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Retail experts surveyed more than 62 national grocery chains—these 7 are the most affordable.
These Are the Cheapest Grocery Stores in America
The 8 Cheapest Stores In America, According to This Survey
In 2018, the grocery industry expanded into areas American shoppers never thought it would—services like Whole Foods' 2-hour home delivery, Target's in-store delivery team, Kroger's decision to launch a fleet of driverless cars, and the rise of plant-based foods at nearly every major retailer (like Target, for example). But one of the most important aspects for consumers has remained the same—shoppers still care how much money can they save while buying groceries.
The team of retail experts at Consumer Reports conduct a survey every year to determine how much shoppers are spending at more than 60 recognizable chain supermarkets across the nation. They ask 50,000 shoppers about their spending habits at each grocery store—and compare prices of grocery staples at each chain, too.
Consumer Reports shared their ranking of the top eight supermarkets that scored best for affordability: While these supermarkets outperformed others by slashing prices, the following list is ranked alphabetically.
Without further ado, these are the cheapest grocery stores in America:
Courtesy of Fareway / Facebook.
This is a smaller regional chain with locations in Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota, Nebraska, and South Dakota—but their reputation for low prices has earned Fareway serious street credit with retail experts around the nation. One of the chain's most celebrated deals? Three 24-packs of soda or other carbonated beverages for under $11. For more information about this regional chain, click here.
4) Market Basket
Courtesy of Market Basket / Facebook.
If you've ever visited the beaches along the beautiful coast of Massachusetts, New Hampshire, or Maine, there's a good chance you've made a pit stop in Market Basket. This Northeastern chain is beloved by New Englanders for low prices and rows of self-checkout lanes—many locals compare Market Basket to Publix, a Southeastern regional chain that’s known for its BOGO deals and unique deli services.
Courtesy of WinCo. / Facebook.
Anyone who has ever shopped at WinCo., a warehouse-like chain clustered along the West coast and into the Midwest, will tell you that they often sell their items in bulk, which is why their prices are so shockingly low. Like other chains on this list, WinCo's stores aren't exactly modern beauties; they're designed to house groceries effectively, and staff is limited, so you'll have to bag your own groceries.
Courtesy of Woodman's Market / Facebook.
Another warehouse-style supermarket, Woodman's can be found in Illinois and Wisconsin and sells items in bulk—but shoppers don't need a membership. Woodman's is able to offer some of the lowest prices in the Upper Lakes region by accepting cash only: Woodman's saves on banking fees, which in turn creates additional savings for customers.
Bonus Mention: Military Commissaries
Photo: Getty Images / Joos Mind
Did you know that the federal government actually operates a chain of larger convenience stores for some of its employees? Survey respondents said that shoppers with a valid Department of Defense ID cards can pay rock-bottom prices for more than 38,000 items sold in these stores, and prices are said to remain steady (no flash sales!) throughout the entire year.