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Coupon Abbreviations
  • SC = Store Coupon
  • MC = Manufacturer Coupon
  • SS = Smart Source
  • RP = Red Plum
  • PG = Proctor and Gamble
Coupon Terms
  • WYB = When You Buy
  • B1G1 = Buy One Get One Free
  • .75/1 = 75 cents off one item
  • .75/3 = 75 cents off three items
  • EXP = Expiration Date

Going Nuts? I can help you understand coupon terms and abbreviations

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US Foods Chef's Store = Great Way to Stock Up on Meat & Produce!

In my area we had a new store open in the last 6 months that I finally got to go in this past weekend.  It’s a US Foods Chef’s Store, geared towards restaurant supply.  The fun part is that anyone can shop there, you don’t need to show any ID and there is no membership fee!  There are only 3 Chef Store locations right now (Columbia SC, Charlotte NC, and Oklahoma City) but something similar in other areas would be a Gordon Food Service (locations in FL, TN, and great lakes states).

Normally I’m not a fan of buying in bulk because you really aren’t getting the savings you think you are (buying smaller items on sale with coupons is 99% of the time a better deal).  However… the big exception is produce and meat!  If you can handle bulk sizes then I encourage you to check out a store in your area!!

What is the difference between this and Sams or other Warehouse Clubs?

  • No Membership Fee.
  • Warehouse clubs sell large quantities of smaller sized products.  For example you can buy 12 cans of hunts tomatoes.  Restaurant Supply stores sell large sizes only.  So a 1 gallon can of hunts tomatoes.

What is the savings like?

You really want to just focus on meat and produce.  Most families don’t need a 5 gallon bucket of soy sauce or 5 lbs of mayonnaise.

I grabbed a few prices as I walked around the store.  To help compare it better I’m showing you the price per lb or per item since that is how your brain is used to processing produce.  I’m also comparing it to the farmer’s market in my area and the grocery store.  Farmer’s Market prices are based on buying in bulk too, not by a small basket.

Chef’s Store Farmers Market Grocery Store
Pineapple $2.21 ea. $2.33 ea. $2.99 ea.
Red Grapefruit 57¢ ea. 45¢ ea. 74¢ to $1 ea.
Tomatoes 73¢ lb 64¢ lb 99¢ lb
Navel Oranges 29¢ ea. 26¢ ea. 49¢ ea.
Bananas 40¢ lb 45¢ lb 59¢ lb

 

These are in large boxes, so you’ll want to go with a friend and split it up between a few families or start canning some tomatoes!

For meat, the prices are much better than the grocery store and even beat Zaycon prices (where we normally get most of our meat).

90% Lean Ground Beef, 40 lb box, $2.83 lb
Boneless Whole Pork Loin, $1.89 lb
Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts, 40 lb box, $1.32 lb
Salmon, 10 lb box, $7.10 lb

 Obviously, you’ll need a freezer if you bought all this.  If you aren’t sold on price then think about the math to go and buy the ground beef or chicken in smaller packs at the grocery store.  On average a 40 lb box of meat lasts my family around 3 months…

40 lbs of Chicken
Bought over 13 weeks at an avg. of $2.49 a lb = $99.60
Bought in bulk = $52.98
(savings of $46.62)

40 lbs of Ground Beef
Bought over 13 weeks at an avg. of $3.99 a lb = $159.60
Bought in bulk = $113.21
(savings of $46.39)

Remember neither US Foods nor Gordon Food Supply has a membership fee, so you might at well swing in and check it out.  Oh, and in case you are wondering… they don’t take coupons.

Does any one know of anything similar in other areas?

    • jd

      Restaurant Depot in Birmingham is the same. Prices are similiar.

    • bev

      Is this meat without antibiotics, etc?

    • Jean

      I have not shopped at Chef’s Store yet but have wanted to. Does anyone know what their prices are like on baking supplies such as spices and cocoa? I use a lot of these items but they seldom go on sale.

    • melissa

      They also had some bulk spices not available at Sam’s like ground ginger. I also bought a container of kalamata olives – can’t find those in bulk either.

    • Ghoti

      Great prices on meat if you don’t mind repacking it for freezing. Butter currently $1.88lb, They have the best prices in Columbia SC on Half and Half and Whipping cream (quarts). Sugar was 37 cents a lb (50lb bag)

    • Tricia

      Gordon Food Supply also has coupons in the Sunday paper for $5 off $50, bringing my boneless skinless chicken price down to $1.20/lb.

    • ctrinkle

      Does anyone know what the quality of the meat is?

    • kelle mccarthy

      Any reviews on the meat would be great…

      • It was the exact same supplier that Zaycon uses for Chicken, so I can say great quality for that.

    • jo

      The quality is amazing, restaurant quality. You can buy the ground beef in 10lb tubes, a big difference than the grocery store quality and under $3 lb. Have been doing this for years.

    • Food guy

      Shamrock Foods also have these types of Cash n Carry stores with locations in New Mexico and El Paso, Texas. Rumor has it, that they have a location in Phoenix coming soon. Should be up and running around Jan 2015. I went to one of their stores in NM and boy do they have deals. Great prices. They also sell in bulk, but offer less then case qtys as well…which works for everyone-even small customers like me. I will definetely be there when they open in Phoenix.

    • momothree

      Is anyone aware of a place like this in GA? Possibly in the ATL area?

    • Ally

      Does the chef store sell any organic produce or grassfed meats?

    • LDove

      I’m looking for “RITUALS ORANGE PEKOE TEA BAGS. CHEFS STORE CARRIES THEM BY CASE. BUT I CANNOT GET TO COLUMBIA SC. TO GET THEM. THEY WONT SHIP OR TAKE ORDERS OVER PHONE. CAN SOMEONE HELP ME. IM WILLING TO PAY SOMEONE THAT CAN SHIP THEM TO ME. 603 209 1864. PLEASE BE HONEST.