“I brought £30 to Asda to see if I could do a week’s shopping like they claim”


Can you buy a weekly store at Asda for £30? Well, that’s what was claimed earlier this week as an Asda store prepared a fake receipt to show how cheap a grocery store can be amid the cost of living crisis .

The store claimed a full week’s shop could cost as little as £33.60. Earlier this week, Asda claimed it was launching the largest range of budget essentials on the market. The new range – rebranded as ‘Just Essentials by Asda’ from ‘Smart Price’ – will land in May as the cost of living crisis hits millions. The new range has 300 products, compared to 150 in the Smart Price range that it will replace.

But does the current budget range live up to the hype, and can you really fill your cart with goodies from the range to last you all week? I shopped at Asda this week to see how true the claim is.

With a budget of £30 in my pocket, I didn’t expect to get too much, but was pleasantly surprised as I got a lot for my money. In addition to packing essential proteins like frozen chicken breasts and chilled meats and cheeses, I’ve also managed to get canned goods such as beans, tomatoes and tuna and have also made stocked with essential cleaning supplies as well as items such as tea and coffee.

Standard Store Cabinet Essentials

Cereals and nuts

All in all, I managed to pack 33 items, which I think was pretty good for the money, but can you get a full shop? I wouldn’t say that. I spent just over £28 on food in total and my trolley also contained items like honey, crisps, biscuits, bin bags, lemonade, bread and milk.

You might say my cart was full of what many people would call their basic essentials, but could you feed your family for that price every week? In all honesty, a lot depends on what you like to eat.

For example, I didn’t have any fresh fruits or vegetables, and those are things I would normally buy every week. I always have a stock of tinned tomatoes in my cupboard which sell for the bargain price of 56p for two in the budget range which I thought was great but you couldn’t buy many fresh items.

Here is my complete shopping list

  • Asda Smart Price Slices of cooked ham 125g £86p
  • Asda Smart Price Medium Food Bags 100 €1.40
  • Asda Smart Price Kitchen Roll x2 £1.99

  • Asda Smart Price Toilet Paper Rolls x6 £1.93

  • Asda Smart Price Mild White Cheddar 825g £4.95

  • Asda Smart Price All Purpose Cleaning Cloths £0.45

  • Asda Smart Price Salad Cream 520g €0.50

  • Asda Smart Price Instant Coffee 100g €1.00

  • Asda Smart Price Dark Chocolate 100g €0.33

  • Asda Smart Price Leicester Red 825g €4.90

  • Asda Smart Price Clear Honey 340g £0.99

  • Asda Smart Price Salted Peanuts £0.46

  • Asda Smart Price Chicken Breast Fillets 1kg €3.50

  • Asda Smart Price Tea Bags (40) £0.28

  • Asda Smart Price Garbage Bags x45 £1.07

  • Asda Smart Price Long Grain Rice 1kg £0.45

  • Asda Smart Price Wholemeal Bread 800g £0.49

  • Asda Smart Price Wrapping Sheet €0.75

  • Asda Smart Price Toilet Cleaner £0.30

  • Asda Smart Price Long Lasting Skimmed Milk 1l £0.75

  • Asda Smart Price Scrubbing Sponges x8 £0.40

  • Asda Smart Price Tomato ketchup 530g €0.42

  • Asda Smart Price Snacks 12x16g £0.98

  • Asda Smart Price Lemonade 2l £0.23

  • Asda Smart Price Golden Vegetable Savory Rice 120g

  • Asda Smart Price Chocolate Chip Cookies 250g €0.49

  • Asda Smart Price Apple and Blackcurrant Squash 750ml £0.41

  • Asda Smart Price Pasta Shapes 500g £0.29

  • Asda Smart Price Tuna Chunks in Brine 145g £0.79

  • Asda Smart Price Chopped Tomatoes 400g x2 €0.75

  • Asda Smart Price Baked Beans £0.22

  • TOTAL: £28.13

You also can’t argue with a 39p loaf of wholemeal bread as this wholesome loaf is good value for money but I wouldn’t say you can get everything you need to last a week. However, what I would say is that if you stock up once a month (or as long as you need) on your store cabinet essentials, it may be possible to get away with packing the most of what you need for the remaining weeks of the month for as long as possible. just £30 per week.

Cleaning and household items

Cheese and ham

For example, if you’re the type of person who always has meat in the freezer, spices on the grill, and other morsels that can add flavor to food (in addition to being able to source fresh fruits and vegetables cheap), then this will allow you to succeed in your budget shopping, because all you will have to do in the following weeks is to pick up the other essentials of daily life to help you.

That’s where Asda’s budget range comes in, as all the basics can be had at bargain prices – all you need to do is come up with a plan to get the most out of your cupboards and your money. A 1kg bag of chicken breasts for £3.50 will give a hungry family plenty of options.

The key to making this plan work is to make sure you vary the store each week with different frozen meats, or make sure you have other cuts in your freezer for meal variation. If you start some sort of meal planning process, I’m sure it could pay off.

Not to mention when you pair your protein with your canned food and your cereal – good work – because you’re getting the most out of everything you’ve bought at that time. It’s just learning to think more carefully before you buy.

It must be said that when it comes to cleaning products and everyday household items, it is impossible to go wrong. I managed to get a roll of tin foil for 65p, toilet cleaner for 30p, a six roll pack of toilet paper for £1.93 and a pack of cleaning cloths for 35p.

You have to say – these are bargains not to be missed – and with bills rising, you can’t blame people for rushing the budget range to save their pennies. We’re all trying to cut our expenses, we’re all trying to shop smarter and looking at brands like this is one way to try and do that.

Preserves and jars

So would I say I could do my entire weekly shop using Asda’s budget range? I don’t think you can say for sure that it would be possible to do it every week, but I would say it is possible to do it on some weeks.

To me, it seems to me that saving success is all about buying wisely and stocking up on essentials from the store cupboard that will last you months, so you’re only looking to top up certain items each week. I think that’s the way of looking at it, and it’s the best way to learn to only buy what you really need.

What I would add though is that using a budget range like Asda’s is a good way to cut down and save on your expenses, especially if you’re doing it online, because you can see how much your bill is increasing before you pay.

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