Sam's Club can be a bit . . . overwhelming to shop. The first time you push that giant cart through the door, you might wonder where on earth to begin.
And more importantly is everything at Sam's really a good deal?
The bulk sizes tend to mess with our math (and our minds ~ the temptation to buy big is real!) so it's so important to go in with a plan in place.
In case you don't know how much you're spending for certain items, make sure to learn what the best price is on basic food pantry staples, so you never overpay just because you don't know what a good price even is.
On a recent trip though I was reminded of several items that are worth the cost of having a Sam's Club membership (especially when you can get a discounted membership like you can right now.)
So here are 18 things you NEED to buy at Sam's Club when you shop . . .
Sam's Club has great prices (most of the time!) on meat. Snag a rotisserie chicken for $4.98 (which has a ton of meat and is well worth the price, just like Costco.) They also regularly carry boneless, skinless chicken breast for $1.99 per lb, and extra lean ground beef for $3.18/lb which is a pretty reasonable price right now.
Produce prices are really good at Sam's Club for the most part – a big 8lb bag of Sunkist Navel Oranges are just $6.98 this week, bananas are 44¢/lb, (the same price as Aldi), the Fuji Apples 6lb Bag is $7.98, and Seedless Grapes are $2.99/lb.
**However, the important thing to remember is how much your family will actually eat – if half the bag of apples goes bad before you get to them, it's not a good deal after all!
My latest trip I was buying for a get-together and I was reminded how many AWESOME deals Sam's has on big bulk bags of chips and snacks.
Especially these Stacy's Pita Chips – only $5.96 for a 28 oz Bag is CRAZY cheap compared to the regular Target price of $3 for a 7.8 oz bag.
And folks – they had a bag of Skinny Pop that was half as tall as I am for only $2.87!
4. Kids' Snacks
From Goldfish to Granola Bars – there are great deals allll the way down this aisle of Sam's Club. For instance, these Mott's Medleys are $7.73 for 90 pouches (like 9 regular boxes). That's like paying 85¢ per box, and a 4 lb box of Pepperidge Farm Goldfish is only $7.87 this month!
(To compare, Kroger has Goldfish on sale this week for $.99 per 6.6 oz or 15¢ per ounce. The sale price this month at Sam's Club breaks down to 11¢ per ounce, so definitely a great time to stock up!)
5. Juice Boxes
Both juice boxes and those little individual size juices bottles for the kids to take to school are much better deals at Sam's Club than anywhere else. Normally a 10-ct box of Capri Suns is $2.50 – but Sam's has a 40-pk for $5.58 right now.
Sams has TWO 18-ct eggs for $3.71 – that breaks down to $1.23 a dozen and lower than most grocery stores.
7. B.A.C.O.N. 🙂
Bacon can be SO expensive normally – so if it's something you cook up every weekend, you'll want to grab a big 4lb pack at Sam's Club!
8. Laundry Detergent
If you like Tide or Gain – heading to Sam's for a GIANT bottle might just save you some moo-lah.
A huge 225 oz bottle will run you $19.29 – whereas Walmart sells the 150 oz bottle for $18.87. Granted – this is taking into account the instant savings coupon from this month's booklet – but I've noticed that there is a Tide coupon in almost EVERY month's booklet!
9. Bath Tissue
Sams Club bath tissue is good bath tissue – it might not be Charmin, but it's pretty darn good. And it's almost ALWAYS one of the deals in the Instant Savings booklet that comes out monthly. (Like an instant coupon) This pack contains 45 MEGA rolls (about the same as 4 regular rolls) for $18.48.
So that's like getting 180 regular size rolls, at a cost of about 10¢ per roll!
Where I live (and this varies a lot) a gallon of milk is at least $1 higher anywhere else – but Sam's Club always has it priced low! Don't forget to watch Aldi too though for great milk prices ~ it's only $1.69 at my local store.
A 10 lb bag of sugar is just $4.47. Compare that to $2.50 – $3.50 for a 4 lb bag anywhere else, and it makes sense to buy this size and portion it into a big canister or ziploc bags!
Save BIG on diapers at Sam's Club when you buy these bulk size boxes. For example, this 140 ct Huggies Little Movers Size 5 is $33.98 right now. Walmart has the 132 count priced at a full $10 higher!
HINT: Want to get the very best deal though? ALWAYS check Amazon on diapers ~ they're actually just 20¢ per diaper over there when you clip the 20% off coupon and subscribe and save, so always do the math to make sure you're getting the very best deal.
Having a cookout or get-together where you'll need plenty of condiments for everyone? While you may be able to occasionally purchase condiments like ketchup, mustard, salsa, salad dressing and the like at just pennies during a BOGO sale with coupons – on a normal day you'll likely less per ounce buying them at Sam's Club.
For example, the 16 oz bottle of Pace Salsa will normally run you $2 – $3. At Sam's Club you can get nearly 5 TIMES that amount for only 4.98. That's a HUGE discount!
14. Fries & Tater Tots
The big bags of fries, tater tots and the like are a good grab at Sam's – this 8 lb bag of Ore-Ida tater tots is just $4.98!
15. Baking Supplies
Chocolate chips, vanilla cxtract, flour and more are always a low price at Sam's. For instance, a 60 oz box of Bisquick is $4.50 at Walmart – so this 96 oz box is a steal at $5.48! (A great item to keep in the pantry for all sorts of recipes.)
16. Peanut Butter & Jelly
A 16 oz jar of Jif will run you around $2.50 at Walmart or Target. At Sam's you can buy this 48 oz Jif 2-Pack for only $9.28 – that's equivalent to 6 normal sized jars, and brings the cost to just $1.54 per jar!
Sam's Club has some nice deals on clothing – and while not all of them are great buys, you can usually find some unexpectedly good deals on basics. I recently picked up Champion athletic shorts in a very popular style for under $5.98, and adult-sized Reebok athletic shorts for just $12. Keep your eyes peeled for clearance clothing as a season ends!
18. Seasonal Items
Now I will say that not everything is a good deal in the seasonal section. Many things you can get on Amazon or other stores for a better price if you wait for a sale. But there are a few good buys in every seasonal display – whether it be a nice big cooler bag in the summertime, or lawn tools in the Fall – just remember to give it a look!
And a few things NOT worth buying at Sam's Club…
“Fun” Office Supplies
While bulk staples, paperclips and the like ARE a good deal – the more exciting items like Sharpies and Gel Pens and Dry Erase Markers are MORE expensive than Amazon!
I've found that I can almost always get soda at the drugstore for less. I aim for $2.50 per 12pk, and Sam's (even WITH the Instant Savings Coupon this month) still came out to around $3 per 12pk.
You would assume that a 50ct box of Frito-Lay Chips would probably be an awesome deal at Sams. You would be wrong! Amazon consistently has the same price on this item – crazy!
Lots of things in electronics…
I did price checks on these video games for instance – and the LEGO Star Wars Game is $15 cheaper on Amazon!
I'm sure there are others I'm just not remembering at the moment – so I hope you'll comment with your favorite items to buy (or not buy!) as well 🙂
Disclaimer: We are all different, and what I think is a decent price may be very different than what you think it is. These are just some guidelines to get you thinking about it, and I was surprised by what I found!
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