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What to buy from Waitrose: the Mumsnet shopping list

The aisles of Waitrose are a veritable treasure trove of items that will make your weekly shop a little bit lovelier. Here are the must-haves Mumsnetters have on their Best of Waitrose shopping list. And ssssh! Don’t tell the others!

By Mumsnet HQ | Last updated Feb 17, 2022

woman writing shopping list at supermarket

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If, like many of us, you begin the year with excellent intentions for feeding your family, but find by early spring you’re back to old habits, reinventing your shopping list a little can help. 

We talked to Mumsnetters about how they had overhauled their weekly shop for the better, whether that was reducing cost and waste or simply trying to eat better. We also sneaked a peek at their secret Waitrose shopping lists to compile a list of all the must-buys from the supermarket that you might not have spotted hiding on the shelves. 

Waitrose might be renowned in Mumsnet circles for being the go-to supermarket for the upmarket, the unusual and the Friday night treat, but wellness has long been top of its agenda, providing ingredients to inspire healthy eating and a healthier lifestyle too, ensuring that good food always means tasty food. 

Its Good Health label appears on all the store’s foods that are as good for you as they are delicious, making it really easy to make healthier choices as you do your weekly trolley dash. 

And of course, good food begins not on the supermarket shelves but out in the fields, farms and rivers, so if your aim for 2022 is to eat a little less meat and fish but eat better when you do buy it, there’s plenty of choice. Mumsnetter AnotherMansCause suggests a few ways to shop and eat more sustainably: “Eat fewer animal products. Have a couple of vegetarian/vegan meals every week… Buy organic foods if you can afford them, because organic farming helps biodiversity on the farmland and also in the ocean due to reduced fertiliser runoff.” Plenty of good reasons to source the best you can. 

Meal planning and using up leftovers

Perhaps you’re aiming to throw away less food this year? The first step to creating less waste is almost always a meal plan. “Get your family together to see what dinners they like,” advises Mumsnetter Mrsjayy. “Do a mixture for everybody and use your fresh food first, then freeze things and keep till the menu ends.” 

Having a few chuck-it-in-the-oven options, using frozen foods such as freezer veg and breaded fish is always helpful. Those kinds of meals are an easy win on busy days and, if you end up not eating them one week, they just stay in the freezer and get bumped on to the following. 

If you shop online, get out a stack of recipe books while you’re doing your shop so you can look up ideas and add the ingredients to your basket as you go. You’re more likely to cook a meal if it’s something you’re really looking forward to and know you have everything you need to hand. Or search for menu inspiration online. Mumsnet’s recipes pages have lots of ideas, as does Waitrose’s online recipe book

Of course, every now and then, you’ll find you’ve accidentally over-catered or the week doesn’t pan out quite the way you wanted. It’s worth searching online for ways to use up leftovers too so you can cut pounds off your weekly shop as well as live a more sustainable lifestyle.

Mumsnetters’ essential Waitrose shopping list

Whether you’re buying online or perusing the shelves in person, it’s easy to miss some of the best and most useful items at Waitrose. 

We scoured the Mumsnet forums for all the best buys from Waitrose, as recommended by Mumsnetters themselves. They include products that are the best on the market, better value or flavour than at any other supermarket, as well as super-useful and downright delicious items you just might not have heard of. 

1. Pelagonia Aivar

Pelagonia Aivar

Price: £3.35

This jar of colourful red pepper and aubergine paste is a little like an olive tapenade - smoky, flavourful and an easy way to perk up pasta dishes. It goes well with cheese and chorizo, and can simply be spread on bread. Use it for posh sandwiches, spread on blinis or just add a dollop to sour cream on top of a jacket potato. It’s a flexible fridge staple. 

What Mumsnetters say

“Pelagonia Aivar - really good for pasta sauces.” GeidiPrimes

2. Levantine Table range

Levantine dish

Price: From £1.20

Waitrose’s huge range of products with Middle Eastern-inspired flavours will bring a little bit of the Levant to your table. The range includes cooking ingredients, deli items, ready meals and bits and bobs for picnics and packed lunches. 

It’s worth checking out the whole range for products you might not otherwise have tried but Mumsnetters love the range most for easy-to-throw-together sharing platters for weekend lunches with friends and impressive picnics. 

What Mumsnetters say

“I second their Lebanese range 'Levantine Kitchen' it's great for a minimum effort dinner party, easy to cook and lots of nice sharing/snacky bits, flatbreads and hummus etc.” iknowimcoming

3. Waitrose Halloumi Fries

halloumi fries

Price: £3.50

Great with chilli or spicy tomato dipping sauces, these halloumi fries cook quickly in the oven and have a crispy shell and delicious, moist halloumi inside. For something posher, drizzle a plate with natural yoghurt, fresh herbs and pomegranate molasses. Or make a kebab shop fakeaway by filling wraps or pittas with them along with salad, a little couscous and plenty of garlic yoghurt. 

What Mumsnetters say

“Just eaten the whole packet on my own. I know I am not being unreasonable but just wanted to share just in case anyone hasn't yet tried them! With sweet chilli for dipping!” halloumihalloumi 

4. Waitrose Essential Profiteroles

Waitrose profiteroles

Price: £1.60

There’s no occasion that’s not improved by the addition of a profiterole, and these pots of profiteroles for one are just the thing for cheering up a Friday evening, a rainy evening, or just an evening, really. The custard filling is really smooth and creamy and the perfect foil to the dark chocolate sauce and delicate choux pastry. Throw in some chopped strawberries to make them even more special.

What Mumsnetters say

“They used to do Waitrose Essential profiteroles filled with custard - get those.” isthersomethingwrongwithme 

5. Frozen veg

Waitrose sweetcorn

Price: £1.20

Mumsnetters rave about the Waitrose frozen veg range. The ready-chopped frozen shallots are brilliant for cooking stews and pasta sauces, and they also love their sweet potato fries - an easy switch-up to accompany school-night fish fingers and peas with an extra health kick. 

The whole range is worth a good long look some time, but this frozen corn is a freezer staple your future self will thank you for. Defrost and then throw into salads, tuna mixes, sauces and stews. Or simply microwave and then add a little butter for a healthy vegetable side dish that goes with nearly anything.

What Mumsnetters say

“Their essential frozen sweetcorn, petit pois and skinny fries are better than other supermarket equivalents.” ServeTheServants

6. Cooks’ Ingredients Zhoug Paste

zhoug paste

Price: £1.80

This little jar of flavoursome herbs, spices, garlic and olive oil lasts for ages. Spread it on chicken or fish, use as a dip with flatbreads, or add to dishes such as pilafs for a bit of brightness and flavour. Really useful for adding interest to healthy meals of meat or fish and veg. It’s great spread on halloumi too. 

What Mumsnetters say

“Lots of the spice pastes are really interesting and make for quick and flavourful meals. I’m currently obsessed with the zhoug paste on lamb/chicken and roasted.” MustardScreams

7. The Collective Dairy Raspberry Yoghurt

raspberry yoghurt

Price: £2.25

There’s a big difference between an ordinary, workaday yoghurt and something that stands out from the crowd, and Mumsnetters agree that the Collective brand of yoghurts from Waitrose are something really special. 

Mix with a little granola or fruit for breakfast or a dessert or, let’s face it, just retire to the sofa with the pot and a big spoon all by yourself. 

What Mumsnetters say

“The Collective yoghurts are really good. I love the Mango and the Raspberry - so delicious.” SirVixofVixHall

8. No. 1 Scottish Prime Fillet of Salmon

Waitrose salmon

Price: £10

Something simple and done really well is always a delight, and Mumsnetters gave Waitrose’s No. 1 Scottish Prime Fillet of Salmon the thumbs up for exactly that. 

It’s excellent quality - a world apart from anything similar in other stores - and fished from sustainable waters in Scotland. Mumsnetters agree it’s the best-flavoured salmon they’ve ever had. 

It’s delicious simply pan-fried with butter and lemon juice or gently cooked in a foil parcel in the oven with capers and butter or a little pesto spread on top. Serve with green veg or salad and new potatoes. 

What Mumsnetters say

“The prime salmon fillet (500g) is the best I’ve had from a supermarket.” MustardScreams

9. Waitrose Essential Strawberry Trifle

strawberry trifle

Price: £2.65

You might disagree, but we think trifle is always essential and Waitrose’s Essential Strawberry Trifle is an easy and inexpensive treat that’s guaranteed to bring joy to an ordinary day. 

Whether you’re celebrating a birthday or just a Tuesday, have one of these in the back of your fridge to bring out and deliver instant smiles. At 50p per serving, you won’t find a better value pud.

What Mumsnetters say

“Their trifle is lovely!” Myshoelaceisundone

10. Aubergine, Mozzarella and Tomato Ravioli

Soli ravioli

Price: £3.49

Fresh pasta is one of our go-to mid-week meals for speed and Mumsnetters agree that Soli pasta from Waitrose is a great range with lots of imaginative flavours. The aubergine, mozzarella and tomato flavour is hugely popular for a meal you can have on the table in literally minutes. 

If you have the luxury of a whole 10 minutes, bung a garlic ciabatta in the oven too and make a salad. 

What Mumsnetters say

“The aubergine, mozzarella and tomato ravioli (made by Soli). I fry up some mushrooms and pour on top with some parmesan and it’s gorgeous. Two packs for five pounds so it’s quite reasonable.” kerkyra

11. Waitrose Frozen Scallops

Waitrose scallops

Price: £7.50

If you’ve got a pack of these in your freezer, and some dry pasta and a lemon, you’ve always got a simple but impressive meal for unexpected guests. Scallops are great cooked with chorizo or just garlic butter, for adding to paella or in a prawn and chilli spaghetti sauce. 

What Mumsnetters say

“Frozen scallops. I fry them and have them with fresh spaghetti, a squeeze of lemon and some good olive oil.” 36degrees

12. No. 1 Natural Strained Greek Yoghurt

greek yoghurt

Price: £1

Waitrose’s No. 1 range is incredibly popular with Mumsnetters and several Waitrose shoppers on the Mumsnet forums enthusiastically recommend the Greek yoghurt. 

It’s really creamy with a lovely authentic flavour - a little taste of Greece, even if you’re in Gweek or Greenwich. And it’s very versatile - enjoy it with honey for breakfast, or dollop it on the side of your dish with grilled meats, salad and pittas or spicy dishes that would benefit from a little coolness. 

What Mumsnetters say

“I buy most of the No 1 range, especially the Greek yoghurt and the chocolate.” Defiantly41

13. No. 1 Salted Caramel and Ginger Granola

granola

Price: £4.25

This crunchy granola, with just enough sweetness that you don’t need to add honey and just enough ginger to give it a bit of a kick, makes breakfast something of an occasion.

It comes highly recommended by Mumsnet users and is great stirred into natural yoghurt too. 

What Mumsnetters say

“They do granola with ginger bits in, and it’s amazing… Have to stockpile every time I’m near the store. It’s so moreish.” Paripale

14. Soffrito

Soffrito passata

Price: £2.50

From the Cooks’ Ingredients range, soffrito is so useful you’ll wonder how you ever managed without it. Soffrito - for those who don’t know - is a base for building flavour into dishes, usually a mixture of diced onion, carrot and celery, gently sautéed in olive oil and then blended with tomatoes to a smooth and very tasty passata. 

Mumsnetters love it for making fast work of Bolognese sauces and chilli, but it’s a great base for all sorts of stews and soups and is brilliant for spreading on pizza dough for homemade pizzas. 

What Mumsnetters say

“Soffritto in a jar, or the fresh mix in a packet that you can add to tomatoes - makes spag Bol and chilli taste amazing.” RUOKHon

15. No. 1 Spinach and Ricotta Pizza

spinach and ricotta pizza

Price: £6

We’re all fans of a quick and tasty weekend ready meal. For a Friday night dinner in front of the TV, you can’t go far wrong with a pizza from Waitrose’s No. 1 range. 

The Spinach and Ricotta flavour, with its white bechamel base, is a favourite among Mumsnetters but the King Prawn, Garlic and Chilli version also gets plenty of honourable mentions. Serve with the remote control, a bottle of wine nearby and an attitude of ‘farewell, Week and hello, Weekend!’. Alternatively, a few of these with a salad and some sides would definitely not be sneered at were you having friends over. 

What Mumsnetters say

“I'm under DH's strict instructions not to step foot in Waitrose for a loooooong time. Last time I went in for milk, cabbage and onions… I walked out £250 lighter. Whoops! It's my favourite supermarket ever. I could spend hours in there. You won't go far wrong with anything you buy but I never leave without Waitrose No. 1 Spinach and Ricotta Pizza.” HorticulturalGraveyard

Why Mumsnetters love Waitrose

“Teenage DD says their fresh pasta is the best of them all.” SnitchyB**ch 

“It's the only supermarket that sells decent bread.” katy1213 

“If I could only go to one supermarket it would be Waitrose and because they have some great offers. Overall I don't find it expensive.” fussychica

“I love to shop at Waitrose because you can pretty much guarantee most of your meat and chicken is British.” mklanch

“Waitrose do lovely [shower gels] in their Essentials range for about £1 (Sea Moss is lovely as is Pink Grapefruit) but their £2 range is lovely too. Again, the Fig and Sandalwood is nice as is the Clementine and Ginger.” WellTidy

About Waitrose

In terms of your shopping list, we have something for everyone, spanning across healthier choices towards a more indulgent offering. If you shop smarter, you can weave in the healthy choice with a little bit of what you fancy too so make sure to read those food labels. For further inspiration, check out our recipe section on the website and for healthier meal inspiration for your family, go to https://www.waitrose.com/healthyrecipes