Wednesday, November 4, 2015
Eat Well For Less in the Jackson House
A TV show we've enjoyed recently is Eat Well For Less. Some experts come around to different family's houses and swap all their food for cheaper alternatives in plain packaging in an attempt to help them spend less on their weekly shop.
It gives us a good opportunity to feel smug, we organise our shopping pretty well already, have a weekly menu we stick to and spend less than the national average each week.
The national average for a family of 4 (according to Eat Well For Less) is £86 a week. We usually spend between £60-70. But after watching this series we've been thinking maybe we could spend less is we tried more of the cheapest non-brand foods.
So we decided to go for it and in one week just buy Morrisons Savers versions of everything we usually get. All our meals for the week would be made up of Savers items. The weekly shopping was weird to see with no brands and very plain packaging. It was JD's favourite thing about it.
In addition to the Savers stuff we had our usual fruits and vegetables which are just a standard price and not in the Savers category.
We already make a lot of things ourselves but for this week we decided to try the ready-made cheap versions. We bought frozen chips instead of making our own, we bought fish fingers instead of making fish cakes that kind of thing. We tried some cheap canned vegetables instead of fresh veg just to see how the cheap Savers things were.
A couple of examples of our menu for the week:
Fish fingers - 60p a packet
Tinned sweetcorn - 35p
Cheese pasta in sauce - 20p a packet
Total meal - £1.95
It's not really the kind of food we'd like to eat generally but if you were strapped for money it's a decently filling meal for 4 for less than £2. Add some bread and butter from the Savers range for £1.12 for a loaf and block of butter and it's even more filling.
We also ate:
Sausages - £1 for 20 frozen sausages
Tinned peas - 21p
Garlic bread - 34p per baguette
Total meal - £1.89
Leigh and Erin said they preferred these sausages to the usual £4 for 20 ones we buy. JD and I preferred our usual ones in this case.
Most of the food we ate was pretty good. We already usually buy some Savers items every week. We buy Savers oats to make muesli, we buy savers mozzarella to make pizza, we use Savers grated cheese for salads and sandwiches. We missed some things like the nice muesli bars we usually get, the Savers ones are ok but not great.
I was surprised how little complaining Leigh and Erin did about the changes. Erin said the Savers peanut butter was the same, she also enjoyed the Savers wheat biscuits (Weetabix) for breakfast. If we eat fish we usually buy frozen breaded fish but this week I bought Savers fish fillets and added a breadcrumb topping flavoured with curry. They both ate it without hesistation.
We'll stick with some of the Savers items we changed but we'll definitely go back to making our own version of ready-made foods.
We spent £34 in total for the week's shopping. Which is less than half the national average. I think Greg and Chris from Eat Well For Less would be proud.