Guest Post- Winco vs. Walmart Spice Price

04/21/2010 9:00 am · 1 comment

by Sarah A Thrifty Mom

Thanks to Utah Deal Diva for passing this great info along.

After the holidays, I took a trip to Winco to do my weekly grocery trip and browsed the bulk food section. If you’ve never wandered around that section before, I highly recommend it- the sheer variety is offers is incredible! Several different types of flours, pastas, and of course, all the spices. I took the opportunity to scoop a little of a couple different types of spices into the baggies provided and when it came time to check out, I was shocked at how inexpensive it was!

I came home and dumped the spices into my then-empty jars. I refilled my jar of cumin. For only .22. Not even a quarter! That got me wondering just how the bulk spice prices compared to other stores with relatively low cost spices, like Walmart. I knew they’d be lower of course as when we purchase the item at a regular grocery store, we’re paying for the packaging as well. However, what I wasn’t prepared for was exactly how much lower

I compared 40 spices in the Winco bulk foods section to Walmart’s lowest priced item and Winco was an average of 56% less!

The top five most overpriced items at Walmart were: bay leaves {98% less at Winco}, cinnamon sticks {98% less at Winco}, chives {98% less at Winco}, rosemary {97% less at Winco} and basil {95% less at Winco.}
Of the 40 items I compared, 18 of the spices {nearly half} were at least 70% less expensive when you purchased them in the Winco bulk foods section. Ten of the spices were at least 90% cheaper!

Here is a chart showing several common spices and their cost differences: {click chart to enlarge}

When looking at this chart, remember that the items from Walmart came in bottles or jars of varying weights. Winco’s items were all priced per 16 oz, which is a pound.

 

Now, it’s safe to say that a majority of spices are less expensive at Winco. However, that wasn’t the case with all forty! There were 4 spices that were actually cheaper at Walmart, them being: lemon pepper {70% cheaper at Walmart}, onion powder {8% cheaper at Walmart}, garlic salt {3% cheaper at Walmart}, and chili powder {2% cheaper at Walmart.} There were also very minimal differences in regular salt and baking soda.
I’m so glad I compared the costs! As someone who cooks frequently, I go through some spices fairly quickly and it’s nice to know I have a low-cost alternative to paying full price at the grocery store. Next time you run out of a certain spice, save the bottle and stop by the bulk foods section at Winco and pay the quarter to refill your spice jar- it’s worth it!
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