Phil & Mel In The Afternoon

Weekdays 3:00PM-7:00PM

A shopper browses in the snack aisle at Amazon Go Grocery on February 26, 2020 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by David Ryder/Getty Images)

Most of us are always up for saving money at the grocery store. Although I find it annoying, lately I’ve been going to more than one grocery store so that I can save money. Mashed has a new list out of the’15 Least Expensive Grocery Stores’ in the U.S. and I’ve picked out the top ones in our area.

Phil often goes to more than one store to shop and I’m finding that if I do that too, I save money. Everything is too expensive now so saving money where you can is important! Usually now I’ll shop at Lidl and Publix. Lidl has great deals and if you’ve never tried the bread they bake, it’s amazing! Publix is a bit more expensive, but I go there for certain items I can’t find anywhere else. And for their fried chicken if I’m in the mood. Their fried chicken is delicious!

The Mashed list is in no particular order, so I’ll start with Lidl. Although many folks think Lidl and Aldi are the same company, they aren’t. Both are good stores to shop if you want to save money. I’ve found great deals on spices, olive oil, and meats at Lidl. Like Aldi, you have to bag your own groceries, but you don’t have to spend a quarter on a cart. And if you download the app, you can snag deals.

Aldi is also on the list. Phil goes to Aldi lots and I like it too however I find that Lidl is a bit less crowded. Although, with Aldi you can shop on Instacart and pick your groceries up which is convenient if you don’t have time to shop in the store.

Sam’s Club and Costco are also on the affordable list. Although there isn’t a Costco in Gastonia, there is a Sam’s Club. Both are members-only wholesale stores. If you have a big family, these are great places to buy in bulk. I’d love to shop at one of these stores, but I have limited space in my apartment. I have found that buying toilet paper and paper towels in bulk on Amazon saves me some money. You always need those! ‘

Trader Joe’s is on the list as well. When I lived in Wilmington, N.C., I’d shop at Trader Joe’s sometimes. They have great products and prices. I can’t believe that a store hasn’t opened in Gaston County yet. Since they’re only in Charlotte, I don’t shop there often but the store is very popular.

Walmart made the list too. This is a store that I’ll shop once in a while. At Walmart you can find pretty good prices on household items like cleaners and detergent. It’s also a great place to shop for beauty products. And I will admit that the last time I shopped the Walmart near my apartment, they had amazing produce. I found some yummy Bok Choy at a stellar price!

Although this list features stores that are regional/national, I will say that this is the time of the year to start hitting local farmers markets. The produce is incredibly fresh, and the sellers are local. I make a lot of trips to the Gastonia Farmers Market in the summer. Heirloom tomatoes are one of my favorite things to eat and there are a few farmers that offer them. Summer fruits are usually available at a good price at local farmers markets.

You can check out the entire list of affordable stores here. If you have any shopping tips or if you shop somewhere that didn’t make the list, let me know! I’m always in for saving money.