Popcorn Smackdown: SkinnyPop vs SimplyNature vs Heavenly Light

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three-popcorns

Somehow I ended up with three competing brands of popcorn here, so thought it would be fun to do a comparison + very limited sample blind taste test!

  • SkinnyPop is our name brand contender, weighing in at $6.59 for 18 oz at Costco, or 36.6 cents per oz.
  • SimplyNature is our limited time special buy ALDI contender, weighing in at $1.79 for 6 oz, or 29.8 cents per oz.
  • Heavenly Light is our CVS store brand contender, weighing in at $.99 for 2.25 oz, or 44 cents per oz. (5 oz is oddly more expensive at $2.49 regular price, or 50 cents per oz.) Full disclosure: I actually got this little bag free with the recent printable CVS coupon, but am listing its everyday price for purposes of comparison.

I opened three fresh bags here and we did a blind taste test among all three.

three-bowls-of-popcorn

Behold: Three bowls of popcorn. Which one looks the tastiest? We eat with our eyes, too… 😉 While you’re thinking about that, let’s see how they stack up ingredient-wise:

  • SkinnyPop: Popcorn, sunflower oil, and salt. Non-GMO and gluten free. 39 calories per cup.
  • SimplyNature: Organic popcorn, organic expeller pressed sunflower and/or safflower seed oil, salt. Non-GMO, organic, and gluten free (but processed in a facility that also processes milk, soy, peanuts, tree nuts, and egg). 37 calories per cup.
  • Heavenly Light: White popcorn, corn oil, and sea salt. Gluten free. 40 calories per cup.

popcorn-pick-from-mr-8

And here’s Mr. 8’s pick — he was a fan of bowl C.

Good choice, Mr. 8!

… he picked: ALDI SimplyNature brand organic popcorn! In our decidedly limited six person sample here, we have:

  • Three votes for ALDI SimplyNature (bowl C).
  • Two votes for SkinnyPop (bowl A).
  • One vote for CVS Heavenly Light (bowl B).

Reviewers generally commented that SkinnyPop and ALDI SimplyNature were very close in both taste and texture (and tough to pick between!). The general consensus, however, was that CVS Heavenly Light tasted “stale” and “too chewy,” while the sole vote for bowl B was because “it’s saltier.”

ALDI SimplyNature brand wins all around

Aside from narrowly beating out SkinnyPop in our blind taste test, SimplyNature popcorn was the only organic brand tested — and is also the cheapest per ounce, with the fewest calories. Unfortunately this is a limited time special buy item at ALDI, but I’ll be picking more up while available!

What’s your favorite brand of bagged popcorn?

ALDI deals week of 5/27/15 – 6/2/15

Posts on Mashup Mom may contain affiliate links. Please see disclosure and disclaimer here.

Here are your Chicago ALDI deals on produce and more for the week of 5/27/15 – 6/2/15.

  • Produce (and sometimes other) prices vary by location, as do ad dates; these ALDI deals are from Chicago ads.
  • These ALDI deals are from both the weekly mailed ad and the weekly in-store preview ad. To see your own weekly ads, check on the ALDI site here each Wednesday.
  • ALDI does not take manufacturer coupons. ALDI does not take credit cards, only cash or debit.
  • Bring a quarter to “rent” a shopping cart, and you get it back when you return the cart. Bring your own reusable bags; ALDI does not provide free bags.

Produce deals

  • SimplyNature organic spring mix, $1.99.
  • Pint organic grape tomatoes, $1.49.
  • Red grapes, $1.09/lb.
  • Bananas, $.44/lb.
  • Mangoes, $.49 each.
  • Cantaloupe, $1.39 each.
  • 2 lb Vidalia onions, $.99.
  • 4 pack sweet corn, $1.49.

*** Click here to read the rest of this week’s ALDI deals! ***

Got frustrated and just went to Costco shopping

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clearancedeals

This morning I stopped by Jewel looking for more portobellos on the last day of the sale — they had about five really yucky ones left, so I passed. I did, however, see a bunch of $1.00 clearance gefilte fish at the Lombard store (and dates are wayyyyy out there, so no worries) — and also found a $1.50 OYNO Catalina someone left sticking out of the machine at self checkout, so the trip wasn’t a total loss. Bought two gefilte fish for MashupDad ($2.00), 2 ears corn ($.25), 100 sq ft Glad wrap ($1.99 & used $1.00/1 from the 5/3 SS1 and got $1.00 back on Ibotta). Used the $1.50 Catalina I found to pay $1.94 with $1.00 back for a net cost of $.94.

Then I decided to head down the road to the Villa Park ALDI for the last day of cheap blueberries. Turns out they didn’t get any in, because that’s how my day is going, lol. They did have a bunch of 40 oz peanut butter on clearance for $1.99, but I passed because I’m working on this healthier eating thing and it was full of sugar and hydrogenated oils and such. There, I bought organic popcorn ($1.79), clearance 16 oz cotija ($1.99), avocado ($.79), clearance olives ($1.25) = $5.92.

costcoaldijewel526

So then I said the heck with it and drove a little further down the road to Costco, where I found 2 lbs of blueberries for $6.49. OK, then! Costco:

Milk, $2.45. Got $.20 back on Ibotta.
2 lbs Oscar Mayer Selects lunch meat, $7.99.
Almond butter, $10.79.
2 lbs blueberries, $6.49.
Organic half & half, $5.99.
Skinny Pop, $6.59.

Spent $41.01 with $.20 back for a net cost of $40.81. Net cost for the day: $47.67 — and a horribly inefficient way to shop, but it’s always fun to browse around Costco.

Taste Test To Come

Later on I’ll do a taste test of Skinny Pop vs. SimplyNature. They both contain just popcorn, oil, and salt, while 18 oz Skinny Pop runs $6.59 at Costco, or 36.6 cents per oz. The 6 oz bag of SimplyNature cost $1.79 at ALDI, or 29.8 cents per oz. Both are non-GMO and gluten free, but the ALDI brand is also organic.

ALDI deals week of 5/20/15 – 5/26/15

Posts on Mashup Mom may contain affiliate links. Please see disclosure and disclaimer here.

Here are your Chicago ALDI deals on produce and more for the week of 5/20/15 – 5/26/15.

  • Produce (and sometimes other) prices vary by location, as do ad dates; these ALDI deals are from Chicago ads.
  • These ALDI deals are from both the weekly mailed ad and the weekly in-store preview ad. To see your own weekly ads, check on the ALDI site here each Wednesday.
  • ALDI does not take manufacturer coupons. ALDI does not take credit cards, only cash or debit.
  • Bring a quarter to “rent” a shopping cart, and you get it back when you return the cart. Bring your own reusable bags; ALDI does not provide free bags.

Produce deals

  • 4 pack corn, $1.49.
  • 6 oz raspberries, $1.29.
  • Pint blueberries, $1.79.
  • Pineapple, $1.69.
  • Cantaloupe, $1.29.
  • Seedless watermelon, $4.29.

*** Click here to read the rest of this week’s ALDI deals! ***

$.39 avocados shopping

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avocados

Stopped by the Villa Park ALDI on Roosevelt earlier today to take advantage of the last day of the $.69 avocado sale — and they’d marked them down to $.39 each! I bought 12, lol — they’re perfectly ripe to use right now, so I’m going to make a giant batch of guacamole tonight and freeze some. (Just leave the tomatoes out for freezing because they’ll get watery and freeze in quart bags — you can always add some fresh diced tomato in once you thaw it.)

aldishop

For $16.19, I bought 12 avocados, 2 lbs Vidalia onions ($.79), knockoff Atkins bars ($3.99), the cutest little set of bowls ($2.99 on clearance), raspberries ($1.29), and pork chops (supposed to be half off $5.75 but she rang them in as $2.00). I normally don’t buy ALDI pork chops since they’re solution added and cook up watery, but I punted because I didn’t know what to make for dinner and am now making skillet salsa verde pork chops. (Oh, and I’ll get back $.25 on Checkout 51 for avocados. It’s something!)

bowls

Seriously, aren’t these bowls adorable? They’re plastic and I think perfect for kids’ snacks, fresh berries, etc. There was a lot of other clearance in the store today, but this is all that spoke to me. What have you picked up at your ALDI lately?

May be done for the week shopping

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freshaldi

I just added up all the grocery/HBA shopping I did this week and I’m at a net cost of $78.55, including these above trips to Caputo’s/Fresh Thyme/ALDI yesterday. I try to keep it around $75 (although hmm, do the plants here count? if not, I’m at $75.21, perfect!) and was well over last week after the Costco fun. I’m thinking I might actually relax this a little bit now that I’m doing less coupon shopping and more whole foods (the foods, not the store) shopping, but we’ll see. What’s your weekly target these days?

illegal

And yes, that’s a lot of stores — yesterday was coffee and shopping with a friend day, and Caputo’s & Goodwill are in the strip mall with Panera, kitty corner from Fresh Thyme. We also went to Goodwill, but I didn’t buy anything! Including these somewhat disturbing plates….

ALDI

Raspberries, $1.29.
8 avocados, $5.52.

That’s $6.93.

Caputo’s

Kumato tomatoes, $.65.
5 limes, $.50.
Campari tomatoes, $.22.

That’s $1.39.

Fresh Thyme

Bulk nutritional yeast, $.60. 2 packs sliced mild cheddar, $2.13 total.
2 Earth Balance baking sticks, $5.98. Used two $1.00/1 from the Gluten Free Expo.
Earth Balance shortening sticks, $2.99. Used $1.00/1 from the Gluten Free Expo.
Cayenne pepper plant, $1.67.
Chives plant, $1.67.
2 Earth Balance organic frozen veggies, $3.00. Used $1.00/2 printable from their e-club.
Van’s waffles, $1.99.
Enjoy Life cookies, $2.50. Used $1.00/1 from the Gluten Free Expo.
Chicken brats, $2.66.
2 packs blackberries, $1.76.
2 bunches parsley, $1.00.
3 red bell peppers, $1.00.
Red grapes, $1.05.
Vidalia onion, $.39.
Tuna steak, $5.49.

Paid $31.73.

Reader deals 5/12/15

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readerdealsbook

Reader deals 5/12/15: Here are the deals, heads up, and requests you shared over the last 24 hours — Thanks! How do you share your own deal?

  • Email Rachel: [email protected]
  • Comment below, or on any post where it seems to fit.
  • Post on the Mashup Mom Facebook page.

*** If you are sharing a deal from another site or an online coupon, please include the link. If you found a deal at a specific store, please include the location.

ALDI

  • Kristin shares a find on Facebook: “Aldi in Buffalo Grove had all the mother’s day flowers on clearance. 1.99 for 6 roses. I got 2 sets. Lots left this morning!”

Amazon

Buona Beef

  • Letsshop shares a May 30 only offer from Buona Beef — get throwback prices when you show the app offer or your Buona card to your cashier. Plus, 10″ beef for the price of 7″ all month long — probably also need card or app.

Meijer

  • Andrew clarifies some things about the Meijer refund policy: “Regarding Joanne and her refund issue. It sounds like one of two things are at play here (or both). One case is that the item she returned was part of an instant savings promotion, like buy $20, save $5 instantly. The receipt won’t show the deduction under the item purchased, but will proportionally associate the discount with each item. For example, you bought 5 items at $4.19 each in a buy $20, save $5 instantly promotion. If you were to return one of those items, you would only receive $3.19 back, since the $5 instant savings is proportionally split among the 5 items purchased, or $1 off each item. The other case involves redeeming earned personalized rewards as part the transaction. Like case one, a $5 off your next order is proportionally associated with every item in your order, so if you buy 20 items in your transaction, returning any item on that receipt will end up with a reduction of $0.25 per item. It can be confusing, but you have not been cheated out of anything if you’re actually returning the item for a refund. On the other hand, the same problem will occur if you try to do an exchange, for example, trading a medium size shirt for a large. The register will actually suggest you owe money if you redeemed a personalized reward in the original transaction, which is just plain wrong.”
  • LauraC asks: “Does anyone know if Meijer will take Whole Foods coupons? Meijer carries he Enjoy life products. Has anyone had issues with using Target coupons paired with a manufacture coupon at the Meijer in Melrose Park? I was thinking of using my Iams coupons there.”
  • And ann suggests: “Laura, now the Melrose Park Meijer is good about taking Target coupons with a manufacture coupon. A few months ago I asked on facebook if we could combine, was told yes, then asked them to advise the Melrose Park Meijer. Have not had a problem since then.”

Target

  • LauraC confirms on the Nature Made deal that: “For NatureMade it does include the kids vitamins along with Vitamin B, B-12 and D. My target in Wheaton appeared to be out of the regular B.”
  • Kelly found: “Thera a nice little deal going on at Target on Powerade 8pks. They are on sale for $4 (list $5.09). There is a 10% cartwheel so get them for $3.60. The 12pks are also on sale with a 20% cartwheel but my Target didn’t carry the favors I wanted.”

ALDI deals week of 5/13/15 – 5/19/15

Posts on Mashup Mom may contain affiliate links. Please see disclosure and disclaimer here.

Here are your Chicago ALDI deals on produce and more for the week of 5/13/15 – 5/19/15.

  • Produce (and sometimes other) prices vary by location, as do ad dates; these ALDI deals are from Chicago ads.
  • These ALDI deals are from both the weekly mailed ad and the weekly in-store preview ad. To see your own weekly ads, check on the ALDI site here each Wednesday.
  • ALDI does not take manufacturer coupons. ALDI does not take credit cards, only cash or debit.
  • Bring a quarter to “rent” a shopping cart, and you get it back when you return the cart. Bring your own reusable bags; ALDI does not provide free bags.

Produce deals

  • Large Hass avocados, $.69 each.
  • 20 oz beefsteak tomatoes, $.99.
  • 2 lb Vidalia onions, $.79.
  • 6 oz raspberries, $1.29.
  • 6 oz blackberries, $.99.
  • Mangoes, $.49 each.

*** Click here to read the rest of this week’s ALDI deals! ***

Coupon free shopping under $20

Posts on Mashup Mom may contain affiliate links. Please see disclosure and disclaimer here.

petes-aldi-511

Realized I hadn’t been to ALDI in a week, so popped over to see what’s new. The answer? $1.99 pints of blueberries. Then, Pete’s Market is right across the street… :)

ALDI

Strawberries, $1.49.
2 pints blueberries, $3.98.
2 packs tortillas, $.66.
3 avocados, $2.37.

Paid $8.65.

Pete’s

Romaine lettuce, $.50.
4 limes, $.50.
Apples, $1.36.
Green onions, $.33.
Portobello mushrooms, $2.84.
Poblano peppers, $.86.
8 oz mushrooms, $.98.
Sourdough bread, $3.29.

Paid $10.85. So, $19.50 all together — and I’m doing a lot more shopping without coupons lately, how about you?

ALDI deals week of 5/6/15 – 5/12/15

Posts on Mashup Mom may contain affiliate links. Please see disclosure and disclaimer here.

Here are your Chicago ALDI deals on produce and more for the week of 5/6/15 – 5/12/15.

  • Produce (and sometimes other) prices vary by location, as do ad dates; these ALDI deals are from Chicago ads.
  • These ALDI deals are from both the weekly mailed ad and the weekly in-store preview ad. To see your own weekly ads, check on the ALDI site here each Wednesday.
  • ALDI does not take manufacturer coupons. ALDI does not take credit cards, only cash or debit.
  • Bring a quarter to “rent” a shopping cart, and you get it back when you return the cart. Bring your own reusable bags; ALDI does not provide free bags.

Produce deals

  • Organic bananas, $.60/lb.
  • Organic baby spinach 5 oz pkg, $1.69.
  • Pineapple, $1.29 each.
  • 4 lb navel oranges, $1.99.
  • 16 oz kiwi, $1.99.
  • 16 oz strawberries, $1.49.
  • 6 oz blackberries, $.99.
  • Pint blueberries, $1.99.

*** Click here to read the rest of this week’s ALDI deals! ***