I’m not usually brand specific. It’s worth a once a month trip to stock up for sure. If you’re just wondering if you should go, yes, try it out.

  • Amy Lauren says:

    When I lived on the other side of town (which had an Aldi) I shopped there a lot. Mainly I bought things like produce that don’t have coupons, and my husband bought meat there occasionally (I don’t eat meat and have never purchased or cooked it, don’t know how). I’ve also bought random stuff there like a mattress topper and a shelving/storage unit for my closet- both of which are great. I even have a houseplant from there, haha.

    The one thing I have to say about Aldi though is that if you have a store that doubles coupons in your area you can get a lot of stuff, such as cereal, cheese, bread (sometimes), frozen foods, peanut butter, etc cheaper at a regular store sometimes. But for fresh foods our Aldi is pretty awesome. It’s also a very clean store and I like how you bring your own bags or use their boxes to carry things out because that’s more environmentally friendly.

  • Jade =) says:

    I love that Aldi made it’s way to our area (DFW, Texas). It has been a lifesaver! With our strict budget, I am able to walk away with so much more groceries for less! I tend to just try to buy everything we need there because I am just not able to make multiple shopping trips at this point. Yes, using coupons for every item I can would save me money, but only have one car and being able to use it for a very specific (short!) time period means I have to shop fast! Aldi has been a blessing. We can get nearly everything we need there! Love it!

  • A bag of lemons is cheaper there than anywhere else around us. Their hoagie rolls are AmAzInG! There is also a candy bar at their checkout that tastes almost as good as a Twix bar, and it costs less than 30 cents at our store.

    I make sure to have my money READY. Those cashiers are fast as lightning!

  • Amanda says:

    Aldi is European. Love the store in Europe. Have really appreciated the store in America. Also, it’s closely connected to Trader Joe’s. If you love Trader’s, then just imagine it in the same family.

    Things I love at Aldi (at the cheapest prices around):

    1. Dilled Havarti
    2. Pistachios
    3. Dried beans
    4. Canned black beans
    5. Millville Unfrosted Shredded Wheat (Special buy, only comes out every 6 months or so. Bought a case last time.)

    Ads come out on Wednesdays. Check both weekly ads out on line and get your produce Wednesday cause that’s when it’s freshest.

  • Julie says:

    I have been shopping at Aldi’s for the past two years. At first I was just like Chelsea and VERY hesitant to buy from there, and thought I would never buy things like meat. I started with about $20 of things (staples). From there I branched out and started buying more. Now I buy at least half of my groceries from there. I find that much of their meat is exceptional quality. As we only eat beef that is 93% fat free, it is MUCH cheaper there. I can get that for $2.99 a pound, whereas in the store it is $4.99 a pound. I also find their frozen chicken tenderloins amazing. My family prefers them over any other chicken. Things such as their “Mixade” (generic crystal light) are just as good as the brand names. Things like tomato paste, tomato sauce, stewed tomatoes are so much cheaper. The only thing I really do not like from there are the cereals, but I generally do not like store brand cereals anyway. My family can definitely taste the difference. (I put their brand of Fruity Pebbles in the original Fruity Pebble box just to see if my teenager would notice, which she DEFINITELY did!!). They were really pretty bad!

    I save a ton of money by going to Aldi’s, and am so thankful to have a good one nearby. Definitely try it out! As Crystal stated, I find many things my family prefers better than the name brands!

  • Toni Harlow says:

    We mainly buy whole foods at Aldi and we shop there weekly BEFORE heading to our regular grocer. We sometimes take a cooler so we can head to Kroger without backtracking home to put freezer items away. These are our weekly regulars:
    olive oil, raisins, nuts, eggs and milk (only if not available for same price at Kroger), peanut butter, jelly, oats, pinto beans, tortillas, canned tuna (note: it is lower quality than store brands, being very fine/not chunky), sugar (when we can’t get it cheaper elsewhere), flour, bananas, onions, carrots, other fresh seasonal fruit, spices, cheese (when needed and not a better price elsewhere), wheat bread, english muffins, frozen corn and broccoli (the broccoli is surprisingly very good for frozen), canned “cream of” and tomato soups for recipes, canned tomatoes, 13 gallon trash bags (very, very good quality for $4.99), toilet paper (large 4-roll 2 ply for $1.29, good quality for generic “Willow Soft”).

  • Elizabeth says:

    Aldi’s is mostly not worth my time (it is in the opposite direction of all the other stores, and we try to eat local food as much as possible) but there are two exceptions. I live in PA, but when I visit my parents in WV I stock up on their Winking Owl wine which is great for cooking and fine for a family dinner. I wouldn’t take it to someone’s house, but is fine for me, and at $3 a bottle, the price is right! 🙂 The second time I will make the trip is in the fall for pumpkins. They have great big carving pumpkins for $3. They aren’t organic, but since we aren’t eating them, I don’t care.

  • Jen says:

    I am so excited to read these answers! I have searched for blogs that answered this question and haven’t found anything very helpful. Here in northern Baltimore, we have two Aldi stores, both in not-so-great parts of town but I go because the prices can’t be beat. One carries so much more than the other though! I have also noticed that many times when Crystal lists things that she bought at Aldi, our prices are higher. For example, I don’t think we’ve EVER had strawberries for $.99/pound.

    Some things we LOVE: the steam-in-bag broccoli is simply delicious and only $.99/bag, the whipped yogurt, the breads and bagels, they have THE BEST cream cheese danish I have ever eaten, hands down. I buy many staples there: flour, sugar, spices, oil, butter, sour cream, cream cheese, etc. Love their tortilla shells too. I once met a lady in the store who was buying a cart full of cake mixes. She told me that she baked wedding cakes and ALWAYS used Aldi cake mixes as they tasted the best and were always moist. I also like their shredded cheese. The mama cozzi pizzas are delicious too! My kids love them!

    Things we don’t like: wheat thin crackers (yuck!), chocolate chips (I like only Nestle), doritos.

    Thanks for sharing!

  • Ana says:

    Our local Aldi is amazing. We do most of our shopping there (for grocery staples, at least). We do tend to eat a lot of organic and vegan food, so we go to a nicer Kroger store about 30 minutes away for that.

    Our Aldi has a great produce section, I remember getting mushrooms at 68 cents a package! They also have the best deals in town on avocados. Our store also has a fairly wide selection of pastas, and the couscous! Oh, the couscous. Cheaper than any other place.

    I love how it’s “bring your own bags.” We do this anyway, but it saves the company money and helps their shoppers become a little more conscious of unnecessary consumption.

  • Brenda says:

    The Aldi’s where I live are awesome! They are very clean and have great quality food. Our produce section is really great. Very fresh and well stocked even on sale items. Staff is friendly and they will check in the back for new produce if you ask. With the fit and active line you can find some healthier options for your family. You have to bring your own bags (which is a great way to force yourself to be a little greener), but if you forget they have empty boxes that you can use to put your groceries in. Check out their holiday selection too. Around the holidays they have some unique candy and snack foods! And don’t forget the flowers. Around Easter they carry beautiful Lillies and before summer really nice hanging baskets and then right before fall hearty mums!
    If you haven’t tried them it is worth it.

  • Amber says:

    Okay, after reading the Aldi love-fest, I’m going to have to give ’em another whirl. We tried shopping there a few times and never felt like the prices were that great. Maybe I need to look for specific items to save on, and leave the rest of my shopping to my regular grocery store (Kroger — I love Kroger). 😀

  • sam says:

    I shop there every week for staples and whatever produce looks good. I love their 12 grain bread! I won’t buy most of their processed foods (cookies, ice cream, ect) because it usually has high fructose corn syrup and/or trans fat. My favorite item is Choeur Dark Chocolate bars!

  • Laura says:

    I recently moved to my first city with an Aldi and checked it out. Like you said, I was pleasantly surprised! We use a credit card with good cashback bonuses for grocery shopping, so I’m a bit turned off my having to use cash and I don’t use it as my primary store, but I was glad to know the options. Here’s a post I wrote about my trip with some Aldi tips! http://unpunctuatedlife.com/2011/06/fun-friday-wherein-i-go-on-an-adventure-to-aldi/

  • Guest says:

    We really enjoy the European products they offer. At Easter, I was able to buy marzipan eggs and German chocolates – yum!

    The one thing I won’t buy there is meat. It always looks really bad (at our store). 🙁

  • elaina says:

    I shop at Aldi nearly every week. My husband knows when he drives my car and he needs some change, he can have whatever is in my little coin slot, but he has to leave me a quarter for Aldi!

    We always buy our snack cakes and cookies there, the pop tarts are better than the name brand, their cheese puffs blow cheetos out of the water, and my husband loves the fit ‘n active yogurts because the containers are so much bigger than what we can get at Walmart and he loves the cherries jubilee! I know it’s full of sodium, but nights when we are pressed for time, everyone loves their frozen salisbury steak and gravy…even my dog who gets the leftover gravy!

    It’s much easier for me to name what I DON’T like at Aldi because the list is much shorter. We do not like the frozen burritos, the spaghetti sauce, or the bologna. Also, as others have mentioned, the produce at my store is hit and miss at times. When it first opened, it was awesome, but lately, I have been doing a lot more price-matching at Walmart.

    It’s pretty funny because I have an ongoing conversation with a friend at work about what we have discovered at Aldi that is better than the name brand. We will be talking about something else entirely, and just randomly start talking about the great thing we found. It has worked our really well because we have been able to recommend things to each other and have both ended up trying things we weren’t sure about.

    • Jen says:

      HAHA!! Elaina, I keep my “Aldi quarter” hidden in each car too! Just to be sure I’m never stuck without one! Everyone knows to leave that quarter alone! 🙂

      • Leah Robbins says:

        LOL! Hubby goes around collecting change to put in the boys savings account. But the “aldi” quarter goes untouched or else!!! 😉

  • Maggie says:

    I used to stop in at aldis about every two weeks for basics like shredded cheese, butter, bread and tortillas, but the ones in the city we just moved to are both pretty far away from us and in not great areas of town (one is actually in a kind of scary area and I didn’t know until I went with my son one afternoon….definitely not a good idea), so I haven’t been very impressed when I stopped in. When my husband and I were first married, we were SUPER broke, so we shopped together at aldi every saturday afternoon and would go to sonic and get a happy hour 1/2 price drink afterwards. It was like our little date. Most things were so cheap that we could afford to get a little extra something for our saturday night at home, like ice cream. We’ve cut out alot of processed foods and commercially raised meat since then, but it was still nice to stop in for things like cheese and baking supplies at great prices before we moved.

  • Lis says:

    Change you’re to your.

  • I won’t buy meats there anymore. The quality is not awesome.

    But I will buy produce there (super cheap, just ripe and ready to go already).

    I also buy snack foods, eggs, milk, and other staples there.

    They have a line of products there called Fit & Active which we love because my hubby and I do Weight Watchers. Some of their goods are comparable to Smart Ones, Special K, and the like.

  • Whitney says:

    I was skeptical when my MIL shops there and I’ve very picky about natural, whole foods. That being said, there are things I love to pick up there. Honey, cheese (including real mozzarella), dried fruit snacks, produce (when it’s good it’s very cheap), etc.

    The the item I love the most is their frozen salmon. It’s nice quality and the price is great. It comes in four small planks to a one-pound bag, so it goes quite a ways for our small family. I love this item and stock up every time I’m there!

  • Rachel says:

    I find the milk and eggs at my Aldi to be of better quality than our local grocery store chains. So those are two things I always buy there along with baking supplies and other staples like spices and canned goods. The produce at my Aldi has a reputation for being some of the best around, and I never really have had a problem with it not being fresh. When I buy produce at my Kroger, it tends to go bad very very quickly. I don’t have a problem with most things there and would never hesitate to try something new. The thing I love most about Aldi is that I can go there and shop when I need a couponing break and still feel like I am getting a decent deal on everything. Aldi has saved us soooooooooooo much money over the past couple years and I am just so grateful to shop there!

  • Amanda says:

    I don’t know if anyone else has had this experience but a few years ago I decided to try aldi out. We found sticks, little broken up pieces,in a bag of potato chips and cinnamon in a pepper container. I’ve been hesitant since then.

  • Nancy says:

    I was raised on Aldi’s food. Now we live a couple blocks from one and I still shop there a lot. I like that it’s small and easy to get through with kids, but still has a lot of staples that I need. My husband doesn’t like their coffee and I had a freak incident with their brand of diapers once. I bought a pack where half of the diapers had no tabs – some weird manufacturing error. The store gave me a refund with no problem. There is a difference in stores regarding the side of town they’re on. Also the newer stores are much more open and have better lighting if that matters to you. If you’re a first-timer, be sure to take a quarter (for your shopping cart) and your own bags.

  • jamie says:

    Aldi chips are our favorite!
    Their watermelons this year were the best in town.
    My sis says their oranges lately are fantastic.
    The strawberries have been sweet!
    My husband thinks their spaghetti sauce is better than Target brand.

    Our town is building a brand new one further from me and closing the one close so I hope I will still be able to shop there.

  • Dineen says:

    I used to be able to shop at Aldi, now it’s a bit far for me to feel that the prices would be worth the gas money since I have moved to a smaller rural town.
    For produce, I learned that you need to ask the staff when their shipment is due so that you have the best opportunity to get the fresh stuff, otherwise it *will* have been picked over. For meat, while the fresh cuts are not the best, I am impressed with the airless packaging that keeps it fresh longer. I do like the frozen turkey meatballs and other frozen meat and fish fillets.
    For a treat, I really like their canned chunky chicken chowder. I generally make soups from scratch, but as Crystal says that is one of those Aldi store brands that I find I enjoy more than the national brand.

    It hasn’t been mentioned, but some stores carry wine and beer. I like cooking with wine from time to time and their prices are very good and the wine is decent and drinkable, unlike “cooking wine” that’s been heavily salted.

    German friends I used to work with would eagerly await the Christmas stollen.

    Definitely Aldi is the best place I’ve found for staple baking items, herbs and spices, and dairy products. I do miss having a neighborhood Aldi. (The SavALot stores around here that seem to try to do what Aldi does just don’t compare in quality.)

    Another thing I liked about Aldi was their special purchases on both food and non-food items. You need to have savings for this and not be tempted to buy items just because they are a good deal, but they have some great deals on electronics and home furnishings from time to time. Maybe not the same as clearance deals, but still very good prices. I bought my first digital camera from Aldi about 5 years ago and it was (and still is) a good camera. At the time it was probably $75-100 cheaper than any other digital camera of its type and pixel quality so it made it affordable on my budget and I could pay cash for something I’d been wanting for a long time.

    You can sign up for their email notifications of both their special purchase sales ads and their regular grocery ads on their website.

  • We like their Fit & Active line of products. They have great low fat ice cream bars, fiber bars in flavors that aren’t available at Costco / Sams, sugar free popsicles, lean pockets, and the frozen stir fry dishes. Also, their turkey mignons aren’t too bad and everything is much less expensive than other grocery stores. Literally, we get a week’s worth of food for a family of four for about $40.

  • Vee says:

    Aldi is the BEST!!!! I agree with other posters that I get my staples there. And canned fruit and tomato sauce, paste, beans…etc.

    I really like their preimum vanilla ice cream – wonderful! Their chocolate bars are really good. I chop them up and use them in baking. Their wine selection is great.

    Around holiday time, they have wonderful deals, and a great selection.

    I can spend 100.oo and have two weeks worth of groceries!!!!

  • Michelle says:

    Here is the scoop on Aldi. Aldi originated in Germany and is still an extremely large grocery store chain in Germany. That is why the chocolate in the Aldi stores is awesome!

    As for the canned vegetables, they taste as good as name brand because they are name brand. My aunt who works on the canning lines for Del Monte, said the only difference when canning is the label on the can. The line is stopped and they switch the labels being used and restart the line.

    I agree that I typically stay away from the produce, but other than that I encourage everyone to shop and save.

  • Laura says:

    I try to watch the prices and sizes even on my staple items at Aldi. I can actually get sugar cheaper at a larger grocery store nearby. Since mine is farther away, sometimes it’s not worth the extra gas for the amount I would be saving. When we lived closer though, I got brown and serve rolls for $0.25/bag! Normally I make my rolls, but it was cheaper for me to buy them that time. 🙂

  • lacey says:

    their chocolate is the absolute best, i crave it way too often. i make special trips just for their chocolate, i love it that much. i tell everyone about their chocolate bars. yum, i might have to go right now.

    my store used to have these pork chops that were the best i have ever had, please aldi’s if you are reading this, bring them back.

    plus their 12-grain bread is my favorite, and their flour tortillas are so soft and yummy, not at all dry.

    the only things i dont like are their version of doritos and sun chips, just gross and also the really cheap cheese slices they have, yuck. they have a more expensive one that is good, try that.

    no store around me doubles coupons so aldis is really that best option for me to feed my family of six. if you havent tried aldi’s in a while you should because their quality and store cleanliness has greatly improved over the years.

  • Kelli says:

    I love to shop at Aldi’s stores. I am always telling people about how I love their yogurt better than brand names. And a tid bit of information, Aldi is the parent company of Trader Joe’s.

  • I liked Aldi when I went. The reason I haven’t gone back is because I have to insert a quarter to get a shopping cart. Although I understand WHY they do it, I don’t always have change on me. I know it is a bad habit of mine.

    • Aly says:

      I go to Aldi’s all the time an use a stiff handled basket, it is usually big enough for most shopping trips. If you need to put a quarter away in your wallet or cup holder in the car just for the shoppig carts at Aldi’s/

  • Veronica says:

    We buy most of our staples there, as well as snack foods, produce as long as it looks good, salad (they even have the artisan salad blend now), breads, bagels, orange chicken, waffles, frozen veggies, some of the canned goods and their chocolate. They just redid their orange chicken recipe and I think it is the same as Trader Joe’s. The maple cookies Aldi had in the store yesterday are delicious, and we’ve enjoyed the chocolate chip dunkers, too. I think both of those are TJ’s as well. I typically don’t buy their meat because Wegmans usually has better prices and better quality on the chicken and meats. But we do like the ham at Christmastime, and especially after the holidays, when they put it on sale. The stollen is wonderful. We’re closer to Wegmans than the Aldis, but sometimes I’m too tempted to overspend at Wegmans. At Aldis even if I add a couple of items to the order, I don’t usually go over budget.

  • Rae says:

    My list is not based on quality since it varies, if I see something of poor quality, I will not buy it even if it’s on my “always buy” list.

    Things I always buy there:
    -EGGS (around $1.50 or up for a dozen around here, maybe $1 on sale, or $1.60-something at Costco for 18 ct but still $.47 per dozen at Aldis!)
    -milk ($1.89 here, well over $2 everywhere else including costco)
    -hamburger and hotdog buns ($.69, $1 at the next cheapest place)
    -certain fruits per week are a great price

    Things I sometimes buy:
    -bread
    -canned beans
    -special buy items (sometimes they have some cool items for decent prices)
    -baking staples
    -the frozen chubs of ground turkey (I think they were like $1.49 for 1 lb)

    Things I never buy there (because prices do NOT compare with what I can get sale/coupon shopping):
    -meat, poultry, etc (except for the ground turkey) including luncheon meat
    -cheese (and any other dairy except listed above)
    -processed food
    -most frozen foods

  • Margaret says:

    I love Aldi’s! I do most of my shopping there, with the occasional stop at Walmart. Ours is clean well kept and the produce is generally good/terrific, though limited, but mostly seasonal. I cook mostly from scratch and we use few of the convenience foods, but the chips and such we have bought are good. The posters who commented about the honey baked ham and the chocolate being some of the best you can buy are dead on. I have served it to rave reviews, to folks that would probably never go there. I figure that there are about the same amount of foods that I wouldn’t buy at Aldis as I wouldn’t buy at any other grocery store. Just read your labels. And their guarantee is great.

  • Diana Alm says:

    I buy most everything at Aldi. They really improved the store when they began taking debit cards (it used to be cash only,) and when they started selling meat and fresh produce. Now it’s just like other grocery stores but with much lower prices. They don’t have as much choice, but their generic brands are good and if you want to just get some groceries and not make a career of shopping it’s a great place to go. I’ve also bought some items besides food — air mattress, a pot to boil water, etc. that were very good even though I didn’t recognize the brand name. I really like Aldi!

  • Heather says:

    Liked Aldi when I was super poor and single living in France back in the 90s. Now I look back with regret that I bought so much there, when I could have been buying MUCH better stuff anywhere else!

    Went to my first U.S. Aldi last summer when out of town, and I was not impressed. Guess I am older and more picky now, or maybe it wasn’t a good one. The coin-operated shopping carts brought back fun memories, though!

  • takeya smith says:

    i shop at aldi and i really like. I’ve change some of the things that i get. I mainly get the salad in the bag, spices, oils and barbecue sauce and staples like that i also get the fruit and veg that are fresh. thank you for the post

  • Amy B says:

    2 Things I Wish I’d Known Before Going to Aldi:

    1. Bring a quarter for the shopping cart.

    2. Bring your own bags.

    I did neither, so I just bought all I could carry in my arms and walked out with it in my arms as well. LOL!

    • stacey says:

      the first time I went I asked the lady in the car next to me (she was leaving as I was arriving) if she could give me a quarter since I hadn’t brought one! Whoops!
      Your story is great – you’ll certainly never forget a quarter or bags again!! 🙂

  • stacey says:

    Our favorite thing about Aldi besides the rock-bottom prices on many staples for our family is the way the bar codes are printed on boxed items. The cashiers never have to second guess anything when they are scanning items because half the box is covered in bar codes! We just always laugh at how funny it makes the box look, but really, that is just one of the many ways they make shopping there quick and simple!

  • Jillbert says:

    I’m a huge Aldi’s fan. Right now they have the cheapest price on real maple syrup the I can find in my area. Ours also has good produce. My staples are corn chips, chocolate chips, canned tomatoes, milk, butter, pickles, produce, bread, and OJ. My family loves their hummus and we often find special treats as well. I’m lucky to have two within easy driving distance to home.

  • Sarah says:

    We moved recently to an area where there’s no Aldi–I miss it so much and am having a hard time keeping our grocery budget under control without it. The produce was hit-and miss (but sometimes really good deals), and some things, like honey, were actually more expensive but for the most part, the quality was comparable and the prices much better than the regular supermarkets.

    Not sure if this has been mentioned, but many of their skin care products (Lacura brand) are very nice. I didn’t care for the Sea Minerals face cream (made me break out) but their other moisturizers, make-up remover, facial scrubs, etc. were great.

    Oh, and around Christmas every year they had wonderful cookies and marzipan stollen cake which was delicious!

  • Elisa says:

    We like their toilet paper and unless you come across a great deal with coupons and a sale it is the best price in town. We also think their refried beans are among the best to be had.

  • Emily says:

    Does anyone happen to know whether or not Aldi’s milk and dairy products come from cows not treated with rBST? (It would probably say it on the packaging somewhere). Also, whether or not Aldi’s carries any organic things? I buy almost exclusively certified organic produce and try to buy dairy products made from cows not treated with rBST (since I haven’t quite found the extra money in our grocery budget yet for organic dairy…..one at a time). I”m not sure if giving Aldi another try would be worth it for me.

    • Veronica says:

      The label on the milk says that they don’t use artificial growth hormones.

    • Dawn says:

      Hi Emily,

      Don’t know about milk- I don’t support factory animal farming, “organic” or not- nut milks are SO MUCH healthier (and kinder) but as far as other organic foods- they do carry quite a bit from fresh bags of apples, carrots, grape tomatoes, bananas, spring mix or kale or spinach fresh leaf salads to organic steel cut oats, organic coffees, organic pasts and many other products. Plus I LOVE that I can find chocolate from Germany and Denmark; pasta from Italy; brioche from France, etc, etc during their rotating special buys…awesomely better than big Ag’s monopoly here…..

    • Susan says:

      Aldi is going organic on most things now. I am not sure about how much of the meat is organic, but about 1/2 the store is either clearly marked organic or going organic without the blatant markings. Some of the things are your choice & you have to look. Organic things at Aldi are cheaper here than they are at the whole foods or only organic stores.
      Thank goodness I have one within walking distance (only 1.5 miles each way) from me. I walk both ways with a wagon that doubles as shopping cart & means to get things home.
      Maybe I am biased as I have been shopping at Aldi since before my 24 yr old son was born & have seen how this store grows & changes to adapt to what their loyal customers want and need.

  • Starla says:

    I LOVE Aldi! We would be broke without it, I think. There are only a few things that we don’t care for. We stick to name-brand cereals & peanut butter, but otherwise I use many, many of their items. Their seasoning prices cannot be beat, their dairy products are great, and their juices are super! I LOVE their paper towels – I used to buy only Bounty brand, but the Aldi paper towels are very nearly the same.

    Give it a try – you may be surprised! They do vary by the location, so what works for one may be different for another.

  • Patti says:

    My family discovered Aldi when I decided to become a stay at home Mom. We LOVE nearly everything there – only a few items have not made the taste test.

    I have collapsable crates that I keep in the car and I wheel the groceries out and put them in those plus a cooler. When I get home , it is much easier to unload because I have put items together. Now when I go to the regular grocery store, I am always peeved at what the bag boys pack together!! The crates are found in the back of Office Depot and are only about $7.00. They have hundreds of uses so I keep six at a time.

  • Aunt Sissy says:

    The shredded Parmesan cheese is very good for the price as are the walnuts. I have purchased several of the Crofton brand items and have been very happy with them. Wish I could find another 10 qt. pasta cooker! Works wonders when blanching summer vegetables for freezing.

  • Kimberly says:

    I’m not an Aldi regular, but I’ve shopped there enough to know that their products (to me) taste just as good, if not better, than some store brands or name brand items I buy. I’ve not eaten a thing from there that i could tell a difference in. My husband claims their chips aren’t as good, but he’s a chip snob, anyway!

    Things I love at Aldi….milk and eggs (much cheaper than grocery stores/Walmart), spaghetti sauce, coffee creamer, lunch meat, canned fruits/veggies, mayo, meat marinades. Truly, everything I’ve bought I have liked. And my doggie loved their 99cent treats!

    The fresh produce seems sketchy at times. The fresh meat and chicken has always been great as well.

  • Jessi J. says:

    I buy almost everything at Aldi’s except for fresh meat… I’ll buy frozen ground turkey or beef but not fresh…. I just can’t do it.

  • Ramona says:

    I started shopping at Aldi after regularly reading moneysavingmom.com. I have also done a price comparison between Aldi and Wegmans in my area (Webster, NY). When I did this a year ago there was a big difference between the 2 stores but the gap has really closed between the 2 stores for some items. I buy baking supplies there among other items-I think the baking mix is just as good as Bisquick and cheaper. Produce a little iffy at times, have to be careful.
    Someone told me the Fit n Active yogurt is made by Yoplait according to their phone app. There was recently a food recall on Honeysuckle ground turkey and Shadybrook Famrs was included so the same company that makes Honeyscukle ground turkey apparently makes the ground turkey for Aldi.

  • Leah Robbins says:

    I love shopping at Aldi. I primarily buy staples there as others have mentioned. Something to note as well the owners of Aldi are also part owners in Trader Joes. Since we don’t have one here in OKC I was surprised to find this out. After that I have noticed that several of their items are VERY similar to TJ’s. The chocolate chip dunkers, “italian” soda, several chocolates (seasonal), butter crisp waffer cookies, and alot of their european items are very similar. So when I see them I snatch them up! Also their German products are very good too (trust me I know grew up there!).

  • Sue says:

    I was not an Aldi shopper until a new one was built in our neigborhood. Now I will pass by the hot dog/hamburger buns in other stores to buy them at Aldi. They are always fresh, good-tastng and ALWAYS cheaper than other stores. The milk is very good and also a good price. I love their chocolate (candy bars, etc.). Because Aldi is German-owned, they obviously get their candy from Switzerland – the world’s best chocolate. My advice is to try a product there. It actually could become your preference.

  • Jocelyn says:

    We adore Aldi! We have been shopping there every week for about 2 years now. I was one of those people who didn’t think I would like “generic” food, even though we did buy store brands on occasion. Once I tried it, though, I’ve never looked back!

    My favorite items at Aldi are the rising crust frozen pizzas, pizza rolls (I like them better than Totino’s), cereals (made by General Mills, so I’ve heard), chocolate candy, pretzels, sour cream and onion chips, BBQ baked chips (better than Lay’s), and graham crackers just to name a few. The refrigerated jalapeno salsa is exceptional.

    The produce here is pretty good. I’ve never had any problems with it. You have to watch the expiration dates, but I’ve never had any problems returning anything (I’ve only had to do it 2 or 3 times).

    If you’re still skeptical, give it a try! You can get your money back if you don’t like what you buy.

  • jen says:

    Miss shopping at Aldi so much, had it in KY but not out here in CO. Just wanted to mention that I first started shopping at Aldi in Germany of all places. The funny thing is they are “regular” stores there, not discount ones so there’s no stigma about shopping there–everyone does. Still have to bring your own bags and use a quarter for the cart there, but that’s every store in Germany. Brings back so many wonderful memories. 🙂

  • Heather says:

    We shop there for staples like flour, rice, beans, sugar, some seasonings (not the garlic it was nasty), apple juice and potatoes. Sometimes we get the fruit if it looks good. Every now and then I’ll buy the green peppers if no one else has them on sale and various other produce if it looks good. I found by looking at the labels that it is the same produce sold at our grocery stores.
    Their milk is also RbGH free though we utilize a local dairy for our dairy.
    Ground beef price is best around here in SC, and the frozen vegetables are decently priced.

    What I won’t buy: lemon juice (seriously it wasn’t good), yogurt (they all have HFCS in them and artificial dye), prepackaged anything like cookies, chips, candies, frozen “meals” (not Aldi’s fault I don’t allow this food in my home ). Bread, rolls All have HFCS in them and other chemicals.

  • Terrah Hartley says:

    So worth the extra shopping trip!! We buy so many staples there and are VERY lucky to have an amazing fresh produce aisle!! Here are the items we buy: salad dressing, flour, sugar, baking soda, pie crusts, cheesecake mix, brownie mix (the only mix we buy now!), choco chips, sweetened condensed milk, cake mixes, icing, milk, eggs, sour cream, yogurt, canned chix, potato sides, flavored water bottles, bottled water, sprts drink (very like G2), rice, pasta noodles, spaghetti sauce, tomato sauce, mushrooms, burrito shells, dog chewies, canned dog food, paper plates, bagged salad, ham steaks, ground beef, ground turkey, premade hamburger patties, chix breasts, butt roasts, lunch meat, applesauce, canned crushed pineapple, baked beans, canned soups, popcicles (these are my hubby’s fav we buy 6 boxes a week!!), all bread. We’ve bought other items that are ok but we prefer namebrand but will do in a pinch or tight budget month (mayo very close to namebrand, ketchup and mustard as well)
    I’m sure there might be more I buy. I tried to go down the aisles in my head.
    Again worth it to make 2 grocery store trips. I just started to bulk shop. My goal is to buy a full box of 1 item each time I go to start a stockpile.
    TRY IT!!

  • Evie (from MN) says:

    Thanks for asking this question – I have been wondering the same thing. I was hesitant to go because of not being able to use coupons. I will definitely go and try the ‘staples’. Thanks everyone for your feedback – it was just what I was looking for.

    Signed – I swear I squeak when I walk – Evie 🙂

  • Karen says:

    My hubby and I are senior citizens.
    Some time back we watched an episode of “Unwrapped” on the Food Network. Featured was Aldi’s.
    For what it is worth, Aldi’s is a German company. Many of their products are made by “name brand” companies – General Mills/Post/Kellogg’s cereals for examples – the same way store brands in Kroger, Safeway, Giant Eagle etc. are made by name brands. I have a friend who emigrated from Germany and she is so happy to have Aldi’s here.
    Aldi’s saves us a lot of money for our coming retirement nest egg. It is easy to get in and out; just carry your own bags. In my neck of the woods they’re building a bigger/better one for us.
    My advice is to start out with one or two basic items and go from there. Their oil refill air fresheners are cheaper than Glade of Air Wick’s. Their face care products (Lacura) are very good – for $3.99 a jar give it a try! Beats L’Oreal prices any day. In our store fresh produce is brought in every other day. Talk to the staff and ask how often new stock is put out. For the most part the chips are great and now they have baked versions – made by Frito-Lay no doubt! Give Aldi’s a try!

  • Beulah says:

    Many have mentioned the connection to Trader Joe’s. Aldi’s store brand merchandise is the same as the store brand for the Kroger family of stores. We buy most of our staples there. If you cook with basic ingredients as opposed to using processed ingredients, Aldi will save you a small fortune.

    A note on produce: I’ve noticed my produce goes bad much quicker from Aldi during the normal growing season. To avoid this, we usually shop the Farmer’s Market during this time. If you read the labels on the produce, you’ll notice that the produce is generally sourced from a closer area and not grown in a hothouse. We live in IN and most of the produce at our Aldi comes from IN or MI. It isn’t exactly local, but it’s much better than produce that has traveled all the way from CA or overseas.

  • Jill says:

    I have several Aldi’s around me. One of them in particular is usually worse than the others. I think mainly it’s because it is the only grocery store in a town with a high food stamp rate and where most people don’t have cars.

    But no matter which one I go to they have things that I can’t get anywhere else!

  • Lyn says:

    I shop Aldi’s for a few things on occasion. This article was very helpful as it gave me many ideas of products to try that might help the grocery budget even further. The input was great. Thanks! 🙂

  • Carol P. says:

    My son loved the Fit and Active pasta – of course, I didn’t tell him what it was. But he asked me to make it again anytime… He also likes their frozen Italian food. I thought the Fit and Active shakes (a la Slimfast) were fine. I bought gum there once and it had a chemical taste – only thing I was disappointed in.

  • Tammala says:

    Also try their snacks. My family loves them! This is a store where my family can actually afford some healthier choices. They have baked potato chips, natural peanut butter, chocolate bars with nuts (I know, not so healthy), turkey hot dogs, fat free salad dressings, and a variety of produce. Every now and again we even find a good deal on plants, yard decor, accessories and other seasonal items. Great store! If you’ve never been, check a nice one out at least once. Oh and I must not fail to
    mention their fitActive brand sorbet ice cream pops. They either have very low sugar or fat and they are DELICIOUS!

  • Michelle says:

    Ok, I am new to Aldi too and here has been my experience. I always buy my sons whole milk there and I buy their cheese. I am a bit of a cheese snob, so this shocks me that I like it! I buy the majority of my produce there too. The strawberries have been the cheapest, mostly flavorful and tasty all summer long! I will not buy potatoes there anymore. I have a friend that loves them but my bag had so many that were spoiled inside that I wouldn’t even want to risk making a baked potato with them. I have tried the hard taco shells, I don’t buy them again they were thin and crumbled when you ate them. I also buy yogurt covered raisins there…my reg store has no variety and they are yummy! I have gotten the ravioli twice and I think that it is good (again my other store has no variety). My mom is now getting the indiv cups of yogurt from there and I have a friend that loves the frozen shrimp. I also get margarine from there…way cheaper than in the other stores! I have bought sandwich bread and buns from there too. I won’t buy the sandwich bread, it had a funny taste but the buns were ok. Ooh and I bought bagels and cream cheese there too. Way cheaper than other store and they were good. Basically what I don’t regularly have coupons for and are staples I get at Aldi. Yes some things will not be to your liking but try a few things at a time. You will be suprised what you can walk out with for $20!

  • Melody says:

    I love to get their canned beans (all varieties) and tomatoes for chili! I make chili often and have even won a few contests with Aldi’s canned goods in it! I don’t get to Aldi’s as often as I should and when I am low on beans (chili, pinto, black and baked) and I try to pick them up in another grocery store I about choke when I see the price. We were out the other day and I just couldn’t bring myself to pay $1 at Meijer for one can of black beans. Also, I do fresh fruit whenever possible but during the winter months when I want a fruit salad (or am going to a potluck and need to bring something) I pick up some of their canned fruit. They have their “light and fit” (something like that) brand that has mixed fruit in fruit juice (avoid the extra sugar!!) and they have a tropical fruit that I mix in with papaya, pineapple and mango and everyone always compliments the mix! Canned fruit is another thing I can hardly buy in other grocery stores when I know the price (and quality) at Aldi’s is so much better!

  • Beth says:

    I’ve never been to an Aldi that was dirty or had less quality items than another. I have lived in several different states and all of them had Aldi’s that I have loved. The cashiers are always friendly, store is always clean and produce always fresh; plus everything is cheaper than bigger chain stores. I couldn’t survive without them!

  • Alisha says:

    Every fall I stock up on baking chips for the year ($1.19 for white, chocolate and butterscotch.) I also regularly buy graham crackers and snack crackers ($1.19 and $1.69 respectively.) I also like their tortillas and chicken breast ($5.49 for 3 lbs.) We also buy canned beans for taco soups. And I pull up their ad on my phone to price match produce at walmart each week. 🙂

  • Debbie says:

    I LOVE shopping at Aldi’s and actually drive the 1 hour to the closest one to me. Normally I will pick up everything there except for the fruit and vegetables that are not frozen. I love to stock my pantry from them, and cannot beat their prices. I just wish they were closer so I don’t have to use my cooler and make sure I have nothing else going on in the morning – I give myself 3 hours for my Aldi trip… 2 for driving and 1 for shopping!

  • Angela says:

    Last year I found an adorable backpack for my son. It was on clearance and I don’t remember the exact price but I know it was under $10. The quality amazed me for such a low price. I love it. It’s those random, good finds that make Aldi such a great store. Also love that they have plants for cheaper than most places.

    • Vicki says:

      I bought GREAT sleeping bags two years ago, and am hoping they have them again. They were large, long enough for my over 6 foot sons, and rated to zero degrees.

  • Carol says:

    I do most of my grocery shopping here. I don’t think anyone has mentioned the chicken salad which comes in the 1 lb. tub, delicious and cheap. Love the wide pan whole wheat bread, and many others. The only think we’ve ever bought there and not really liked was mayo, and my husband is picky with that and only likes Kraft.

  • Lisa J. says:

    We don’t have an Aldi anywhere around here, but it sounds very much like our Sav-A-Lot stores. It took a while before I would actually shop there because the store just wasn’t anywhere near as nice as my beloved Publix. But I did finally venture in and pick up a few items — cabbage for 39 cents a pound, bananas for 29 cents a pound, etc. I still haven’t bought any meat or milk there, though. Maybe if the store seemed a little cleaner…

    • Vicki says:

      I have a Sav-A-Lot and an Aldi. The only thing I get at Sav-A-Lot is the 1/4 pound hot dogs. My teenagers and husband love them. If I did not have an Aldi I would shop there more. (once in a while Aldi has the 1/4 pound hot dogs. YEA)

  • Emily says:

    I love ALDI especially because of their “Double” guarantee… which they are very good about honoring. A few years ago I found a piece of wood in my hot dog bun (from the pallet they are stacked on), and they gave me my money back, plus a new pack of buns, PLUS a ton of canned veggies. And then a few weeks ago, I bought some cookie dough ice cream, and it didn’t have any “cookie dough chunks” in it, as shown in the picture, so I sent an email… I ended up getting my money refunded times TWO from the ice cream manufacturer, plus a very nice letter from ALDI saying I could get a refund in the store plus a free ice cream. AWESOME customer service! 🙂

  • Kristine says:

    I buy most of my groceries at Aldi, and our store has awesome produce. Our Wal-Mart has terrible produce, so I try to avoid it as much as possible even though Wal-Mart is closer. My meal plans include lots of staple items, fresh or frozen veggies, and fruit, and Aldi is great for those things.

  • Vicki says:

    I LOVE my Aldi!! The first time I walked in I was disappointed because they didn’t have everything I wanted, but now I know they don’t carry everything and I just supplement at Meijer. I have a list of the things that Aldi has, and over the years I have written the prices on this list. I compare and match up coupons and still Aldi has the better price!! I truly believe that I have cut my grocery bill in half by shopping at Aldi. I have 7 kids and three of them are teenagers so that is really important. My husband sings Aldi praises at work and convinced a coworker to go and now she shops there all the time. When I buy brand name food, my kids are not impressed. God bless Aldi for the little people and the big families!!

  • Aly says:

    I go to Aldi’s at least 2x a week and I am single. The produce deals are awsome and I love the special items they brig in especially around Christmas like the soft, filled chocolate covered gingerbread cookies. Prices are very reasonable and Wednesdays are meat special day. Their dairy quality is great and prices are the best around. Overall a 5 out of 5. I have had a couple of problems with produce, I just bring it back and it is replaced or refunded with no questions asked.

  • c says:

    Aldis has some good nuts, chocolate, coffee- even the decaf is good and inexpensive. Dairy products, frozen veg, veg burgers usually good. Produce
    frequently is in multi-packs, so see if it is fresh enough to use all of it before it spoils. i have not found a really fresh fibrous bread that I like there so I usually buy that elsewhere and I tend to skip most of the baked goods. Tuna and other packaged fish is good and inexpensive. I do not use cold cuts, but have purchased sliced chicken and turkey there for others and it is good quality and about 1/2 the price of other nearby stores. A lot of their products are the same as “name” brands, but without the name packaging and you will recognize some Trader Joes knock offs.

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