How to Save Money at Whole Foods Market
I recently had the chance to conduct a Values Tour through the Roosevelt, Whole Foods Market store (Seattle). During my tour, I shared all kinds of ways you can save money at Whole Foods Market! The truth is I believe you can save money at ANY store you choose. You just need to know how!
There are honestly SO MANY things to share, I thought I’d just list them out for you! Ready? Let’s do it.
- Grab the Whole Deal booklet when you first walk into the store. It’s full of store coupons and tips for eating well for less.
- You can also get the same coupons online at Whole Foods Market.
- Look for the yellow flyer when you first walk in – those highlight some of the best sales in the store.
- Stop by Guest Services and your little ones can pick out a healthy snack! On Friday I found apples, bananas, fruit leather and granola bars.
- The yellow tags throughout the store indicate a discounted price. You’ll find them in every department.
- Look for the punch card in the supplement section of the store. When it’s full, you can save $10 on your next supplement purchase!
- Watch for one-day sales to stock up on food such as sustainably farmed fish or organic chicken. The one-day sales are shared on Whole Foods Facebook page or by signing up for their emails. These usually happen on Fridays.
- While there are no rain checks on the one-day sales, you can phone the store ahead of time to have them set aside for you.
- See something you want to try, but aren’t sure you want to spend the money? Look for any team member in the store. Whole Foods has a “try-me-free” program where you can sample something you’re interested to try and in some cases, they may even send it home with you!
- Whole Foods Markets offers free tours for school children! I learned that some stores may be open to taking even smaller groups – such as a homeschool co-op or if a few families call and express an interest.
- Just need a small quantity of a certain type of produce? Don’t forget the salad bar! It may be cheaper to just buy a small quantity there versus bigger sizes out of the produce department.
- If you would like to buy a large quantity of an item – say produce – just ask a team member. You can place special orders with Whole Foods Market and if you buy a case of an item, you’ll score an added 10% off – even on top of sale prices!
- Keep your eyes peeled throughout the store. Whole Foods is committed to empowering and educating their customers about good health. I found several FREE recipe cards towards the back of the store. I’ve also found free booklets and charts in the stores before, too.
- Each store may differ in their product selection, pricing, and coupon acceptance policies. Get to know the store you frequent most. The Roosevelt store, for instance, allows you to stack a Whole Foods coupon (such as from the Whole Deal booklet) with a manufacturer’s coupon (such as from the Sunday paper).
- Don’t forget those bulk bins! I was most impressed with Whole Foods’ bulk spices section. They had things that may be more difficult to find in bulk elsewhere such as organic orange peel, whole coriander seeds, freeze dried chives, and garam masala.
- Choose the least prepped version for the biggest savings. Whole Foods has a number of items that are wonderful for convenience purposes, but not so wonderful for your budget. Case in point, whole organic pineapples are $3.50 right now. Or, you could buy the pre-cut pineapple in the container for $7.60.
- For some nice wine for less, try Whole Foods own label called Three Wishes. It’s just $2.99 and they offer both red and white varieties. It was displayed on an endcap not in the wine section, so just ask if you can’t find it.
- Want a nice wedge of cheese, but not a $9 wedge? Just ask a team member at the cheese counter and they can slice up a smaller piece for you! And don’t forget – you can always try before you buy!
- Bring your reusable bags for an additional $0.10 discount per bag you bring.
- The staff in the seafood and meat sections can fillet and cut your meat to your desired specifications. Also ask for free marinades that they can send home with you!
- Don’t forget the 365 brand – which is their store brand. I found 365 Organic Macaroni and Cheese for $1 a box last week. Please note that not all 365 items are organic, so you’ll want to read the labels if that matters to you.
- Buy produce that’s in season, and build your meals around it. One of the things I’ve insisted for awhile here is this: “plan your meals around produce, not meat!” Not only will you get out of cooking ruts, you’ll save money, too!
- Contact companies for coupons. See some new products you’d like to try? Take a moment to contact them and ask if they have any coupons they could send you!
- Monday – Friday there are deals in the prepared food section. My favorite? Every Wednesday you can get a Family Value Meal for $15.99. These are generously portioned complete meals – main dish, two sides, and a huge salad – for four. You’ll spend less than you would on pizza or a fast food restaurant, and enjoy a healthier meal, too!
- Get to know the Whole Foods Market website. Have you ever spent some time there? If not – I recommend it. It’s just full of fantastic recipes, articles, tips, and more. There’s even a section for healthy, budget-friendly recipes!
I want to make a final remark about Whole Foods Market. Let’s not kid ourselves. Across the board, it IS more expensive than your average grocery store. If your number one concern is saving money, you probably should shop somewhere else. But I know a growing number of you are more concerned about getting quality, healthful food. You care about the treatment of animals, if the food is locally sourced, or if it has HFCS. For that reason, you might want to shop at a store like Whole Foods Market. And if that’s the case – all the more reason to make sure you’re getting the complete value you can from your trip there!
As for me, Whole Foods is a special treat. It’s a store I like to shop at maybe once a month, and it’s a place I’m not overly concerned about saving money at. I see it as a “treat” store – so if I save at other places, I can afford those specialty items or make a splurge without blowing my budget.
I would love to hear from you today. Do you enjoy shopping at Whole Foods Market? Do you think there is room for it in the couponer’s budget? Is it a special treat place, or a store you shop at regularly? Would you like to see more posts here at the blog about Whole Foods deals or shopping tips?