Costco vs. Aldi: Who’s cheaper?

|
Costco vs. Aldi: Who’s cheaper?
Image Credit: Clark.com
Team Clark is adamant that we will never write content influenced by or paid for by an advertiser. To support our work, we do make money from some links to companies and deals on our site. Learn more about our guarantee here.
Advertisement

The shopping experience at Costco and Aldi couldn’t be more different. The former is a cavernous space with merchandise stacked to the ceilings and the latter is a four-aisle minimart that’s about the size of your local chain pharmacy.

But when it comes to price, which one offers you the best deals?

Read more: Amazon Prime vs. Costco: Who’s cheaper?

Costco vs. Aldi: The battle on price

Both Aldi and Costco are big into store brands. With Costco, it’s primarily the Kirkland Signature label. With Aldi, there are any of a variety of store labels like Happy Farms, SimplyNature, Never Any! and Tandil, to name just a few.

We can talk all day about whether Costco offers better quality store brands than Aldi. That’s a separate issue. The real test for me in thinking about these two very different kinds of stores is price. Which one is cheaper? Read on below to find out…the answer may surprise you.

(Special thanks to Queen Bee Coupons for pulling the data on Costco’s prices in this February 2017 spreadsheet. I pulled the numbers myself on Aldi prices while shopping there this weekend.)

(Full disclosure: I received no compensation from either Aldi or Costco to write this article.)

Dry dog food

Aldi
Shep Complete Nutrition Dry Dog Food

Total price: $7.99

Unit price: 43.2 cents per pound
Costco
Dog food, Kirkland Signature Chicken, veg and rice

Total price: $27.99

Unit price: 70 cents per ounce

Winner: Aldi


Dry cat food

Aldi
Fine Feline Complete Nutrition Dry Cat Food

Total price: $7.99

Unit price: 50 cents per pound
Costco
Cat food, Nutra Nuggets Dry Super Premium

Total price: $10.89

Unit price: 55 cents per pound

Winner: Aldi


Organic kale

Aldi
SimplyNature Organic Kale

Total price: $3.49

Unit price: 29.1 cents per ounce or $4.65 per pound
Costco
Kale, baby, organic mixed

Total price: $4.79

Unit price: $3.19 per lb

Winner: Costco


Nonfat Greek yogurt

Aldi
Friendly Farms Plain Nonfat Greek Yogurt

Total price: $3.49

Unit price: 11 cents per ounce
Costco
Yogurt, Kirkland Signature Greek Non-fat

Total price: $5.99

Unit price: 9 cents per ounce

Winner: Costco


Salted butter

Aldi
Friendly Farms Salted Butter

Total price: $2.79

Unit price: $2.80 per pound
Costco
Butter, Kirkland Signature Butter Quarters

Total price: $9.99

Unit price: $2.50 per lb

Winner: Costco


Organic almondmilk

Aldi
Friendly Farms Unsweetened Original or Vanilla Almondmilk

Total price: $1.99

Unit price: 3.2 cents per fluid ounce
Costco
Non-Dairy Milk, Kirkland Signature Organic Almond unsweetened

Total price: $8.49

Unit price: 4 cents per fluid ounce

Winner: Aldi


Orange juice

Aldi
Nature’s Nectar Orange Juice from Concentrate

Total price: $1.69

Unit price: 2.7 cents per fluid ounce
Costco
Juice, Tropicana Orange (no Kirkland Signature brand pricing noted in spreadsheet)

Total price: $13.39

Unit price: 0.06 per fluid oz

Winner: Aldi


Eggs

Aldi
Goldhen Grade A Large Eggs

Total price: $1.05 per dozen

Unit price: 8.7 cents per egg
Costco
Eggs, Wilcox, Large

Total price: $1.30 per dozen

Unit price: 10.8 cents per egg

Winner: Aldi


%1 milk

Aldi
Friendly Farms 1% Milk

Total price: $1.65 per gallon

Unit price: 10.3 cents per ounce
Costco
Milk, Kirkland Signature, 1% low-fat

Total price: $1.20 per gallon

Unit price: 7.5 cents per ounce

Winner: Costco


Store brand pizza

Aldi
Mama Cossi’s 16′ Five Cheese Deli Pizza

Total price: $4.49

Unit price: 11 cents per ounce
Costco
Kirkland Signature Cheese Pizza (4 count)

Total price: $9.99

Unit price: 15 cents per ounce

Winner: Aldi


Store brand organic deli meat

Aldi
Lunch Mate Never Any! Turkey (no antibiotics/hormones/nitrates/nitrites)

Total price: $3.29

Unit price: 47 cents per ounce or $7.52 per pound
Costco
Turkey, Columbus nitrate free

Total price: varies

Unit price: $7.49 per lb

Winner: Costco


Store brand goat cheese (hey, what can I say? I’m Greek!)

Aldi
Happy Farms Preferred Goat Cheese

Total price: $1.99

Unit price: 49.8 cents per ounce
Costco
Kirkland Signature Goat Cheese

Total price: $6.79 a pound

Unit price: 32 cents per ounce

Winner: Costco


Shredded cheese

Aldi
Happy Farms Mild Cheddar Shredded Cheese

Total price: $2.99

Unit price: $2.99 per pound
Costco
Cheese, Kirkland Signature, Mild Cheddar, shredded

Total price: $13.69

Unit price: $2.74 per lb

Winner: Costco


Store brand HE laundry detergent

Aldi
Tandil Premium HE (high efficiency) Liquid Laundry Detergent

Total price: $6.49

Unit price: 6.5 cents per fluid ounce
Costco
Laundry Detergent, Kirkland Signature Ultra Free and Clear 2x HE

Total price: $13.99

Unit price: 7 cents per fluid ounce

Winner: Aldi


Store brand sparkling water

Aldi
Pur Aqua Belle Vie Sparkling Flavored Water

Total price: $2.99

Unit price: 2.1 cents per fluid ounce
Costco
Kirkland Signature Sparkling Flavored Water Variety

Total price: $8.99

Unit price: 3.8 cents per fluid ounce

Winner: Aldi


Grape tomatoes

Aldi
Double Diamond Farms Grape Tomatoes

Total price: 1.79 cents per dry pint

Price per pound: ~less than $1.79 (One dry pint is 18.6 ounces. A pound is 16 ounces. We’ll call it a pound for argument’s sake.)
Costco
Tomatoes, grape, hothouse grown

Total price: $5.99

Price per pound: $3

Winner: Aldi


Organic apples

Aldi
Organic apples, Gala

Total price: $4.99

Unit price: $1.66 per pound
Costco
Apples, Gala, organic

Total price: $8.99

Unit price: $1.63 per pound

Winner: Costco


Store brand organic milk

Aldi
Simply Nature organic fat-free milk

Total price: $2.95

Unit price: 4.7 cents per fluid ounce
Costco
Milk, Kirkland Signature, 1%, organic

Total price: $10.99

Unit price: 5.7 cents per fluid ounce

Winner: Aldi


Store brand organic tortilla chips

Aldi
Simply Nature Organic Yellow Corn Tortilla Chips

Total price: $1.99

Unit price: 18 cents per ounce
Costco
Kirkland Signature Tortilla Chips, organic
Total price: $4.99
Unit price: 13 cents per ounce

Winner: Costco


Conclusion

Though my selection of items was highly arbitrary, I have to declare this contest a tie. Aldi won in 10 of the 19 categories and Costco won in the other 9.

I think these results really say something. Many people I talk to rave about how cheap Costco is…but are they really?

At Costco, you have to purchase in bulk, which doesn’t necessarily work for everyone. And let’s not forget that shopping at Costco costs $55 a year for a membership.

Of course, this isn’t to say that Costco can’t be a smart choice for you or your family. I picked 19 randomly selected items to price compare based on what went into my shopping cart this past weekend. Your results may vary and they could make that Costco membership worth it for your family.

Read more: Secret pricing hacks at Costco, Sam’s Club and BJs

Costco CEO shares tips with Clark Howard to help you save money

Source: Costco CEO shares tips with Clark Howard to help you save money by Clark on Rumble

Advertisement
Theo Thimou About the author:
Theo is director of content for clark.com. He has co-written 2 books with Clark Howard, including the #1 New York Times bestseller Clark Howard's Living Large in Lean Times.
View More Articles
  • Show Comments Hide Comments