Bread is a staple in most households, and one of the easiest ways to save big is to purchase it at outlet stores!

Bread outlet stores are similar to clothing outlets: what doesn’t sell at the regular stores is marked down at the outlet for a quick sale. The bargains are often 25 to 50 percent off.

Bread varieties can include everything from cinnamon raisin to sourdough, artisan, rye, and gluten-free. Another great feature is that they sell more than just loaves! Savvy shoppers can often pick up muffins, cakes, bagels, pies, tortillas, bread sticks, donuts, croissants, rolls, chips, crackers, and sometimes refrigerated dairy, all marked down.

Since many of the bread items at outlet stores are nearing their best-buy date, it’s wise to use them within a day or two of buying. Another option is to stock up and freeze for later use. Day-old French and Italian bread is a favorite in our house for garlic bread. Bread that is more stale makes fantastic French toast, bread crumbs and croutons. English muffins are perfect for mini homemade pizzas. This is also a great place to look if you’ll be needing a lot of bread for a large BBQ or get-together.

If you aren’t already shopping at an outlet, look for one in your area with a quick Google search. Popular brands with outlet stores include Bimbo, Hostess, Oroweat, and Franz.

No outlet nearby? Just look for a grocery store’s “Reduced For Quick Sale” section. Store bakeries will often provide a rack or shelf near the back of the store. Many cafes or restaurants that specialize in fresh bakery items discount the day after, such as Jimmy John's and Bruegger's Bagels.