We Love Aldi: A Guide to Des Moines Grocery Shopping


Aldi grocery shopping des moinesOkay, hear me out. I know some of you are Aldi lovers but there is a good chance you clicked on this even though you’re an Aldi snob. Here’s a secret.

I used to be the biggest Aldi snob.

It’s true.

We lived in Nashville at the time and I walked into an Aldi (with my nose up of course) did a quick loop, was appalled that you had to bring your own quarter for the shopping cart AND bag your groceries, and walked out. I told myself I’d never step foot into an Aldi again.

Then we moved to Iowa and our grocery bill skyrocketed. Still trying to figure that one out but I had to find a way to spend less.

Aldi A Guide to Des Moines Grocery ShoppingEnter Aldi. This is my warning to you: never say never. I had also said I would never move back to Iowa, and here I am. 🙂

Giving Aldi (a fair) second chance

With fresh eyes, I went back to Aldi, quarter and bags in hand, and I was surprisingly shocked at how many organic options Aldi had to offer. I realized I had judged this place all wrong.

Grocery shopping at Aldi has been a game changer for our family. We’ve saved so much money and it actually takes less time to grocery shop because there’s nothing to get distracted by!

I will say, I don’t buy everything there. They have a lot of great staples, organic produce, and other amazing products but there are some special items I still buy at local stores. Not everyone loves shopping at different stores, but for me, it’s been 100% worth it because of how much money I am saving. I cringe when I have to run to a different store and pay double for Kerrygold butter or some other product!

What know before you shop at Aldi

  • Bring a quarter. You will need this to get a shopping cart. The quarter unlocks the cart and when you return the cart you get your quarter back. I always keep one in the same spot in my car to ensure I have it when I go shopping.
  • Bring your own reusable bags. I always keep them in my trunk for easy access. If you happen to forget them they do sell plastic and paper bags for cheap.
  • You bag your own groceries. It really isn’t all the bad, promise. It takes me no time at all and I don’t even think twice about it anymore. This is actually one of the reasons prices are so low, fewer workers!
  • Limited staff. The Aldi staff are some of the friendliest grocery store employees you’ll ever meet! They’re super friendly and helpful, but there just aren’t a lot of them. This helps keep prices down.
  • Small store. Think 4-6 aisles. I’ve grown to love this because it literally takes me 15-20 minutes to grocery shop. By now I know where everything is so I can run in and out. I love that about grocery shopping at Aldi.

What do I Buy When I Shop at Aldi?

Okay, you probably scrolled down to this section, which is totally fine. But be sure to scroll up to What to know before you shop, especially if you’re a first-time shopper!

I’m saving hundreds each month and to me, that’s 100% worth it. Below are my go-to items:

Organic Blue Corn Tortilla Chips



Organic Chia Seeds

Organic Flax Seeds

Oven Roasted Almonds

Organic Popcorn

Organic Cheddar and Mozzarella Cheese (shredded)

Slivered Almonds

Chopped Walnuts


Organic Ketchup

Organic Eggs

Mixed Nuts

Organic Salsa

Organic Honey

Pure Maple Syrup

Gluten-Free Pretzels

Organic Puffs

Organic Eggs

Organic Chopped Kale

Organic Mixed Greens

Organic Unrefined Coconut Oil

Organic Olive Oil: The price for this is soooo good and HALF the price if you’re shopping at other stores!

Kerrygold Butter

Wild Caught Salmon

Organic Frozen Blueberries/Strawberries

Organic Grass Fed Beef Patties

Organic Grass Fed Ground Beef

Organic Top Sirloin Steak

Organic Baby Pouches

Organic Spices

Organic Apple Cider Vinegar

Organic Colby Jack and White Cheddar Cheese (sliced)

Freeze Dried Fruit

Organic Oranges

Organic Onions

Organic Grapes

Organic Bananas

Organic Pears

Organic Potatoes

Organic Cucumbers

Organic Bell Peppers

Organic Grape Tomatoes

Organic Apples

Organic Baby Carrots

Organic Berries (when in season)

Lifeway Kefir

Organic Brown Rice

Organic Quinoa

Brown Rice Pasta

Sparkling Water

Organic Beans (canned)

Organic Mini Cucumbers

Unsweetened Coconut Flakes (seasonal)

Organic Pumpkin (seasonal)

Never Any Nitrate-Free Bacon

Feta Cheese:

Frozen Green Beans

Gluten Free Raisin Bread

Frozen Cauliflower Rice

Toilet Paper


Paper Towels

Aldi has many other gluten-free and even organic products, but we don’t necessarily buy them all. Remember, just because something is gluten-free and/or organic doesn’t mean it’s healthy or good for you.

I hope this helps shed light on shopping at Aldi, and, at the very least, intrigues you to try it out. If it’s your first time shopping at Aldi, go with an open mind. Once you see how much you can save, you won’t want to shop anywhere else for your staples!

I’d love to know how many Aldi lovers (or, to be fair: snobs) there are reading this! What’s your favorite item to shop for at Aldi? And if you aren’t a fan, did this help change your mind at all?  

Do you grocery shop at Aldi?


6050 Mills Civic Pkwy, West Des Moines, IA 50266

3940 E 14th St, Des Moines, IA 50313

5512 SE 14th St, Des Moines, IA 50320

8400 Douglas Ave, Urbandale, IA 50322


This post is part of Des Moines Moms Blog’s Ultimate Guide to Grocery Shopping. This is not a sponsored post, all opinions are our own.


  1. I’m an Aldi’s lover but am 45 minutes from Des Moines. I try to hit up Aldi’s every time I’m in DSM amd I’m wondering which is your favorite location? I know from experience not every store is created equal amd want to hit up the best spot when I’m in town.

    • Hi Dana! I usually go to the one on East 14th only because it’s closer to my house (although they are currently building one in Ankeny!). But the one out in West Des Moines is really good too!

  2. That’s exciting to know Ankeny is getting this store, which will be closer for me! I related to this post a lot because I was sort of a snob my first few time there too. I don’t mind not having bags but I sometimes forget to bring my own, at least there are free boxes in that event, but some of the boxes are bulky or oddly shaped so I don’t always have a reuse for them and have to end up recycling them. I don’t go here as often just because it’s sort of out of the way for me right now and I can get most of what I need at other stores. It’s more of somewhere I go if I have extra time to spare but I do like trying new products I can’t get elsewhere once in awhile.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here