We Did The Same Grocery Shop At Metro & Sobeys To Find Out Which Basket Was Cheaper
Check out the price differences. 👀
Has Ontario's cost of living crisis forced you to rethink your approach to grocery shopping? Are you constantly debating between Metro or Sobeys as you sort through flyers each week in an effort to determine what store has the better sales?
Well, take comfort in knowing that you're not alone. That's why we decided to investigate the grocery prices at both Metro and Sobeys to get a better understanding of which one may offer the better deal.
They might not have the same budget-friendly grocery store reputation as No Frills or Food Basics, but many still flock to them as a potentially cheaper alternative to say Loblaws or Farm Boy, for example.
So to figure out which one might be the cheaper go-to for your everyday staples, we compiled a list of the common items you might find in your kitchen and calculated the total cost.
To give you an unbiased comparison, we visited both Metro and Sobeysand compared the prices of items with the same weight. We purposely excluded any sale prices to ensure fair competition, as these may change frequently.
It's also important to note that grocery store prices can change at any time and may vary from location to location.
Nevertheless, within the confines of our analysis, we determined which basket was the cheapest.
A bag of milk at Sobeys. Right: Beatrice bagged milk on Metro's website.
Patrick John Gilson | Narcity, Metro
We began our comparison by finding the cheapest 4-litre bag of 2% milk in each store and putting them to the test.
Surprisingly, we discovered that the Beatrice brand at Sobeys and the Sealtest brand at Metro both offered the same price for the item.
The price match, likely the result of each brand's competitive strategy, eliminates the need to go looking for deals on the dairy product when deciding between Sobeys or Metro.
- Sobeys: $5.89
- Metro: $5.89
A loaf of Dempster's bread at Sobeys. Right A shelf of different bread options at Metro
It can be rare to see two different grocery store giants selling the same brand, but it's nice when it happens because you can make a direct comparison. While a loaf of Dempster's white bread (675g) was the cheapest option at both stores, the two prices did differ a bit.
- Sobeys: $4.19
- Metro: $3.99
Astro Original Yogurt at Sobeys. Right: A shelf of yogurt selections at Metro
There was no shortage of yogurt options between the two stores. Both Metro and Sobeys carried Astro Original (750g), which proved to be the cheapest brand at each location.
However, for whatever reason, Sobeys was selling the product for a good chunk of change more than Metro — something for yogurt lovers to keep in mind.
- Sobeys: $5.29
- Metro: $4.99
Metro's unsalted butter. Right: Sobeys butter
You might be team salted butter, but we went with unsalted butter for this price comparison test. The cheapest option available at both grocers was listed at the exact same price, despite being different brands altogether.
Butter. The great equalizer.
- Sobeys: $6.49 per 450 grams
- Metro: $6.49 per 450 grams
A carton of eggs at Sobeys. Right: A shelf of eggs at Metro
The next item we price-checked was a carton of 12 white eggs.
We found that Metro's cheapest option for eggs, sold by the brand Brunbrae, was priced a bit higher than the cartons sold under Sobeys' Compliments label. However, Brunbrae's eggs are also slightly larger, so your money is at least giving you a little more per egg.
- Sobeys: $3.79
- Metro: $5.39
A shelf of Cracker Barrel Cheese. Right: Black Diamond Cheese from Metro's website
Patrick John Gilson | Narcity,Metro
To compare cheese prices, we opted for a weight of 400g and picked the item with the lowest selling price in that size.
Despite the brands being different — Cracker Barrel for Sobeys and Black Diamond for Metro— both grocery stores had identical prices for their 400-gram cheese options.
- Sobeys: $9.49
- Metro: $9.49
Chicken thigh at Sobeys. Right: Chicken thighs at Metro
Patrick John Gilson | Narcity,Metro
To compare the price of chicken, we investigated each store's cheapest option for meat.
We looked at the price difference between Sobeys and Metro's value packs of boneless skinless chicken thighs and discovered they both sell the product for $17.61 per kilogram — when we did the math.
However, the family sizes were being sold as follows, making Sobeys the cheaper option at the store on that particular day:
- Sobeys: $17.93 per 1.018 kilograms
- Metro: $21.13 per 1,200 kilograms
A bag of Yellow onion at Sobeys. Right: A Pier-C tag at Metro
For this comparison, we looked at how much each store was selling a two-pound bag of yellow onions for. The difference wasn't huge, but worth noting.
- Sobeys: $2.99 per two pounds
- Metro: $2.49 per two pounds
A bunch of bananas at Metro. Right: Bananas at Sobeys
Everybody loves a perfect match!
You can find bananas being sold by kilogram in almost every grocery store and market in Ontario. So, seeing this method being utilized by Sobeys and Metro was hardly a surprise. However, the fact that they were the same price was a bit shocking.
- Sobeys: $1.52 per kg
- Metro: $1.52 per kg
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
A shelf of olive oil options. Right: Extra virgin olive oil at Metro
Extra virgin olive oil is an item you find in most kitchens, so finding a great deal on the product can be a big help.
For this test, we tracked down the cheapest one-litre bottle of olive oil we could find at each location.
Metro's Selections brand proved to be the most affordable, but only by a small margin.
- Sobeys: $11.49 per one litre
- Metro: $10.99 per one litre
Sobeys Lancia spaghetti. Right: Metro's Italpasta spaghetti
The price of spaghetti was pretty similar at both stores but we did note a slight difference.
Metro's cheapest option for 900g of spaghetti was the Lancia brand at a slightly higher price point than the Italpasta that can be found at Sobeys.
- Sobeys: $3.69 per 900 grams
- Metro: $3.49 per 900 grams
A bag of frozen veggies at Sobeys. Right: The frozen veggie section at Metro
Some people may prefer to serve their veggies fresh rather than ice cold. But given the rising cost of groceries in the province, we assumed that most people aren't above heading to the frozen veggie section to find some savings.
If you fall into that category, then Sobeys is where you'll want to go to score the best deals.
- Sobeys: $3.49 per 750 grams
- Metro: $4.99 per 750 grams
There was only a slight difference in each basket's total cost, with our Metro haul coming out just under 5 dollars more than our Sobeys goods.
However, it is important to note that the packs of chicken we evaluated were not of the same weight, so you may potentially get a better deal at Metro's depending on which location you visit.
- Sobeys: $76.25 before HST
- Metro: $80.85 before HST
Total difference: $4.60
Sobeys may have won out in terms of affordability, but shopping at either store can pay off for you in the long run.
Both Metro and Sobeys have a loyalty program with Air Miles, allowing you to earn points on your purchases that can be redeemed for various rewards, such as travel and merchandise.
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