Happy Ad Friday!

I’m in before the weekend and we’re just going to call it good.

I’m typing on my son’s laptop, which seems to have the mouse that a dragon might need,


        It looks angry.

(along with a touchscreen that I seem to touch for NO REASON) so I’m ON FIRE with deals. But I’m not going all Scott Elder, so don’t worry on that score.  It’s not like Cheepie is in a nickle pickle or anything.


We’re inching toward the time where fruit gets dopey cheap and I start getting a bit hyper about corn (so far, I’ve seen 3/$1, but I know 6/$1 is coming so I don’t bother)(that’s still pretty cheap though)(If you make corn casserole invite me). The big BBQ meat cuts also start going on sale, so there’s stocking the freezer sales.  With luck, there will be another $1.99/lb brisket sale!

This week we’ve got blackberries for their rock-bottom price. They freeze dead easy and are great to make into smoothies, cobbler, or just cover them with sugar and tell the kids they’re a new kind of cereal.

Also cheap this week: tomatoes, cucumbers, cheddar cheese, cantaloupes and eggs. Potatoes and mangos are also at stock-up lows. Mango freezes well once you have it diced, and potatoes will keep if you keep them dark and cool.

Here’s the full list:


blackberries, 5.6oz                                        77c/ea

seedless watermelons                                 $2.88/ea

on the vine tomatoes                                   88c/ea

red, yellow or orange bell peppers          88c/ea

green beans                                                     88c/ea

thick sliced bacon (@meat counter)       $3.99/lb

mild cheddar cheese, bulk cut                  $2.99/lb



cantaloupe                                                    99c/ea

Ataulfo mangos                                           33c/lb


You be you, Fiesta, come what may.

Russet potatoes, 5lb bag                            $1.69/ea

ground chuck                                              $2.29/lb (Fiesta limit)

pork shoulder roast                                  97c/lb (Fiesta limit)

chicken drumsticks, jumbo bag            59c/lb

live crawfish                                                $1.99/lb ($1.79/lb full sack)

Goya rice, 3lb.                                              99c/ea (limit 2)

Blue Bell, 1/2 gal                                          $3.99/ea (Fiesta limit)



cantaloupe                                                      97c/ea

hot house cucumbers                                  50c/ea

mangos                                                             50c/ea

blackberries, 6oz                                           88c/ea

kiwi                                                                    25c/ea

Campari tomatoes, 1lb                               $1.50/ea

HCF sliced bacon, 12oz                               $2.50/ea

Eckrich smoked sausage, 30-42oz          $5/ea



dozen eggs                                                    99c/ea (must buy 2, limit 4)

assorted pork chops                                $1.69/lb

center cut pork loin chops                     $1.99/lb


Get out there and shop, Cheepsters!  Let me know if you find a great deal.

Weekly Flyer Links:


Plant Some Happy

Flowers for 50c. I can afford enough to survive my terrible gardening skills!

At HEB until Tuesday–get some and make it look like you know how to grow things.  It makes you feel good, and seem like a responsible person and not like someone that ate Cheetos dipped in hot sauce for lunch (No? Just me? Moving on then).


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Look how cheery! You can be cheery!

Fun with Charts

Well, Cheepie is having a good day.  Sometimes the word gets out, and sometimes it doesn’t.  


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                           Thanks, /r/austin! 

Tips from Cheepsters:

All produce is 10% off at Wheatsville, excepting ‘Co+op Basics items which are already at rock-bottom prices’.  You might find something you’ve been meaning to stock up on!

Non-grackle HEBs have prime top sirloin steaks for $4.97/lb.  If you’ve got a reason to celebrate (for example: You made it to dinnertime. Go you!), you might want to grab some. Do NOT be confused–the grackle HEBs have select grade top sirloin for $3.97/lb, and it is NOT a good deal. You can get that cheaper another time. Here’s the list of which HEBs are which!

Many thanks to those that sent in deals!


Happy Ad Wednesday!

Boneless chicken breasts are cheap all over, so if your freezer is low it’s a good week.  They’re not rock-bottom, but every one of the Big 4 has them on sale, so you don’t have to hunt them up.   Also at stock-up prices: cheese at Randalls, red bell peppers at Sprouts, canned tomatoes and tomato sauce at Fiesta, Community Coffee at Randalls, and Fiesta bacon. Pretty much an all-purpose stock-up week.

And before you ask, no, I don’t know what’s up with HEB! This is their worst showing ever.  Given last week they started copying Randalls’ style sales, and now have the occasional limit, I’m setting them to a DEFCON 4 on my Cheepie ConcernMeter, which I just invented right now.  I’ll get a guy on it. Probably this guy.

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I’m this much worried. It’s concern, but manageable. He’s got this.

Here’s the roundup:


beef sirloin tip roast                                        $2.77/lb (Fiesta limit)

Fiesta sliced bacon, 24oz                                 $4.99/lb

key limes, 1lb bag                                              50c/ea

Fiesta saltines, 6 oz box                                   99c/ea

Fiesta diced tomatoes, 14.5oz                           50c/ea

Red Gold tomato sauce, 8oz                            20c/ea



large green pears                                             87c/lb

bscb                                                                   $1.79/lb

assorted pork chops                                           $1.97/lb



whole bone-in pork loin                                     99c/lb

bscb                                                                      $1.77/lb

Lucerne shredded or block cheese, 2lb              $4.99/ea

Community coffee, 12oz, whole or ground        $3.88/ea

DeCecco pasta, 16oz                                           B1G1 (note: look at the prices, get best deal)

Signature Kitchens can vegetable                       67c/ea



Halos mandarins, 2lb. bag                                   $1.98/ea

red bell peppers                                                      50c/ea

Fuji or Braeburn apples                                          98c/lb

organic Red or Golden Delicious apples                $1.50/lb

bscb                                                                        $1.69/lb

assorted pork chops                                               $1.99/lb


Central Market

PEI fresh black mussels, 2lb bag                            $8.99/ea



R.W. Knudsen Simply Nutritious Juice, 32oz                              $2.50/ea

organic brown flaxseeds, bulk                                                         $1.99/lb

As always, if you find a deal I haven’t listed, or a special at your local store, let me know here on the blog, on Facebook or Twitter. Happy shoppping Cheepsters! 

Weekly Flyer Links

Instacart HEB Review

Cheepie isn’t an early adopter. I had an iPhone until last year. Just an iPhone, no number after it. Because it was the first one. It had two fingerprint sized balloons of dead pixels, a quarter of the screen was packing tape covered cracks and the  app store just laughed if I tried to connect.  It still sent texts so I kept using it, despite the fact that it could only hold a charge for 20 minutes.

This is my phone. There are many like it, but this one is mine.

      In 2014 this was my phone.Yes, I             charged it for this post. 

Eventually a friend took pity on me, or tired of me always needing to sit near an outlet when we went out, and updated me from her ‘junk’ drawer.  I’m friends with some generous people! So with my fancy ‘new’ phone I’ve been able to tell you about on-the-spot deals I find, and tweet about how pumpkins can be worrisome.

When HEB/Instacart made their announcement a bit ago about a partnership, marriage, or conscious coupling, I realized something important. I blog about Grocery Shopping. Covering advances in this area is clearly content my readers would have some interest in. I realize this doesn’t make me an early Instacart adopter, but short of this I’d have likely waited until some thoughtful person took my license away because I was 95 and blind. For me, this is early.

So, one day, when we were out of milk and it was raining, I went ahead and placed an Instacart order. For my audience. Not at all because I was in pjs, and it was raining, and the first order? Free delivery.

I ordered milk, bread, and eight other things just before 1pm. My first delivery window was 5-6pm, which was fine since I’d let the kids finish off a half-gallon of Bluebell and they were set for a while.

I hate gum! Surely I didn't buy that?

I hate gum! Surely I didn’t buy that? Kids are sneaky.

My impression of the whole ordering experience was that it was simple. Simple to find what I wanted, simple to register, simple to pick HEB, all super easy. And don’t forget, the first order? Free delivery.

Then, ten minutes early, a friendly guy showed up with four bags of groceries. I handed him a cash tip, because I’m old and that’s how I tip.  I asked him how he liked delivering for Instacart.  He said that he was enjoying it, and that he was just a driver. The shoppers stationed in the store bring the orders out to him.  Reading more about the ‘partnership’ it seems HEB has had Instacart for a while now, and the new thing is this stationing of shoppers that are in the store.

The grapes were perfect, everything arrived, with no missing items. I wasn’t even charged for the HEB bags, an aspect of this system that I didn’t think of until I was unloading my order. Your shopper doesn’t come and pick up your reusable bags, after all.

Yes, while shopping I did check on pricing, because that’s what I do. I was also shopping from my desk while hungry, which explains the chips, salsa and queso. In my defense I did buy the snack I felt had the most minimal markup. Overall, the pricing seemed varied. Some items were $1 over what I’d expect on the shelf, others only 10c or so.  If you’re a price-conscious shopper, you’d need a serious price book or photographic memory to be sure you weren’t over your price point for an item.

I know what you’re thinking. ‘Cheepie! As a Grocery Maven, I rely on your help to tell me where to shop. What do I do now?’  

Answer: I think Instacart is worth checking out.  We all have overwhelming weeks where adding one more trip to the list is pushing our sanity to the limit. Sometime, when you’re not in dire straits, head over and just look at the pricing and see if what you normally might order (bread, milk, tp, Bota Boxes)(no? just me? moving on) has got a markup that hits your own price point limit.

The site is easy to use, the emails I received about my order were accurate and timely, delivery was polite. I don’t have a single bad thing to say about my experience.  

Delivering the first order for free is smart, as always, because now I know it’s there. I likely wouldn’t have done this if they were charging me the delivery fee–I wanted to see how it worked first. 

For me, living in the middle of five different grocery stores, I need a good reason to pay the markup, fee and tip. I can see people getting addicted easily, though, especially parents that have little ones to strap in/argue with/placate/change/feed/mentally abandon to get through a big shopping trip.

For my particular order, the milk is the only thing I found well over what I’d pay in the store. I pay $2.78/gal for Randalls Pantry Essentials, so it was a big jump.  Because everything else was pretty much in line, I felt okay about it. With the free first-time shopper bonus, I really felt like I’d made a purchase that would help Cheepsters.

Or keep me from having to find real pants. One of those.

Fiesta Limit, Going Viral

Fiesta has long had the ‘limit 2 with additional $10 purchase’ meat specials. I’ve used those sales to stock my freezer for years.  Recently Randalls had one, with brisket super-cheap and a limit of 2. 

Now HEB is joining in.

 Which is great. I love meat sales where I can fill up the deep freeze. This is the cheapest pork butt I’ve seen in a while, keeps in the freezer forever, and can be used in so many dishes.

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Cheaper than tin foil and twice as tasty!

It’s also the simplest way I know to feed a crowd–make it ahead, pull it, and warm it up before people show. Put out rolls, coleslaw, tortillas, and pickled onions and you’ve fed 15-20 people for about $25.  

This deal starts tomorrow, so you’ve got time to rearrange your freezer.

Cheep cheep!

Organic Berries on the Cheep!

A Cheepster reports that the HEB at Slaughter/Manchaca has organic raspberries for $1.50 and CONVENTIONAL (sorry for the caps, it’s an edit!) blackberries for $1.25.

Head over before she buys them all! 

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The Mystery of the HEB Weekly Ad

The weekly ad I get from HEB in the mail has a list of all the HEBs that the prices are valid for that week.  I’m equidistant from about three HEBs, and I’d always thought the ad was the same for them all, until I went to the one on Brodie for something that I’d specifically seen on sale. I had the ad with me, and when I spoke to the butcher, wondering where the item I wanted was, he pointed out that the ad I was holding didn’t apply to the HEB I was standing in.

So, from then on, if I was heading to the that HEB I’d have to double-check their ad to make sure I wouldn’t be unpleasantly surprised (read as ‘super-ticked off’).  When I started this blog, I checked and double-checked at first to make sure that I wouldn’t steer someone wrong. So far I haven’t found any discrepancies on the big loss-leaders. If you do, please let me know–my karma cannot take the ill-will sending a Cheepster off for a deal, only to have it not there!

This week, when I got the weekly flyer in the mail, I noticed the very long list of stores this ad does apply to, and I wondered if the HEB on Brodie is the only exception to the usual flyer.  Here’s the list:


If your HEB isn’t on the list, let me know. That way I can check the flyer online and make certain I’m not sending anyone on a wild goose chase– CheepieAustin wants to SAVE you time, not waste it!  I’m also interested in whether the stores that don’t use the usual flyer match each other, if there’s more than one.

At the very bottom, in the tiny print, the next to last sentence says, “Some items may not be available in all stores.’ If you’re following Cheepie on Facebook, you saw my post last week about the 88c lettuce.

I’d gone to the HEB at S. 1st and Wm. Cannon and couldn’t find the lettuce. I wandered a bit, making sure I didn’t miss it, and hoping to run into a produce employee. I didn’t (that store is high on checkers, but low on other staff). I think the reason it wasn’t there is what I suspected on the FB post, they just do not stock lettuce that isn’t bagged. They didn’t have any kind of unbagged lettuce at all.

I will keep this in mind with the Happy Ad Wednesday posts, and try to point out if an item seems less likely to be in all stores. But lettuce is pretty universal, and I would have never caught that one. Mussels on sale? I might point out they’re not in all stores. Lettuce? Really thought that would be everywhere!

Remember to follow CheepieAustin on Facebook AND on Twitter!  I post deals that I find while I’m out, so you can check them out too, if you’re nearby.

Seriously, follow me on Twitter. It’s hysterical. I forget hashtags about half of the time. I can’t sort out how to make a photo compress quite right, so it’s no telling what part of the photo you’ll see if I tell you I found a good deal on squash (my foot?).  Right now, I’ve got just four followers, and one is a chick racecar driver. I know you want to be as cool as a chick racecar driver! So follow CheepieAustin on twitter. Be cool.