When you stroll into a dollar store with a
wad of singles and everything on the shelf is a buck, it might seem like there’s no way
you can’t get a bargain. “It’s cheap, it’s convenient, it saves me
from going to Walmart.” Food is a huge part of the sales formula for
dollar stores, after all, and while they might not be what most people think of when they
picture a grocery store, they actually sell more food than Whole Foods — though, let’s
be honest, you can probably expect a lot less of it to be labeled “artisan.” “It’s cheaper, like here you can get all these
things for a dollar each.” A lot of what makes up dollar stores’ food
sales would fall under the snack category, but it turns out that grabbing chips from
the dollar store shelf may not be such a score after all. Here’s what you should know about dollar store
chips before your next snack attack. Money Crashers set out to see just how great
the deals were when it came to food at a typical dollar store and noticed pretty quickly that
customers weren’t getting all that much bang for their buck. That bag of Frito’s, Doritos, Lay’s, or some
other name brand chip just isn’t going to have much in it. On an ounce-by-ounce basis, the chips sold
at dollar stores for $1 don’t compare well with what you might pay at a grocery store. Basically, dollar store chips are just as
bad of a deal as buying chips at a gas station — which, by the way, isn’t a good deal on
your dollar either, according to Popular Mechanics. Need more proof that your dollar doesn’t go
too far when it comes to buying chips at a dollar store? Consider a bag of Takis Fuego Hot Chili Pepper
and Lime Chips. At Dollar Tree, a bag might only set you back
$1, but you’re only getting 3.2 ounces – barely a handful. At Walmart, a bag of the same flavored Takis
will cost you $2.68, but you’re getting 9.9 ounces. So Dollar Tree charges you 31 cents per ounce,
while Walmart only charges 27 cents per ounce — and depending on where you live, that
Walmart price might be as low as 20 cents per ounce, while the dollar store is still
charging $1, regardless of location. Price and quantity are only two factors one
has to consider when shopping for chips to snack on at the dollar store. There’s also the very important factor of
taste. Obviously there’s no reason to suspect that
your Doritos from Dollar General are going to taste any different than if you had bought
them from Publix — assuming the bag isn’t four years old and full of stale, sad tortilla
chips. You’ll notice pretty quickly strolling through
the snack section of a dollar store, though, that they also happen to carry chip brands
that you’ve probably never heard of. For example, Dollar Tree carries its own brand
of potato chips under the Home Style Select label. Dollar Tree didn’t get particularly creative
with the logo design, but then again, who really cares about a logo? How do these dollar store chips really taste? Well, the old saying “you get what you pay
for” happens to be true when it comes to potato chips, too. According to some potato chip critics, the
chips taste and feel like they’re more made of oil than potato. On the plus side, a bag of Home Style Select
chips does offer you a little more portion-wise than the Takis, since it comes in a 5-ounce
bag. Of course, Dollar Tree also sells 5.34-ounce
canisters of actual Lay’s Stax chips. This begs the question — why would you pay
a buck for the knockoff brand of chips when you could pay the same price and get more
of the name brand chips? When it comes down to it, buying chips from
the dollar store really doesn’t add up to be much of a good bargain when you factor
in price, quantity, and taste. Just something to think about next time you’re
searching for crumbs in the bottom of that bag of dollar store Takis. Check out one of our newest videos right here! Plus, even more Mashed videos about your favorite
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