I ordered a £3.59 mystery bag from Starbucks and it was miles better than Costa – Bethan Shufflebotham

Last week I ordered a Too Good To Go magic bag from Costa for £3, which contained just £6.10 worth of products. It was the worst mystery bag I’d received on the app to date, but I was undeterred when it came to continuing to prevent food waste.

It was probably the first bag I’d ever been quite disappointed in, having had success at Morrisons, Toby Carvery, Greggs and Millie’s Cookies in the past. But there’s one place I’ve ordered Too Good To Go bags from more times than any other store, and that’s Starbucks.

Starbucks is one of the many retailers partnered on the free-to-download app, which helps prevent food waste in the community. The app uses your location services to find venues near you who are partnered with it, with each restaurant uploading a limited number of ‘magic bags’ a day.

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At Starbucks, their mystery bags cost £3.59 and promise the customer £10.75 worth of goods – but I got almost double that in mine. The boxes and bags do sell out quickly, so you will find yourself having to refresh the app throughout the day to see what’s available nearby.

But when you can get your hands on one, it’s usually a real bargain worth well over what you paid – the only exception I’ve had to this so far is the Costa bag.

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My mystery Starbucks bag was ready to collect from the store at 9pm, having been reserved at around 10.15am the same day. Some stores require you to reserve a bag for collection the following day, but it all depends on the individual partners.

Inside my bag were two pots and three wrapped sandwiches, all of which had the same days date on, but would be fine to eat the following day, too. There was a huge tuna melt panini that I’d never finish in one sitting, which usually costs £5.10. It contained tuna, mature cheddar and mozzarella with sweetcorn, spring onion and chives on a rustic ciabatta.

The three sandwiches in the bag totaled £13.45

This could easily have been warmed, cut in half and shared with some salad for lunch, or a handful of chips for tea, or some people may just enjoy it on their own, as it comes. The All Day Breakfast Wrap was one of the best items in the bag, filled with scrambled egg, Monterey Jack cheese, sausage, smoked streaky bacon, spinach and tomato beans, which would also cost £5.10 at full price.

It was really jam packed and like eating a full English breakfast on a seeded tortilla, and felt less like a product that was destined for the bin, and more like a special treat. The final sandwich-style item was less delicious, mostly as I’m not a fan of mayonnaise, but this £3.25 Egg Mayo sandwich didn’t go to waste, as my dad took it as his lunch for work, to save having to make one at home.

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Already, the bag had exceeded the £10.75 promised value with two items still to unpack. The two pots inside the Too Good To Go bag were a Berry Crunch worth £3 and a Peach and Raspberry Overnight Oats, worth £3.15.

The Berry Crunch featured a Greek-style yogurt with crunch granola and mixed berry compote which was perfect for breakfast or a quick snack. I find that, like with milk, these products do tend to last beyond their use by date if stored correctly, and you can use your own initiative on whether they’re okay to eat.

There were also two breakfast pots that were perfect for snacking
There were also two breakfast pots that were perfect for snacking

Meanwhile the Peach and Raspberry Overnight Oats was the only plant based item in the bag. Unfortunately, you can’t really specify any dietary restrictions on the app, so it is the luck of the draw if you’re vegan, for example.

This post contained jumbo rolled oats with apple, vegan oat yogurt alternative with a raspberry and peach sauce. The oats were topped with cooked peach and berries and looked more like a dessert than a breakfast, which is my favorite kind of morning meal.

In total, my bag was worth a whopping £19.60, which is the most I’ve received in terms of value. In previous food-saving adventures, I’ve seen cakes, cookies and muffins thrown in, so Starbucks is definitely a venue I’d reserve a bag with again.

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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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