Christmas sandwiches 2018: the best and worst

This year’s festive offerings tasted and rated

Costa

Turkey Feast (£3.60)

This is an unfussy and tasty Christmas sandwich, filled with generous chunks of turkey and ham, and just the right amount of mayo and cranberry. As a rule, food served up by the big coffee chains is awful, so the fact that this isn’t half bad comes as a pleasant surprise. Rating: 7/10

Veggie Christmas Lunch Wrap (£3.50)

Where Costa’s turkey effort succeeds, its veggie wrap fails. Filled with sweet potato falafel, it is about as Christmassy as Easter and becomes cloying after just three or four mouthfuls. Meanwhile, the plum chutney – the one attempt to Xmas it up – barely registers as a flavour. 4/10

Waitrose

Turkey, Stuffing and Bacon (£2.40)

Waitrose knows what its doing with its version of the classic Christmas sandwich. Punchy pork and sage stuffing is the star of the show, with the orange in the cranberry and port sauce providing a satisfying tang. A mark off, though, for the presence of raw spinach. I don’t whack a load the green stuff on my Christmas dinner, so how it’s found its way into this sandwich only the Three Wise Men would know. 8/10

Ham Hock and Chilli-Lilli (£1.72 introductory, £2.30 full price)

This is the type of sandwich Santa only leaves in your stocking if you’ve been a very, very bad boy or girl (I’m talking committing serious organised crime or an act of terrorism). It’s made up of tasteless white bread and too salty-ham. The appallingly named ‘chilli-lilli sauce’ is about as spicy as a bowl of cornflakes. It gave me the kind of sinking feeling Scrooge gets when he’s shown his own grave by the Ghost of Christmas Yet-to-Come.  2/10

M&S

Turkey Feast (£3.50)

Last year, my esteemed colleague Olivia Potts rated this sandwich the leader of the Christmas pack – and I’m more than happy to come to the same conclusion. The turkey breast, bacon and herby stuffing are all plentiful and delicious, while the crispy onions are an inspired finishing touch. The sandwich also holds together perfectly as you tuck in. A Christmas cracker. 9/10 

Three Bird Roast (£3.80)

From the sublime to the hideous. M&S have taken the disgusting idea of squashing together and roasting different types of bird as ill-advised inspiration for a trio of sandwiches. The ‘roast chicken dinner’ tastes of chicken-flavoured crisps and straw, while the only flavour emanating from the duck and plum chutney entry is a toxic brand of clove. The bog standard turkey sandwich that makes up the three fails to salvage what is a disastrous effort. 1/10

‘No Turkey’ Feast (£3.30)

I’m no connoisseur of roasted soya protein, which stands in for the turkey here, so perhaps my review of this sandwich should be taken with a hefty handful of salt. But this really is quite horrible. Weirdly, it has no flavour, but it made my stomach-turn. If a desolate Christmas spent all alone could be turned into a taste, this would be it. 1/10

Pret

Christmas Lunch Sandwich (£3.75)

Alongside the Waitrose effort, this is both an obvious runner up in the classic Christmas sandwiches stakes, and deserving of a ticking off due to the presence of raw spinach. Otherwise, this is a sturdy and satisfying lunchtime option for when you’re craving a taste of Christmas. 8/10

Very Merry Christmas Lunch (£3.50)

This vegan lunch leads the way for those after a non-meaty Christmas sandwich. Forget M&S’s ‘non-turkey’ monstrosity or Costa’s falafel faux pas, this is a great combo of roasted squash, crispy onions and a pesto made up of Christmassy flavours, including chestnuts. 9/10

Tesco

Turkey and Trimmings

There are some truly epic turkey sandwiches on this list. This, sadly, is not one of them. The turkey element is fine, but the bacon tastes like its been dragged across the floor of a salt mine and the sausage slices taste of rubber and regret. 5/10

Benugo

Rare Beef, Blue Cheese, Crispy Onion & Chilli Marmalade Baguette (£4.95)

Harder to find than most sandwiches on this list, Benugo is, in the main, a London-based chain, and the hefty price tag that goes with this beef baguette highlights the fact it’s at the premium end of the lunchtime market. If you’re prepared to shell out close to a fiver, what you get in return is a rather good sandwich. The beef makes a pleasant change from turkey and is thinly sliced, moist and flavoursome. The blue cheese is a strong addition, but not overplayed. What is overdone though is the eye-wateringly hot mustard, which is strange considering the under-powered chilli marmalade is meant to be the headline condiment,  7/10

Eat

Ham, Brie and Cranberry Baguette (£3.50 takeaway)

For any right thinking (and non-dairy intolerant) person, cheese is a vital part of any Christmas, and this straightforward sandwich packs plenty in. It’s a hefty one and gets a bit samey by the halfway point, but it’s still a very solid option for those who enjoy a brie and cranberry combo, with meat-lovers well looked after thanks to the generous slices of ham.  7/10


Close