Shop Cheap

Sharing the best prices on groceries and other stuff in the Sacramento region.

February 28, 2012
King-sized savings are a slam dunk

Shop Cheap knows that anything with "Kings" in the headline climbs to the top of the keyword charts, so we are jumping on that shopping cart while it's still hot. Who knows, the Maloofs are going to need to Shop Cheap so they can afford those arena payments. Gavin, Joe, George - start clippin'! The "Shop Cheap Arena" has a nice ring...don't you think?

But seriously, shoppers, there's lots to cheer about at the grocery store this week. It's a good time to buy breakfast items, meat and fresh produce. Here's what we like:

Save Mart is advertising a "5 packages of meat (chicken and fish included) for $25" sale. Examples: boneless New York steak; boneless pork ribs; ground turkey; boneless, skinless chicken breasts and raw prawns. Also on the table, rock cod fillets and Dover sole fillets for $5.99lb. Cooked shrimp meat is $4.99lb.

The "7 daily coupons" include eggs for 69-cents on Wednesday; OJ for 99-cents on Friday; Kellogg's and General Mills cereal for $1.49 on Saturday and bananas for 39-cents a pound on Monday. Other coupons worth mentioning: Sunny Select tomatoes 2/$1; Prego pasta sauce 2/$3; Barilla pasta 99-cents; Hansen's apple juice $1.99 and Farmer John ham steaks for $1.49.

Michelina's frozen entrees are 88 cents each; Weight Watchers Smart Ones entrees are buy 5, get 1 free and Sunny Select frozen waffles are $1.79.

Progresso soups and Tostitos chips are BOGO; Crystal Geyser water is $3.33 a case and Powerade is $1 a bottle. Sunnyside Farms has its own brand of Greek yogurt for $1 and regular yogurt for 50-cents a cup.

In produce, apples and pears are 97-cents a pound. Pints of grape tomatoes and packaged salad blends are BOGO. 'Chokes and bell peppers are 69-cents each; berries are 2/$5. Sierra gold or Sierra rose potatoes are $2.50 for a 5lb. bag.

Raley's has more than 1,900 daily deals. Some are good; others not so much. Our favorites are bananas for 68-cents a pound; fresh baguettes for $1.88 and a dozen eggs for $1.48.

They will also have you clippin' this week with Kellogg's kids cereal for $1.99; tortilla chips for $1.39; Dennison's chili for 89-cents and a case of Aquafina water for $3.49.

Boneless, skinless chicken thighs are $2.99lb; Raley's own brand of fresh pork - chops or roast - is BOGO; and cooked salad shrimp is $4.99lb.

In produce, a bag of Tesoro tomatoes is $2.49; broccoli is 79-cents a pound and strawberries are $1.99. Lemons and limes are 4/$1; bell peppers and cucumbers are 2/$1 and those Sierra Gold or Rose potatoes are the same price - $2.50 for 5 pounds.

Looking for a quick meal, chicken strips in the deli are $5.99; homestyle meatloaf is $6.98 and sesame chicken skewers and potstickers are buy 2, get 1 free.

If you're craving donuts and just a little one will do, donut holes are BOGO in the bakery.

Take a deep breath before plowing through the Safeway ad, or just let Shop Cheap do it for you. It's a 10-pager this week with 4-day sales; $5 Fridays; a page of coupons and a $10 reward coupon when you spend $75 or more.

First, the coupons. General Mills cereal for $1.99; 7-UP and Pepsi for 88-cents; Oscar Mayer lunchmeat for $2.49 and 4lbs of Safeway sugar for $2.49. Then there's the Mennen or Lady Speed stick for $1.49; $1 off PediaSure and Safeway tissue for 99-cents. Other clip-worthy coupons: Jiff for $2.49; mayo for $2.49; Lucerne sliced cheese for $1.99; Hunt's canned tomatoes or sauce for 89-cents; Kellogg's frosted mini wheats for $1.99 and Safeway salsa for $1.99.

Under the coupons, you'll find the BOGOs - verything from Safeway Kitchens wheat bread to Guerrero tortillas to brown rice for cooking and crispy rice for breakfast.

The Friday-Monday specials include BOGO bacon and Thomas' English muffins; Kellogg's cereals for $1.99; Yoplait 10/$6; Progresso vegetable soup for 99-cents; a 12-pack of Lipton tea for $3.99 and whole roasted chicken for $5.99.

If you're a $5 Friday shopper, put Signature Cafe pizza, a family pack of Activia yogurt, Hormel pork tenderloins and a cream pie from the bakery on your list.

Got cookie duty this week? A container of 50 cookies is $5 in the bakery. A package of Ghiaradelli baking chips is $3. You decide!

In produce, apples are 88-cents a pound; avocado is 77-cents; large lemon are 2/$1 and yellow onions are 99-cents a pound.

That's it for this week. Happy shopping.





February 21, 2012
Shop like it's Spring

It's entirely possible that we'll be breaking out the shorts and tennis shoes this weekend. Good thing there's plenty of fruits and veggies on sale to go along with the springlike weather that's coming. Here's a taste of what's on sale:

Save Mart is tempting us with BOGO berries. You can mix & match strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and blackberries. They also have a pretty good 7-day sale with different items from Wednesday to the following Tuesday. Our favorites are: A dozen large eggs for 69 cents on Wednesday; Bayview Farms OJ for 99-cents on Friday; Kellogg's corn flakes or Frosted Toast Crunch for $1.49 on Saturday; and bananas for 39-cents a pound on Monday.

Other stuff we like: Boneless, skinless chicken breasts in the max pak for $1.99lb; fresh Dover sole for $5.99lb and cooked prawns for $4.99lb. Campbell's soups are $1 a can; Nabisco saltines are $1.99 and Yoplait yogurt is 10/$6. Sunny Select drinking water is $2.99 a case; Sunny Select tortillas are $1.99 a bag and fruit on the bottom cottage cheese is 79-cents.

If you're clippin', Johnsonville ground Italian sausage is $2.48; Foster Farms lunchmeats are $2.49; Sunny Select broth is 2/$1 and Sue Bee honey is $1.98.

In produce, Grimmway peeled baby carrots are $1.29 a bag; Roma or vine ripened tomatoes are 79-cents a pound; iceberg lettuce is 97-cents a head; oranges are 69-cents a pound; cucumbers and bell peppers are 2/$1.

 Raley's has boneless, skinless chicken breasts for $1.88lb; boneless pork chops for $1.99lb. and sirloin steak or roast for $3.99lb. Buy 4 or more boxes of Kellogg's cereal and pay just $1.99 a box; Quaker cereals are $2 a box.

Large eggs are always $1.48 a dozen. Coupons include Campbell's chunky soups for $1.25; C&W frozen veggies for $2; Ore-Ida potatoes for $2.69 and Krusteaz waffles or pancakes for $2.

Dreyer's ice cream or frozen yogurt is $3.33; Drumsticks are $3 a box.

In produce, strawberries are $3.99 for 2 pounds; tomatoes on the vine are $1.49lb and asparagus is $1.29lb. Large lemons or limes are 4/$1 and jumbo 'chokes are $2 each.

Safeway is the produce king this week, with BOGO berries; asparagus for 99-cents a pound and Fresh Express salads for 99 cents

Jennie-O lean ground turkey is $3.99 a package; country style pork ribs are $1.99lb and Pacific snapper fillets are $5.99lb.

In the BOGO Dept. you will find, Safeway Kitchens wheat sandwich bread; Ritz crackers and Fig Newtons. The $5 Friday specials include 8-piece fish; Tiramisu bar cake; 20-pack of Coke and Deli counter turkey breast. The 4-day (Friday-Monday) sale includes: BOGO Farmland bacon; Angel Food Cake for $1.99; Tide detergent for $5; Post and Quaker cereals for $1.99 and saltines or Chips  Ahoy! for $1.88.

In the stretch your dollar dept., items a $1 or less include Michelina's frozen meals; S&W canned beans; Golden grain pasta and Pantry Essentials breads. For $2 or less, there's Pantry Esssentials mayo; a 6-pack of Cup Noodcle; Cheeze-Its and Safeway bleach.

A case of refreshe water is $3.33. And for all you Safeway clippers, Kraft sliced cheese is $2.49; Stouffer's or Lean Cuisine meals are $1.99 and Lucerne Lactose free milk is $2.99.

Shop Cheap visited Sunflower Farmers Market on Monday to check out their produce and came away with a bag full of fresh fruit and veggies. This week, check out avocados 3/$1; onions 2lbs/$1; grapes and cherry tomatoes for 77-cents and grapefruit 4/$1. The store, in the Roseville Square Shopping Center, also has some pretty tasty Salt Water taffy!

February 14, 2012
Get shopping, it's a 3-day weekend

If the springlike weather that has been with us most of the winter lasts, it's going to be a wonderful 3-day weekend. Why not shop early so that you can enjoy the downtime? And if you need help, just keep reading. Shop Cheap will help you fill your cart with fresh savings.

We're starting with Save Mart because they have launched a fund-raising campaign to help keep Sacramento's neighborhood swimming pools open this summer. Shop there and you'll be helping, too. For more information, go to

Here's what we like. Asparagus is 99-cents a pound; green onions, radishes or cilantro are 4/$1 and bananas are 39-cents a pound next Monday only. Save Mart has other daily sales that they are advertising like a dozen eggs for 69 cents today only Bayview Farms OJ for 99 cents on Friday and Kellogg's corn flakes or General Frosted Toast Crunch for $1.49 on Saturday only.

For $9.99, you can get a rotisserie chicken meal, which includes the chicken (duh!); deli salad and bread. Should feed a family of 4.

Oroweat breads and muffins are BOGO; a case of Sunny Select drinking water is $2.88 and the "buy a national brand get our brand free" includes Lay's Kettle chips and Advil. An 89-oz jug of Florida's Natural OJ is $3.99. If you're clippin', Campbell's tomato and chicken noodle soups are 2/$1; Sunny Select albacore tuna is $1 a can; Sunny Select pasta is 88-cents a box.

Produce deals include tomatoes for 69-cents a pound; mangos for $1 each; blackberries are BOGO; kiwi fruit is 4/$1 and iceberg lettuce is 69-cents a head. Red, white or Yukon gold potatoes are 69-cents a pound and fresh cabbage is 49-cents a pound.

Hopping over to Raley's, we find a sweet 2-day (Saturday & Sunday only) sale. 16-oz. containers of strawberries for $1.50 and large avocados 2/$1.

Other sweet savings include, hot house tomatoes for 99-cents a pound and red seedless grapes for $1.29lb. Buy o loaf of Pulgiese bread in the bakery and get a free jar of Smucker's preserves. Or, how about a case of Crystal Geyser spring water for $3.49 and sparkling mineral water for 89-cents a bottle.

Boneless, skinless chicken thighs are $1.99lb. Wishbone salad dressing is $1 a bottle; Bush's beans are $1 a can and Quaker cereals are $2 a box.

Safeway is advertising the Mix & Match BOGO meat sale, which includes London broil; pork ribs; boneless, skinless chicken breasts, thighs and tenders; and lean ground beef. Some of their organic produce has dropped in price. Oranges are 99-cents a pound; broccoli is 2/$3 an dheirloom tomatoes are $2.99lb.

Even Dave's Killer Breads are $1 cheaper, only $3.99. But you've really got to want to try it to pay nearly $4 a loaf. On the other hand, Open Nature breads and buns are BOGO. Nature's Pride bread is BOGO, too. And if you like little donuts, try the buttermilk bites in the bakery for $1.99.

Seedless grapes are 99-cents a pound; whole or sliced mushrooms are BOGO, too. Lots of other produce is 99-cents or less, like cantaloupe, pears, grapefruit, apples, zucchini and bell peppers. O Organic salad blends are 2/$5 and Arrowhead water is $3.50 a case.

Arm & Hammer detergent is BOGO; Safeway cleaning products are $1.99 each.

There's lots to clip this week. Here's what we like best: Quaker Oatmeal squares cereal for $1.99; La Tortilla Factory hand-made tortillas for $1.69; Eating Right of Safeway Select meals for $1,79; Signature Cafe soup for $3.49; Klonkide bars for $2.49 and Lucerne shredded cheese for $1.79. Other stuff: Kleenex for 99-cents and Safeway trash bags for $5.99.

Powerade is 79-cents a bottle; Lays and Doritos are buy 2, get 2 free; and 7-UP or Pepsi liters are 99-cents each. If you are on a soda and cracker diet, this is your week. Buy 2-12 packs of Coke products and get 2 more free, plus a free box of Nabisco snack crackers.

The Friday only $5 stuff includes Black Forest ham or swiss cheese in the deli; Safeway Select coffee; 24-oz container of blueberries and a 4-pack of cake slices in the bakery.

Friday-Sunday highlights are tomatoes for 99-cents a pound; Prego sauce for $1.49 and Chicken of the Sea tuna for 69-cents. If you are in the neighborhood on Monday, stop in for the $5 package of bath tissue or paper towels.

That's it for this week, shoppers.


February 7, 2012
So long Super Bowl, hello sweet savings

This is the week we focus on the sweet savings. If you are crunched for time, not to worry. The Big 3 - and all the other stores, too - have everything you need to fix a special meal for that special someone...or at least get her some flowers!

Seriously, you can get everything from chocolate-dipped strawberries to a bouquet of roses or a complete dinner for 2 while filling your cart with the weekly essentials. Here's what we like this week:

Raley's has a 4-pack of delicious looking hand-dipped strawberries for $10. They also have hand-dipped caramel apples but I don't get the love there. Too hard to eat. Other sweets for your sweetie includce decorated cookies for $4.29 and cupcakes for $5.99. Then there's the mousse cake for $7.79 and a single layer Valentine cake for $5.99. Want to set the mood? Duraflame logs are $17.99 with coupon.

New York steak is $5.99lb; lobster tails are $6.99 each. Or you can order the complete meal for $59.99 - salad; sides; dessert and filet mignon or chicken ravioli ($39.99).

Whole Foster Farms chicken is 89-cents a pound. To go with, there's asparagus for $1.99lb; bell peppers for 99-cents each; Idaho potatoes, 5lbs for $1.99 and Haggen-Dazs for $2.99 with coupon.

Shop Cheap is sure you had your fill of chips on Sunday so we are going with the Quaker rice Quakes for $1 a bag. Mix & Match 10 items (General Mills cereal, Betty Crocker pancake mix, Chex Mis; Old El Paso taco shells and Progresso) and they will cost you $1.50 each. Otherwise, it's $2.

If you want to make it real simple, grab an already-cooked rotisserie turkey breast for $6.99 and a Taylor Farms chopped salad for $3. Dove chocolates and Hershey's kisses are $3 a bag.

Over at Save Mart, ribeye steaks are $5.77lb; boneless, skinless chicken breasts are $1.67lb and boneless cross rib roast is $2.49lb. Over in the bakery, Strawberry Boston cakes are $8.99 and Dove chocolates are $2.50 a bag.

In produce, fresh berries are BOGO; seedless grapes are 97-cents a pound and sweet pears are 97-cents a pound, too. Red or green bell peppers are 69-cents each; apples are 97-cents a pound and asparagus is $1.97lb.

Buy 3 boxes of Kellogg's cerea; amd get 3 boxes free - works out to $1.50 each. Sunnyside Farms eggs are $2.29 for 18; Crystal Geyser water is $3.33 a case and 2-liter jugs of Pepsi, Dew or Dr. Pepper are 4/$4. Sunny Select brands are a good buy. Canned tomatoes are 79 cents; beans are 89 cents and string cheese is $2.99.

If you're clippin', Sunny Select chicken noodle soupe is 2/$1; Old Orchard juices are 2/$3 and Uncle Ben's ready rice is 2/$3. Gallo salami is $4.99.

Safeway has your Valentine covered with their own hand-dipped strawberries for $6.99; decorated cupcakes for $6.99 and a fruit tart for $12.99. A chocolate torte topped with berries is $9.99 and a tiramisu bar cake is $10.99.

Rancher's Reserve ribeye steak is $4.99lb; whole Foster Farms chicken is 89-cents a pound and ground turkey is BOGO. If you like to Mix & Match, Safeway has a BOGO sale for you. There are 12 items that you can buy one and get one free, including: Johnsonville smoked Brats; Oscar Mayer lunchmeat; sliced bacon; beef franks and Foster Farms grilled chicken strips.

Dungeness crab has gone up in price to $7.99lb but you can buy an 8oz container of Waterfront bistro lump meat for $8.99.

Oroweat breads are BOGO; Safeway Kitchen sandwich bread is $1.50 a loaf. Refreshe water is $3.33 a case.

But when it comes to shopping for your sweetie, you best bet is probably the daily specials at Safeway. From Friday through Valentine's Day, lobster tails are $5 each. On Friday, the $5 specials include Boston Cream cakes (strawberry or chocolate); whole roasted chicken; an 18oz container of blueberries or blackberries and 128 ounces of Minute Maid OJ.

Add in the Friday-Sunday specials and you're talking asparagus for 99-cents a pound; Red Velvet cake for $6.99 and Froot Loops or Frosted Flakes for $1.99.

On Monday, there's a special Valentine bistro cake for $6.99; baby back ribs for $5 and PF Chang's or Bertolli dinner for 2 for $5.

Cheetos and Fritos are BOGO, Milano cookies are, too. In the coupon catergory, check out the Nestle cookie dough for $1.99; 18 Lucerne large eggs for $2.49; Minute Maid OJ $3.99 for 89-ounces and Lean Cusine meals for $1.99.

In produce Lady Alice apples from Washington are $1.99lb; hot house tomatoes are $1.99lb; broccoli is 99-cents a pound and strawberries are $3.99 for 2 pounds.

Have a sweet week..xxoo


About Shop Cheap

Pam Dinsmore is The Bee's Community Affairs Director. When she's not working, she's shopping. The goal of this blog is to help you save time and money at the grocery store. She's pretty good at it but she can't do it alone. That's where you come in, sharing your tips and secret methods for saving money. You can either respond to the blog or email her at

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