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Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Will you be buying an extra turkey or two this year?

And, what are the turkey deals like in your area, this year?

The deals are not nearly as good this year, as last, for my local stores. Many of the stores have a "spend $150, get a turkey for free" deal going.. This deal is especially hard on lower income folks, who just don't spend that large of an amount at one time. So, I'm not pleased with that deal.

Another local chain has "spend $30, buy a frozen turkey for 59 cents/lb". This doesn't sound too bad. But it is about 20 cents more per pound than this chain had last year, on their "deal".

Finally, the best deal for me this year, "spend $35, buy one turkey for 99 cents per pound, get one turkey of equal or lesser value for free". I was able to find turkeys which were identical sizes, so my price per pound was 49 cents. Still 10 cents more per pound than last year. But as it was the best deal around for my circumstances, I'll take it. In fact, I got 4 turkeys with this deal, this year. I'll roast one this week, and save the other 3 for the rest of the year. At least we'll have plenty of poultry for the months to come.

Buying extra turkeys at Thanksgiving will help me keep our grocery spending low through the rest of the year.


  1. How long do you keep a a turkey in the freezer after buying it? Do you ever keep it longer than a year?

    1. Hi live and learn,
      I'll cook our final turkey from this November's purchases in September, at the latest. I've never had a turkey in the freezer over a year. I've read that if you have a stand-alone freezer, kept at 0 degrees or colder, then up to 1 year for best flavor and texture. But with regards to food safety, turkeys can be kept frozen much longer. I just don't find eating an old turkey very appealing.
      Our plan for this year's 3 extra turkeys is 1 in January, 1 in April, and 1 in September.

  2. Our store HyVee had a deal of buy a certain ham and get a turkey FREE...The turkey was for 10 to 14 pounds... So we bought a nice ham and then go a 13 and 1/2 pound turkey free...$17 turkey for free... I put the ham and the turkey in the freezer for later in the winter.... I then waited to see if turkey went on sale because I needed a bigger turkey...Ended up with a 20 pound turkey.... we are having a lot of people......Happy Thanksgiving....Lisa

    1. Hi lisa,
      Now that's a good deal, you're set with both a ham and a turkey for later
      Have a lovely Thanksgiving!.

  3. We don't have any good turkey deals around here unless you spend a huge amount. I still have a turkey in the freezer from last year, so I won't be buying extra. There are only 4 of us, so I'll be buying a whole chicken for Thanksgiving. I'll make it in the crockpot for extra oven space.

    Also, just observing, I haven't seen any advertised potato deals, which I wanted to stock up on. I'm sort of bummed about that. I believe last year, pretty much every store had 10 lb bags for $1. Maybe it was Christmas, not Thanksgiving?

    I think that last deal you posted is good compared to the ones I've seen.

    Happy Thanksgiving!

    1. Hi Katie,
      I think you're right about the potato sales being Thanksgiving. That's when they've traditionally gone on ad, here.
      I wondered about the potato crop, this year, as only 1 of our local stores had potatoes on sale this week at a great price. This store had them at 97 cents for 10 lb. The next best advertised sale price I could find was $1.79/10 lbs. Anyway, on the one store with potatoes at 97 cents, there was a limit of 1 per transaction, which they haven't done before either. So, I stopped in as often as I was passing by, and brought family members with me. We wound up buying 80 lbs. (Sounds like a lot, but my potato-loving family will go through these in a few months).

      I also was surprised to find the turkey deals not hugely great, either. Last year, every store had turkeys right around 30 cents per pound, with just a small spend required ($25-30). Now I wonder if there will be a glut of turkey on the market in spring.

    2. Katie,

      It is usually Thanksgiving for potato sales. Last year, I'm sure I got 10 pounds for $1. This week, my Kroger has 10 pounds for $1.99.


    3. It's Thanksgiving, and I normally buy 300-400 pounds for .10 a pound every November. The sales have been VERY slim this year. One store had a limit of 1 10-pound bag for .99 cents. My husband tried and was able to get 16 bags on 16 transactions. 160 pounds is a far cry from the 400 we have had in the past, but I'm glad we were able to get them.

    4. Brandy, I'm so glad for you that you got the potatoes that you did. It may be half of what you normally buy, but they will be enjoyed. And maybe we'll see sales on potatoes later this year. If they have a surplus, they'll have to do something with them.

  4. My husband has one in the freezer. We will be eating turkey at my in-law's house but we usually purchase one or two extras for the inexpensive meat. I don't remember our pricing last year (cuz Steve buys the turkeys!) but this year it's $10 off with an additional $20 purchase for a 10-15 pounder or $17 off with an additional $20 purchase for 16 pounds and up. It's tricky to find the lower poundage weight (where you get the better deal) because everyone grabs those first, so Steve tries to get there early. I don't think our potato sales are anything exceptional this year--they are usually cheaper at Aldi our Aldi's potatoes aren't always the best quality so sometimes I'd rather pay a buck or two more for them.

    It's highway robbery to have to spend $150 for a free turkey! Glad you got a good deal.

    1. Hi Kris,
      Hopefully your husband will get the turkey you're after. The smaller turkeys are easier to deal with, I think. Especially when you're just roasting it for your family.

      I thought having to spend $150 was way out of line, too. It completely left lower income people out of the sale. Really bothered me.

      Have a wonderful Thanksgiving! Safe driving, too. I don't know what the roads are expected to be like in your area, but it sure seems like every year, the US Thanksgiving holiday coincides with the first of the messy weather.

  5. Lili,

    How do you store your potatoes? Sorry, if I missed it somewhere.

    I was thinking of stocking up on potatoes at Kroger this week. 10 pounds for $1.99 isn't great, but the best I have seen this year. We have an unheated 'mud/utility room' between the kitchen and the garage. I didn't know how cold it actually gets in that room until Sunday. I put a thermometer in there and it seems to be around 55 in the day and 50 at night. Is that cold enough to keep potatoes for awhile? Or should I put them in the garage where it is usually between 40 - 45? All I know is that my grandparents always dug up their potatoes and kept them in their cellar. They usually had potatoes until Spring.

    Happy Thanksgiving!


    1. Hi Angie,

      Potatoes are best stored at temps between 40 and 45 F. So, your garage might be ideal, if you don't have rodents. We live up against a native area, and have rodents, so I can't store mine loose in the garage.

      Best plan, get them out of the plastic bags, right away. If you happen to have large baskets, they're best (good air circulation), but alternatively, paper sacks work, too (that's what I do). Top the paper bag with another paper bag, to keep light out. Don't store on the garage floor, but slightly elevated, either on a shelf, or on a pallet, or make-shift riser/pallet (you can do this with two by fours). Check them every couple of weeks, and remove any that appear to be developing mold.

      Unless potatoes are treated, they will begin to sprout in 2 to 3 months. So, stocking up for more than a 3 to 4 month supply might be a waste.

      Most people have heard that you shouldn't keep your potatoes in the fridge. I loaded 30 pounds into the drawers of our fridge over the weekend. And will load 10 more pounds, when the apples are gone (in an other couple of weeks). The problem with storing in the fridge is the starches turn to sugars. But, you can reverse this by taking potatoes out of the fridge, 4 or 5 days before cooking, and the sugars will mostly turn back to starch. The bulk of our potatoes (50 lbs) are in the pantry, as we don't have a spot this year that's any cooler. We used to use a spare bedroom that we closed the heat supply vent to, and kept the door closed (it stayed around 55 in there in winter without heat).

      We eat a lot of potatoes in winter. My husband likes to take them in to have with lunch at work. I like them for lunch, as well, and I add them to about half of our dinners all season long. I expect that we will be out of potatoes sometime in March.

      Oh, one more thought, if your potatoes begin to go soft-ish towards the end of the season and you want to save them, you can cook and make mashed potatoes (recipes which call for cream cheese, or lots of butter work best for freezing), and pack into meal-size packages. Then reheat, add milk, as needed, and beat them extra hard. They'll be decent enough for a family meal, or for topping a shepherd's pie. or for making potato-leek soup.

      Hope that helps!

      Have a lovely Thanksgiving!

    2. meant to add to last paragraph -- mash the potatoes, pack into containers *and* freeze! They'll keep in the freezer for about 3 months.

    3. Well, so far we haven't had problems with rodents, but we've only lived in this home for 15 months. Our 3 1/2 acres is surrounded by our neighbors' 25 acres. They have farm animals and keep about 20 cats. We have the best of both worlds because we don't have to take care of cats, they mostly stay on our neighbors property, and they seem to control the rodent population. I see a cat or two hunting in our back yard every now and then, or in our field and I think 'carry on kitty, carry on'. :)

      Anyway, I think I might try to store some potatoes in the garage.

      I had heard that one shouldn't store potatoes in the fridge. Thanks for the information about that! :) I didn't know that I could make mashed potatoes and freeze for later use either. I will definitely remember that the next time I have some potatoes going a little soft.

      Thanks! I have to say that I have learned more from reading your blog than any other.


    4. Hi Angie,
      Your potatoes will probably be just fine in your garage. If you had rodents, you'd likely know about it by now! Lucky you, to have cats who come your way!

      Thank you for the kind compliment! I learn so much from others who comment, here!

  6. Most stores had a spend $400 and get a free turkey, not possible for me. I did spend $25 at one store to get a turkey @ 59/lb. Best price around. We had that this past Sunday for our Thanksgiving (due to divorce, we have Tgiving every other year). I also have recently bought 4 turkey breasts (bone in) @ 99/lb-my go to price. So we ate one, i have 4 more waiting. Nice feeling. : )

    1. Hi Carol,
      $400! Oh, Wow! That's just ridiculous, and completely blocks low-income folks from participating.

      But it does sound like you got a good deal on yours, and the bone-in turkey breast price beats what I would pay around here. You'll be enjoying those for a while, yet!

      I found little on sale that I could use to get to the $35 spend, and wound up stocking up on bath tissue. I buy our bath tissue at that store, anyway, so that worked out.

      Enjoy your long weekend!

  7. There was a store here with a $50 requirement last week in order to buy one for .68 a pound. Prices are MUCH higher here this year. I was going to get a turkey at that price and noticed the $50 requirement (including the cost of the turkey) in tiny print (this store doesn't send out ads). I was talking with the woman next to me and then I noticed that and mentioned it.

    She said she couldn't do it and she had to put the turkey back.

    Every time I think about her and her husband, who were there together, I start crying. I sat and cried in the parking lot afterwards. I have prayed that they were able to get a turkey.

    The higher prices and limits at stores this year were much different than years past. I am concerned that the days of inexpensive turkeys may be going away. Stores that had $25 requirements in the past to purchase a turkey had $150 requirements this year.

    1. I am very curious to know if overall, stores sold fewer turkeys this year. And just what will happen to the surplus of turkeys, if there is a surplus.

      Now, with potatoes, I had an inkling in October that potato prices wouldn't be as good (maybe the crop wasn't as prolific this year). When I shopped the clearance at my fav produce stand, their best price on potatoes was in 50 lb sacks for 20/cents per pound. I was keeping my fingers crossed that I'd find someplace with a good price on potatoes, as our garden potatoes didn't do well this summer.

      It seemed odd to me, that many of the stores had exactly the same deal, here (spend $150, get a turkey for free). It felt like instead of stores giving each other competition, in this free-market economy, they all banded together, to extract the most money from customers possible.

      That is so sad about the couple who couldn't buy a turkey. I hope they were able to get a turkey somehow.

      Keep an eye on sales on *fresh* turkeys in the days immediately after Thanksgiving. Stores will have to do something with the fresh ones right away.


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