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Cost of a Thanksgiving meal in Tucson

What stores have the best prices?
Posted at 6:17 AM, Nov 16, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-16 08:17:44-05

Tucsonans won't pay as much as the average Arizonan to prepare their Thanksgiving dinners.

The Arizona Farm Bureau released its statistics on the average cost of a 2017 Thanksgiving dinner for a family of ten, and Tucson sales push us to the cheapest dinner in years.

Here's a list of the items used in the AFB informal study, and how they compare to three major grocery stores in Tucson.

The italicized prices are the state average, not including weekly deals, in 2017, 2016, and 2017 organic. Our prices are based on current sales and listed prices on the respective stores websites.

Arizona Average  2017--2016 --2017 Organic

Turkey, 16 lbs   $14.24--$19.68--$47.84

  • Fry’s: $12.64 with card, limit 1
  • Safeway: $12.64 with card, limit 1
  • Bashas’: $12.64 with card, limit 1
  • Food City: $12.64 limit 1 with $25 purchase (No other Thanksgiving deals were available in the weekly ad for Food City)

Cube Stuffing, 14 oz. $2.42--$2.50--$7.99

  • Fry’s: $2.50
  • Safeway: $2.50
  • Bashas’: $1.99

Pumpkin Pie Mix, 30 oz. $2.98--$2.98--$3.98

  • Fry’s: $2.99
  • Safeway: $2.50
  • Bashas’: $3.00

Pie Shells (2) $2.00--$2.39--$5.49

  • Fry’s: $1.59
  • Safeway: $1.50
  • Bashas’: $1.49

Sweet Potatoes, 3 lbs $4.64--$5.31--$5.07

  • Fry’s: $3.87
  • Safeway: $3.00
  • Bashas’: $2.01

Brown & Serve Rolls, 12 $2.00--$1.79--$3.69

  • Fry’s: $1.99
  • Safeway: $2.49
  • Bashas’: $2.49

Frozen Green Peas, 1 lb $1.00--$1.12--$2.99

  • Fry’s: $1.00
  • Safeway: $1.00
  • Bashas’: $1.77

Whole Milk, 1 gallon $2.05--$2.27--$4.69

  • Fry’s: $1.99
  • Safeway: $1.89
  • Bashas’: $1.89

Fresh Cranberries, 12 oz. $2.50--$2.50--$2.50

  • Fry’s: $2.50
  • Safeway: $3.29
  • Bashas’: $2.50

Whipping Cream, ½ pint $1.98--$1.59--$3.49

  • Fry’s: $2.69
  • Safeway: $1.00
  • Bashas’: $2.79

Tucson Totals:

  • Fry’s: $33.76
  • Safeway/Albertsons: $32.57
  • Bashas’: $31.81

Editorial note from Saving with $am: Your time, cost in gas to get from one store to the other, and item necessity should all be considered before going to multiple stores to shop -- there's less than a two-dollar difference between the most and least expensive totals.

"Throughout the year we're fortunate to enjoy a bounty of foods produced in Arizona and across the nation, said Arizona Farm Bureau President Stefanie Smallhouse, a cattle rancher, alfalfa and specialty crop farmer from Pima County. "It's especially appropriate as we gather at the Thanksgiving table to savor not only food and fellowship, but to take a moment to recognize that
this blessing begins with our hard-working farm and ranch families. Arizona agriculture is a $23.3 billion industry and is a major component of the state's economy." Arizona farmers and ranchers produce most of the ingredients in the traditional Thanksgiving meal including dressing (bread, onions and celery), peas, pumpkin and pecans for pies, and several others. Even roses, sometimes used for holiday centerpieces, are grown in Arizona. "Based on this year's average meal cost, Arizona residents can enjoy a traditional Thanksgiving meal for around $3.98 per person. That's worthy of many thanks," Smallhouse concluded.

For more information on the Arizona Farm Bureau, its study, and the multitude of produce grown and sold in Arizona, visit their website.

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