HOME > Chowhound > Washington DC & Baltimore >


Good inexpensive grocery in DC

Just moved to DC and can't seem to find a good grocery - e.g., fruits and veggies, as well as pantry items - for a decent price. Dupont area suggestions would be nice, but any great suggestions would be much appreciated. Thanks

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. The Safeway is your friend. http://dc.metblogs.com/archives/2005/...

    You do realize we name them in DC?

    1. Ugh. Safeway. I say hop on the metro and get thee to the Columbia Heights Giant, at least they have more a selection than the Soviet Safeway on 17th. If you don't have a car nor the time to want to rent a zipcar and head to the burbs, there's always Peapod. Though, Giant is just as bad as Safeway. Supposedly Trader Joes is moving into Adams Morgan over on U and California where Mint is.

      1. Whie not inexpensive, you are right there for the Dupont farmers market each Sunday. It's addictive.

        1 Reply
        1. re: monavano

          I like to go to the latin markets in Mount Pleasant Columbia Heights neighborhood. They are actually a lot cheaper then Giant ans Safeway

        2. Peapod is a great option even though they run out of stuff and that can be annoying. If you can get to the burbs Wegman's is huge and you can stock up on stuff. I normally only have to shop once a month. Or Costco at Pentagon City isn't bad but bulk in small spaces is sometimes hard.

          1. I haven't lived in DC for a few years, but I always loved the Shoppers Food Warehouse in Virginia. Great prices, but I think you would need a car.

            1 Reply
            1. Welcome to life in the city! Even if you go to one of the chain stores, the prices are higher and usually the selection is more limited than in the 'burbs. Fact of city life.
              You can deal easily if you can get organized. I make a distinction between un-fun, obligation shopping and pleasure shopping.
              For the drudgery, organize a big order once a month or so from Peapod or Safeway.com. They honor the sale prices from the circular in the newspaper or online, you can shop in your jammies at midnight and they carry the stuff up the steps right into your kitchen. Buy toilet paper, cleaning products, staples like Hellman's, flour, sugar, canned goods and all the other heavy, unsexy things that you just have to keep on hand. Add produce that keeps like 10 pounds of potatoes or onions on that order. If you want some meat for the freezer, go for it. Even if you use a zipcar, load up on one big trip.
              Then do the fun shopping as part of your regular life.
              The pleasure of foraging for fresh produce, cheeses, breads and other fresh items from farmers' markets is never a chore for me. I enjoy going to Eastern Market which is open 6 days a week. You can hit Dupont Circle or any of the other markets around town or Whole Foods to pick up the fresh things as you need them.
              When you have the heavy and bulky un-fun stuff out of the way, doing the marketing is a pleasure. It's the reward for a little organization.

              2 Replies
              1. re: MakingSense

                My co worker, who lives near Eastern Market was telling me she was going to try the farmers' market in NE, as it's accessible via metro (bus) and doesn't attract the double-wide stroller crowd.

                1. re: MsDiPesto

                  We're really lucky on Capital Hill. The Fresh Farm Market (same people as the Dupont Circle Sunday market) have a Saturday morning market on the 600 block of H Street. Smaller but has a parking lot. They hold the Thursday market in nearby PennQuarter. Easy bike ride or 10 minutes on the D6 bus.
                  The farmers' market in the Florida Ave Market isn't that far from the Metro stop but buses stop right in front of it. Probably the wildest market in town. Everything from halal meats, African, Caribbean and Asian stuff. Crazy flea market.
                  The huge market at RFK is held Thursdays (small) and Saturdays and is producers from surrounding states. Great place to buy in bulk for canning or freezing.
                  Those double wides just don't fit inside markets, do they.

              2. This time of year, local farmers' markets are best. All are good The dupont one is usually very high quality at always very high prices.
                Trader Joe's is very good and cheap, though light on produce. Wegman's is the best, but far from DC. Magruder's is cheap, quality mixed.
                Avoid Giant and Safeway and their ilk if you can - buy only sale items and TP.