Grocery items that you can't find in Toronto (but you can in the states)
Picked up a couple packages of grits already. Would like some more ideas of things to pick up to use and also for gifts.
We go every 3 months and get stuff not available here. Never had a problem. We always tell them we are bringing back groceries.
Flaming Cheetos, Cheesecake from Cheesecake factory, liquid smoke, Stubbs and Dinosaur BBQ sauce, flavoured coffee creamers, lots of cheese and milk. And yogurt. Some we have here but so much cheaper in the US. Green tea mints from Trader Joe's.
And while we are there, we pig out on all the different flavours of Starbucks and Haagen Dazz (?) icecreams not available here. The variety you get in the US is so much better than here.
Decades ago, before we had no name brands, etc., I was in a Buffalo supermarket and the guy in front of me had a case of 24, brown plain box with almost no print naming beer and all I could think of is what a rubbish product it then was. Of course today there are some better beers, micro breweries, etc., but the great USA will never beat our Canadian beers from any level! The irony, I much later met a guy in Toronto that was then at Upper Canada brewery for a tasting. He not only was from Buffalo, but ran in the USA a club that weekly sent a 6 pack to it's members of a different brew from sources across the USA. What a lot of work and inspiration he provided to beer lovers. Of course, here in Canada, we can never have that level of beer sourcing, let alone allow me to join his club as I am in another country! So, things change from that dreadful looking 24 pack to an enthusiastic club, I could not be a part of!!
What I find interesting is that I can find a wider selection of Quebec beers in some stores in the Buffalo area than I can through LCBO/Beer store. I really need to do some research prior to my next trip so I am not buying just based on labels as I have bought some bad beers too :)
Payday candy bars, Bridge Mixture in bulk, 99-cent brand name hair detergent at check-out counter, Cheezies, Wegman's sticky buns, Wegman's sharp cheddar huge 2 lb packages for a song, many flavours of Wegman's sodas with diet cherry-grapefruit highly recommended, whoopee (crème filled) cookies, peanut butter with striped grape jelly, Swanson gravies (liquid) plus stocks and powdered package gravies at about a buck, Wegman's individually pouched packages of 10 skinless boneless chicken breasts at $1,99/lb, Hawaiian dinner rolls, Wegman's 2 lb packages of pulled pork, store-brand butter at $1.69/lb (price varies), canned items like tuna fish and cranberry jelly at $1 each for up to 10 - and on and on. To get the best prices, and potentially some gas discounts, sign up at Tops and Wegman's for their free shopper cards, Quite different feeling stores each with great offers.
Cheese - so much cheaper there!
Also, if you are into making your own sausage, cured meats, smoked meats or cheese the Sausage Maker (Buffalo area, not far from Walden Galleria) is a great place to get ingredients/supplies - my husband has gotten stuff there several times.
Kummelweck or "Weck" buns (assuming you're in Buffalo)
Hebrew National Hot Dogs
Like others, I love to stock up on Trader Joe's items
Reasonably priced wine
Jiffy Cornbread mix
In Buffalo we always make a stop in Elmwood Village to pick up Penzey's spices and amazing olive oils from D'Avolio
Pelicano's Pasta Sauces
Nice list. The Hebrew National is the major issue. They stopped selling here a few years ago when US beef was banned. After the ban was lifted, they decided that it was worth the effort to sell here anymore. I also find the Jiffy mixes enjoyable.
Other sadly missed items include:
Baby Watson cheesecake
Vernor's ginger ale (sometimes available here?)
Fried clams !!!
Drake's coffee cakes
Hershey's chocolate fudge sauce
Cheap Mexican TV dinners (like at US Walmarts)