These store-brand foods can please your taste buds, wallet

Consumer Reports’ taste-testers compare store brands with name brands

SAN ANTONIO – Buying store-brand or private-label groceries instead of name-brand goods is an easy way to save on the grocery bill.

“Store brands are almost always cheaper, sometimes as much as 70% cheaper than name-brand products,” said Consumer Reports’ Amy Keating.

But it may not be worth it if the food doesn’t taste good. So, Consumer Reports did some blind taste-testing on common items, comparing name brands to popular store brands.

First up, cereal. Tasters found you really can fill your bowl with a Honey Nut Cheerios knockoff that tastes close to the real thing and costs a lot less.

They were impressed by Honey Nut O’s from Walmart’s Great Value brand. They’ll save you 67% per serving.

Having syrup on your pancakes?

“We found that all of the syrups we tasted were delicious, but some were actually more expensive than the name-brand syrup by Butternut Mountain Farm,” Keating said.

They found that the store-brand organic maple syrup at Costco will make your taste buds and wallet happy, with 25% savings.

If you’re a fan of Skippy Peanut Butter, testers said to go for the Walmart brand. It costs 50% less. But, they said to skip the store-brand PB from Target and Dollar General because they found they had a less-roasted peanut flavor.

Testers said it’s nuts how good Costco’s Extra Fancy Salted Mixed Nuts are. And, you’ll save a lot of money over the Planter’s brand.

Finally, when it comes to ketchup, a lot of families use Heinz. But, tasters found that Target’s store brand was very good and costs 70% less per serving.

Consumer Reports did not include H-E-B products in their testing.

We’d like to hear which specific store-brand foods you think are as good or better than name brands. Please comment below. We may use the information in future reporting.

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About the Author:

As a consumer reporter, Marilyn is all about helping people stay safe and save a buck. Since coming to KSAT in 1985, she’s covered everything from crime to politics, winning awards for her coverage of the Mexican Mafia, Oklahoma tornadoes, children’s transplants, an investigation into voting irregularities and even a hit-and-run Santa Claus.