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Couple Goes Viral After Posting Video of $444 Trader Joe’s Receipt: ‘What It Takes to Feed 6 Kids’

The video has social media users a bit divided about the most efficient way to stock a kitchen

A video posted by a California man has gone viral and sparked social media debate about best practices for feeding a family. Sergio Gonzalez posted a video to Instagram on June 26 in which he gave viewers a glimpse into his family’s grocery spending at a Trader Joe’s store in Westlake Village, California. The long receipt ended with a total of $444.38, and the video was picked up by X (formerly Twitter) where it has since received 17.5 million views.

“This is what it takes to feed six kids in about a week and a half,” Gonzalez can be heard saying as he pans over the extensive receipt. The highest price item on the list was Korean style beef short ribs for $13.99 each, of which there were three. Other higher price items included tempura shrimp with dipping sauce for $7.99, a ribeye steak for $7.27, a NY strip steak for $5.59, breaded chicken tenders for $8.99 and organic cotton candy grapes for $9.99.

The internet reacts to viral video of $444 Trader Joe’s receipt

The comments on Gonzalez’s post were largely critical, with many users arguing that the high price tag is due to the family’s choice to shop at Trader Joe’s as opposed to less expensive stores, and others pointing out that the total cost seems to be on par for a family of eight. Galen Callahan, Gonzalez’s wife who he tagged in his video, responded to many of the comments in defense of the video. For example, she rebuked claims of Trader Joe’s being a generally expensive store and said it was actually amongst the cheapest options in the family’s vicinity.

“You should be shopping at Costco for 6 kids. Trader Joe’s packages are too small,” one user commented. “I agree! That’s what I tell the wifey. I go by myself there,” Gonzalez responded.

Another user commented that Gonzalez shouldn’t be complaining when he chose to have six kids and shop at Trader Joe’s instead of Walmart or Costco. Callahan responded about her husband: “He didn’t complain. It’s a funny post about the amount of food. That’s all.”

Many comments also pointed out that there were frozen and pre-packaged items on the receipt, and suggested that the couple buy more whole foods and cook for their kids. Callahan explained that this particular shopping trip was a filler in addition to ingredients stocked at the family’s home. Cooking from scratch, she added, would be a challenging addition to an already busy schedule as she and her husband run two businesses and have toddlers and an infant.

Gonzalez compares Costco receipt to Trader Joe’s

Packed grocery cart

Gonzalez took another video of the couple’s Costco receipt from a separate grocery haul, which he posted July 8. “So everybody wanted us to go to Costco and see what it’s like to feed six kids here,” he says. The receipt, which was visibly even longer than the one from Trader Joe’s, came to a total of $1,239.08 for what would last for about two weeks, Gonzalez said.

Once again, viewers called attention to the items on the receipt and questioned the couple for purchasing certain products at higher price points. For example, Wagyu beef which cost $24.49, salmon burgers for $18.99, halibut for $42.99, NY steak for $53.02 and lamb for $38.34 amongst others.

“Trying to read the items and it looks like many things aren’t necessary or are excessive,” one comment read. “Well maybe scale down a bit and realize you had 6 kids,” said another.

What do you think of the viral video? Let us know in the comments!

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