Which is the cheapest supermarket 2022?

At a time when the cost of living is skyrocketing, searching for the cheapest supermarket and finding ways to slash food bills is more important than ever
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  • As soaring inflation, rising energy bills and the National Insurance hike put increasing pressure on household finances, looking for the cheapest supermarket is one way to help reduce your food bill and make your income go further.

    “Food prices are at an all-time high and could increase further due to the impact of supply-chain disruption, rising inflation, and the conflict in Ukraine,” explains Brean Horne, personal finance expert at Nerdwallet. “Groceries are an essential part of every household’s budget so naturally, any increase in food prices will directly impact their spending power. Finding the cheapest supermarkets is more important than ever to help cut the cost of food shopping.”

    Which is the cheapest supermarket 2022?

    Latest research by trade magazine The Grocer reveals that discount retailer Aldi is the cheapest supermarket for everyday groceries. The weekly shopping price survey compared the cost of a shopping basket of 33 typical grocery items at the biggest supermarkets (Asda, Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Morrisons and Waitrose), and compared it to the same basket at Aldi. Aldi’s basket came in at a total of £51.35, which was £6.98 cheaper than runner-up Asda, and £26.91 cheaper than the most expensive basket from Waitrose.

    Overall, the supermarkets were ranked as follows from cheapest to the most expensive:

    • Aldi
    • Asda
    • Sainsbury’s
    • Morrisons
    • Tesco
    • Waitrose

    The full table of the 33 items that were compared across the supermarkets is outlined below:

    Product Asda Morrisons Sainsbury’s Tesco Waitrose Aldi
    All-purpose cleaner, own label (1 litre) £1 £1 £1.15 £1 £1.15 85p
    Apples, own label, Braeburn (6 pack) 99p £1.59 £1.60 £1.60 £2.10 £1.19
    Arrabbiata sauce, own label (350g) £1.87 £1.65 £1.60 £1.60 £1.28 £1.19
    Baby potatoes, own label (1kg) 90p 85p £1 £1 £2 49p
    Cadbury Dairy Milk bar (95g) £1 £1 £1.50 98p £1.50 98p
    Choc chip brioche rolls, own label (8 pack) £1 £1 £1.15 £1.15 £1.50 79p
    Coleslaw, own label (300g) £1.35 £1.35 £1.35 £1.45 £1.60 99p
    Crinkle cut chips, own label (1.2kg) £1.25 £1.49 £1.50 £1.50 £2.17 99p
    Cucumber, own label (large) 45p 85p 70p 69p 80p 43p
    Eggs, own label (6 pack) £1.75 £1.65 £1.90 £1.90 £2.30 £1.59
    Foster’s cans (10x440ml) £9 £9.25 £6.67 £10 £9.50 £8.32
    Halloumi, own label (225g) £2 £1.75 £2.30 £2 £2.34 £1.59
    Haribo Giant Strawbs (175g) 90p 89p 92p 89p £1 89p
    Kellogg’s Corn Flakes (500g) £2 £2 £1.82 £2 £2.10 £1.99
    Kitchen towel, own label (2 pack) £1.99 £2.55 £2.50 £2.30 £2.60 £2.09
    Lasagne, own label (400g) £1.60 99p £1.50 £1.60 £2.29 £1.19
    Loaf, own label, medium, white (800g) 58p 59p 55p 59p £1 49p
    Mini flapjack bites, own label (20 pack) £1.38 £1.67 £1.80 £2 £2.75 £1.16
    Mouthwash, own label (500ml) 47p 50p 80p 47p £1.30 42p
    Nutella (630g) £4.25 £4.75 £4.75 £4.35 £4.65 £4.35
    Olive oil, own label (1 litre) £3 £3.29 £3 £3 £4.25 £2.59
    Orange squash, own label (1 litre)  £1.35 £1.50 £1.35 £1.35 £1.30 £1.09
    Parsley, own label (30g) 56p 79p 50p 53p 84p 44p
    Pickled onions, own label (440g) 75p 95p 80p 70p 90p 49p
    Plums, own label (400g) 59p 59p 90p £1.50 £3 95p
    Pork mince, own label, 5% fat (500g) £2.50 £2.49 £2.19 £2.50 £3.20 £2.19
    Quiche, own label, cheese and onion (400g) £1.95 £2.30 £2 £2.30 £2.24 £1.45
    Rump steak, own label (225g) £4.01 £4.50 £3.53 £4.01 £5.55 £3.49
    Salmon fillets, own label (240g) £3.20 £2.95 £3.50 £3.50 £3.86 £2.95
    Smoothie, own label, mango & passionfruit (750ml) £1.20 £1.20 £1.50 £1.40 £1.85 £1.09
    Strawberry trifle, own label (600g) £2 £2 £2 £2.65 £2.65 £1.49
    Sweetcorn, own label (325g) 50p 70p 60p 55p 70p 39p
    Teabags, own label, camomile (20 pack) £1 £1.29 £1.50 £1.20 £2 75p
    Total cost £58.33 £61.92 £60.43 £64.25 £78.26 £51.35

    Source: The Grocer

    Is Lidl cheaper than Aldi?

    According to Which?’s annual survey, Aldi narrowly beat rival Lidl to be named cheapest supermarket of the year for 2021. Which? tracked hundreds of thousands of grocery prices across the UK’s eight major supermarkets throughout 2021 to find out how much each retailer was charging for everyday items such as bread, milk and eggs. Overall, Aldi was found to be cheapest for six of the 12 months, while Lidl was the cheapest for five. For one month, January 2021, Aldi and Lidl were tied with a basket of 19 items costing £18.45 at both stores.

    Emphasising how close the two discounters are in price, Lidl won the cheapest supermarket accolade in 2020 and was also the cheapest supermarket in February 2022, at £24.21 for a basket of 23 groceries. In comparison, Aldi’s basket was £24.83.

    Discount retailers Lidl and Aldi have soared in popularity in recent years, thanks to their ability to offer a wide range of products at low prices due to low operating costs.

    Which is the most expensive supermarket?

    Research from both The Grocer and Which? has highlighted Waitrose as being the most expensive supermarket. According to Which’s annual survey, Waitrose was consistently the most expensive across the 12 months of 2021. In fact, a basket of everyday items at Waitrose cost from £6 to over £10 more per month than the cheapest supermarket.

    The research from Which? also revealed that while food prices rose at all supermarkets over 2021, prices increased the most at Waitrose. Prices rose by a massive 9%, compared to the average 3% rise across all eight supermarkets. That said, prices at Aldi and Lidl also increased by more than the average over the 12-month period. In comparison, Sainsbury’s managed to keep its prices relatively steady over the year, with the smallest price rise of 0.59%.

    How to find the cheapest supermarket

    Monitoring surveys and research from publications such as The Grocer and Which? is one way to keep track of the latest supermarket trends. But there are also a number of apps and tools that can help you. Nick Drewe, personal finance expert at online discount platform WeThrift told us, “Latestdeals is an app which lets you compare prices across supermarket giants like Asda, Aldi, Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Iceland, Waitrose, Ocado and Morrisons. With this app, you can compare product prices by size and brand. There is also Trolley, which like Latestdeals, enables you to see the cheapest grocery prices across the UK’s biggest stores. What’s more, you can also get daily offers and price alerts on this platform, as well as create shopping lists to save you as much as £1,000 a year.”

    My Supermarket Compare also lets you compare prices of particular products across the supermarkets, while deal-sharing platforms, such as Hotukdeals.com, can be worth checking out for the latest offers.

    “Deal-sharing platforms share thousands of offers every week and can help decide where it’s best for you to shop,” says Dan Plant, consumer savings expert at hotukdeals.com. “Users will post deals they see in-store and online, for example BOGOF offers, reductions and loyalty scheme discounts.”

    Is the cheapest supermarket the best?

    At a time when the cost of living is soaring, hunting out the cheapest supermarket and finding the biggest savings will be a top priority. However, cost isn’t the only factor that should be considered when looking for the best supermarket for your circumstances. Customer service can be particularly important if you might need additional support buying groceries in-store or online. Keep in mind that while budget stores such as Lidl and Aldi are often cheapest, their in-store shopping experience tends to be more minimalist.

    Budget stores don’t always offer the widest range of products either, although this has improved over time. Some, such as Lidl, also do not offer home delivery for food, unlike most traditional supermarkets.

    “Supermarket location is an important factor to consider too,” says Brean Horne. “Transport costs may offset any savings made on food shopping if you have to travel further to find a cheaper supermarket. Accessibility options are another key consideration when deciding the best supermarket for a particular shopper. Customers that rely on volunteer services to do their grocery shopping, for example, may prefer to use supermarkets that offer specialist gift cards to make paying simpler.”

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