So…How Did I End Up Shopping At Aldi?

Let me take you on a journey…

Sit back and relax…

Firstly I posted about reducing grocery spend and a dear reader, Sharron, whose opinion I respect suggested I may want to check Aldi out. I wasn’t convinced it was for me, but I like to think I have an open mind and believed Sharron may know her stuff. It went on the back-burner.

Then this post went up over at The Frugal Girl. Kristen is one of my very favourite bloggers and I trust her opinion. In 2010 I read a review of a book that she’d been badgered to give by the author. Her honesty and willingness to share objectively with her readers was never in any doubt for me from that moment. You can read the review here. If you want to check my comment out it was under my pre-blogging peusdonym SimplyJo.

Upon reading The Frugal Girl’s post on her trip to Aldi’s test kitchens, I commented and Aldi UK contacted me. They very kindly offered to send me a few samples of some of their award winning products. I accepted. To attempt a grocery shop at Aldi was on the ‘to-do’ list, so it would be great to get a preview of some of their products.

Then Aldi went up in my estimations ten-fold by kindly agreeing to send Sharron (my dear reader) some samples also. After all, Sharron had recommended them.

A few weeks passed, and I still hadn’t tried out a grocery shop at Aldi. I was keeping to my reduced budget of £50 rather well, albeit it was taking 4 to 5 separate locations to achieve this.

Then I had a bad day. Arms dropping off and brain ache, I began questioning whether there could be another way? Could I get my groceries from one location and stay in budget? The cogs started whirring.

Eventually I did my grocery shop at Aldi, managing to get all the items on my list apart from lasagne sheets (I still don’t understand why these aren’t stocked – bizarre!) and milk (delivery hadn’t arrived). The total spend came in £8.89 under budget.

Last Friday I did my second shop at Aldi and spent less than the previous week.

And I grabbed a bargain – A £19.99 running jacket reduced to £7.99…

Whilst there I picked up the majority of the ingredients and foodstuffs for my Simple Dinner Party.  I’d already made the meringues and had a few storecupboard items to hand.

The cost of the ingredients for the main and dessert came to;

£23.24 – Aldi

£32.51 – The Supermarket I would have used normally

A saving of 28.5%

(Please bear in mind this cannot be scientific – it is an estimate, but it’s as close as I can get it!)

I’m keen to let you know what Sharron and I thought of our samples, but this is a long post as it is and it’s bedtime in the UK (I thought the background to it all was important before I start talking about product. ) …so it’ll have to wait for another day 🙂

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{ 30 comments… add one }
  • Carla December 12, 2011, 11:10 pm

    I really wish we still had an Aldis here… There was one here many years ago that we used to shop at, but I don’t even think there are any Aldis in Ontario anymore… 🙁

    Glad you were able to save some $$ there! 🙂

    • simplybeingmum December 13, 2011, 9:31 am

      Hi Carla! Yes it is a shame – wonder why they moved out of Ontario?

  • Carla December 12, 2011, 11:10 pm

    I really wish we still had an Aldis here… There was one here many years ago that we used to shop at, but I don’t even think there are any Aldis in Ontario anymore… 🙁

    Glad you were able to save some $$ there! 🙂

    • simplybeingmum December 13, 2011, 9:31 am

      Hi Carla! Yes it is a shame – wonder why they moved out of Ontario?

  • Carla December 12, 2011, 11:10 pm

    I really wish we still had an Aldis here… There was one here many years ago that we used to shop at, but I don’t even think there are any Aldis in Ontario anymore… 🙁

    Glad you were able to save some $$ there! 🙂

    • simplybeingmum December 13, 2011, 9:31 am

      Hi Carla! Yes it is a shame – wonder why they moved out of Ontario?

  • Carla December 12, 2011, 11:11 pm

    Ps – Great deal on the running jacket! Love it!! 🙂

    • simplybeingmum December 13, 2011, 9:34 am

      Bargain! Last one – out of wrapper and a bit grubby (it’ll wash) – but in my size! I’ve been waiting to get hold of one, but didn’t want to pay the £35+ price tag the branded stuff costs. I knew Aldi was cheaper as I buy other running stuff there, but £19.99 still seemed too much (I’ve been managing with a fleece over my running top – I’m a bit of a ‘make-do’ gal these days). But at £7.99 I had to give it a home!

  • Carla December 12, 2011, 11:11 pm

    Ps – Great deal on the running jacket! Love it!! 🙂

    • simplybeingmum December 13, 2011, 9:34 am

      Bargain! Last one – out of wrapper and a bit grubby (it’ll wash) – but in my size! I’ve been waiting to get hold of one, but didn’t want to pay the £35+ price tag the branded stuff costs. I knew Aldi was cheaper as I buy other running stuff there, but £19.99 still seemed too much (I’ve been managing with a fleece over my running top – I’m a bit of a ‘make-do’ gal these days). But at £7.99 I had to give it a home!

  • Carla December 12, 2011, 11:11 pm

    Ps – Great deal on the running jacket! Love it!! 🙂

    • simplybeingmum December 13, 2011, 9:34 am

      Bargain! Last one – out of wrapper and a bit grubby (it’ll wash) – but in my size! I’ve been waiting to get hold of one, but didn’t want to pay the £35+ price tag the branded stuff costs. I knew Aldi was cheaper as I buy other running stuff there, but £19.99 still seemed too much (I’ve been managing with a fleece over my running top – I’m a bit of a ‘make-do’ gal these days). But at £7.99 I had to give it a home!

  • Suze December 13, 2011, 11:00 am

    Interestingly some of the products are the same in Australia. We have lasagne sheets or we did last time I looked. I just wish I could get more of my regular list when I shop.

    • simplybeingmum December 13, 2011, 5:47 pm

      Hi Suze – so far I’ve been able to get most of my shop – pretty much everything apart from lasagne sheets (I need to get over it seriously ;-))… however I anticipate as I shop there further I may not…not sure yet…time will tell eh?

  • Suze December 13, 2011, 11:00 am

    Interestingly some of the products are the same in Australia. We have lasagne sheets or we did last time I looked. I just wish I could get more of my regular list when I shop.

    • simplybeingmum December 13, 2011, 5:47 pm

      Hi Suze – so far I’ve been able to get most of my shop – pretty much everything apart from lasagne sheets (I need to get over it seriously ;-))… however I anticipate as I shop there further I may not…not sure yet…time will tell eh?

  • Suze December 13, 2011, 11:00 am

    Interestingly some of the products are the same in Australia. We have lasagne sheets or we did last time I looked. I just wish I could get more of my regular list when I shop.

    • simplybeingmum December 13, 2011, 5:47 pm

      Hi Suze – so far I’ve been able to get most of my shop – pretty much everything apart from lasagne sheets (I need to get over it seriously ;-))… however I anticipate as I shop there further I may not…not sure yet…time will tell eh?

  • sharron December 13, 2011, 11:20 am

    As you know Jo, Aldi revoilotionised (sorry about spelling) my grocery spending and eating habits. When i think back to about 2008 (when food prices were much cheaper!) i was spending £100-£120 per week for the six of us plus 2 cats and 2 dogs, i thought this was reasonable. How wrong was i!! I realised that i could, with a little thought and preparation do it cheaper. A lot of what ended up in my trolley was overpackaged, and ‘pretend’ offers,( I’m looking At you Asda). Not to mention the whole hour it took to walk round their megasized store (again i’m looking at you asda). Aldi is simple, and honestly, the quality is fab. Even better for me is that 2 minutes down the road from me Aldi is opening in the new year.

    So glad Jo that you tried it, and the savings you made on your dinner party were not to be sniffed at! Well done for stepping outside the box.
    Can’t wait for tommorrows post, and your crimbo tree looks lush 🙂
    Sharron x

    • simplybeingmum December 13, 2011, 5:51 pm

      Did you watch Panorama last week? They kind of spelled out what I’ve suspected for for a while. In fact some of the ambiguous offers I am so used to seeing I don’t bat an eyelid – for example 49p each or “2 for £1” offer! It’s actually quite amusing. Yay on the store opening – how convenient is that going to be for you?

      • sharron December 13, 2011, 6:08 pm

        Yes, i saw the programme, and yes i was watching thinking, yeah i knew that, at least dick turpin wore a mask.

        The store is probably a bit too convnient (extra visits 🙁 ) I have one that is about 3 miles away, i shop there then pick up at the home bargains on the way back home, but i only go there once a week. I would still need to use the car to visit the new one, but i will pass it on the way to my mums 🙂 and seens as i visit about 3 times a week it’s going to be tough. Apparently cool trader is going into the complex too. But am kinda wandering if it all will be a bit TOO convnient lol!!

        Sharron x

  • sharron December 13, 2011, 11:20 am

    As you know Jo, Aldi revoilotionised (sorry about spelling) my grocery spending and eating habits. When i think back to about 2008 (when food prices were much cheaper!) i was spending £100-£120 per week for the six of us plus 2 cats and 2 dogs, i thought this was reasonable. How wrong was i!! I realised that i could, with a little thought and preparation do it cheaper. A lot of what ended up in my trolley was overpackaged, and ‘pretend’ offers,( I’m looking At you Asda). Not to mention the whole hour it took to walk round their megasized store (again i’m looking at you asda). Aldi is simple, and honestly, the quality is fab. Even better for me is that 2 minutes down the road from me Aldi is opening in the new year.

    So glad Jo that you tried it, and the savings you made on your dinner party were not to be sniffed at! Well done for stepping outside the box.
    Can’t wait for tommorrows post, and your crimbo tree looks lush 🙂
    Sharron x

    • simplybeingmum December 13, 2011, 5:51 pm

      Did you watch Panorama last week? They kind of spelled out what I’ve suspected for for a while. In fact some of the ambiguous offers I am so used to seeing I don’t bat an eyelid – for example 49p each or “2 for £1” offer! It’s actually quite amusing. Yay on the store opening – how convenient is that going to be for you?

      • sharron December 13, 2011, 6:08 pm

        Yes, i saw the programme, and yes i was watching thinking, yeah i knew that, at least dick turpin wore a mask.

        The store is probably a bit too convnient (extra visits 🙁 ) I have one that is about 3 miles away, i shop there then pick up at the home bargains on the way back home, but i only go there once a week. I would still need to use the car to visit the new one, but i will pass it on the way to my mums 🙂 and seens as i visit about 3 times a week it’s going to be tough. Apparently cool trader is going into the complex too. But am kinda wandering if it all will be a bit TOO convnient lol!!

        Sharron x

  • sharron December 13, 2011, 11:20 am

    As you know Jo, Aldi revoilotionised (sorry about spelling) my grocery spending and eating habits. When i think back to about 2008 (when food prices were much cheaper!) i was spending £100-£120 per week for the six of us plus 2 cats and 2 dogs, i thought this was reasonable. How wrong was i!! I realised that i could, with a little thought and preparation do it cheaper. A lot of what ended up in my trolley was overpackaged, and ‘pretend’ offers,( I’m looking At you Asda). Not to mention the whole hour it took to walk round their megasized store (again i’m looking at you asda). Aldi is simple, and honestly, the quality is fab. Even better for me is that 2 minutes down the road from me Aldi is opening in the new year.

    So glad Jo that you tried it, and the savings you made on your dinner party were not to be sniffed at! Well done for stepping outside the box.
    Can’t wait for tommorrows post, and your crimbo tree looks lush 🙂
    Sharron x

    • simplybeingmum December 13, 2011, 5:51 pm

      Did you watch Panorama last week? They kind of spelled out what I’ve suspected for for a while. In fact some of the ambiguous offers I am so used to seeing I don’t bat an eyelid – for example 49p each or “2 for £1” offer! It’s actually quite amusing. Yay on the store opening – how convenient is that going to be for you?

      • sharron December 13, 2011, 6:08 pm

        Yes, i saw the programme, and yes i was watching thinking, yeah i knew that, at least dick turpin wore a mask.

        The store is probably a bit too convnient (extra visits 🙁 ) I have one that is about 3 miles away, i shop there then pick up at the home bargains on the way back home, but i only go there once a week. I would still need to use the car to visit the new one, but i will pass it on the way to my mums 🙂 and seens as i visit about 3 times a week it’s going to be tough. Apparently cool trader is going into the complex too. But am kinda wandering if it all will be a bit TOO convnient lol!!

        Sharron x

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