Friday, 29 August 2014

Approved Food and making plans...

Hi everyone,

I just received an order from Approved Food and I thought you might like to see what bargains I picked up.

I have been shopping with them for many years now and think it's a great way of saving money on store cupboard staples and treats. It's not everyone's cup of tea because some items are past their best before date. As the food isn't fresh anyway, it's down to personal choice. The only problem I've ever had is crisps that have been stale (on one occasion) and have been fine eating other stuff. I am a person who never eats food that's past it's use by date. I do get a bit paranoid about being sick! However, food is either used up by other members of my family or I make sure it's used before it's out of date. I have been working hard to eliminate food wastage in our house.

I haven't ordered from AF for a while because we have been eating so much fresh foods over the summer and my meal planning has meant that I only buy what I need each week. This has now become a habit, but the seasons are changing and I need to prepare for the colder months...

Already we have been suffering with a cold in my house (I'm still ill) and it got me thinking. When I'm ill I really don't feel like cooking and I'm really not prepared for that! Luckily my lovely hubby is perfectly capable and a very good cook, but he has been working hard all day (normally on a roof) and I would like to provide him with a hot meal to come home to. I can cut corners with AF with jar sauces for example. I like to cook from scratch but sometimes life just gets in the way of how we want to live.

The colder weather means that sometimes we want a warm lunch as well as tea and not just a sandwich. Soup or beans are ideal for this and I can find bargains on AF. I picked up some cup-a-soup to have for my lunch. 

Stocking the cupboards ready for bad weather during winter is something I do every year and I'm looking for the cheapest way to do this...supermarket offers will be stocked up on too. 

Finally, life would be boring without a few treats and buying close to a best before date is fine by me...chocolate doesn't hang around long enough here to go bad! 

I really don't like processed foods, but I am saving money now to enable Christmas planning (it's never too early...we know it's coming) and I will be really concentrating on sorting things out over the next few weeks to save and prepare for winter and Christmas. 

So, this is what I got...

 Sorry the photo is dark, but the flash made it worse! It's a dull day here.

There are snacks and goodies to cheer us up after so much illness and a few toiletries and cleaning bits. There's medication (how expensive is baby nurofen and lemsip etc!!) I've been getting through a lot of ibuprofen for my back, so stocked up on the cheaper version. I also got some porridge oats for Daisy and I to eat for breakfast in the chilly mornings. Even the value ones seem to be really expensive now. 

As I spent a certain amount, I was offered a lucky box from AF for 1p. If had no idea what I was getting...

It looked ok for 1p.

There were a few things in date and a few out of date...

The soup will get used for lunches, the noodles I will use as a pad out to a meal and my daughter will use the chewing gum. All in date.

The date here is July 2014. Hubby loves pork scratchings and my daughter will eat the breakfast bars at work.

These are June 2014. They are snacks that I wouldn't buy, but they will be enjoyed I'm sure. 

These are the only packet that will probably be wasted. It's liquorice which I hate and the date is 2013. Unless anyone in the family wants them, they will head for the bin. Not bad for 1p though!

I am not being sponsored by AF. I'm just giving my opinions. My little old blog is not popular enough to be asked! Does anyone else use them to stock up or for treats?

I forgot that I also got some swimming nappies for Daisy because they were heavily reduced. These are not in the photo.

I'm still hoping to get back to normal blogging soon, but illness and being behind with my chores is slowing me down. 

There will be lots of winter money saving ideas to share with you soon. 

It's Daisy's birthday on Monday, so I will be posting up pictures of her cake etc next week.

Thanks for waiting!

Mandy x


  1. I haven't done an af shop for a while as we are supposed to be moving house. I do love the surprise boxes though! Dried food and runs last for ages and I've still got lots if stir fry sauces from them which are still fine. Hope you feel better soon. X

  2. I have some tinned chestnut puree that is dated 1998, I used one tin since we moved it from Reading to Derbyshire. the meal was lovely and tasted fine.I also use to work at Julian Graves and have food that was out of date when I took it home and still OK. I have not bought from AF thought I keep looking.

    1. I think approved food is fine for some things, but there is a lot of processed food on offer there xx

  3. I had a box from them this week, I buy curry spices and herb mixes. This time I bought lots of mexican stuff and stacks of cous cous and bulgar wheat plus some marinades. I am careful about best before dates but these are only a guide line, in lots of cases if you contact the manufacturers they extend them by 6 months to a year for dried food. In theory once dried they last indefinitely as long as they are kept dry. I do not often buy jars of sauces as it pushes the deliver cost up.

    1. The boxes can get quite heavy if you order jars or catering size bags of bread mix! Xx

  4. I have an order on the way, but always have to be careful as there is also a lot of rubbish on there, I will post my order on my blog.

  5. I use AF quite often. They are great for sauces, soups etc and often have great offers on pasta which I stock up on as it lasts for ages.

    1. I've bought sauces and soups from them too xx

  6. I still buy occasionally from AF but used to stock up so much when they had a good deal that it didn't all get used and I ended up throwing stuff out. Now I only buy what I know will get used, but they are still great for some store cupboard items and I often get deals on cat food from them.

    1. I agree...I only buy what I know I can use up xx

  7. I have looked at Approved Foods as I don't mind eating stuff past its best before date but I got a bit confused by the cost of postage and gave up. I must go back and take another look.

    1. The savings are worth the delivery cost as long as you're going to use up what you buy xx