I'll admit, I do most of my grocery shopping at our Wal-Mart Supercenter because the prices are just so low, and because it's the nearest store to me. I occasionally make trips to stores that are more expensive because they carry particular items. And I stock up on certain things at Costco.
(That's a huge bag. I think my husband might be able to carry me in it. But I'm not crazy enough to try.)
I have to be careful though. Some items are not cheaper at Costco. Cold cereal tends to be kind of expensive there. Some of the produce is pricey. Some items aren't available in the store brand "Kirkland" and I'm better off buying a smaller package of a store brand somewhere else. I've just got to take it item by item.
But for certain things, Costco does have good deals. Sometimes I even use the coupons they send me; because they sell in bulk, each coupon saves me enough money to make the clipping worth it!
Here are some of the items I regularly buy at Costco.
- Energy bars. These are in the bakery section, and Zoodle loves them. I eat them regularly before running, but Zoodle (who is in a picky phase) has them almost every morning for breakfast. Check out all the good stuff in that ingredient list.
- Chicken broth. Six quarts of organic broth for under $10.
- Frozen mixed berries and strawberries (for smoothies, snacks, pancake topping, etc.)
- Mickey-shaped all-natural chicken nuggets.
- Spring mix or spinach, and huge bags of baby carrots.
- Some fruit, depending on the price.
- Certain snack items--tortilla chips, pretzels, "Simply Fruit" Fruit Roll-Ups (made with real fruit & fruit juice), various types of granola bars, Goldfish crackers etc.
- Frozen boneless/skinless chicken breast.
- Turkey bacon.
- Frozen fish.
- Chicken sausage--a delicious, healthier alternative to beef or pork sausage!
- Sandwich bread. (Orowheat bread is a great deal there; each loaf is twice as big as a normal grocery store loaf. You have to buy two at a time; I freeze one.)
- Beer and wine. (We like Black Box Cabernet; it's a tasty wine that yes, comes in a box.)
- Huge jars of sun-dried tomatoes and artichoke hearts.
- Idahoan "Baby Reds" instant mashed potatoes. Yeah, I know, instant, but we like them.
- Diapers--well, not anymore! But we appreciated the diaper discounts on Huggies and on Kirkland brand (which is comparable to Huggies Supreme) for both kids.
- Clothes--Sometimes we find some good deals on quality clothes for the kids, for us, and for gifts.
- Contact lenses--I save SO much money buying my contacts at Costco! I even use the on-site optometrist (who is available to members and non-members.) Her prices are great, and I really like her.
- Gummy bear calcium for the kids. (And sometimes for me--they're MUCH tastier than the calcium pills I sometimes take!)
Those Costco trips can be expensive, but now that we've stocked up on so many things, I usually don't have a huge list when I go there. After shopping, we often buy some cheap food at their cafe, where Chickie loves to sit at one of the tables that has an umbrella over it.
What do you buy at warehouse clubs? Do you find that you save money in the long run, or just end up spending a lot more than you expected?