Is ALDI Cheaper than Walmart? 2019 ALDI vs Walmart price comparison
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Back in May of 2017 I did a price snapshot comparison between my local ALDI and Walmart stores, where I compared the prices of a number of equivalent items at the two stores in the same town on the same day. I thought it might be interesting to repeat this experiment in 2019 to see if ALDI is still cheaper than Walmart. So, I again visited the same two stores on May 10, 2019 — to collect updated prices and see what might have changed over the past two years.
- If, after reading this, anyone wants to try (or loves) Walmart grocery pickup, here’s a $10 off $50 code that is currently working for new AND returning customers as of 5/14/19: LA9ARAAC
- Then of course to be fair, for those of you who want to try out ALDI grocery delivery through Instacart, check out my review.
Read on to see some handy ALDI vs. Walmart price comparison charts I put together for you showing the pricing on a number of common grocery items, plus some observations on how things have changed over the last couple of years. The cheaper of the two prices on each item is highlighted in yellow.
Which is cheaper: ALDI or Walmart?
Here’s my methodology, such as it is. Just as I did when first comparing ALDI and Walmart pricing in 2017:
- I only checked food items.
- I compared store brand to store brand whenever possible.
- I compared identical sized items whenever possible. When not possible, I’ve provided per pound or per ounce equivalents in the charts below.
Note: I live in the Chicago area, so prices at both Walmart and ALDI are often higher here than in many other parts of the country. Pricing at both stores is regional (and can even vary on some items at two ALDI stores within a few miles of each other), so you might see different prices at your own local stores than I did here.
Also note: Since this is a single day snapshot, pricing on items in the produce and dairy departmentsmight change up even the next day. Lastly, since you can use coupons at Walmart but not at ALDI, that can sometimes knock the price of name brand items down to a more competitive level than if you were to simply buy store brand products without a coupon.
ALDI remains cheaper than Walmart in every category, but…
Prices have gone up on many items over the last couple of years — and in many cases have increased much more at ALDI than at Walmart. (In some categories, the average prices at Walmart actually decreased since 2017.) While ALDI again came out overall cheaper than Walmart in my 2019 price comparisons, on many items the price differential between the two stores is now much smaller than it was in 2017.
ALDI is slightly cheaper than Walmart: On Baking Items
Walmart seems to have worked hard on closing the gap between their prices and ALDI prices on many baking items over the last two years.
Baking item prices at ALDI (on the specific list of items I also checked two years ago) went up an average of 15% between 2017 and 2019, while the prices on the exact same baking items at Walmart actually went down 4%.
In 2017 it would have cost 25% more to buy one of each baking item I checked at Walmart than at ALDI; in 2019 it would cost just 3% more to buy the items at Walmart.
As far as pricing on the new products I checked this year, though, vanilla is the clear winner at ALDI — at almost $2 cheaper for the same 2 oz bottle there than at Walmart.
ALDI is slightly cheaper than Walmart: On Dairy Items
Dairy prices in my area of the country can fluctuate like crazy. In this one day snapshot, however, most went up only slightly from their 2017 levels without the same sort of large jump I saw in the price of baking supplies. In most cases, however, ALDI prices again went up while Walmart prices stayed fairly steady, or even in some cases decreased. For instance, Great Value 32 oz plain Greek yogurt was priced at $3.78 in 2017 but at just $3.47 in 2019, while ALDI’s Friendly Farms plain Greek yogurt went from $3.49 to $3.69 over the same time period.
Overall, Walmart closed the gap a bit on dairy pricing, and on some products the 2019 price differential between the two stores was fairly negligible (single yogurt cups were a penny more at Walmart, for example, while gallons of whole milk were also only a penny over ALDI pricing and half gallons of lactose free milk cost just five cents more). There was a bigger price gap in ALDI’s favor, though, on products like sour cream and cheese.
Organic milk ran a whopping 25% at ALDI over the $2.95 it was in my 2017 snapshot pricing, making Walmart’s Great Value brand the winner this year.
Walmart is slightly more expensive than ALDI: On Frozen Food Items
Frozen food pricing didn’t budge much over these two years, while ice cream tubs and frozen pizzas actually got cheaper at both stores.
I didn’t check a lot of frozen food prices, but both stores also added a number of new items, such as the recently popular lower calorie high protein ice cream.
Snack Food Prices have Skyrocketed at ALDI: Now, Very Close to Walmart Prices
I only checked pricing on a few snack food items back in 2017, but the prices on those same products jumped an average of 53% at ALDI between 2017 and 2019 – while only increasing an average of 2% at Walmart. Tortilla chips, for instance, jumped from $1.29 to $1.69 at ALDI, but Walmart’s $1.98 price remained steady. Saltines were priced at just $.89 at my ALDI store in 2017 — but were all the way up to $1.59 in 2019, while the Walmart price stayed consistent at $1.98. Woven wheat crackers went up $.20 at ALDI, to $1.89, but remained the same $1.78 price at Walmart.
While ALDI still came out cheaper overall, Walmart closed the gap quite a bit: In 2017 it would have cost $6.95 to buy one of each of the six snack items I checked prices on at ALDI, and $11.14 to buy one of each of the same snack items at Walmart. In 2019, the ALDI total for those same six items skyrocketed to $10.60, while the Walmart total only went up $.20, to $11.34.
The Price of Pantry Staples is up at ALDI: But still Cheaper Than Walmart
Prices on several store brand pantry staples at this particular Walmart store actually decreased over the last couple of years. Boxed broth went from $1.86 to $1.44, a 30 oz jar of mayo dropped from $2.98 to $2.48, and 24 oz salsa went from $2.48 down to $1.98. While pricing on most pantry staples at ALDI rose only slightly, rice went up significantly (from $1.29 to $1.99 per 3 lb bag), and pasta is now the same price per 12 oz box that they used to charge for a 16 oz box.
Also worthy of note: In some cases, the price increases on ALDI pantry items have put them within a few cents of their Walmart equivalent. In 2017, for instance, canned diced tomatoes with green chilies ran $.45 at ALDI and $.68 at Walmart. In 2019, they stayed that same $.68 price at Walmart but went up to $.65 at ALDI — turning that $.23 difference into just a $.03 difference. Canned beans that used to run $.55-$.59 at ALDI went up to $.69 in 2019, but remained $.72 at Walmart – bringing a $.15-$.19 price differential down to, again, just $.03.
While ALDI still came out cheaper overall, Walmart again closed the gap significantly when it comes to pantry staples. Walmart also came out ahead on some of the new items I checked in 2019: Sandwich bread, mustard, and old fashioned oats.
Meat Prices are Holding Steady — You’ll Still Save More at ALDI than at Walmart
Meat prices didn’t move around as much between 2017 and 2019, although the cost of beef did go up at both stores. In 2019, ALDI was still the clear winner on everyday meat prices, but with less of a price differential on chicken than on beef and pork products.
Produce Prices are Remarkably Steady — ALDI is Still Cheaper than Walmart
Produce prices are always variable, but as a group the fruit & vegetable prices at both Walmart and ALDI have remained fairly steady over the last couple of years, rising less than 1% on average overall. That’s pretty impressive, actually!
When deciding which store to shop at, though: ALDI remained cheaper on most items. Although some prices were fairly close (bananas, cilantro), others were far enough apart to make a larger impact on your bottom line.
The bottom line on my 2019 ALDI vs Walmart price comparison
Since Walmart has gotten rid of price matching and Savings Catcher, it has become more important than ever to look at everyday prices. The fact that the highest price increases were among packaged goods rather than produce, meat, or dairy is also good news for those of us cooking most of our meals at home.
For an easy-to-read snapshot of prices:
- Download the 2019 ALDI vs. Walmart price comparison charts as a single PDF.
- Download the 2017 ALDI vs Walmart price comparison charts as a single PDF.
Of course, straight up prices are also an entirely different question than the topics of product quality, product availability, customer service, and overall shopping experience. I’ll leave all of that as an exercise for you all at home. 🙂
How do your ALDI and Walmart prices compare?
I would love to hear from some of you who shop at both ALDI and Walmart in different areas: Do you find this pattern to be true at your stores? Is your ALDI cheaper than your Walmart, or do you find prices at your Walmart to be better than those I found at mine? Have you also seen prices at your ALDI increase over the last couple of years?
What have other folks found?
Here are a couple of other interesting recent articles on Walmart vs ALDI:
- For an interesting snapshot on how prices compare across the country, look at this Clark Howard ALDI-Kroger-Walmart price comparison chart from Atlanta, GA stores in February 2019. (Living in Chicago, I’m kind of jealous of some of these prices!)
- Check out this May 2019 CNN report on Walmart vs ALDI, including how Walmart’s prices have lowered to try to keep up.
What do your shopping experiences tell you?