Courtney Omell | 

Grocery Essentials on a Budget — Where to Buy Cheap Eggs?

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You've probably noticed over the last few months that basic essentials like eggs continue to have krazy high prices. Inflation, supply chain issues, and changes in demand has caused a hefty increase on even the most necessary items over the last few years. Butter prices are high, plus in 2022 and early 2023, we noticed a huge increase in the price of eggs. Prior to 2022, the highest price of a dozen eggs hit $2.97 in September 2015. Even with many prices well above that since there is some good news. You can still find cheap eggs, if you know where to look.

We did price comparisons at several national grocery chains to find the lowest price as of Feb 2024. Keep in mind that sale prices can affect these comparisons, but this is a good resource when choosing where to shop for everyday essentials. The prices listed are from stores across the country, which should give you an idea of which stores are offering the cheapest eggs.

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Note: Prices may vary. We rounded prices to the nearest cent for our graphics.

Egg prices are up 3.4% since Dec. 2023.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average price of eggs in the U.S. is $2.52 (Jan. 2024). This is a 3.4% increase over the price in Dec. 2023. If you look at the current average price versus six months ago, in August ($2.043, the lowest price in 2023), you'll see prices have increased almost $0.48 per dozen. Here's what we found at several national grocery chains.

Where to shop to find cheap eggs.

We compared a dozen Grade A, store-brand eggs at four national grocery chains and also compared a dozen organic, free-range, cage-free, and pasture-raised eggs at those same stores.

If you’re looking to get the best bang for your buck, store brand is the way to go. But we do realize that people have egg preferences and tried to respect that in our comparisons. If you prefer to shop for organic or cage-free eggs, Aldi is your best bet. Their egg prices were low in all of the categories.

While your local prices may differ from all of the egg prices we’re seeing below, we hope this helps as a guide for where to shop for cheap eggs this month!

Grade A Eggs

Cheapest Dozen Grade A Eggs (2)

Looking strictly at store-brand Grade A eggs, Aldi’s $1.88 for a dozen Goldhen brand Grade A eggs and Target’s Good & Gather brand at $1.89 per dozen (down $0.50 per dozen) or $0.16 per egg tie for first place. Coming in second is Trader Joe’s Large White Eggs at $1.99 (up $0.20) per dozen or $0.17 per egg. Rounding out our list is Walmart's Great Value brand at $2.78 per dozen. That's a price increase of $1.18 over last year's prices.

You can sometimes score a better deal when you buy eggs in bulk. Sam’s Club has 24 Large White eggs for $5.26, which works out to $0.22 per egg. But they also have a 90-count box of Grade A eggs for $14.98, or just $0.17 per egg. It’s worth noting that last year, that same 90-count box at Sam’s Club was over $25! At Costco, a case (24 eggs) runs around $4.99 (same as in 2023). This works out to $0.21 per egg. Unless you need 90 eggs, you’re better off at Aldi or Walmart for now.

Keep in mind that these prices will vary by location. Some prices are higher, while others are lower. Two local Target stores outside of Pittsburgh have a dozen Grade A eggs for $1.99 (up $0.10 over last year), while the same dozen are closer to $2.67 (down about $1.33) in California.

Cage-Free Eggs

Cheapest Dozen Cage-Free Eggs

Taking a look at cage-free eggs, Aldi takes the prize again. Their cage-free eggs are $2.58 per dozen or $0.216 per egg. The next best price for cage-free is Walmart Marketside, is $2.66 per dozen or $0.221 per egg. Target’s cage-free eggs are currently $2.89 ($0.60 cheaper than April 2023) or $0.24 per egg. Trader Joe’s came in last with a price of $0.25 per egg or $2.99 per dozen (the same as they were in April 2023). It’s worth noting that Trader Joe’s kept their prices the most consistent while other retailers’ prices were skyrocketing. We called a local Trader Joe’s and they let us know that they refused to work with sellers who couldn’t provide the prices they thought were fair for customers.

Free-Range Eggs

Cheapest Dozen Free-Range Eggs

Currently, Aldi takes the top spot yet again! Their $3.67 price works out to $0.31 per egg. This is, again, higher than last years prices in April, but still the current best. Trader Joe’s free-range eggs are $4.49 per dozen or $0.37 per egg. Walmart and Target carry the Nellie's brand with Walmart coming in at $4.14 per dozen and Target at $5.19 or $0.43 per egg. That's $0.12 more per egg than Aldi!

Pasture-Raised Eggs

Cheapest Dozen Pasture-Raised Eggs

Pasture-raised eggs work out to be the most expensive on our list. And, big surprise — Aldi's Goldhen brand beats the rest with a $4.99 price tag or $0.42 per egg. Target carries the Vital Farms brand at $6.39 per dozen (a decrease of $1 over last year). The prices on pasture-raised eggs have increased at all stores except Target. This could be a supply problem, but luckily you can still find them for an affordable price at Target. Trader Joe's pasture-raised dozen rings up at $6.49 or $0.54 per egg, our most expensive.

Why are eggs still so expensive?

cracking eggs above a frying pan

Egg prices dropped last year after bird flu cases from the outbreak in 2022 declined. However, the current higher prices are related to another round of bird flu affecting egg production (first detected in Nov. 2023). Here's hoping the latest outbreak doesn't get any worse and these high egg prices will start to nosedive before the end of the year.

What do the different types of eggs mean?

Woman choosing eggs

Eggs are no longer just white ovals in a styrofoam carton. There are organic eggs, cage-free eggs, free-range eggs, and more. But what does it mean? Let’s break it down.

Grade A, AA, B

The grade on egg cartons is assigned by the USDA and is based on the egg’s interior quality as well as its shell condition. Grade AA eggs have thick and firm whites and yolks that are round and defect-free. If you look at Grade A eggs, they have similar yolks but their whites may not be as firm. Next up is Grade B, which is assigned when the egg’s whites are thinner, the yolks are less round, and the shells have stains. Grade B eggs are usually used to make egg products and are not often sold in stores.

Organic Eggs

The term organic is regulated by the USDA. In regard to eggs, it means that the chickens are free-range and fed a 100% organic diet free of hormones, antibiotics, arsenic, and byproducts. These eggs must also come from hens that have access to graze outdoors at least 120 days per year.

Cage Free vs Free Range

So what are cage-free eggs? Cage-free quite literally means that the hens are not kept in cages. It doesn’t mean, however, that their living facilities are top-notch. They could still be in cramped quarters with very little room to live. This term is not regulated, so it’s hard to say. Free-range hens have access to the outdoors, but whether they’re roaming free in a field or just able to visit a screened-in porch will depend on the facility.

Free Range vs Pasture Raised

If you prefer your eggs to come from a hen with ample room to roam, pasture-raised eggs are a good option. This means that the chickens live outdoors and eat a natural diet of seeds, plants, and insects, which to some result in the best tasting eggs. The term is not regulated by the FDA, so check that these eggs are Certified Humane and American Humane Certified. If you see this certification, a third party has determined that the hens have a specific amount of pasture land to roam and sufficient natural foods.

Hormone Free

While seeing these labels on a package may bring you comfort, don’t rely too heavily on these statements. The FDA has banned the use of hormones for poultry production, so this is true for all eggs.

Related: Where to Find Cheap Butter

So what type of eggs should I buy?

person holding a dozen large eggs in carton

To be perfectly honest, it’s up to you! All eggs are healthy and a great source of protein and vitamin D. You should not avoid eggs in your balanced diet just because your budget doesn’t have room for high-end, organic brands.

But if you do want to shop for eggs with denser shells and round, yellow yolks, look for pasture-raised, organic eggs. According to experts at the Cleveland Clinic, these eggs have lower cholesterol content and darker, richer yolks.

How to get the best deals on cheap eggs.

Nice!-Eggs-BOGO-VE-4.17

While the prices listed above are regular prices and not reflective of any sales, you can save by using coupons for eggs. We often see mobile and printable coupons for 30% off a dozen eggs, or $0.50 to $1 off per dozen. The best way to save is to be flexible with the brands you purchase and the stores you shop. Though we don’t recommend spending the extra gas to go to multiple stores to get the lowest price, it’s worth planning your grocery trip around stores that often have the lowest prices on cheap eggs and other basic grocery essentials to stock up.

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