Do you have and ALDI grocery where you live? Are you super intimidated by it? Do you really need to start saving at the grocery? This was me about a year ago. I didn’t understand the shopping cart thing and quite honestly, there didn’t really seem to be a lot there I wanted to get. Now I have no issues buying generic brand supplies but something about the… German-ness (?) of ALDI really intimidated me. Up until last year, I hadn’t set foot inside one since the late nineties. Lately though, we have been doing our best to get the most bang for our buck at the grocery- to save money and still get all the goodies we both needed and wanted each week.
ALDI has recently made a huge comeback, at least here on the eastern half of the country and I am so, SO glad we gave them a chance. If you don’t have an ALDI near you, it’s definitely still worth scouring your other discount grocery store equivalent (Dollar Tree, Grocery Outlet, Save-A-Lot, whatever) to see if they carry their own version of these things. Many times, the generic is made in the exact same factory as the brand name and is therefore the exact same thing in different packaging.
Yeah, I know, people can be super intense about the quality of their produce and for good reason- it’s not cheap and if you’re gonna buy healthy stuff it better be good! I’ve found that every grocery has a few produce items they are really good at consistently getting high quality, and that includes your discount shops. At ours, the organic apples, green onions, bagged salads, grape tomatoes and bananas are all perfect quality and of course a better price than our big box grocery store. We consistently throw these things in the cart every single week.
Frozen Breakfast Stuff
Yeah this is where I’m Sort Of getting healthy eating right for our family. I don’t love processed foods, but at breakfast I tend to make an exception in the name of convenience and variety. The boys really like their frozen waffles and frozen sausage links the best.
Baby and Toddler Food
I can’t speak to the actual purees they sell there, but the pouches, rice crackers, puffs and yogurt thingies are all made with the exact same ingredients or better than the name brands. They also make staples like formula, wipes and diapers that are probably worth looking in to as well.
I know, most discount stores don’t bother with organic options because, well, they tend to be way more expensive than their traditional counterparts. ALDI’s organic line is called Simply Nature and comes with a price tag this is around the price of a traditional product at the grocery store. So for the same price, you can get it organic! We love the canned tomatoes and beans, cereals and veggie bites for kids in the freezer section.
I’m always a huge proponent of frozen veggies and ALDI brand are no different. Frozen veggies are as nutritious as fresh and way more convenient. Several times a week I’ll steam a few handfuls to add on to lunch. There isn’t a ton of selection, at least at our store, but all the staples are covered: corn, peas, carrots and a couple of mixed veggies.
Milk and Cheese
I mentioned the milk before- their organic milk is perfect, tastes good and has the long shelf life we love. We don’t use a ton of milk every week and so the longer shelf-life is necessary. The cheese selection is also pretty great- their shredded and block cheese is perfect for everyday and snacking. They also have a few different “gourmet” style cheeses that Mr. Sort Of and I love to have with our wine. Don’t get me wrong, an artisan cheese made by a passionate farmer is the best cheese you will ever taste, but this ALDI version is perfectly passable.
Alllll the snacks. The crackers are literally the same as their name brand counterparts. You know how those generic orange cheese crackers are slightly different, a little bit off somehow? NOT THESE! ALDI snack crackers are perfect and there is never any reason for me to buy the name brand ever again. From wheat crackers, to cheese to sandwich crackers I love them all. They also have a great selection of knock off potato chips, pretzels and veggie chips that are surprisingly good.
I love saving money. I love discounts. I love being able to afford all the different types of foods my family asks for each week. I may not be able to get my entire grocery list (like, why can’t ALDI carry rutabaga, what do they have against jicama???) but the value for the price is completely worth a second trip to pick up the handful or so things I couldn’t find. You definitely should be checking your discount grocery store- it’s a proverbial gold mine!