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While holiday grocery shopping this year, you probably noticed higher prices on basic essentials. Inflation, supply chain issues, and changes in demand caused a hefty increase on even the most necessary items. Butter prices are high, and we’ve 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. Now many states average around $4 per dozen and rising. So where can you find cheap eggs?

We did price comparisons at several national grocery chains to find the lowest price as of January 2023. Keep in mind that sale prices can affect these comparisons, but this is a good resource for where to shop for everyday essentials.

Want to save even more? We also compared shopping carts with other holiday goodies. Check which stores hit the mark for the lowest prices on Christmas cookie supplies, pumpkin pie ingredients, hot cocoa bar essentials, and charcuterie board fixings.

Tip: Never miss out on money-saving tips and tricks when you download The Krazy Coupon Lady app.

 

Why are eggs so expensive this year?

cracking eggs above a frying pan

You may have gone to your local grocery store and seen astronomical egg prices — or found no eggs on the shelves at all. The egg shortage is likely due to the Bird Flu affecting egg production. CNBC reports that over 50 million birds were affected by the Bird Flu this year since February. As a result, farmers have seen 37 million of their egg-layers die. Demand for eggs, along with this shortage in egg-laying hens, is driving prices up, making cheap eggs hard to find and also causing empty shelves in some stores.

 

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?

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.

 

Where to shop to find cheap eggs.

eggs on a shelf at whole foods

You’ll notice a higher price when you do see eggs on the shelves, but you can still shop smart to get the best deal. Browsing egg prices in my area, which is outside of Pittsburgh, I was lucky enough to find eggs on the shelves at each store. However, prices are noticeably higher than earlier this year. 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, Trader Joe’s is your best bet. Their egg prices were surprisingly 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

where to buy the cheapest dozen grade a eggs graphic with target as the winner

Looking strictly at store-brand Grade A eggs, Target’s Good & Gather wins first place. Their large white eggs are $3.69 for a dozen, working out to just $0.31 per egg, and the lowest price for cheap eggs anywhere on our list. Next up is Walmart’s Great Value brand at $3.78 per dozen, or $0.32 per egg, followed by Trader Joe’s at $3.99 per dozen or $.33 per egg. Aldi recently had a pretty huge price jump in my area and their Goldhen brand Grade A eggs at $5.49 per dozen work out to $.46 per egg!

You can sometimes score a better deal when you buy eggs in bulk, but even those prices are rising. In-store, Walmart sells a case of 60 Great Value Grade A white eggs and in 2020, the case was $5.24 or just $.09 per egg! In 2021, we saw that rise to $7.95 or $13 per egg. And recently at the end of 2022, that same case of eggs was $20.22 or a whopping $.34 per egg.

We also asked a few other KCL employees across the U.S. for their local egg prices. Albertson’s has a dozen Grade A eggs for just $1.89 in some stores. A Whole Foods in New Jersey rang up at $3.49 per dozen and a Walmart location in Kennewick, Washington has a dozen Grade A eggs for just $1.88 or a half dozen for $1.08 (working out to $2.06 per dozen if you buy two).

Cage-Free Eggs

where to buy the cheapest dozen cage-free eggs graphic with trader joes as the winner

Taking a look at cage-free eggs, Trader Joe’s takes the prize. Their cage-free eggs are $3.49 per dozen or $0.29 per egg. The second best price for cage-free is Target at $0.41 per egg or $4.89 per dozen. Aldi, with their hefty price jump, is now $5.45 per dozen or $.45 per egg. But Walmart, carrying only the Egglands Best Cage Free Eggs is the most expensive at $5.48 per dozen. It is also worth noting that many of these eggs are sold out at select stores in certain areas. My Target outside of Pittsburgh is currently out of cage-free eggs, so I cost-compared at a neighboring store.

Free-Range Eggs

where to buy the cheapest dozen free-range eggs graphic with trader joes as the winner

Again, Trader Joe’s comes out on top. Their free-range eggs are $3.99 per dozen or $0.33 per egg. That’s $0.06 per egg less than Aldi’s free-range eggs at $4.65 per dozen and a whopping $0.15 less per egg than the Happy Egg brand found at Walmart.

Pasture-Raised Eggs

where to buy the cheapest dozen pasture-raised eggs graphic with aldi as the winner

Pasture-raised eggs work out to be the most expensive on our list. Trader Joe’s pasture-raised eggs have actually moved out of our top spot with their price jump to $6.49 per dozen and $.54 per egg. The new winner is Aldi! At $5.49 per dozen, you’re paying $0.46 for their Goldhen brand. And Target carries the Vital Farms brand at $7.39 per dozen which is a huge price jump this week and $0.62 per egg! Walmart doesn’t have a pasture-raised option in my area.

 

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.

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