KFC has been running an advertisement on TV about how their 7 piece chicken bucket for $9.99 costs less than if you tried to cook it yourself. As soon as I saw this advertisement go up, I started to think that it was a pretty bold claim. The commercial even challenges families to try and beat the price on their own. If you haven't seen the commercial, here is is courtesy of youtube:

It seemed pretty obvious to me that any dedicated couponer could come out of the grocery store with the needed ingredients for under $10. But before I could give it a try myself, someone went ahead and did it even without any coupons. A bit of good shopping and a willingness to cook for yourself can make the same meal for under $8 as a post over at grist.com shows:

I rounded up everything I needed for chicken, biscuits, and mashed potatoes with gravy and totaled my costs, accounting for ingredients that were a fraction of a cent (small amounts of spices, for example) by rounding up to $0.01. I must admit I don't know the seven secret herbs and spices, but as a professional chef, I know you can do an awful lot with salt and pepper. The bottom line? The KFC meal, including Iowa state sales tax of 6 percent, is $10.58. I made the same meal (chicken, four biscuits, mashed potatoes, and gravy) for $7.94 — and I got three extra pieces of chicken and a carcass to use for soup.

How much lower could you go with the help of coupons…?

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