‘I ate nothing but Iceland food for a week – this is what happened’

Iceland is one of the country’s most popular supermarkets, with thousands of customers regularly making their way to the grocery store to do their weekly shop.

With an emphasis on the sale of frozen foods, the supermarket has a wide range of meals and products to fill your freezer with, from baked goods and desserts to ready meals and other household essentials.

But despite its plethora of frozen goods, the chain often isn’t included when comparing sites put British supermarkets head to head, even though the store does also stock a variety of fresh food, homeware items, toiletries and pet supplies.

READ MORE: I went to a social supermarket and got all this for under £ 10

So, can you live off only eating from Iceland for a week, and how much does it cost? This is what Liverpool Echo reporter Ella May Rice said she discovered.

The big shop

“I’ve done a big shop from Iceland before, but usually I head into a nearby store to pick and choose the items myself.” She said. “This time around I couldn’t make it in person but I did manage to use Iceland’s online delivery service.

“Typically I struggle with what to buy during my food shop, with so many options and being a picky eater I tend to make last minute decisions about my meals. However, this time I sat down and made a meal plan for five days, with some success. “

Ella's full week shop from Iceland
Ella’s full week shop from Iceland

Ella says she never eat breakfast until she goes to work, usually settling on tucking into some pastries or fruit, and for the days she’s at home she tends to stick with cereal, which she says made picking up breakfast from Iceland rather easy. The reporter went with a six pack of chocolate bread (£ 1.25), a huge 36 pack of Weetabix (£ 3) and a selection of fruit.

She added: “Lunch for me tends to be a quick snack while I’m working from home or on-the-go during the days I’m in the office, so making sure I had things that were quick and easy was important to I managed to get hold of soup, noodles and ingredients for sandwiches relatively cheaply.

“There was a wide range of fresh food available online, with plenty of deals too. I added fresh chicken fillets, an Iceland salad selection pack (lettuce, cucumber and tomato) as well as hummus and pitta bread to my online basket. I also managed to pick up a fajita kit and pasta, as well as jars of pasta and curry sauces. “

As Iceland is known for its frozen food selection, Ella says she was intrigued at what she’d be able to get her hands on. Since she often work long hours, she was pleased to find a number of products that would make cooking dinner easier.

She said: “I quickly added a frozen Cathedral City Mac n Cheese dish (£ 3), Birds Eye four Steamfresh Family Favorites Mix (£ 1.90) and Iceland six White Rice Steam Bags (£ 2.60). I also picked up a frozen Slimming World dish to give it a go, I chose the Slimming World Pizza Chicken (£ 4.50).

“With a full online basket of meals prepped to go, I felt ready for the week ahead. My full shop came to £ 49.40, after taking advantage of some of the deals available online.”

The problem with fresh food

One thing she said she was disappointed with however was the quality of the fresh food: “While the website offers a wide variety of fresh products, ranging from meat and poultry to salad, fruit and bread, the quality of the items on arrival proved less than satisfactory.

“Some products, such as the fruit and chicken, were exactly as promised. However, the salad and bread arrived already past their best.”

Ella says that the Iceland salad selection she selected – which includes a little gem lettuce head, two tomatoes and half a cucumber – was already limp and browning by the time it arrived: “I had also ordered a pack of five Warburtons soft pittas, but on arrival they’d already been out of date by a few days. “

She added: “I had only ordered my food the night before, so there was no way the mix up was down to ordering far in advance and the food being selected before the best before date. Unfortunately by the time the pittas arrived they were actually moldy. “

Still, there were some great meals to be had

Despite this, the Liverpool reporter said there were still some great meals to be had, including the food she ate at lunchtime: “Luckily I had made lunch as easy as possible, planning ahead for basic sandwiches, soup and noodles. I had hoped to have hummus and pitta bread one day too, but that wasn’t meant to be – I ended up just switching out the pitta for bread instead.

“I would never claim to be a good cook, but I did manage to pull together a large pasta bake for four for under £ 7, fajitas for two for just over £ 3 and a curry for two for around £ 5, all of which were fairly decent. “

Slimming World Pizza Chicken with veg
Slimming World Pizza Chicken with veg

Ella said the frozen Cathedral City Mac n Cheese she indulged in was full of flavor- and had an added bonus of being a very quick and easy tea at the end of a busy day.

Another item she purchased was the Slimming World Pizza Chicken, which comprises of two chicken breasts topped with a tomato and herb sauce, cooked sliced ​​pepperoni-style sausage, diced red onion, tomato and red and green peppers. Ella paired the chicken with some veg and said it was brilliant, flavoursome and filling: “The £ 4 price tag for the chicken was a little steep but for the ease of popping it into the oven it was worth it.”

The verdict

Despite the disappointment on the fresh foods front, Ella says the shopping was quite easily done and that meal prepping was the hardest part of it all. She told readers: “If you’re going to do your weekly shopping at Iceland – particularly online – I’d recommend planning ahead and seeing just what you’ll be able to get.

“The best thing I found about shopping online at Iceland was that many of the deals available – which mostly encourage bulk buying – was that I could purchase several items that I knew would last more than the week ahead, such as the huge box of Weetabix and the frozen bags of rice. This meant I could put these products away and they’d be just as good next week or the week after.

“If fresh food is a deciding factor, it could be worth shopping elsewhere for those necessities before hitting up Iceland for your cupboard and frozen food. The tinned products, dry food and chicken were great and are well worth the money. But, Iceland will definitely have to step up its fresh food game before it can compare itself to supermarkets such as Tesco and Asda. “

If you want to shop at Iceland online, you can visit the site here.

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