Friday, January 28, 2011

So Far, So Good

So, I've been trying the No-Name stuff.

First up, the Gingerale - this was a surprising one. Paul was really skeptical, but we tried it and it was really good. Much better, even, then other generic brands (Big8, Safeway brand) we've tried. It was actually gingery, a bit spicy and pretty tasty.
Conclusion: Totally worth it.

Second up, the Mayo - I tried it both mixed in tuna, and just spread on a sandwich. It was decent in the tuna, but as a spread, it didn't really stand up. It was watery and not tangy. I love my mayo - especially Hellman's, and especially NOT Miracle Whip. But, it would be fine as a mixer - in tuna, in dips, in salad dressing, just not on it's own.
Conclusion: Moderately worth it

Thirdly: Tortilla Chips

We eat quite a bit of tortilla chips. Chips and Salsa, Nachos, these are our go-to snacks. So, I bought a big bag (Club Pack in No-Name terms). We hadn't had yellow corn in awhile, since we've mostly been eating white corn. They were fairly tasty. Unfortunately, they don't come in a reduced-salt version, which I quite like about brand name.
Conclusion: Moderately worth it for the savings, but I would buy brand name occasionally as well.

Lastly: Granola Bars, specifically these Sweet and Salty ones:


I like the brand name ones quite a bit, so I thought I'd try them. This, my friends, this is what this experiment is all about. These are exactly the same as brand name, and at half the price. They are super yummy and, like two boxes for $5.
Conclusion: So very, very worth it. I highly recommend.

So, that's part one. So far, so good. Thanks for all the comments on the last one! I'm glad people are interested. I'm not going to buy anything that I wouldn't normally buy, so that leaves out quite a bit of pre-prepared stuff, and I am going for the savings over the experiment, so when (for example) Black Diamond cheese was cheaper this week - I bought it instead.


  1. I love this experiment! I've been craving wings lately, so we bought the no-name ones cuz they were the cheapest. There weren't as many flavour options, but they are really good!

  2. Great experiment, Jan. I think we've been experimenting for years, only not quite so intentionally. In Australia the No Name equivalent at IGA is Black and Gold. Guess what colour the packaging is?? We usually shop at Woolies though and theirs is Homebrand (red and white packaging - looks a little nicer than the black and yellow). Definitely some things are worth buying while others are definitely NOT. Homebrand tea, for example. Bad choice.
    One thing I wonder about though is the ethics behind the food. Sometimes you have to pay to be guaranteed that your stuff is fair trade or isn't harming dolphins or something like that.

  3. Something else I think about is how healthy something is...our Homebrand muslei (granola) bars are great and I think just as good as some of the other brands, but I often don't buy them because they're so high in sugar. I have to pay more if I want the healthier option.

    Love you, Jan! Thanks for posting stuff. It's great reading and keeping up with your life! :)

  4. Yeah- Gingerale, Chips and Granola Bars are definitely not representative of our general diet! They're just our usual treats. But yeah, it is a debate about the ethics of this food. This experiment is betraying a bit of my non-hippie ways. I wish I could eat organic and fair-trade everything, but right now the cost is just too high.

  5. Hey - how's this experiment going? Haven't heard about it in a while.

    Just thought I'd add on of mine... DO NOT buy the Presidents Choice mini eggs. I got sucked into buying the package that was $2 cheaper, and it definitely wasn't worth it. Now we have a bunch of cheap chocolate that no one wants to eat, but I can't go buy the real mini eggs because I'll feel guilty buying another bag!!

  6. I'm restarting it now, I have a bunch of new posts that are going to be coming up once a week!