4.01.2013

April Challenge

Do you have an Aldi grocery store near you? I had never heard of them until we moved here. They carry the equivalent of store-brand goods. They are bare-bones: bring a quarter to 'rent' a shopping cart if you plan to use one (you'll get it back once you return the cart) and bring your own shopping bags. Credit cards are a no-no but they do accept debit cards and cash. I had poked in for a walk-through a while back and have decided that this month, I will try out a few items - items that I normally buy at the 'big box' grocery store or the commissary. I'll be posting what I buy and our assessment of them over the next month or so.


This month, I bought trash bags, some Belgian-style cookies (Aldi is a European-owned corporation so I've found a lot of European foods there), chicken nuggets, and smoked Gouda cheese.




First up are trash bags. I managed to throw away my receipt before I noted the price but I believe I paid $3.99 for this box of 45 bags. So far (we've used about 10 of them thus far), they have held up nicely and I can't tell the difference between the Boulder brand and the Glad brand that I normally buy. For my next post, I'll do a better job of posting the price from our 'normal' grocery store in comparison.
** VERDICT: worth the money. I won't buy trash bags at the 'big name' grocery store again. 





My children like chicken nuggets. If I were a better crunchy mom, I'd make my own by dicing up free range chicken, coating it in non-GMO bread crumbs, and baking them myself but I have about 10,485 other things that need my attention during the day (to include Facebook. Don't judge.) so bagged nuggets once a week are my go-to. This bag was $3.99 for a 32-ounce bag. The same sized bag at our normal grocery store would run me at least $5.99.
** VERDICT: The Girl said she didn't notice a difference but she has a lousy sense of smell (and, therefore, taste) so I only give her opinion so much weight (sorry, baby!). The Boy said his tummy hurt after eating them but his tummy hurts often so I'm not sure we can attribute that to the nuggets. We will have 1/2 of a bag left so we'll try again.



We love chocolate in this house. And we love cookies. And when you combine the two, we have a happy house. So we grabbed these for $2.99 and hoped for the best. Similar cookies in either the grocery store or commissary would run easily more than $5.00 so this was an easy call. I mean, really, cookies and chocolate (dark, at that!) for under $3.00? Who can say no to that?

** VERDICT: The chocolate, as European chocolate is known to be, was wonderful - smooth, creamy, rich. The cookies themselves had an odd chemical taste but that was mostly overpowered by the wonderful chocolate. I would have just sucked the chocolate off the cookies and thrown the actual cookie in the trash but my children elbowed me out of the way (The Girl has bony elbows!) and then viciously declared that I was not allowed to touch them. Heh. They have to sleep at some point. 


We also bought a wheel of smoked Gouda but I failed to get a picture of it before it was devoured. If there is anything in this house that is devoured more quickly than chocolate, it's cheese. We like cheese on our cheese. This cheese was mild and creamy with a good, solid hint of smoke to it. Perfect. It was$2.99 for a 7 ounce wheel. A perfect price for a small indulgence. 


MacGyver hit the commissary today (soldiers who are involuntarily separated from the military maintain access to the PX and commissary for 2 years) and they had cereal on sale so we stocked up there. I'm still working my way through some stuff I have in the freezer for meals so I don't need to do a major shop just yet. I do need to go pick up some frozen veggies and the everyday stuff (bread, orange juice, peanut butter, etc.) but I'm going to put that off as long as possible. We managed to stay close to my $300 budget last month but went over a smidge so I'm trying to get closer this month. 


Still no word on the job front - still waiting for a few pieces to fall into place. If you're the praying type, we could definitely use them.


Have you shopped at Aldi? 




Pau.




- hfs

6 comments:

Aloha Ya'll! said...

Someone was just telling me about Aldi on Sunday! We once tried to shop at Aldi about 20 years ago and when we got there and realized it was cash only (they didn't take debit), we left and never tried again. But the folks I talked to on Sunday said it is well worth a visit!

Michelle said...

I LOVE ALDI's!!! We have one in our little town here in Germany and it is my favorite!!! Course, having a mini-bakery is a BIG plus!!! We find all sorts of great deals and not just on food :) It is one of the few stores in Germany that actually puts seasonal stuff on clearance!

kimalso said...

We love Aldi's, too. Eggs, milk and bread seem to be big savings items. I don't like their vanilla wafers or graham crackers at all, but I've enjoyed the few cereals I've tried (granola, bran flakes). My family is addicted to the cranberry-oatmeal "bakery cookies." I definitely recommend shopping there....especially when, for me, it's about 2 miles away and the commissary is 30 minutes away.

kimalso said...

We love Aldi's, too. Eggs, milk and bread seem to be big savings items. I don't like their vanilla wafers or graham crackers at all, but I've enjoyed the few cereals I've tried (granola, bran flakes). My family is addicted to the cranberry-oatmeal "bakery cookies." I definitely recommend shopping there....especially when, for me, it's about 2 miles away and the commissary is 30 minutes away.

Glenn Mark Cassel said...

There was one very close to us where we lived in Wichita KS.
My Aunt loved Aldi!

Bou said...

I had absolutely never heard of this store, so I thought I'd click the link to find out where this store is big. There is one 15 minutes from my house! I'm going to check it out, in particular their cheese and chocolate cookies since... we are the same. We would eat chocolate covered cheese...

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