Grocery Store Roundup – Best Places to Shop with Multiple Kids
Grocery shopping with kids is a drag, but sometimes it is unavoidable. I try to get as many kids as possible in the shopping cart so I can move quickly and avoid tiny hands grabbing unnecessary things. Here’s a roundup of my favorite and least favorite places to shop with kids and my strategy for each.
Note: Many of these stores are specific to the Denver area, but some are national chains.
King Soopers has standard shopping carts (small basket on top with kid straps) and carts with a car seat holder on top. In our local store, they always set aside the car seat carts so they are easily accessible. They used to have shopping cars with a little car on the front, but I think they have completely done away with these – I have checked multiple stores!
My Strategy: Since I have one still in an infant seat, I use the car seat cart and typically put my 2-year-old in the large basket. I try to shop here while my oldest is in school so I can avoid taking all three of them.
- Avoid peak times because they are often under-staffed at checkout.
- They have free cookies in the bakery for kids, but sometimes our store runs out so don’t promise your kid one 🙂
Sprouts has standard shopping carts and compact shopping carts. They do not have car seat holders.
My Strategy: Since we have a baby who can’t sit on her own, I wear her in a baby carrier and put one or both my other kids in a standard shopping cart. My 2-year-old goes in the small basket and sometimes my 3-year-old goes in the larger basket (depending on his mood).
Tip: If you order sliced meat from the deli, they will typically give kids a free slice or meat or a string cheese.
Target has a great setup for kids. They have standard carts, carts with a car seat holder and carts with an extra two seats for kids. I can easily fit all three kids in a shopping cart – it is awesome!
My Strategy: I put the two older kids in the kid seats and put the infant car seat in the main shopping cart.
Whole Foods – My favorite!
This is my favorite grocery store to shop at with little kids! They have special shopping carts with a little car on the front that can seat two children with two separate steering wheels. My kids LOVE this. Also, the car positions them really low to the ground so they can’t see much – which means they don’t see things and start begging 🙂 The car is basically the same size as a standard shopping cart so I don’t have trouble maneuvering around with it.
My Strategy: I wear my youngest in a baby carrier and have my two older kids ride in a car shopping cart.
- They usually have multiple car shopping carts that they try to keep separate near the store entrance. If you go at a non-peak time you shouldn’t have a problem getting one.
- At their customer service desk, they will give away juice or snacks as part of their “Kids Club”. This is usually near the exit.
Costco is nearly my favorite grocery store with kids – it was a close second. I really like their oversized shopping carts because I can fit 2 kids in the small basket on top. Also, they have samples to keep my kids happy 🙂
My Strategy: I put the older two kids in the small basket on top. I either wear my youngest in a baby carrier or put the entire car seat in the large basket.
- Avoid the center section of Costco because that’s where they keep all the toys.
- I like to go later in the morning (close to lunch) when they have samples out because my kids love trying them!
Trader Joes – Least Favorite
Trader Joes has two types of shopping carts – standard shopping cart and a car seat holder version, but they are both slightly smaller than a typical shopping cart. This is my least favorite store to shop with all my kids because I can only fit one in the cart and it is always super busy no matter what time I go. I prefer to shop at TJs without my kids.
My Strategy: Shop alone!
Please note that the statements made in this post are based on my own personal experience at these grocery stores and may not apply to other chains. If I got something wrong, please contact me and I will update the post. Thanks!
– Anna, Life with Little Ones