What are the cheapest grocery stores to shop at in 2021?

Aldi is the cheapest grocery store to shop at. It is closely followed by Market Basket, Winco Foods, and others. So if you’re a budget shopper interested in cutting costs at grocery shopping, those are the supermarkets to visit. We’ve made an extensive list to show you why that is. 

Top 5 cheapest grocery stores to shop at in 2021

The Dunhumby retailer preference index recognizes the following grocery stores as the best to shop at in 2021. 

1. Aldi

Aldi grocery store building
Photo credit: @aldiusa on Instagram

Aldi continues to combine fast delivery speed, topnotch quality and affordable prices. This has earned the grocery store first place on the list of the cheapest grocery stores to shop at in 2021.

However, the German-owned store is not best known for variety. A large amount of the store’s inventory contains store brands. So if you’re hoping to find popular product brands like Heinz, Coke, and Crest, you’d be disappointed.

But what it lacks in variety, Aldi makes up for in its Twice as Nice guarantee. Aldi will refund you and replace any food item you aren’t satisfied with.

2. Market Basket

Front view of Market Basket supermarket building
Photo credit: @marketbasket on Instagram

Market Basket is a chain of 90 supermarkets with their headquarters in Tewksbury, Massachusetts. The retailer also has branches spread out across New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Maine, and Rhode Island in the United States.

The quality of products at Market Basket is fair, but the same can’t be said for the meat. The store doesn’t have the best steaks to buy, so we don’t recommend it.

But if you prioritize price over quality, they do have cheap meat stock. You can buy steak from as low as $5. 

3. WinCo Foods

People standing in front of Winco Foods building
Photo credit: @wincofoods on Instagram

This is an American supermarket chain with headquarters in Boise, Idaho. Its other retail stores branch out in Arizona, California, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oklahoma, Oregon, Texas, Utah, and Washington.

WinCo Foods is home to top quality fresh produce, bulk foods, meat and delicious food recipes like roasted matcha pumpkin spice latte. But more importantly, it doesn’t force membership fees on customers. 

According to the store manager, Steve Corbin, “We want to make sure you walk in and see this is our model—low prices, lots of product, no gimmicks. Just buy what you need, as much as you need”.

4. Lidl

Lidl official website
Photo credit: lidl.co.uk

Lidl is popular for being Aldi’s rival in the pricing category. Though Aldi is obviously the cheaper grocery store to shop at, Lidl has more product varieties, unique brand features, and more organized grocery store aisles.

The store sells everything from fresh produce and meat down to cleaning, household, health and beauty items, and even liquor.

Most grocery stores don’t sell liquor, but Lidl proves to be an exception as it offers nice selections of wines, beers and spirits.

5. Food 4 Less

Food4Less official website
Photo credit: food4less.com

Kroger is the parent store of Food 4 Less. The store has outlets in Illinois and Indiana, as well as Southern California. But in Northern and Central California, Kroger runs the stores under the name. “Foods Co”. The reason is because Kroger hasn’t acquired the rights to use the Food 4 Less name in those regions.

Food 4 Less offers nice selections of bakery, dairy, deli, frozen foods, general grocery, fresh produce, meat, and even electronics. You can also order Kroger food brands like the hard smoked bacon from the store starting from $3.


What should I not buy at Aldi?

Don’t buy seafood from Aldi because it’s of questionable quality and annoyingly expensive. The sushi is usually undercooked and dry, so you’re better off buying it from other grocery stores like Whole Foods.

Besides seafood, here are other things you shouldn’t buy from Aldi:

  • Pizza: poor quality
  • Produce: chances of buying bad produce are high because Aldi sells produce in containers.
  • Pet foods: Aldi uses corn fillers instead of real meat in pet foods.

Are Aldi products low quality?

Though Aldi offers affordable prices, it’s not the best place to shop at if you’re sensitive about quality. 

Shopping at Aldi is a hit-and-miss experience. You won’t always walk out of there with the best goods, especially fresh produce. If you’re in search of purely organic produce, then check out Whole Foods Market.

Why does Aldi produce go bad so fast?

One possible reason why Aldi produce goes bad so fast is because they’re placed too close to the store entrance. 

Customers constantly walk into the store, meaning that the doors are continuously open and shut. This contributes to temperature fluctuation that makes their vegetables and fruits go bad.

Now that you know all about the cheapest grocery stores to shop at in 2021, here are some other stores you might like: