Some people say….

that the produce

at Aldi

isn’t good.

But I

have not

found that

to be

the case.

Interestingly enough, the produce I find at Aldi is often better than the produce I’ve found at other stores. For instance, the $0.29 grapefruits at Aldi are so much better than the $1+ grapefruits that Weis carries.

Aldi rarely carries organic produce, their produce is not as virtuous as the stuff at the local farmer’s markets, and if you need an exotic kind of fruit or vegetable, you won’t find it there (they only stock produce that sells quickly because wasted food means wasted money).

But, the produce is super-duper affordable, and because of that, we eat more produce now than we ever did before I became an Aldi convert. And organic or not, eating more produce cannot possibly be a bad thing.

Because the pictures are not comprehensive, here’s a list of the produce I routinely buy at Aldi.

Tomatoes (Roma or grape, depending on the week and how they look)
Spinach
Avocados
Mushrooms
Potatoes
Cucumbers
Sweet peppers (red and yellow peppers always used to be out of my budget, but no more!)
Onions
Broccoli
Grapes
Strawberries (my Aldi usually only carries these when they’re in season)
Grapefruit
Oranges
Pineapple
Mangoes
Pears

The only thing I avoid are the bananas (they’re the type in plastic bags, and those tend to go straight from green to overripe).

Also, I don’t buy produce if it looks iffy (I look it over carefully whether I’m at the grocery store, Aldi, or a farmer’s market), and I mostly try to stick with in-season produce for better quality (this applies to fruit and not so much to vegetables). For instance, strawberries in June are better than strawberries in January, and Aldi’s February oranges are better than the ones they sell in July.

If you’ve been avoiding Aldi because you’ve heard stories about the produce, do yourself a favor and at least check it out. You just might find a fabulously frugal source of fresh food.

____________________________

Today’s 365 post: It’s the elusive Mr. FG.

Joshua’s 365 post: “Can I play da state game, Mommy?”

Comments

  1. Stephanie says

    Thank you! I live in Canada but there is an Aldi less than an hour away across the border in New York state. It’s the first store I hit when I make a trip stateside!

  2. says

    I love the produce (and prices!) at Aldi. My store occasionally carries more exotic stuff too – different types of leaf lettuce, etc. but that seems hit-or-miss. The every day stuff is always wonderfully priced though, and I have never had an issue with quality. Nice post!

  3. says

    Aldi is the only place I can afford to buy avocados. I’ve seen them as low as 29 each there, when other stores are selling them, on average, for $1 each.

    Unless another store is having a great sale on something, I buy most of my produce at Aldi.

  4. wanda says

    I hope I don’t sound argumentative but I’m not sure I entirely agree with this: And organic or not, eating more produce cannot possibly be a bad thing.

    I know we all have to make choices about where to spend our dollars and what to eat, but I can’t help but wonder if a greater quantity of conventionally-grown-shipped-in-from-overseas produce really is better in the long run.

    I didn’t feed my kids organic produce when they were little….however, if I were feeding kids today, I’d have a hard time choosing quantity over quality. I’d rather buy frozen organic strawberries when they are on sale, than fresh strawberries grown conventionally, because I think the chemicals just aren’t good for growing kids, and it’s not good for the environment.

    I don’t buy all organic all the time, but I do try to choose US and locally grown conventional produce when I can. A lot of times the cost difference isn’t so huge. I think sometimes we look at a tub of organic lettuce and think wow that’s crazy money, when it’s really only a dollar more than you were going to spend on the tub of conventional lettuce. Plus, you don’t really have to wash the organic lettuce before use, so it saves water and time.

    When I’m looking at produce, I’m also thinking about the impact my purchase has on the industry…if I keep spending money on watery tomatoes grown using pesticides in Mexico, I am encouraging a lot of practices that I don’t want to support.

    The most frugal option is to setup a raised beds or a few pots on the patio, and grow veggies for ourselves. It might not help with the bananas and avocados but things like lettuce and broccoli are super easy to grow. I know it’s not possible for everyone and we all get to make our own choices, of course.

    • Kristen says

      Certainly, organic, local produce is better than other types…I’m not disagreeing with you there.

      What I’m saying is that before Aldi, a greater percentage of our diets was composed of non-produce, non-organic foods (maybe we ate more bread, and now we eat less bread and more produce). And in that situation, I think more produce is a better option.

      I think Aldi provides a very helpful service with their produce. People with meager incomes often subsist on a lot of processed, shelf-stable foods, so if Aldi makes it possible to switch some of that stuff out for spinach, avocados, and oranges, I see that as a positive thing.

      I do grow some stuff in my yard, I mooch off of my parents’ garden in the summer, and when produce stands are open here, I buy as much produce as possible from them. But from October-May, there just aren’t a lot of local buying options, and I can only freeze and preserve so much local food.

    • WilliamB says

      “but I can’t help but wonder if a greater quantity of conventionally-grown-shipped-in-from-overseas produce really is better in the long run. ”

      I think it depends on what one’s diet is now. If it’s mostly processed, cheap meat, and junk, then conventional produce is an improvement. Whether, in every case, organic is better than conventional, depends on what one’s goal is. The goals are usually some mix of:
      – personal health
      – better environment
      – producing enough food for the world (this gets complicated very quickly)
      – farm worker health
      One will end up with different answers, depending on which goal is most important.

      I found the chapter on industrial organic in Michael Pollan’s “The Omnivore’s Dilemma” to be a real eye-opener. What actually happens on the industrial organic farms is not always in accordance with the popular image.

      For example, organic farming can be quite bad for the soil, depending on how and where it’s done. There are no pesticides, so the industrial producers till their organic fields 3-4 times a season, with predictable negative effects on soil health (details available upon request). Since one of the reasons I’m interested in organic is better soil health, organic does not always fit my needs.

      There are other questions as well. My biggest question is which is “better” – distant organic or conventional local? Again, it depends on what my goal is.

      In other words, it’s complicated.

      In related news, I’m getting my prepared happy pork this weekend! It’s taken me three years to find a provider for pigs raised as God intended[1], that’s close enough to make the trip feasible, and for a vaguely reasonable price. Keep your fingers crossed for me, I asked for the bones as well, I’ll probably be making pork stock all weekend just so I don’t have find freezer space for all dem bones.

      [1] This varies by animal. For pigs its particularly hard to define, but it includes spending most of the time outside in large large areas (ideally a mix of wooded and grassy) and rooting around for food to go with the supplied feed.

      • wanda says

        Totally agree – there are SO many choices we have to make when we’re standing in the produce aisle…no wonder my husband hates to go shopping with me!

        I would be so excited if I were you – one of these days I’m going to figure out how to make room for a freezer and buy a hog too. The meat aisle is an even tougher problem area for me for a whole other set of reasons.

    • Mon says

      This comment is super old, but I highly suggest washing your lettuce and any greens whether or not they are organic. Pesticides may be less of a concern, but what about pathogens?

      Washing doesn’t sterilize or disinfect our food, so you’d still be getting exposure to pathogens and other microbes. But you’ll be much more likely to reduce the load so that you don’t succumb to illness. Bacteria, viruses, and the like don’t care what our packages say or what pesticides are use. Of course, pesticides can affect microbes, but they don’t care about our ‘good practices.’ So it’s best to get them off our food.

  5. wanda says

    Ooh….another frugal tip: try pick your own to save a bunch on organics. We just picked organic strawberries for $1.50 a pint – the same strawberries that cost $6 in the store. They were soooo delicious and now I’ve got a bunch in the freezer for much less than I would have spent on fresh or frozen strawberries at the store. Watch for end of season sales on pick your own organic and other locally grown produce. It’s a great way to keep your freezer stocked.

    • Jennifer says

      I wish I was so lucky! Our pick your own farms around here (NY) cost double if not triple the cost of those in the stores- and that’s for the non-organic places! We go apple picking every year, but we do it because it’s a family tradition and a lot of fun, not because it saves us any money.

      • wanda says

        I’m guessing it’s because we are in Florida and maybe once fruit is ripe it needs to get off the plant very very quickly….but I don’t really know that for sure.

        We also volunteered with an organization that gleans the last of the crops for charity…most often there is more food than even the charity can accept, so you also come home with a bag of oranges or tomatoes for your work. It’s a great way to volunteer and sometimes, but not always, get cheap food.

  6. says

    I do very much agree with this post. I pick my own in the summer and grow a lot of my own stuff BUT I am no where close to self sufficient. we have a local farmers market however in the winter NOTHING is local. i’ve yet to meet someone that grows grapes in january in PA:) so why not buy it at aldi? non organic fruit is better than no fruit…in MY opinion. i bought strawberries at market last week. they were not tasty. the strawberries at aldi the week before? they were phenomenally good!

  7. says

    I agree, I would much rather be able to buy higher amounts of nonorganic (that phrase has always seemed weird to me…conventional?) produce than no produce at all. i sometimes use the savings to get organic produce. I think that the aldi’s around here however must not have a high enough produce turn over rate because the stuff i get sometimes turns before i have a chance to use it, even with checking it first.

  8. Rachel says

    Thanks for this! We have an Aldi opening in our city next month. I have been anxious to check it out anyway, but it’s a relief to read that the produce you get is high-quality and cheap. I know you buy a lot of local chicken and beef, but when you’ve bought meat from Aldi, how was the quality?

    • Kristen says

      I’ve never actually bought beef or chicken from Aldi! I do buy their fish and I’ve been happy with that.

  9. Diane says

    Completely agree! I love, love Aldi’s, not only for their produce but most other products, as well. I can go to Aldi’s with $50 and buy a substantial amount of dairy, produce, and pantry items and have had positive experiences with the quality there. I’ve been trying to convert my co-workers for some time now. I even gave them the “$100″ challenge – go there with $100 and see what you can buy! My boss has 2 teenage sons and she spends hundreds of dollars per week to feed them. She hasn’t taken me up on it yet…too bad! :)

  10. says

    Great post Kristin and I totally agree with you. I also second Annie….I seem to only buy avocados at Aldi too! I was in two different stores yesterday where they were priced at $2/each. Ouch! Aldi has become a new trend among all of my mommy friends as well.

  11. Ellen says

    Great making my mouth water! I have two aldi within 10 min of each other, I have yet to venture in… One of these days….

  12. HeatherS says

    I buy some produce at our Aldi but find that for some reason the veggies tend to be better than the fruits in our store. Some fruits are great but I have not have good experiences with the bananas (overripe too quickly) or the apples (always too soft no matter what time of year). I have bought some amazing pineapples there and such a great price for fresh pineapple! I’ve always been happy with all the veggies except for the onions which always seem to mold.

  13. Karen S. says

    Recipes, please–for the salad you photographed in this post, and the tomato (salsa) maybe…or whatever that is. Thanks!

    • Kristen says

      I don’t have a recipe for either! The salad was just a leftovers mix…spinach and yellow peppers from Aldi, dill cheese from Aldi, and leftover deli ham from Aldi.

      The salsa I made for some quesadillas…just chopped tomatoes, onions, jalapenos, and some salt. I’d have added cilantro if I had it on hand.

  14. Natalie says

    Great photos! Aldi’s is a great option for fresh produce, especially in the winter. I don’t shop there all the time, but when I do I am rarely disappointed.

  15. Molly says

    I’ve actually had great luck with our bananas. Yes, they come in plastic, but they’re 29 cents a pound, and I like bananas a LOT. I haven’t had many problems with them going brown too fast, but I’ll also happily eat them, yellow or brown or whatever in between. And there’s nothing wrong with lots of frozen bananas for baking. :-)
    I also get lots of carrots at our Aldi – they’re cheap and yummy and I eat them every day, too.
    Sometimes I wonder why I’m not orange…

  16. April says

    I had a marketing class in college and we learned about all of the store and generics and what not. When the store get there produce , the suppliers have them on a grading system. This is based on their reputation, bill paying, etc. Aldi’s is always the first in line before all of the big name stores!!! They get their produce from the same place as everyone else, only they basically get first choice!!!! So tell anyone that who argues that Aldi’s quality is bad!!!! On another note, more than 75% of their name products are brand names but with different labels. Campbels soup was an example that my professor used and I actually know a person who works at the libby plant and they confirmed this as well. There are sections of the plants that can the off brands and roll out labels such as value time, great value, etc!!!!

  17. Donna says

    I couldn’t agree more! I am a huge Aldi fan, and specifically go there for produce. My entire Aldi grocery bill the other night was what I would have had to spend at the grocery store on produce alone — and I ended up with 5 bags of groceries! I tend to go to Aldi for these things in particular: produce, dairy, school snacks (veggie chips are 1/2 the price of anywhere else), and some toiletries. I am a total convert (our store is relatively new) — and tend to give my “do you know about Aldi” speech to every guest we have over to our home.

  18. says

    We have an Aldi opening up here (Boston area) in June, and I’m so excited! I’ve never actually been to one, only heard stories from others.

  19. says

    Aldi is great but the Produce in their stores in upstate NY I’ve found to be abysmal. Yeah you can get bananas or carrots okay but I’ve never found a cucumber that wasn’t rotten or broccoli that wasn’t wilted. Their celery is hit or miss.

  20. Raye says

    We had an Aldi’s open in our town last year and I didn’t start going to it until I started reading this website. At first I just went in to compare prices after I just finished shopping at our major grocery store and I was floored as to how much cheaper Aldi’s prices were!

    I am now a convert to Aldi’s and make them my first stop when I grocery shop and have not been disappointed with any of their produce or private labels! I just went last night and got for .99/ea a fresh pineapple and a tube of strawberries! Yummy! :-)

    But I must warn everyone that when you get their sale paper in the mail that you need to get to the store fast and first because the sale stuff is gone fast (at least where I live)! I wanted a cantalope for .99/ea but when I got the store after work they were already gone so now I have to go to Wal-Mart and show them the Aldi’s flyer to get the cantalope for .99/ea. Boo!

    Anayone who has an Aldi’s close by and hasn’t tried it must do so. You won’t go wrong and have money left in your pocket!

  21. Ruth says

    My closest Aldi is not close enough for me to shop there regularly, but my MIL does, and she says the secret to finding good produce for her is to know which day the trucks come in and only shop for produce on that day. :)

  22. Kristel says

    The Aldi in our area sometimes has great produce and other times it just goes bad very quickly. Like this weekend I bought the peeled carrot bags for my son to take to school and when I opened the bag Monday morning they were all sticking together and smelled bad ( I know about the produce policy but I did not go back because it is about 25min for me to drive). I do have to say that I always see some kind of fruit or vegetable that are moldy or starting to rot. This weekend it was tomatoes. I never shop at Aldi Monday mornings because it seems to be worse after the weekend and Thursday seems to be the best day. We do love their pears and I have not yet had an issue with them.
    I shop Aldi about once a month for milk, coffee, olive oil, chocolates , baking goods and other things that I need and I do not have coupons for to buy the name brand in other stores (as this is usually cheaper).

  23. Jenessa says

    Beautiful pictures.
    I also agree with you about produce. While organic and local produce are both wonderful ideas, they are just not possible for a lot of people. I live in Nevada where it is very dificult to grow food, so our “local” produce comes from California, which is at least 400 miles from where I live. And organic just isn’t that popular where I live because of the expense, so there is a very limited selection of organic produce.

  24. Kristel says

    And I also have to say that when I went this weekend some prices had increased a lot. Milk was $0.50 higher (still $0.50 lower compared to Walmart), sugar $0.60 more to name a few.

    • says

      I hadn’t been in a while and recently returned and thought their blocks of cheese were about $0.50 more expensive! I couldn’t remember for sure what the old price used to be, but it sure seemed like it had increased dramatically. :P

    • Molly says

      Nope. It’s part of how they keep their prices so low. Plus most of their stuff is store brand, so there are no coupons for those.

  25. Vanessa says

    living in the midwest, i don’t find this to be true at our aldi’s, but those items do have to be put on trucks and shipped in from the coasts, which makes a difference. In KC, it’s a better bet to go to the farmer’s market or use the local/organic home service (like I do). i’m grateful for our local/organic delivery service in the same way you’re grateful for aldi. :)

    on another note, these photos are some of the most beautiful, mouth-watering shots i’ve seen in SOOOOOO long. now i need a snack!

    • Kristen says

      Thank you! I’ve been working on this post for weeks now…taking a picture of produce here and there until I had enough. :)

  26. Molly F. C. says

    Kristen, terrific photos w/text. Aldi’s doesn’t take coupons, as least as far as my experience goes. They don’t carry alot of name brand stuff anyway in which the coupons are usually good for. I buy alot of produce at Aldi’s and yep, sometimes there is some questionable stuff in the bins, but I pass those items by. I’ve had great luck with both fruits and vegetables. Love their cheese, particulary the sliced varieties. So much cheaper than the regular grocery store. Oh, and the return policy is fantastic. You get your money returned if you don’t like an item, and then you get to try a different item that costs the same amount. I returned the cheese puffs, ahem, counts as a dairy item, right? My cash was returned, and I chose a bag of regular potato chips to try. Potato chips are a treat in my house, it isn’t an everyday snack, so they get enjoyed when we partake of them. The Aldi’s regular potato chips are pretty tasty and so much cheaper than a national brand. My son is eating an Aldi’s Moo Tube as I write this, by the way…:)

  27. Jennifer says

    You have made me into an Aldi’s convert. Their produce always looks great and is minimally packaged. I actually really like the bananas at my Aldi’s. I only shop every 2 weeks and they often have very green bananas. So I get one bunch of almost ripe and one bunch of not even close to ripe and that gets us through the two weeks.

    I’ve recently decided to stop buying a lot of my meat from Aldi’s. All of their processed meat (like sliced deli meats and frozen ground meats in the tube) are disgusting. The past several times I’ve gotten their “fresh” ground beef, the fat has been NEON YELLOW! After seeing S2E1 of Jamie’s Food Revolution, I’m thinking that they add a lot of garbage to the ground meat. I’ll still get pork chops and other “whole” meats, but nothing processed.

  28. says

    Hi! I live in Portugal and I have an ALDI across the street. Most people say that ALDI’s food is no good, but I disagree. The fruit is always fresh, and so are the vegetables. They are delicious! What I don’t like are the detergents for clothes. Although it’s cheap, I don’t like the end result.

    I love your blog! Hugs :)

  29. Wanda(a different one) says

    I love Aldi’s and when I lived up in Pa I used to get my produce there in those winter months where it was too difficult to get out ot Shady Maple Farm Market to get my supply of produce. Since I moved to Florida I don’t use them as much for produce(other than banana’s and sometimes strawberries). I have only had a few pieces of produce go bad over the years and that wasn’t enough to stop me from using Aldi’s.

    I do not agree with buying all organic particularly when its marked usda certified organic. That “certification” is expensive and isn’t really “organic”. I prefer to simply buy local. It supports the farmer that may not have that “organic” label but is doing everything organic. I get to know the farmers I buy from this way I am under no delusion of a label.

    I agree with Jennifer about buying processed meats from Aldi’s. We are also stopping the practice after watching Jamie and Food,Inc again. I had fallen off the local meat wagon because of expense but well now back on it.

    Jenessa–I know what you mean,I lived in Nevada for awhile. I used to get my produce from a place called wild oats(its now defunct and a whole foods) and trader joe’s. I hear now they have a place called sunflower market there with really good produce deals.

    Oh yeah and as always I buy in season only. At the beginning of strawberry season I bought 2 flats of strawberries,washed,dried and cut them up and froze them.They lasted a good long while and I will soon be going to be a few more flats for the end of season to last until strawberry season next year. I do the same thing with blueberries.

    • wanda says

      Hi Wanda, nice to ‘meet’ another one of us!

      It is so very unfortunate that the ‘organic’ term has been usurped by industrial agriculture. I like those little farms out in the county that say not-organic-certified-but-using-organic-methods, but of course food in the produce aisle is never labeled that way. :)

  30. Jenny says

    No Aldi here. But I used to go with my mom inIllinois and she loved it–all the seniors did as they could stretch their fixed income. It was also the only store the Amish in the area would shop at, other than their own grocery. The Amish grocery was a great place for bulk products and their meat dept. was fabulous. My mom and her friends would make a day of it every couple of months and go to the Amish town for lunch, a visit to their fabric store and a grocery stop. All their grocery savings got eaten up at the fabric store, I’m sure!

  31. Linda says

    Hmm, you are inspiring me to check Aldi’s produce out again. The last time I was there, what they had was not great, and the big sale items were gone already. But, your pictures are gorgeous!! Maybe I hit it on a wrong day.

  32. says

    Couldn’t agree more! Your blog inspired me to start shopping Aldi last year, and my only regret now is that I didn’t do it long ago!
    As far as what’s best to eat, have to agree w/ William B (as usual, lol)…the whole food thing is very complicated, and all we can do is make choices from the best available resources we have.

  33. Linda H. says

    I’m a big fan of Aldi for a lot of things. However, maybe the produce differs by store or staff management because the produce in my Aldi is, sadly, not so good. I can occasionally buy peppers if I hit on a “fresh” day. I also have never had bad luck with baby carrots and apples. The rest, forget it. On average, most of the produce in my store is mushy, rotten looking, etc.

  34. says

    I shop at Aldi!! I’ve found the produce to be of good quality – at least as good or better than our local markets, and amazingly it is typically lower in price than local’s. Another bonus is the chocolate they stock. Now I just wish there was an Aldi localed closer than a three hour drive away, sigh. Any opportunity I have to be close to a store I take the time to get there.

  35. Maggi says

    Interestingly enough, I have been into both Aldi’s in my area and your assessment is correct – management is everything. The Aldi’s closest to home has less ‘iffy’ produce whereas the other one (albeit conveniently on my commute home from the city) seems to be not as ‘loved’.

    Still, bargains abound!

  36. Stef says

    Oh, 5 stars for Aldi! I loved the photos you shot here! It reminded me of a cartoonish layout! He he! I couldn’t wait to see the next shot! OH, it all looks so yummy! I have to agree that fresh produce is a plus then non at all. When Iused to live in CA, they would also let us pick the last of the red peppers after the harvest (there were too many to even gather!) and also we were given permission to pick fresh grapes (for free), right of the vine! MMMMMMMM! Now (living in IL), we just grow our tomatoes, parsley, and mint. We realy love tomatoes so my hubby won’t let me squeeze in any other plant, lol. I would like to plant some of those berry bushes you did from Aldi (I don’t think my hubby will mind to much) ;) I do also miss my peach tree we planted in CA. But anyhow, I am so thankful for Aldi!

  37. Kathy says

    Hi! One of the ways to think about getting the benefits of organics AND still be on a budget is to use the “Dirty Dozen” guide to fruits and veggies http://www.foodnews.org/walletguide.php created by the nonprofit Environmental Working Group. The group says that if consumers buy organic only on the “dirtiest” 12 varieties, they will cut down on pesticide consumption by 90 percent!!! That’s what many people are starting to do. We don’t have the budget to buy all organic, but by being frugal, are starting to zero in on a few organics. They also have a companion list of “cleanest” conventionally grown stuff. For ex.: no reason to waste money on organic avocadoes, according to the list.

    • Raye says

      Kathy, thanks for the info! I just with the the website you mentioned and they have an Iphone app for Free called the Dirty Dozen that I just downloaded. Very simple and nice to have on hand when you go grocery shopping.

  38. Sheila says

    Thank you for the lovely pictures of Aldi’s produce. I have not been to an Aldi’s store as yet, but I will check it out the next time I go grocery shopping. We do have an Aldi’s nearby.
    Thank you also for the pictures you posted in the miscellany post a couple of days ago. Would it be alright if I used one of the pictures (tulips beside a brick path) for my computer desktop wallpaper? You always have so many neat pictures and I enjoy your blog so much. Thanks.

    • Kristen says

      Certainly! I’m pretty lax about how my photos are used as long as someone isn’t trying to sell them or use them to earn money in some form and isn’t taking credit for them.

      So, wallpaper away! I’m not sure how great that photo will look on a large screen because it’s not a full-size image (I resize them before blogging so that they don’t take forever to load), but you can certainly give it a try.

  39. Barbe says

    Also, the Aldi’s I go to, sells beautiful big bunches of broccoli for .79 which is amazing! The only thing wrong is that you have to dispose of the plastic container and wrapper.

  40. Sarah says

    I LOVE shopping at the Aldi in my area! I have always found that the produce is amazing. I haven’t tried their grapefruits yet, but your picture inspired me to do so on my next shopping week! I always buy their bagged oranges for 1.59 a bag, because at the other store that I frequent, they are 5.99 a bag for the same amount! Crazy price difference! I buy all of our snacky type food there and our produce, for sure. I’m a couponer, so I do shop at another store, too. I cannot bring myself to pay full retail for anything anymore, when I can get such great deals by couponing and by shopping at Aldi! Love the blog, by the way!! I’m starting to come out of “lurk mode” on here! :-)

  41. Holly says

    I lovethis post! I drive by to Aldis on my way home from work and I have always wanted to try an Aldi ever since you mentioned it, sooo on my way home i stopped by and got lots of produce. It looked so nice. I love the store and the fact that you have to bring yor own bags so its great for recycling. Its also vey clean and AWESOME prices!!! Sooo glad I went in. Plus ur pics made me crave fruit!!!!

  42. says

    I’m a totally jealous that you have an Aldi’s to shop at. I live in the western half of the U.S., and do not have one in my area. I have to rely on Bountiful Baskets to get high quality produce cheaply. Bountiful Basket’s is a produce co op based out of Arizona. For a $15.00 weekly contribution, you get a laundry basket full of fruit and veggies (usually six fruits and six veggies). My baskets feeds our family of six all week long. We get quite a bit. Plus each week it’s a “surprise” to see what you get. It helps me keep my menu exciting! P.S. I am not affiliated to Bountiful Basket in anyway, I just love that I have a source to feed my family more produce economically. :D

    • says

      I live in the west and get a bountiful basket as well. I love that we get fresh, fairly local produce and build the community at the same time. I’m interested to know if readers in other regions have a produce co-op they can join.

      • says

        I’ve wondered that, too. Bountiful Baskets is now available in 12 states. It is slowly spreading. I know this week on face book they were encouraging people to open more sites in their areas, because there has been such a demand. I’ve met some wonderful people and swapped many recipes each week when I pick up my basket!

  43. Chelsea says

    Haha you just reminded me to email Aldi and suggest they open a store in my town. Your produce always looks so good – where I live in Queensland, Australia it’s a bit ridiculous because we have several farms around (eg a large percentage of Australia’s Bananas are grown 2hrs up the coast; two hours down the coast is a large vegetable farming area; most of the mangos are grown near here etc) yet our produce generally gets shipped to the capital city some 1200kms away before getting shipped back to our region. We really only have the choice of two supermarkets in my area – Coles & Woolworths and they are honestly as bad as eachother. Woolworths call themselves the ‘Fresh Food People’ but a bag of lettuce I bought there last week had a 5 day expiry on it but was already slimy when I brought it home and I had a similar experience with some tomatos. I’m not sure what Aldi’s produce is like in Australia but I do know that their prices on most grocery items are way cheaper than the Big 2 and I email them every couple of months to suggest they open a store here and am about due again :)

    • Chelsea says

      PS – I have just sown my own lettuce in a pot on my patio to try and get around the expensive price to pay for a wilted bag in Woolies so fingers crossed that works out well :)

  44. Pamela says

    I absolutely love Aldi! I started shopping at Aldi in 1993, and I remember of many people looking down on anyone that would shop there. Now where I live, it’s “in style” to shop there. The store that I go to does a large volume of business so we always have beautiful, fresh produce. I don’t buy a lot of boxed and prepared foods — just stick to the basics like cheese, milk, eggs, etc. Be aware that Aldi’s sour cream, half and half, dips, etc. have a lot of extra additives in them. Sour cream does not need a list of 10 ingredients…it should only have two or three (like Daisy Sour Cream), same for half and half. Be a label reader because many of their Fit and Active foods are not very healthy. But these products are no different then the ones sold at other grocery stores. I have stood in line at Jewel (which is right across the street from Aldi) and watched people in the check-out line buy produce, etc. that I just purchased at Aldi and they spent 2 to 3 times more for the same food. Overall, Aldi is a great place to shop and save lots of money! By the way, love the pics!

  45. Jan says

    Hi! You probably already know this, but I recently read that if you separate bananas at the stem into individual bananas when you first buy them, they will ripen more slowly.

    Your blog is great! I have turned around our shopping, cooking and wasting habits in just four weeks, and I thank you.

  46. Margaret says

    My biggest problem with Aldi is that they shrink wrap so much of their produce. The heat from the shrink wrap process damages produce such as the peepers. I end up with so much waste that it is cheaper to buy elsewhere. I only buy fruits and vegetables that I can examine from all sides from Aldi.

  47. RB says

    That is my biggest issue with ALDI. EVERYTHING is packaged in plastic. Yes its cheap, but what is it doing to our environment. I use ALDI for somethings, but trend to a large, locally owned store nearby which sells almost all its produce open from large bins, so I can use my cloth bags and skip the plastic. And the cost is just pennies more than ALDI.

    I do pick up things at ALDI not in plastic though, like melons last week were $1 each, I grabbed 3.

  48. says

    I am one of those who has run into issues with produce purchased at Aldi. I will give it another go though and pay more attention to the quality before I put it in my cart this time. However, I believe my store falls into the category of smaller and less effective than many others around the country. (I have to drive almost an hour to get to it too! Yikes.)

  49. Magda Flechner says

    For me, ALDI is just great. They have so many products gluten free, and their prices are excellent. It is a very good place to go and get fresh food, gluten free products, dairy, and many other things. To buy at ALDI is also very good for your budget.

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