I got an XXL Papa John’s mystery pizza for £3.99 and it made my night out – Bethan Shufflebotham

When you’ve had a few drinks in town on a Friday night, there’s only really one way to end the evening. There’s really nothing better than tucking into some carbs after walking around in heels holding a plastic cup of gin and lemonade and dancing to your favorite songs.

Pizza is usually my end-of-night takeaway order of choice – doughy, cheesy, and easily shareable if your mates want a slice.And I’ve found a brilliant and cheap way to end a night out while saving food waste, money, and your grumbly tummy.

Papa John’s recently partnered with Too Good To Go, a free-to-download app that aims to tackle food waste in the community. Retailers upload a limited number of ‘magic bags’ each day, which are available at a hugely discounted price – with shoppers saving up to 70 per cent on their purchases.

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At Papa Johns, I was able to reserve either a medium pizza for £2.66 instead of £7.99, or an XXL pizza for £3.99 instead of £11.99. For the extra £1.33, I went large, reserving an XXL pizza to collect between 10pm and 11pm on Friday night.

My Papa John’s pizza was £17 on the Too Good To Go app

The app said: “The Papa John’s team will cook you up a pizza using surplus dough just before the collection window. You could get a mixture of surplus toppings or the great original cheese and tomato.” Too Good To Go recommended arriving as close to the beginning of the time slot as possible to be presented with an oven-fresh pizza.

Now, 10pm might seem a little early to call it a night. These days I prefer to head out slightly earlier at 6 or 7pm, and then be back home in my slippers, pajamas and fluffy duvet before the clock strikes midnight.

But for those of you who do enjoy a later night out into the early hours, there’s nothing wrong with a cheeky takeaway pizza between bars, right? Having enjoyed a couple of drinks, I headed to Papa John’s shortly after 10pm to pick up my surprise pizza.

It was around 10.15pm when I got there, but when the server handed me my box I was thrilled to discover that it was still warm.

The 15.5 inch pizza even came with a garlic dip
The 15.5 inch pizza even came with a garlic dip

The 15.5 inch pizza was in fact a cheese and tomato, which suited me well because you really can’t go wrong with a simple margherita. The cheese looked beautifully grilled and offered some pretty satisfying cheese pulls, while the base was crisp but still chewy.

What pleased me even more was that, when I went to check how much the order would usually cost, an XXL pizza at Papa John’s retails at way more than what the Too Good To Go app suggested. The Papa John’s website actually reveals that a 15.5 inch cheese and tomato pizza would usually set you back £20.99 for collection.

Not only did I end my night out with one of the tastiest, cheapest pizzas I’ve ever ordered from a takeaway, but I also saved a whopping £17 and leftover pizza dough from getting discarded in the bin at the end of the night. It even came with a garlic dip – the ideal accompaniment to cheese pizza.

There was no way that me and my partner could finish the huge bigger-than-a-dinner-plate pizza in one sitting, so we saved some for the next day too. It reheated well in the oven and was almost twice as good as the previous night, acting as the ultimate hangover cure.

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Our Too Good To Go reviews


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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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