I’ve become pretty well accustomed to supermarket café hot food, having indulged in a Morrisons veggie breakfast just a couple of weeks ago.
I was pleasantly surprised to be met with a top-quality hash brown, perfectly cooked meat-free sausages and even some sliced avocado at my local Morrisons in Yate.
It got me wondering whether I’d find the same joy in hot breakfasts at other major supermarkets, which I was willing to go to all lengths to find out.
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My original plan was to sit down for a vegan breakfast at Tesco, which comprises vegan sausages, avocado, baked beans, flat mushroom, wilted spinach, roasted tomato and multi seed toast with vegan spread.
Despite there being no option for vegetarians (i.e. the same breakfast but with the addition of eggs, real butter and a hash brown) I had high hopes for the £5.20 meal. But when I arrived at Tesco Extra in Yate I found they were running a reduced menu due to a staff shortage.
I had a plan B, though. Just a ten minute drive away is Sainsbury’s Emersons Green which I knew had a café with an extensive breakfast menu.
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I strolled in at around 10am on a Tuesday morning and was overwhelmed by the options for breakfast, which include a breakfast sandwich, porridge, teacakes, eggs on toast, as well as small and large versions of its classic and vegetarian all day breakfast. I’m pretty sure I saw a cream tea on offer too, as well as its usual cakes and sandwiches selection.
I opted for the all day vegetarian breakfast. It’s only served until 11.30am, though, despite what the name suggests.
It was advertised as £4.50 on the sign above the till area. However, looking back at my receipt I was charged £5.00 for the breakfast. This was disappointing. I originally thought I had been charged an extra 50p for toast but looking back at the menu this should have been included in the price. I am sure they would have rectified this had I gone back in and asked, though.
I also went for a standard-size hot chocolate which cost £2.20. My breakfast came to £7.20 in total, 5p less than the exact same meal at Morrisons.
I paid by card at the till and found a seat next to the window. To my delight the hot chocolate was made by the waitress, which she brought over, and it didn’t come out of a machine. It made all the difference. The hot chocolate was one of the best I’ve ever had.
It was rich and creamy and had a sprinkling of chocolate on the top. It also had a layer of milky froth and was the perfect temperature right until the last sip.
The hot chocolate was delicious
Around two minutes after my hot chocolate arrived my breakfast came. I was astounded at how fast it was put together. I had ordered my breakfast at precisely 10.06 and it came at 10.09.
I was pleasantly surprised by the speed at which the food arrived but I couldn’t help but doubt how fresh the meal was. It looked appetising on the plate, though, so I tucked in. The service was great too.
All the elements were served on the same plate, including the toast and beans. No separate pots here. In fact, the toast came pre-buttered.
I also had the option of choosing either white or multi seed bread with my breakfast, and either fried or scrambled egg. I enjoyed being able to tailor my own breakfast, and I could have added extras as well if I had liked.
Sainsbury’s cafe’s all day vegetarian breakfast
I went for scrambled eggs but found them extremely dry. They were hot, which is a plus, but I could tell they were overcooked.
The meat-free sausages tasted high quality but they weren’t my cup of tea. They tasted fragrant and too herby for my liking. They had a realistic, meaty texture though.
I was happy with my flat mushroom and tomato. The mushroom was well cooked and not soggy, and the tomato tasted fresh.
I was blown away by the hash brown at Morrisons but, unfortunately, this one fell short both in size and taste. It wasn’t crispy and looked like the freezer ones you buy in big bags.
I would have preferred my beans in a separate pot but that’s just my preference. The beans were a good temperature though and tasted like Heinz.
I was glad the toast had been spread with real butter, and the bread itself was nice and chewy. I think I would have preferred to butter my own toast, though.
I’m sad to say my Sainsbury’s breakfast was a bit of a let down.
The process of ordering was easy and there were loads of options to choose from. My drink was delicious and by all means worth £2.20. The meal arrived in no time and the staff were friendly.
But I was disappointed to have been overcharged and the breakfast itself wasn’t all to my taste.
The overcooked eggs and herby sausages let the meal down and the hash brown wasn’t crispy.
I would return to Sainsbury’s café again for breakfast (especially for the hot drink) but I’d opt for something else on their menu.