Ready Whole Chicken Roundup

In the white down of winter, I was feeling peckish and a little cooped up. I head out to the store to get a few things. I decide to buy a “rotisserie” chicken but my mind starts to wonder am I getting the best value from the store cooked chicken.
I figure I might ruffle a few feathers but I’m feeling cocky so I decide to wing it and start hatching a plan to compare the chickens.

So here is here is how I went about it. I bought chickens from different retailers across a 5-week span. I noted the price and then weighed the entire product including the plastic packaging. If there was a cardboard sleeve I removed that before weighing it. I did afterwards, clean the packaging and weigh that (they were all between 50 and 57 grams). I visited the main players Costco, Sobeys, Walmart, Superstore and Dave’s to compare

DateStoreLocationPriceWeightPrice/lb
Feb 1 2017CostcoDartmouth$7.991484$2.44
Feb 14 2017SobeysWyse Rd$10.99993$5.02
Feb 21 2017DavesMain St$7.991126$3.22
Feb 28 2017SuperstoreBraemar$10.991171$4.26
Mar 6 2017WalmartDartmouth$8.471136$3.38

So straight up the best value is the Costco based on a dollar to weight.
There are other factors that come into play when eating a chicken as well you still want it to taste good.

Costco: These birds are super moist and for me had the best flavour but maybe a little on the salty side. (yes I realize you need a membership which could be factored in the price)

Dave’s: The other bird at $7.99, I have had chickens there before that were really good but this one was a little dry.

Walmart: At $8.47  on the lower $ scale, and you can get multiple flavours but this chicken was terrible, it was so dry that it absorbed the saliva in my mouth. I only had a little bit and will try and salvage the meat in sauce or soup. If this was the first cooked chicken I had ever eaten I would not ever buy one again.

Superstore: coming in at $10.99 the meat was pretty good but the skin was soft. Superstore also has a few flavours available but they charge $11.99 for those.

Sobeys: The only one I ate that had a crispy skin. but the meat was a little dry. Interesting though on Sobeys a reader went to the Cole Harbour location and they had different weights which show variation which I  will explore at a future date

DateStoreLocationPriceWeightPrice/lb
Feb 1 2017SobeysCole Harbour Rd$10.991088$4.58
Feb 14 2017SobeysCole Harbour Rd$10.991093$4.56

Now some more variables, while I like the Costco many people do not, and it has to do with them being saline injected. Costco does they because they still use a flame rotisserie oven and the injections help them from drying out. Most others use a combi-oven that steams the chickens and then broils them. The saline solution would add to the Costco chickens weight.

They are just using expiring chickens. Yes but mostly no, the chicken game has become so large that they specially order chickens for that cooking purpose. Some retailers I have heard will cook remaining expiring stock instead of marking it down. Just like Costco will recycle unsold chicken into chicken salad and Superstore will sell them cold tax-free the next day.

I can get a chicken uncooked and cook myself at home for cheaper. Yes you can when it’s on sale but normal Sobeys/Superstore prices are around $2.99/lb
Today for example when I went to the Superstore they didn’t have and regular whole chickens only Halal and Free From. I did find a chicken on sale at Sobeys for $1.88lb but it was $5.70 and you need to factor in about 60¢ for electricity and seasoning plus your time.

So over the next 6 months, I will be buying chickens from other locations of these retailers and may add a couple other roast chickens in the fray.
If you have a home kitchen scale and want to send me the results I’d appreciate it (in package, cardboard sleeve removed)
But please don’t make eat at Walmart again.

 

5 comments
  1. I had heard that Costco injected oil/fat into their chicken to keep them moist. First I’ve heard of saline. Rumors perhaps.
    Thanks for your review and taking one for the team.

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