It's not quite the middle of May but already the stores are thinking about the Class of 2010 and offering up ways to make the celebration easier and more reasonable.
At Raley's the enticement is a free half-sheet graduation cake when you purchase 2 or more deli trays for $19.99 each. That's pretty easy to do when you are having a group of hungry teen-agers over the house. They also have balloon bouquets for $4.99 and fresh orchil leis for $19.99.
At Safeway, it's "twice the cake" in their bakery. Buy a half-sheet cake for the price of a quarter-sheet - $21.99.
Here's what we like this week:
Raley's has boneless, skinless chicken breasts for $1.87lb; and cross rib steak or roast for $1.97lb. Pork spareribs are $1.99lb and fresh red snapper or Dover sole fillets for $3.99lb.
Large artichokes are 87 cents each. Fresh Express salads are $1.47 a bag and white corn on the cob is 2/$1; Cucumbers are 69-cents each; oranges are 79 cents a pound and blackberries are 2/$4.
There are lots of buy this, get that deals this week. 2-liter Cokes are 99 cents when you buy two. Get a dozen eggs free when you buy 2 Jimmy Dean Skillets. Buy 6 General Mills items ( Cheerios, Fruit Snacks, Yoplait yogurt and Trix) and get a free movie ticket voucher. Get free bleach when you buy any 2 Clorox clean-up items and spend $25 or more on Nestle items - everything from Buitoni pasta to Juicy Juice - and get a voucher for $10 off your next visit.
Raley's large eggs are 99-cents a dozen; Yo crunch yogurt is 59-cents a carton; and Aunt Jemima waffles are 2/$3. Arizona ice tea in the 23 oz can is 4/$3.
Over at Safeway, the "weekend only" deals are pork back ribs for $2.69lb; and 8-pack of Yoplait for $3.29; Breyers ice cream 2/$5 and Fritos or Cheetos for $1.29 a bag.
The "everyday" sales include boneless cross rib roast for $1.99lb; Foster Farms whole chickens for 79-cents a pound and fresh snapper fillets for $3.99lb. Rice-a-Roni is $1 a box and StarKist solid white tuna is $1 a can. Lucerne eggs are BOGO in the 18-pack; Hormel lunchmeat, bacon, entrees and Lloyds ribs are BOGO, too.
Here's a great pasta deal: Buy two jars of Classico sauce (2/$4) and get 2 free boxes of Safeway pasta. If you want to add a little sausage, Hillshire Farm smoked sausage or bratwurst is 2/$5.
Other stuff we like: S&W beans for 79-cents a can; SoBe drinks for 69-cents each; Star Olive Oil for $4.99 and Uncle Ben's Ready Rice 2/$4. In produce, broccoli is 99-cents a pound; tomatoes on the vine are 97-cents a pound; an 8-lb bag of oranges is $4.99 and California cherries are $3.99lb.
In couponland, there's Kraft singles for $1.99; a 4-pack of Dannon Activa for $1.99 and ice cream cups for 49-cents.
At Save Mart, you can get the party started with petite sirloin steaks for $2.97lb; extra large artichokes for 97-cents each and tomatoes on the vine for 77-cents a pound. Bohemian Hearth bread is $1.79 a loaf. Dole juices are 2/$4. In the Butcher's block, boneless pork chops are $1.99lb and fresh snapper or Dover sole is $3.99lb.
Eggs are $1.89 for an 18-pack; Mission tortilla chips are 3/$4 and if you buy four Special K products, you get a 35-pack of Sunny Select drinking water free. Oroweat, Thomas' and Entenmann's treats are 2/$5 and a case of Sunny Select water is $2.98.
In produce, Driscoll's strawberries are BOGO; asparagus is $1.97lb and leaf lettuce is 79-cents a bunch.
In the deli, Foster Farms smoked turkey breast is $4.99lb and 8-pieces of fried chicken is $5.99.
Come back on Thursday for recipes from the Shop Cheap kitchen..