As a stay-at-home mom, I do a lot of grocery shopping. We try to eat most of our meals at home, and even though it is less expensive to do this, you spend a lot of time at the store if you want to continue to eat fresh and minimize the amount of preservatives. The farmer's market doesn't have everything I need—like the world—so we round out our pantry stocking with a trip to the grocery store.
A new just opened up in North Redondo, and I was thrilled to hear it. Sprouts has a wide array of foods, vitamins, and herbal remedies. I'm a fan of herbal remedies. "The Sleepy Nights" by WishGarden is a tincture worth trying when you are struggling with sleep and have recently discovered you ate a box of cereal while "sleeping" on Ambien. (That honestly happened to a friend of mine.)
But I'm here to talk about Sprouts, not sleep—and Sprouts is a terrific new addition to Redondo Beach. But how does it stack up to and (aka Whole Paycheck)?
Lately, I have found myself dividing my time between Trader Joe's, Sprouts and occasionally, Whole Foods. Before Sprouts came to town, I went to Whole Foods more often for vitamins and deli meats. Trader Joe's has recently—finally—started offering nitrate-free meats in the deli section, and Sprouts also carries a few nitrate-free items, so I no longer have to go to Whole Foods and pay the high prices they charge for these items.
Ideally, I would buy all of my produce at the (and ideally, I would weigh eight pounds less), but sometimes I miss the market and have to buy fruit and vegetables from the store. Trader Joe's has the best prices on organic fruit and vegetables. A pound of organic strawberries at Trader Joe's currently costs $2.49, while Sprouts and Whole Foods are charging $3.99. Deli meats without added nitrates cost around $7 at Whole Foods, $6 at Sprouts and $5 at Trader Joe's. Trader Joe's also charges much less than both stores for organic string cheese, which is one of Smith's snack staples. Where would you shop? If your answer is "Trader Joe's," you're precisely right, friend.
Now for the reasons I like Sprouts over the the other two stores: Sprouts carries bulk items at great prices. They have bins of nuts, cereal, beans, flour, spices and snack foods that cost less than they do at Whole Foods. Sprouts also has the same kind of items that Trader Joe's carries at similar prices—like Cheese Puffs. I have been known to eat a bag of cheese puffs in a day, so I guess it's best to buy them at the lowest prices. Not that I want to make a habit out of eating mass quantities of cheese puffs—I'm just saying it might be necessary one day to have an extra bag on hand.
Why still go to Whole Foods? The deli is expensive, but they do carry a wide variety of meat and seafood that is "natural" (no hormones, free range, grass fed, has lived life outside of a tiny box and has cabbage patch adoption papers). Whole Foods also excels in the fine cheese department. Their cheese selection is far better than Sprouts and Trader Joe's. Trust me. I was lactose intolerant before I got pregnant; now I can have dairy, so I eat cheese now like a person who has been deprived. Whole Foods also has a great olive bar, and Trader Joe's can't touch that.
In summary, Trader Joe's still wins my heart (that wayward pirate!), but I shop at Sprouts for the items that Trader Joe's does not carry and then Whole Foods on occasion for specialty items.
Shop savvy, Redondo Beach.