The Price of Yeast

Baking yeast packets at the supermarket: $3 for 3 0.25 oz packets. $64/lb

Bulk baking yeast: $2.29 for a 1lb brick. $2.29/lb

Packets cost 28 times as much. Yipe.

Smart and Final sells packets right next to bulk 1 lb containers. The packets cost $3 for 0.75 oz, the bulk costs $4 for 16 ounces. You do the math. Buy the bulk yeast. It freezes perfectly well after being opened for at least a year (I haven’t ever had to freeze it longer, I use it)

Costco, Sams Club and similar stores also have the 1lb brick of yeast. If you make more than 3 loaves of bread this year, it’s worth getting the large size. With my breadmaker, I make about 30 loaves/year.

Rainbow also has open bulk yeast.  Yeast generally lasts at least 1 year in the freezer… except for the yeast I got at Rainbow. I’m pretty sure it needs to be refrigerated and not frozen because twice now I got yeast there, made a loaf, froze the rest and the yeast was dead after. :-(


  1. andré says:

    What type of yeast are you looking at? Instant? Active Dry? Fresh? Wild? Each has a different cost and stays good for varying amounts of time.

    You can always catch/grow your own wild san francisco yeast with just water and flour and a few days and a little attention. Just google ‘start wild yeast’ for many direction.

    Michael Sprague actually turned me on to starting my own wild yeast. I made a panettone with wild NYC yeast that was awesome. The slight sourness added a complexity that you don’t find in store bought panettone.

  2. Lee says:

    Hey Andre,
    What I am comparing is
    – Safeway Fleishmann Rapid Rise Yeast, $2.50 for 3 0.25oz packets
    – Safeway Red Star Active Dry, $2.39 for 3 0.25oz packets
    – Rainbow… umm, I’m not sure… Active Dry I think, bulk, about $4/lb if I recall
    – Whole Foods.. I don’t recall the brand, Active Dry $3 for 3 0.25 oz packets
    – Fleishmann 1 lb Instant Dry at Restaurant Depot

    Yeah, I’ve done sourdough… I bought Geeza and San Francissco sourdough from Ed Wood who wrote “World Sourdoughs from Antiquity”, a really good book. I had the sourdough for a year or so. It was pretty neat. But it’s hard to do sourdough in a bread machine… and I associate making it with an three old girlfriends :-(

  3. Amanda says:

    Thanks for putting the prices up, people. I have a powerpoint I have to do at school, and it deals with recipes. =] Thanks again!

  4. Lee says:

    You’re welcome, person. Tell us people more about your Powerpoint. The thought that you were assigned a Powerpoint presentation for school is bothersome. The Powerpoint format was flawed from the moment it was created.

  5. […] See my notes about the price of yeast […]

  6. […] The types of flour, salt and yeast matter not, young Skywalker. Really. Yes, really. Different ingredients make subtle differences but you’ll be so happy with how fricking easy it was to make this loaf, you can worry about that later. Try starting with All Purpose flour, Mortons salt and Instant Dry Yeast in a 1 lb bag.   […]

  7. Charlotte says:

    I do the same, a bag of yeast: instant, regular, SAF or Redstar, by the pound, $4.00. I keep it in teh fridge for about a year. I thought the bulk yeast at Rainbow was non baking nutritional yeast for vegan/vegetarian smoothies or some such (I never really trusted it without seeing a label). Yeast by teh pound is great andnon-instant just means you need to proof it first – no biggie. Also King Arthur Flour sells by the pound – I make 2 loaves a week, also along with our own pizza crust, soft pretzels, and sometimes bread sticks.

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