Can you really get a decent Christmas lunch for under three quid? Can own labels beat the luxury brands on taste? If you’re willing to give them a try, you could make your Christmas go ‘pop’ for a whole lot less this year.
As this is the first year I’ve ever cooked and hosted Christmas dinner, I have to admit that I’m not holding back. I’ve got an order with the butcher, the fishmonger and I’ll be going to the supermarket and specialist off license too.
But is this all a bit over-the-top? Undoubtedly, I could cook Christmas lunch for less, but would it taste as good?
I’m sceptical, but the results from our recent Christmas pud taste tests show that the proof is in the pudding. Lidl’s Deluxe Matured Christmas Pud scored 82% in our taste tests, narrowly beating its pricier rival Waitrose to the top spot. Other more expensive contestants (like Sainsburys, which was £6 more) trailed way behind with just 49%.
Festive fizz for less
There are savings to be had on top tipples too, with our champagne taste tests showing that there’s no point being a snob. Top of the pops for festive fizz wasn’t the expensive champagne, such as Moet or Veuve – it was the humble Morrisons own.
At a mere £19.99, Morrisons ‘The Best’ champagne is at least £10 cheaper a bottle than luxury brand names – so can it really be better? According to our taste panel, yes. And, with wine critics, writers and consultants among them, they seem pretty trustworthy. That’s the trip to the specialist offie off my list, then.
Are you economising?
It seems that we’re not the only ones to cotton on to the idea of a cheaper Christmas lunch. Good Housekeeping magazine’s been running a ‘Christmas dinner for under £3‘ campaign, featuring the likes of Lidl turkey, Sainsbury’s basics stuffing and Asda Smart Price Christmas cake bars in place of Christmas cake.
While I’m sure the chefs over at GH could make anything taste good, I don’t hold my own culinary skills in quite such high esteem, so I’m sticking to meat from my local butchers – but I may well economise when it comes to the supermarket shop. Are you planning to use any budget buys in this year’s festive feast?