McVitie’s chocolate digestives were compared against Tesco, Aldi and M&S own-brands – one was a surprising winner


If there’s one thing everyone in the country can agree on, it’s that a McVitie’s chocolate digestive is one of the best biscuits to pair with your usual cup of tea.

Whether you are dunking them into your tea or just having them as a complimentary side, the sheer deliciousness of the biscuit is – quite frankly – unmatched.

And like so many other things these days, quite a few leading supermarkets have tried to replicate the popular McVitie’s biscuit with their own versions.

But, can they really live up to one of the nation’s best loved tea time snacks?

That’s what Kent Live reporter Sam Honey went on a mission to find out as he compared the iconic McVitie’s chocolate digestive with three other leading supermarket brands to see if they could live up to the favorite snack.

Armed with own-branded chocolate digestives from Tesco, Aldi and M&S, the reporter decided to see how they compared to the beloved McVitie’s digestives and – more importantly – if they were suitable to go alongside your cuppa…

McVitie’s

McVitie's remains iconic and popular
McVitie’s remains iconic and popular

Beginning with the iconic McVitie’s chocolate digestives, the reporter said he wanted to begin the taste test by setting the standards to see how the others fare.

He said: “To be precise, I grabbed a double pack for £2 which is pretty good value for two full packets of high quality biscuits.

“As I have said, I really don’t think you can get much better than a digestive chocolate, and of course by this point McVitie’s have got it down.

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The level of crunch, the taste, the ratio of chocolate to biscuit, it is as though McVitie’s have employed biscuit scientists (if that is an actual job, sign me up) to perfectly craft the ideal biscuit.”

Sam said the, as usual, his favorite biscuit made quite the impression and that the rest in the challenge had a lot to live up to.

Tesco

Tesco's chocolate digestive left the best impression
Tesco’s chocolate digestive left the best impression

First up on the own-branded versions was a packet of milk chocolate digestives from the British supermarket chain Tesco and it left Sam feeling more impressed than expected.

In fact, Tesco’s versions were fairly similar to McVitie’s as he could “barely taste a difference”, with the exception of the texture of the biscuit itself.

“What did set it apart however was more down to the texture, the biscuit itself was much crumblier, almost like shortbread, which is not necessarily a bad thing.

“The chocolate tasted great and I could barely notice a difference, this would be perfect for that morning cuppa,” Sam said of the biscuits,” he said.

With a price of just 60p a packet, this version left a good taste in the reporter’s mouth.

Marks and Spencer

M&S' chocolate digestives were underwhelming for the price
M&S’ chocolate digestives were underwhelming for the price

This wasn’t just any biscuit, it was an M&S biscuit – jokes aside, most of us can agree that M&S ​​usually deliver the goods when it comes to quality of food.

So, naturally, it comes as no surprise that Sam found their own chocolate digestives were also a pretty strong contender in the taste test.

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That being said, the reporter did find one downfall with the iconic supermarket’s own version that just stopped it from being as good as it could be.

He said: “For a start, something about the chocolate just didn’t seem to be on brand with the M&S name, tasting a little cheaper than I was expecting it too.

“The biscuit part was rather good, and probably the closest out of these choices to the distinctive taste and texture of McVitie’s.”

To be fair, the result is fairly surprising, especially as M&S are usually synonymous with providing good quality versions of biscuits and sweets.

Overall, this one left Sam feeling a little underwhelmed, especially as it cost 75p and was not as good as the cheaper 60p version from Tesco.

Aldi

Aldi's cheaper price and quality were noticeable
Aldi’s cheaper price and quality were noticeable

When it comes to bargain dupes, Aldi has been on a bit of a roll recently, as you’d be hard pressed to find another supermarket that offers good quality for as little as they do.

Out of all the versions tested, Aldi’s were, unsurprisingly, the cheapest at just 45p a packet.

Usually price doesn’t always mean cheaper quality, but Sam found that this was the case with the supermarket’s versions.

Sam said of Aldi’s biscuits: “Immediately, the biscuits were noticeably smaller than the others which had all been roughly the same size.

“On to taste, this was the weakest by far, with a noticeably cheaper chocolate that reminded me of the rubbish kind you get in advent calendars.”

It’s main downfalls were the hard biscuit and smaller size which meant you couldn’t savor it for longer than 2 bites.

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Overall, Sam felt Aldi’s bargain biscuits weren’t enough to compete with McVitie’s.

Overall verdicts

After tasting all that the supermarkets had to offer, Sam was surprised to find that Tesco gave McVitie’s quite a good run for their money.

Despite his loyalty to McVitie’s running deep, the reporter said that the supermarket’s chocolate digestives left a good impression due to their taste and price.

Aldi and M&S didn’t quite measure up to the challenge and were not enough to dethrone McVitie’s as his go-to-chocolate digestive brand.

Despite the good impressions left by Tesco, Sam did explain that it probably was not enough to make the permanent switch as McVitie’s is still the favourite.

“But, they do absolutely deserve credit for coming pretty close and making a delicious biscuit, so if I’m ever in Tesco and in the mood to save a few pennies, this will make a more than acceptable substitute to my usual”, he said of his taste test.

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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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