Treat time: Approved Food Lucky Box review

It’s Treat Time again, and once more we’re linking up with the wonderful Work from Home Wisdom to bring you some new goodies and inspiration (scroll down for a link to their latest article).

Last week I took the plunge and treated myself to an Approved Food Lucky Box while it was on special offer. I say special – it was reduced to just 1p for the day, so it seemed like a no-brainer.

Approved Food 1p Lucky Box review

If you don’t know about Approved Food, they’re a discount retailer of various foods. Many of these foods are close to or beyond their Best Before dates (but not beyond their safe Use By dates), but they also sell fresh vegetables and loads of surplus stock, including foods that are fine until next year or the year after that but that have been taken off the shelves during rebranding exercises.

So what is a Lucky Box? It’s a small-ish cardboard box that they fill with completely random items from their warehouse. You have no idea what you’re going to get, but it’s discounted on top of their normal low prices. You’re taking a risk. Now, normally something like this might be sold for £4.99 or £1, depending on the size of the box and the relative fanciness of the goods.

Like I said, though, you’re taking a risk – you might not like what you get, or you might have no use for the foods or other household products you’re sent. When I’m short of cash I prefer not to take risks with my money, even if it’s less than £5 – I like to know what I’m getting so I can budget effectively. Well, we’ve had building work done recently, and there’s still decorating and DIY to do and homewares to buy and replace, plus one of my regular clients is no longer using freelancers as of last week so there’s no room to do anything silly until things ease up.

What changed? When I was doing this month’s Approved Food order, there was a little pop-up that appeared on the screen after I’d put £26 of goods in the online basket. It was a special offer, that day only, to get a standard Lucky Box for 1p if you had a £25 or more spend on groceries. I wasn’t aware of the offer before that, so wasn’t spooked into doing an order I didn’t need or putting extra things into the basket to qualify. It was just a random moment where the opportunity presented itself, so I went for it. In for a penny as they say…

A few days later the box arrived, and here’s what was in it:

  • Perfect Fajita Kit from Discovery Foods. Worth it for this product alone: 8 in-date flour tortillas, some seasoned crispy crumb, and a sour cream dip. Bought these before from Approved Food and liked them a lot.
  • 2 x Polar Bars from Sainsbury’s. Supermarket own-brand version of Penguin Bars, handy for the occasional packed lunch treat.
  • Packet of Kania spicy cous cous. This is a Lidl own-brand product, past the Best Before but perfectly fine and a good meal base for quick suppers or lunch bowls topped with leftovers or grilled halloumi cheese slices.
  • 6-pack of Crinkle Bakes snacks. This was the duff one in the bunch – really didn’t taste at all nice (probably due to changes in the oils in the product) and went in the bin.
  • Sunmagic smoothie with apple, strawberry and raspberry. Very nice longlife pure fruit version of a smoothie, and one of my five a day.

The Lucky Box turned out to be very, very good value for one measly penny and a nice little treat when the finances were tight, so I’ve enjoyed doing this review. Hopefully I’ll be able to get another one of these offers next time they come up.

If you’re interested in finding an offer like this, you have to be quick. Sign up for the company’s newsletter or keep an eye on their Facebook page or Twitter feed to find out when they’re running the next one.

Are you tempted to give this offer a try next time it’s available?

Full disclosure: I write recipes each month for the Approved Food blog, but this article is not related to the work I do with them and was carried out completely independently (and with my own money, all 1p of it).


[box type=”alert” style=”rounded” border=”full” icon=”none”]Don’t forget to visit Work from Home Wisdom too, where a Dorset blogger is sharing his insider secrets of favourite local treats large and small. So if you’re off on your holidays and want to know where to get the best chips and cream tea in Lyme Regis…

*Come back and join both of us in a fortnight for another Thursday Treat Time!*[/box]

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