Groceries: Publix, Winn-Dixie

Publix and Winn-Dixie are the two grocery stores closest to my home (although this is relative, I am lucky enough to have many grocery stores nearby and at my disposal) and I decided to just stick to them this week since I didn’t have a ton of money left in my budget. Of course, I didn’t make that decision until I was already at Publix. Which made it seem less like a plan and more like an impulse as you will see. I tally everything at the very end, but the spoiler is — I went over for groceries this month. Sigh.

As a reminder, we are a household of two adults, no children. My grocery budget does include toiletries and similar household items, but not pet supplies, which have their own budget. My goal is to stay at or under (preferably under) $400, and I like to shoot for an average of $60/week at “regular” grocery stores so I have  a decent amount to spend at a monthly or so stock up when I visit BJs (warehouse store). This number feels pretty generous to me and I am more motivated to cook at home when there is a little more wiggle room in my budget. When I tried to keep a much tighter grocery budget, we ended up eating out a lot and that was just frustrating to me. I’m posting all this because I love to read and/or watch grocery hauls from others and I am sometimes guilty of the comparison game, where I never end out on top. But everyone has different needs and resources and, in the end, this is what works for us!:)

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Publix, 6/26/16

  • Spinach, 1lb @$3.49
  • Gala apples, 3lbs @ $4.99
  • Fingerling potatoes, 3lbs @ $4.29 (BOGO)
  • Onions, 1.37lbs @ $.99/lb
  • Bing cherries, 2.16lbs @ $2.99/lb
  • Nestle Outshine bars, 2 boxes $2.99/2 (BOGO + coupons)

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Publix, 6/26/16 (continued)

  • Hebrew National hotdogs, $6.29
  • Bananas, 2.37lbs @ $2.99/lb .59/lb (oops, good catch Nathalie!) 
  • Daisy sour cream, 1lb @ $2.00
  • Noosa yogurt, 2 8oz containers $.79/2 (BOGO + coupons)
  • 1% milk, half gallon @ $2.50
  • Friendship cottage cheese, 24oz @ $2.79 (coupon)

Total: $42.28

So. I had a plan for this trip and it got a bit derailed. I actually visited Winn-Dixie first. Which is only important because I while I picked up a couple of peaches there, I was really disappointed in how hard they were. When I saw these tree-ripened peaches looking so good at Publix I couldn’t resist picking up a couple for comparison. They were amazing. The peaches from WD weren’t actually too too bad. But these peaches. Were so good. Anyway. My plan had been to pick up the onions, yogurt, milk, cottage cheese, hot dogs, potatoes, bananas and maybe the outshine bars. I had a coupon  for Marzetti dips and I thought they might be on sale because they had been listed as an unadvertized sale on the I ❤ Publix blog. But those can be regional or store specific and those dips weren’t on sale in my store. However. I decided that I really wanted dip. So then I was on a quest to get sour cream. I picked up the Daisy brand even though it was not the cheapest because the last time I purchased the Publix brand sour cream…it seemed weird. Or maybe it went bad quickly? I don’t remember, but I prefer not to buy it. Usually I am all about the Publix brands, too, so that sucks. The apples, cherries and spinach were all purchased because I decided not to go anywhere else and I got a little panicky about us having enough fresh fruit in the house. Also the cherries looked amazing. They are one of my favorite fruits and I find them hard to resist. This bag is pretty much perfectly ripe, too, so that is nice. And the spinach is about the same price as the bag from BJs. Hmm…I just did the math and the bag from BJs is $.19/oz and the bag from Publix is $.22/oz. So BJs is the cheapest but the Publix price is actually a tiny bit lower than Winn-Dixie and Aldi. That is good to know. Some of my purchases will be uploaded to various savings apps I have and which I have decided to try using again. I’m a little annoyed with myself because my total before coupons was close to $50 and I have a five dollars off of $50 coupon but didn’t bring it along because I rarely get anywhere close to that amount. Still. I could have picked up some bread I’ve been wanting to try and actually spent less than my current total  since I had a coupon for that, too.

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Winn-Dixie, 6/26/16

  • Chuck roast, 2.15lbs @ $3.99/lb
  • Peaches, .67lb @ $1/lb
  • Ramen noodles, 6 pack @ $1.00
  • Lindsay green olives, 2 jars @ $1.19 (BOGO + coupon), not pictured

Total: $11.59

I had no problem sticking to my list in Winn-Dixie since I hadn’t made the decision to not shop anywhere else yet and tricked myself into a weird sense of produce scarcity. Summer is not necessarily the time for a pot roast, but I have really been craving beef lately (and greens — probably my iron is low) and pot roast is a favorite. Ramen noodles for quick meals with tofu and edamame and spinach when we don’t feel like cooking. I also like to make that Asian inspired coleslaw that uses ramen noodles every so often. And the peaches. Not the best, not the worst.

Weekly Total: $53.87

Monthly Total: $470.09

This is higher than I thought it would be last week because I forgot that I had ordered whey protein for Michael from Amazon at the beginning of the month. It’s expensive but a big 5lb container lasts about 6 months. This means I have $329.29 for July. In theory not hard — I’ve been below $400 most months, actually. And despite eating a lot of meat and fish from our pantry and freezer, we’ve still got plenty of food on hand. But I’ve really been feeling the push to increase the amount of fresh fruits and vegetables that we eat and pay closer attention to the overall healthfulness of what we eat/buy. There is plenty of wiggle room in our budget, but I can see from this month that getting complacent leads to a lot of “want” purchases and impulse buys. So I’ll need to check that for July.

Also, after that little ode to eating and buying healthy food, you may be amused to learn that my first grocery purchase for July will include a great deal of diet soda. And more coffee. Ha. 😉


4 thoughts on “Groceries: Publix, Winn-Dixie

  1. Is the $2.99/lb for banana at Publix correct?! That seems very high for bananas, even if they were organic bananas, no?

    Also, did you ask Customer Service to ring the Marzetti dip to see if it was on BOGO or not? Several times IHeartPublix had unadvertised BOGOs posted on their Happy Report post but my store didn’t have the signage. However, the items were indeed on BOGO when I asked for a price check.

    Lastly, I would go back to Publix Customer Service with the $5 coupon and my receipt. Chances are they will refund you the $5. I’ve done that before, albeit not with a large coupon like that. But it’d be obvious from the receipt that you hadn’t already redeemed it so I don’t think you would have a problem.

    I had wanted the peaches from Winn Dixie too but never went to get them. It’s always hit and miss with peaches, isn’t it? And sometimes hard peaches will ripen nicely and they’ll be delicious but other times they’ll look fine but be all brown when you bite into them. I haven’t bought any peaches yet this year but I might need to splurge at Publix now that I got my free $100 gc, lol. And also Publix will refund your fruit purchase if you didn’t like it. Aldi prices theirs by the piece, which annoys me because I can never tell if it’s a better deal than the $0.99/lb or not. They don’t have a scale at Aldi and I’m bad as estimating weight. Maybe I should bring my luggage scale? I do carry spare recycled produce bags in my coupon organizer, I’d have to put one in my purse…(sorry, just talking to myself here…(

    You didn’t do too bad this month, especially since you made such delicious meals with all your ingredients! And if you stocked up on protein powder that will last 6 months, maybe you can cost-average the powder over the next 6 months and just deduct 1/6th of the cost from your monthly budget in advance?

    1. Good catch on the bananas, they were NOT $2.99/lb. $.59/lb is more like it. I have gone back to Publix and used my coupon (even the $5 one) after the fact if I’ve forgotten it, but this time I didn’t actually get to $50 — just close enough to be annoyed. If I’d brought the coupon I would have made sure I’d gotten to $50 and then the combined discounts would have taken me down to about $40. It’s all just a reminder to myself to not shop hungry, on impulse and without a plan (or to change plans). I’ve never thought to price check something like an unadvertised BOGO. I’ll remember that for next time.

      Peaches can be hit or miss. Last year I ended up getting two bushels from our wholesale market and the first box was amazing but the second one was only ok. Or possibly we had tired of peaches! Yeah, I don’t care for the by item fruit pricing. Although — the two peaches I bought at WD were pretty average in size and weighed in at .67lb. At $l/lb that made each peach about 34 cents. So 29 cent peaches are probably a pretty good deal.

      It’s easier for me to just deduct the cost of the whole container from the month of purchase budget as I just get confused the other way. But it does even out over time. Although actually this has me pondering how I think about our budget, actually…hmmmm…

  2. I am like you and have many grocery stores right around me so I shop every week, cherry picking 4 different stores. I get the best bang out of my food buck that way.

    1. Yes, for me visiting a number of stores is the best way to feel like I’m spending my money wisely. And I do like to shop every week, for a number of reasons but I never worry that we’ll run out of food if for some reason I haven’t been able to get to the store. 🙂

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