7 Grocery Stores With Amazing Free Samples (Besides Costco)

Explore these lesser-known grocery stores dishing out tasty free samples.
Updated Sept. 27, 2023
A woman enjoying a food sample

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Sometimes, it’s nice to have a little free snack here and there during your food shopping trip.

Costco may be the retailer most known for free samples — and you could make a whole meal out of its samples, depending on the day.

But what about other stores? Check out these options to find some yummy treats for free while you save on groceries.

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Sam’s Club

JHVEPhoto/Adobe Sam’s club store

You may prefer Sam’s Club for your warehouse grocery shopping experience instead of Costco, and the club won’t disappoint you.

Sam’s Club also has plenty of samples to choose from depending on the store or time of day you go.

One reviewer once said, “Always a big fan of Sam’s Club, especially when they have their samples out. I usually end up buying the sample stuff because it's so good.”

Trader Joe’s

wolterke/Adobe Trader Joe's exterior

Trader Joe’s is known for its unique items, like mandarin orange chicken and frozen banana slices covered in chocolate (called Gone Bananas).

They also have samples available at their stores so you can taste some of the special snacks before buying them.

You can also ask an employee if there’s a product you want to try that isn’t on a sample table. Trader Joe’s employees may be able to open the product for you to try.


JHVEPhoto/Adobe Publix Super Markets

Publix has several options for you to try out at its stores in seven Southern states.

You may be able to get different samples throughout the store, including a cake sample, while you’re wandering the aisles.

And Publix even offers free cookies for kids under the age of 12 if they would like to try a sample from the bakery.

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Sundry Photography/Adobe  Walmart store

Walmart may have free samples on weekends or holidays.

Before you go, check with your local Walmart on particular promotions or weekend events to see if samples will be available.

Pro tip: Walmart also offers free sample boxes with baby supplies for expectant mothers, or you can get a beauty box with plenty of samples. Each beauty box costs $7 but has plenty of samples to try.


wolterke/Adobe Kroger store exterior

You may not have to wander the aisles of your local grocery stores in search of free samples. Kroger offers them online.

Order Kroger groceries for pick up or delivery and check out the order confirmation page. There, you may find a check box to try free samples. Click it and enjoy a box of free treats from Kroger.

Whole Foods

Sundry Photography/Adobe Whole Foods store

Whole Foods is a great healthy option for grocery shopping, but it tends to be more expensive than other grocery retailers.

The good news is that you can ask employees if you can sample certain items before you buy them, and they may let you.

That could make it easier if you’re worried about spending a little more on a particular product there compared to another store.

Pro tip: If you’re an Amazon Prime member, you can use your Prime membership for extra discounts when you shop at Whole Foods.

Your local grocery chain

Kzenon/Adobe Worker helping shopper at grocery store

Plenty of local or regional grocery chains offer some great samples depending on the day.

Check with your local stores regularly, especially around holidays like Thanksgiving or Christmas, to see what samples are available while wandering the aisles.

Bottom line

Robert Kneschke/Adobe Seller hands a sample to customer

Samples can be a fun way to try something new and a practical way to save cash if you want to check out a new food before committing money to it.

You can also save money using store apps that alert you to specials or give you additional discounts as a loyalty member.

And remember to keep an eye out for other ways to cut grocery costs if you’re sticking to a budget.

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Author Details

Jenny Cohen Jenny Cohen is a freelance writer who has covered a bit of everything, from finance to sports to her favorite TV shows. Her work has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and FoxSports.com.

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