THE countdown to Christmas has begun – and it starts in your lunch break.
Festive sandwiches have hit the shelves everywhere, from Aldi and Pret to Starbucks and M&S, with retailers hoping to lure customers in.
But with so many on offer, which will most delight your tastebuds?
Here, Lynsey Hope marks them for taste and looks then gives a total score out of ten.
Waitrose Christmas Turkey Stuffing & Bacon Sandwich
CONTAINS: Turkey, pork and chestnut stuffing, turkey stock mayonnaise, cranberry and redcurrant chutney and smoked bacon in sliced, malted bread.
Verdict: “The Waitrose sarnie didn’t look too fancy but it had a great taste. The pork and chestnut stuffing flavour really came through, there was lots of turkey and the malted bread was soft and tasty.”
Tesco Finest Turkey Feast
CONTAINS: Turkey, smoked bacon, pork and sage stuffing with port and cranberry sauce.
Verdict: “It looks really appetising, but I was disappointed. The bread is dry and there wasn’t much filling.”
M&S Boxing Day Triple
CONTAINS: Turkey and stuffing, ham hock and piccalilli, Wensleydale cheese with carrot and orange chutney.
Verdict: “Three sandwiches in three different flavours – a great choice for those who can’t make up their mind. Each of these sandwiches was pretty good.
"I was pleasantly surprised by the carrot and orange chutney in the cheese sandwich. The other two were well-filled and a great price from M&S for three. These would make a very substantial lunch.”
Starbucks Festive Feast Panini
CONTAINS: Turkey, smoked bacon, mature cheddar, cranberry gravy, pork, sage and onion stuffing in ciabatta roll.
Verdict: “The main flavours were cheese and bacon so it didn’t taste too different to their regular ham and cheese paninis. The stuffing was lovely but lacked festive sparkle.”
Pret Christmas Lunch Baguette
CONTAINS: Turkey, cranberry, pork stuffing, port sauce, with crispy onions in white baguette.
Verdict: “One of my favourites. Pret’s offering was a Christmas dinner all wrapped up in a baguette.
"The stuffing was delicious and the fresh rocket gave it a little lift. You could tell it was fresh. I only marked it down as it has 28.3g fat so you cannot indulge too often.”
Aldi Smoked Salmon & Soft Cheese
CONTAINS: Smoked salmon and reduced fat soft cheese, lemon juice and single cream in wholemeal bread.
Verdict: “Everyone loves a bit of smoked salmon at Christmas but I found this a bit lacking. It was pretty bland.
"The bread was nice and soft. It’s great value for money too, though not terribly filling. I could have eaten two of them.”
Greggs Pigs Under Blanket Baguette
CONTAINS: Sausages, smoked bacon, pork, sage and onion stuffing, cranberry and port sauce.
Verdict: “What’s not to love about a warm sausage baguette. And the cranberry sauce makes it the perfect festive snack.
"I felt full for ages after eating it. The only downside is the high calories. Don’t eat too many if you want to squeeze into that party dress.”
Costa Creamy Brie, Maple Bacon and Cranberry Panini
CONTAINS: Brie, cranberry sauce and maple cured smoked bacon in a sourdough panini bread.
Verdict: “A bit dull to be honest. The stonebaked panini wasn’t as nice as others I tried and there was nothing very festive about it.
"Costa’s cakes looked better – I wish I’d ordered one of them instead.”
Asda Ultimate Turkey Dinner Bap
CONTAINS: Turkey, stuffing, roast carrot and parsnip strips with cranberry chutney and gravy.
Verdict: “This big bap looked very appetising and was overflowing with ingredients but I didn’t really like the flavour of the carrot and parsnip strips in the roll. I felt like there was too much going on. Sometimes less is more.”
M&S Naughty & Spice Turkey Feast
CONTAINS: Piri piri turkey breast, spiced pork stuffing, red cabbage slaw, cranberry and chilli sauce with mayo on a brioche roll.
Verdict: “M&S’s Christmas bun packed a real flavour punch and I loved it. It was really spicy but still gave me a Christmassy feeling with each bite.
"It looked a bit sloppy but tasted amazing. Pricier than other stores but worth every penny. Tastiest pick of the bunch.”
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