What I like about Aldi's

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

I've gotten a few requests about doing a post about shopping at Aldi's, and I've been putting it off because it seemed like a daunting task to list everything I buy at Aldi's. So instead of an ever long list, I thought I would instead tell you that there isn't much I don't buy there. (Beef and most of my fresh produce I get at Meijer, the butcher shop, or through a local CSA share in season. I've found it to be fresher and last longer before going bad. And they don't have as wide as a selection)
I do 80% of my weekly grocery shopping at Aldi's and go to Meijer once every couple weeks to stock up on the things Aldi's doesn't carry or we prefer from there (for example salad dressing, A-1 sauce, pizza dough, specialty products)

I've been a very happy customer and here is why:

*Their food is cheap~ I don't want to take the time to coupon or wait for sales, if you do, you probably can get your groceries for cheaper than I get mine. I've seen the coupon blogs and I wish I had the patience for that, but I don't. So I get what I want, when I want, and easily spend less than I would at Meijer for similar products.

*Their food is good~ I get a lot of organic, healthy food there. It's not name brand (although you can find some name brands at times) but if I can taste a difference I usually like it better. For example I especially love their animal crackers and chips better. And I hear the owners of Aldi also own Trader Joe's which is cool!

*I can shop quickly~the store is small, and they don't have half an aisle full of peanut butter options to choose from, so no standing in the aisle compering prices and ingredients for 20 minutes. When I shop with up to 3 kids along with me, this is huge!

Here are some recent lunches I served my kids with food from Aldi's:

peanut butter on whole wheat bread, cherry tomatoes and mandarin oranges

steamed carrots, cheese sticks and hot dog with juice 

hard boiled egg, roasted turkey slices (nitrate free) and applesauce pouch

cheese sticks, carrots and hummus and apple slices 

A few things to know:
*You do have to pay a deposit to use their carts, it's a quarter but you get it back when you return the cart. This is so they save money on cart corrals and can save us money on the groceries. 

*You need to bring your own bags, or pay a dime to buy them. I use large utility totes from thirty-one and I love it! I actually don't mind that a bit because I can take several less trips from the van to the house by carrying one (or two) big bags in instead of several plastic shopping bags. 

*They do not except credit, checks, WIC or coupons. You may pay with cash or debit. 

One last thing to add: It's not for everyone, I totally get that! 
I'm sure I'll get some comments about their food coming from China or whatever and to that I'll just say that their labels say from Bativia, IL and I choose to believe it!
I don't think I've ever eaten horse meat, because I'm sure I'll comment get that too :) 

We all make our own choices and do what works for us! 
I'm happy to answer any questions, just leave me a comment or send an email!

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27 Responses to “ What I like about Aldi's ”

Anonymous said...

This was very interesting !! We just had one built by us so I may need to try that. I also heard that the meat and fruit are not the best or freshest! I just go to Meijer for most things except meat which we raise ourselves. We spend sooo much on grocery each week with this big family and I really want to get better this year on the money I spend. Thanks for this post I loved it!! ELma

Charity said...

I switched to Aldi a few years ago. As a working mom of four I appreciate the prices and the efficiency. I started just getting a few things (boxed and canned foods) and now I get everything. Milk, cheese, meat, produce...I have not had anything be bad or rotten. The produce does rot more quickly but with my size family that's not an issue! My hubby loves the frozen pizzas and even the wine is good!

Katie said...

I Love Aldi!! I've been shopping there ever since they built one in our town. And I usually end up buying everything there. The frozen chicken is really good, and cheap. The animal crackers are great! And I don't know if it's the same for your Aldi, but ours has Bible verses on their egg cartons.

Alicia said...

I hear ya! I love Aldi, but I normally go to Save-A-Lot which is also pretty inexpensive and much closer to me!

aLiYoOp906 said...

Love, love, LOVE Aldi! Great post about a great little grocery store!

bri said...

WE LOVE Aldi! When we made the switch it was like night and day. I still prefer to buy some things at our HEB groc store... but there isn't much that doesn't come from Aldi.

And what you said about some of their stuff tasting better... I have found that to be true as well! LOVE it! :)

Rebecca S said...

Must be an east coast/midwest thing. I have never heard of it. Oregon/Idaho had Winco, walmart, albertsons and a discount grocery outlet.

Anonymous said...

What kinds of organic foods do they sell?

Renee said...

We have an Aldi but I've never been there. My mother-in-law works in the pharmacy at Meijer, and I feel like we should help support the company she works for. But I may need to check it soon!

Anonymous said...

I LOVE Aldi also. I do buy some produce and they have great deals on fish and seafood also. I have bought their chicken breasts and pork chops and never had a problem.

Kelly said...

I started shopping at Aldi a few years ago. I'm always amazed because I can get a full cart of groceries and pay $75 and then go to Walmart and get 10 things and pay $40! I get everything I can at Aldi and what they don't carry (or if someone is picky in my house and has a brand preference) I get at Walmart. I think Aldi used to get a bad rep 10-20 years ago for being 'gross', 'dirty' and for 'poor people' but it is so not true. I shop there because I don't want to be poor and why spend more on the same things when you don't have to?

Erin said...

I love Aldi too and get most of our groceries there...just like you and most others, I still go to Wal-Mart or a local grocery store here for things that Aldi doesn't sell but I even get ground beef and chicken from Aldi and haven't had a problem. My hubs is out of work right now and its been a wonderful way to cut back on some of our food costs. :)

Rachel C said...

By far for me the best thing about Aldis is the small size of the store. Less temptation! Up and down about 4 aisles and out of the store. It can definitely simplify your shopping.
Also at ours the cashiers are really really fast!

Emily said...

We LOVE Aldi's!!! I don't think we could live anywhere that didn't have one...we but almost everything there, but if I need something specific we go to Meijer, we also get lots of produce from Meijer. I just love their produce section! I am always amazed when I can get all of our food for 1 week+ for under $100. Aldi's rocks!

DianeTaylor said...

Ok - you all have convinced me to give Aldi's a try! I have one not too far from me. Saving money and time is what I'm all about. Thanks for all the tips, Katie!

Anonymous said...

has anyone actually checked to see where this food comes from? Why is there food so cheap vs. others? It makes no sense to me that this grocery store would be so much cheaper then others.

It is DISTRIBUTED out of IL. Not made there.

Anonymous said...

Hi there, I love your blog and have been following for years!

I do all of the advertising for ALDI and I can confirm that their prices are so low due to many factors, i.e. all products are left in their boxes so there's no cost of employing people to stock the shelves, you pay for your cart, you bring your own bags, etc. Also, the majority of food/products do come directly from the US and they're ALDI owned/manufactured -- thus the cheap pricing.

I would love to add these comments to our database that we pull from to incorporate in ads, signage, etc. Please let me know if that would be ok!

Anonymous said...

i will tell you that "out in the world" people talk about Aldi's coming from China and such and it very poorly made food.

Anonymous said...

also, why does the produce rot more quickly if from the US?

Brooke said...

LOL at these comments. We love Aldi and buy everything from there. I found that the produce from Sams Club went bad way before my Aldi stuff. Also I love it because it has also helped me lose 100 pounds with being able to eating healthy while affordable.

Plus if you have to take your cart back, no door dings! And everyone should be using cloth bags anyways!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous, I believe it rots more quickly because it is more ripe than major super markets. Another reason prices are low.

Ashley said...

Love love love Aldi. We buy their stew beef and it is way better than Wal-mart or Kroger's. Tender and delicious.

Everything is better there.

Anonymous said...

Family Fare is small too. And supporting local business.

Deb said...

Aldi all the way! After my first experience (thought I had to PAY for a cart and did NOT have a debit card or cash with me...) I avoided ALDI for years. Then I tried it again and now I'm bummed when it's after 8 and I have to go to Meijer because I know it'll take me longer and I'll spend more!! I agree too - it's just not as daunting taking 3 kids grocery shopping when you're in a small store like that. I've enlisted them into helping me quite a bit, too. And when you go regularly, you really can just grab and go - you know where things are supposed to be and keep on moving. You even save time because you can park closer to the door!

Ashley B. said...

I'm an Aldi shopper as well. I've had zero problems with the produce. Most of the bananas are still slightly green when I buy them (two bundles a week) and I've never had problems with the organic spinach, kale, etc. I also buy avocado, apples, kiwi, pears, blueberries, onions, sweet potatoes, carrots, etc. No problems.

I think I only see 4-5 employees when I'm shopping. Huge difference compared to being in Meijer. They do not have mass advertising TV commercials or sale adds in the newspapers. The stores are small and they don't carry as much variety (how many different brands of bbq do we really need?).

I also use my Thirty-One totes for my groceries. :)

Ashley B. said...

I looked at the items I purchased during my last Aldi trip. The only thing that I couldn't find was made from the USA was kiwi - sorry they are from Italy. :)

Anonymous said...

I too shop at Aldi's for mostly everything; and have since they came to town (we now have 2). Most of the food tastes the same and I have NOT found things go bad quickly (I have had Walmart fruit bad quicker). Great to get an entire grocery cart of food for like $70 instead of running into a small local store and walking out with 3 bags for $70.