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Best credit cards for groceries for April 2024

Editor's note: Terms apply to American Express benefits and offers. Enrollment may be required for select American Express benefits and offers. Visit americanexpress.com to learn more.

From students to executives, everyone has to eat — in turn, everyone can benefit from a solid rewards credit card for their groceries.

The USDA Food Plans give annual estimates on the average food spending per person, which we calculated to be about $15,675.6 annually (you can read how we got this calculation in our methodology section below).

Based on these numbers, annual fees, rewards, and benefits, here are the best credit cards for groceries.

Best overall: American Express® Gold Card

The American Express Gold Card is a prestigious choice for those who value rewards and lifestyle benefits. This card stands out in the market with its substantial earning potential in key spending categories, making it a solid choice for frequent diners and shoppers.

  • Annual fee: $250

  • Welcome offer: Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after spending $6,000 on qualifying purchases within the first 6 months

  • Rewards:

    • Earn 4x Membership Rewards points at restaurants, including takeout and delivery in the U.S.

    • Earn 4x Membership Rewards points at U.S. supermarkets on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases (then 1x)

    • Earn 3x Membership Rewards points on flights booked directly with airlines or via amextravel.com

    • Earn 1x Membership Rewards points on other purchases

Why we like it: The Amex Gold Card is exceptionally beneficial for grocery shopping. The card’s reward structure benefits those who frequently spend at U.S. supermarkets. With the ability to earn 4x Membership Rewards points on U.S. supermarket purchases (up to $25,000 per year), cardholders can accumulate points quickly. This is especially valuable for families or individuals with groceries as a significant part of their budget.

Plus, the flexibility of Membership Rewards points enhances the card’s value. These points can be redeemed for travel rewards, shopping, gift cards, or even transferred to various airline and hotel partners, providing a range of options for using the accumulated points.

On top of that, the high rewards rate at U.S. supermarkets, the annual credits ($120 for Uber and $120 for dining), coupled with the generous welcome offer, helps offset the annual fee, making the American Express Gold Card a smart choice for anyone who spends regularly on groceries and seeks to maximize their rewards in this category.


Best cash back on groceries: Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express

The Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express is an exceptional contender in cash-back credit cards, especially for those looking to reap high rewards as a new card member but still have a card with long-term value. This card is not just a regular player; it's a powerhouse in categories where many families spend the most.

  • Annual fee: $0 for the first year, then $95 after that

  • Welcome offer: $250 statement credit after spending $3,000 in purchases within the first 6 months

  • Rewards*:

    • 6% cash back at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%)

    • 6% cash back on select U.S. streaming subscriptions

    • 3% cash back at U.S. gas stations

    • 3% cash back on transit, including taxis/rideshare, parking, tolls, trains, buses, and more

    • 1% cash back on other purchases

*Cash back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed as a statement credit or at Amazon.com checkout.

Why we like it: Compared to the over 20 other cards considered, this one won for its generous intro offer. Most of the other contenders offered no new cardmember offer, with the next closest coming in at $200 with stricter incentives.

As for grocery shopping, the Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express shines. Picture this: a whopping 6% cash back at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $6,000 per year in purchases, then 1%) — a rate that's hard to beat. This means that regular grocery runs can quickly translate into significant savings.

Plus, the card doesn't just stop at grocery rewards. It extends its generosity to other aspects of your daily life. The same 6% cash back on select U.S. streaming subscriptions can turn your entertainment expenses into rewarding experiences. And let's not forget the 3% cash back at U.S. gas stations and on various transit expenses — a perfect perk for commuters.


Best for wholesale and retail grocery shopping: U.S. Bank Shopper Cash Rewards® Visa Signature® Card

Surprisingly, branded wholesale club credit cards like Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi or the Sam’s Club® Mastercard® are not the best overall for wholesale grocery shopping. The winner? U.S. Bank Shopper Cash Rewards Visa Signature Card.

  • Annual fee: $0 for the first year ($95 after)

  • Welcome offer: One-time $250 bonus; you will need to spend a minimum of $2,000 in eligible purchases within the first 120 days

  • Rewards:

    • 6% cash back on up to $1,500 quarterly in combined spending at two retailers of your choice, including major stores like Target, Walmart, Amazon, Home Depot, Best Buy, and several department stores

    • 3% cash back on up to $1,500 per quarter in another chosen category, including wholesale clubs like Costco and Sam's Club

    • A competitive 1.5% cash back on purchases outside of the bonus categories

Why we like it: The U.S. Bank Shopper Cash Rewards Visa Signature Card wins in a big way, addressing a common gap in the market by offering robust rewards for wholesale club members and traditional retail grocery shoppers. Its standout feature is the 3% cash back on wholesale club purchases, a category often overlooked by other credit cards. Typically, wholesale club purchases aren’t recognized as "grocery" shopping, so you miss out on the higher reward tiers that you stand to earn with other supermarkets.

This makes the U.S. Bank Shopper Cash Rewards Visa Signature Card an exceptional choice for shoppers at Costco, Sam's Club, and similar outlets, where grocery purchases earn more than most cards' typical 1%-2% cash back. Plus, the flexibility to earn 6% cash back at major retailers, including those known for grocery sales, shifts these purchases into a higher earning bracket, making it an all-around win for grocery shoppers.


Best for local grocery shopping with delivery: Instacart Mastercard®

The Instacart Mastercard is an innovative credit card designed for modern shoppers who prefer the convenience of online grocery shopping and delivery. Tailored to enhance the experience of purchasing groceries online, primarily through Instacart, this card offers attractive rewards for online-centric consumers.

  • Annual fee: $0

  • Welcome offer: 1 free year of Instacart delivery and a $100 Instacart credit upon approval

  • Rewards:

    • 5% cash back on Instacart app and Instacart.com purchases

    • 5% cash back on travel purchased through the Chase Travel Center

    • 2% cash back at restaurants, gas stations, and on select streaming services

    • 1% cash back on all additional purchases

Why we like it: The Instacart Mastercard excels in making local grocery shopping with delivery both convenient and rewarding. The standout feature is the 5% cash back on purchases made through the Instacart app and website, benefiting those who regularly use the service for grocery delivery. This high reward rate, combined with the welcome offer of a free year of delivery and a $100 Instacart credit, significantly enhances the shopping experience for online grocery buyers.

The card’s utility extends beyond groceries, offering cash back on travel, dining, and streaming services, making it a versatile choice for contemporary lifestyles. In essence, it's a card that not only adapts to but also enriches the evolving habits of grocery shoppers in the digital age.


Best for online grocery shopping: Capital One® Walmart Rewards™ Mastercard®

The Capital One Walmart Rewards Mastercard is a fantastic option for those who frequently shop online, especially at Walmart. This card is designed to maximize benefits for online shoppers, offering an impressive cash-back rate on Walmart.com and app purchases, including groceries.

  • Annual fee: $0

  • Welcome offer: Earn 5% cash back on in-store purchases when using Walmart Pay for the first 12 months after approval

  • Rewards:

    • 5% cash back on purchases at Walmart.com and through the Walmart app, including items for in-store pickup and Walmart Grocery Pickup and Delivery; gift cards earn 2% back

    • 2% cash back for in-store purchases, including at Murphy USA and Walmart gas stations

    • 2% cash back on travel and restaurants

    • 1% cash back on all other purchases

Why we like it: The Walmart Rewards Mastercard is a standout choice for online grocery shopping enthusiasts. Its hallmark feature is the 5% cash back on all purchases made through Walmart.com and the Walmart app, covering a wide range of items, including groceries. This makes it particularly advantageous for users of Walmart Grocery Pickup and Delivery.

The introductory offer of 5% cash back on in-store purchases via Walmart Pay adds to its appeal, especially for those who combine in-store and online shopping. Coupled with no annual fee, it’s an ideal card for regular Walmart shoppers looking to maximize their savings on online grocery purchases.

Despite not having an intro 0% APR offer and charging shipping for purchases under $35, the Walmart Rewards Mastercard beats the Prime Visa and the $139 Amazon Prime membership fee.


Best for treating yourself after grocery shopping: Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card

We’ve all been there: Standing in the grocery store checkout line and suddenly realizing you don't feel like cooking tonight. It happens, and the Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card is our pick for those who need a credit card option for dining outside of their regular grocery budget.

  • Annual fee: $0

  • Rewards:

    • Earn unlimited 3% cash back on dining, entertainment, popular streaming services, and at grocery stores (excluding superstores like Walmart® and Target®), plus 1% on all other purchases

    • Earn 10% cash back on purchases made through Uber and Uber Eats, plus complimentary Uber One membership statement credits through Nov. 14, 2024

    • Earn 8% cash back on Capital One Entertainment purchases

    • Earn unlimited 5% cash back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of trip options (terms apply)

  • Welcome offer:

    • $200 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months

    • 0% APR for the first 15 months upon account opening for both balance transfers and purchases (variable APR resumes after; 19.99%-29.99%)

Why we like it: The Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card's strength lies in its broad 3% cash-back category, covering popular spending categories like grocery stores, dining, and streaming services.

Rather have delivery instead of going out to eat? The exceptional 10% cash back on Uber and Uber Eats, along with the complimentary Uber One membership, is a unique perk that adds significant value to the Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card through Nov. 14, 2024. The high cash-back rates on entertainment and travel booked through Capital One Travel also make it a strong contender.



FAQs about credit cards for groceries

Should I get a credit card for groceries?

If you spend a significant portion of your budget on groceries, getting a credit card that offers rewards or cash back on grocery purchases can be a savvy financial move.

What is the best credit card for grocery shopping?

The best credit card for grocery shopping is the one that benefits you the most. This all depends on your shopping habits and preferences. Our recommendation for the best grocery shopping credit card overall is the American Express Gold Card for its high rewards rates on grocery purchases.

What counts as a grocery store for credit card rewards?

For credit card rewards, a grocery store is a retailer that mainly sells a wide range of everyday food and household items. This excludes specialty stores, superstores, and warehouse clubs that sell groceries but in addition to other products, not primarily.

Does Costco count as groceries on a credit card?

Since Costco is labeled as a warehouse club, it does not count as “groceries” for many credit card rewards programs. However, purchases here still count and are eligible for cash back through some credit cards, such as 1.5% on "all other purchases" with the Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card, or 2% cash back with the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi.


Methodology

In our quest to pinpoint the best grocery credit card, we adhere to a rigorous and impartial evaluation process, underpinned by our commitment to editorial integrity. Our analysis is independent and not swayed by external financial influences. Credit card issuers (Bank of America, Chase. Citi, Mastercard, Discover, etc.), do not influence our reviews, ensuring that our recommendations are focused solely on providing value and assisting our readers in making informed financial decisions. This approach upholds our editorial integrity and the trustworthiness of our advice.

Our methodology for evaluating the best grocery credit card involves meticulously examining several key factors. These include cash-back percentages, reward points, annual fees, and introductory offers specific to grocery purchases. Our assessment is grounded in the average annual expenditure on groceries by a typical American family, as outlined by the Moderate USDA Food Plan for a family of four. According to the 2023 plan, the monthly and annual grocery spending estimates are as follows:

  • Child (age 6-8): $286.80 per month

  • Child (age 9-11): $329.30 per month

  • Male (age 19-50): $374.50 per month

  • Female (age 19-50): $315.70 per month

  • Monthly Total: $1,306.30

  • Annual Total: $15,675.60

Using these figures, we calculate the potential annual rewards and first-year returns for various grocery credit cards. Our analysis takes into account the specific rewards offered by each card for grocery purchases, the annual fees, and any introductory bonuses or offers. This allows us to estimate the overall value and benefit that each card can provide to a family spending an average amount on groceries.

It's important to note that all estimates provided are just that—estimates. Actual rewards and returns may vary based on individual spending habits, credit card terms, and other factors. Additionally, the credit card issuers set and control all terms and conditions for their products, and our analysis does not guarantee approval or specific benefits. Our aim is to provide a comprehensive and objective overview, but we encourage our readers to verify the current terms and conditions of each card with the issuer.

In summary, our methodology combines a data-driven approach with a commitment to editorial integrity, ensuring that our recommendations for the best grocery credit card are both reliable and tailored to the needs of everyday consumers. This thorough and unbiased process reflects our dedication to helping you maximize your financial gains and make informed decisions in choosing a credit card that aligns with your grocery spending patterns.

This article was edited by Rebecca McCracken


Editorial Disclosure: The information in this article has not been reviewed or approved by any advertiser. The details on financial products, including card rates and fees, are accurate as of the publish date. All products or services are presented without warranty. Check the bank’s website for the most current information. This site doesn't include all currently available offers.