Skip to content

12 Walmart Must-Have Items to Buy for Back to School

The one-stop shop can help you get ready for the upcoming year.
The product recommendations in this post are recommendations by the writer and/or expert(s) interviewed and do not contain affiliate links. Meaning: If you use these links to buy something, we will not earn a commission.

The school year is fast-approaching, which means it's time to stock up on the essentials. Instead of going to multiple stores to purchase snacks, supplies, and so on, Walmart has just about everything you could need to gear up for the 2023-2024 school year.

Another benefit of shopping at Walmart? The superstore is chock full of discounts and deals, so you can complete your back-to-school shopping without putting a major strain on your wallet.

Although the sheer volume of products sold at Walmart can be intimidating, we're here to help make this end-of-summer errand a bit easier. From lunchbox staples to classroom necessities, here are 12 items to consider putting in your cart the next time you visit America's biggest retailer. As always, prices can vary depending on location.

Goldfish Big Smiles Variety Pack

goldfish variety pack

When you're looking for a salty snack, Goldfish rarely disappoint. For a crunchy lunchbox addition, you can purchase a 30-count Goldfish Big Smiles variety pack at Walmart for $12.86. Each box includes 12 bags of Goldfish Cheddar, 10 bags of Goldfish Colors, and eight bags of Goldfish Pretzels. As with other Goldfish products, the three snacks are baked and free of artificial colors and preservatives.

11 Sam's Club Must-Have Items to Buy for Back to School

Nabisco Team Favorites Variety Pack

nabisco team favorites variety pack

Can't decide between Chips Ahoy and Oreos? Why not get both—plus some additional options? This cookie variety pack contains 30 individual bags of mini Oreos, Chips Ahoy cookies, honey-flavored Teddy Grahams, and Barnum's Animal Crackers for $11.98.

Sargento Balanced Breaks

sargento balanced breaks cheese & crackers

While one shopper likened these to "adult lunchables" in a product review, that doesn't mean kids can't enjoy them, too. For a filling snack, Sargento has a variety of single-serve snack mixes featuring cheese and crackers, or a combination of nuts, cheese, dried fruit, and chocolate. Walmart shoppers can score a three-pack of Sargento's Snack Balanced Breaks for just $3.34, bringing each snack pack to about $1.11.

Clif Kid Zbar

clif kid zbar

Like its Clif Bar counterpart, Kid Zbars are crafted to provide energy, which can come in handy for busy kids on the go. Plus, these soft and chewy snack bars are organic, non-GMO, and free of high fructose corn syrup, artificial flavors, and synthetic preservatives. Now on sale, a box of 18 bars is available for $13.64 in three different flavors: Chocolate Chip, Iced Oatmeal Cookie, and Chocolate Brownie.

Eggo Homestyle Waffles

eggo homestyle waffles family pack

Weekday mornings can be hectic, so popping some frozen waffles into the toaster can be a breakfast lifesaver. At Walmart, customers can stock up on the staple with Eggo's 24-count box of waffles for $6.36. Flavor options include Homestyle, Buttermilk, Chocolatey Chip, Blueberry, and Cinnamon Toast Minis. As a bonus, shoppers can also receive a free book with this purchase, as Kellogg's has partnered with Penguin Random House to give out free books with participating Kellogg's products.

Arctic Zone Upright Reusable Lunch Box

artic zone lunch box combo

If your child will be toting around a lunchbox this year, Walmart's got you covered. One highly rated option sold by the retailer is the Arctic Zone Upright Reusable Lunch Box Combo, which comes in multiple designs, along with a reusable food container, water bottle, and an ice pack for $9.96. As noted by the brand, this item has "high density thermal insulation," which is meant to keep food cold and fresh. There's also an Ultra Safe leak proof lining with Microban, which is designed to protect against odors and stains while also making the lining easier to clean.

Willstar Thermos

willstar insulated food container

If your kids are tired of PB&J or you'd like to get rid of some leftovers, a thermos can be a worthwhile purchase. And fortunately, Walmart is home to a variety of them, such as this 17.9 ounce stainless steel food thermos made for both hot and cold foods. The product comes with a spoon, is available in two different colors, and is currently priced at $10.55 However, if you're looking for something a bit larger, Walmart also carries a 24-ounce version for $13.98.

Oldley Kids Water Bottle

oldley kids water bottle

Sometimes we need to be reminded to drink more water. Luckily, this water bottle does the motivating for you. Oldley's 12-ounce, kid-friendly water bottle is printed with timestamps, measurements, and motivational sayings like "awaken" and "power up" to encourage kids to get their H20 throughout the day. The water bottle, which costs $11.99, also comes with 10 stickers to give it even more personality. For those looking for a bigger bottle, Walmart also sells a 17-ounce version for dollar cheaper.

Bazic Elementary School Kit undle

bazic elementary school kit bundle

Instead of purchasing notebooks, pencils, and erasers separately, Walmart streamlines the shopping process by selling them altogether. Now marked down for $10 off, the Bazic Elementary School Kit is complete with just about anything a student could need ranging from pens, pencils, and erasers, to a notebook, binder, and scissors. Grab this 86-item pack for $37.99!

Pen + Gear Composition Notebook

pen + gear composition book

While you can buy notebooks as part of a back-to-school bundle, you can also snag them for 50 cents each. Categorized as both a "best seller" and popular pick," the Pen+Gear Composition Book is filled with 100 sheets of wide ruled paper and is made with covers that "are flexible enough to lie flat when writing," according to the brand.

Bic Brite Liner Highlighters

bic brite liner highlighters

Whether used to draw attention to important pieces of text or simply add some creative flair to notes, highlighters can be a helpful tool in the classroom. This five-count pack features one yellow, pink, blue, green, and orange highlighter, all of which have a chisel tip that can be used to create both thick and thin lines. Additionally, as stated on the product's packaging, these highlighters won't dry out if left uncapped for up to eight hours. Discounted from $2.10, this item is now being sold for $1.72.

Ticonderoga Pencils

ticonderoga pencils

Nothing marks the start of a new school year like a fresh box of pencils. If you choose to purchase this essential item outside of a school supplies bundle, Walmart is selling a 24-count pack of unsharpened number-two pencils for $2.47. These pencils are made from responsibly sourced forests, while the latex-free eraser ensures smudge-free, clean corrections.

Brianna Ruback
Brianna is a staff writer at Eat This, Not That! She attended Ithaca College, where she graduated with a degree in Journalism and a minor in Communication Studies. Read more about Brianna