Whether recent times have meant you’re struggling to pay for food or you’re just somebody that likes a bargain, then there are several apps that can help you to save money on your food shopping. From free food to cashback, there should be something for everyone.
Which apps give you free food?
- Too Good To Go
- Taco Bell
- Burger King
- Krispy Kreme
- Toby Carvery
- Meerkat Meals
Which is the best free food app?
In truth, there’s only one app that really gives away free food and that’s Olio. All the rest either give you free food after you’ve spent money or give you cashback. But that’s not to say they should be ignored.
Let’s take a look at the list in more detail.
This is an app that allows users to share their unwanted food with others. Once you’ve registered, you can search your local area for food that is being given away. Sometimes, this can just be excess food that somebody doesn’t want or it can be something that has passed its best before end date.
It’s not only individuals that give away food, with some stores taking part too. And if you find yourself with food that you no longer want, you can offer it up to others.
Best of all, it’s completely free to use.
Too Good To Go
This is another great app that helps to reduce food wastage. Instead of companies throwing away excess food at the end of the day, they sell it to customers at heavily reduced prices.
A whole host of companies take part, including Starbucks, Greggs, Toby Carvery and Costa to name a few. In some cases, they will tell you what you’re buying and in others, you will receive a ‘Magic Bag’. This can be whatever they have left over, but you won’t know until you arrive.
You just need to reserve your chosen food through the app and collect. But be warned, lots of other people are keen to do it too, so you need to be quick.
Find out what you can expect to find in a Magic Bag.
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Why not take a look at some of the best apps and sites offering free money?
This is a similar app to Too Good To Go. However, instead of major chains, Karma tends to rely on smaller independent shops. You’ll find some great bargains, but there is one drawback. Karma is relatively new and you’ll only find stores in the major cities.
Still fairly new to the UK, there are more restaurants appearing around the country. With the Taco Bell app, you collect 10 points for every £1 you spend.
- 200 points can be swapped for a side, dessert or regular drink
- 300 points will give you a free Cravers item
- 500 points can be exchanged for any product worth under £6.
Once you have earned over 1,000 points, you’ll receive exclusive offers and experiences.
Use the code PETERD6537 when you join and you’ll get a bonus 50 points.
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Surprisingly, McDonald’s didn’t introduce their rewards app in the UK until 2022. The concept is simple and rewards you with points when you make a purchase. These points can be exchanged for free items, such as fries, burgers or coffee. You can also earn bonus points when buying certain items on the app.
You’ll earn 1 point for every penny that you spend and you’ll need 4,000 points for a free Big Mac. Yes, that’s £40, but it’s still free food with little effort.
Unfortunately, KFC changed its Colonel’s Club rewards programme in 2022. It was replaced with KFC Rewards Arcade, which wasn’t quite so generous.
Once you’ve spent £3, you can play a game on the KFC arcade which can reward you with free food. However, unlike their previous scheme, there’s no guarantee that you’ll actually receive anything.
The YourBurgerKing app allows you to collect points every time your buy food or drink from Burger King. You earn 10 points for every £1 that you spend. At the moment, if you spend £40, you’ll earn enough points to swap for a Wopper.
The app also offers discounts on certain food items and meal deals.
The Greggs app is one of my least favourite free food apps, but that’s not to say it’s not worth having. With this loyalty app, you’ll earn stamps each time you shop and when you reach 9, you’ll earn a free item.
The issue I have is that the Greggs app breaks it down into categories. For example, to earn a free sandwich, you’ll need to have made 9 purchases from the sandwich category. For a free breakfast, from the breakfast category and so on. If you buy a variety of items from Greggs, it can take you a little while.
Still, it’s worth downloading for regular customers and they occasionally throw in a free sausage roll or drink.
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Subway will give you 10 points for every £1 you spend. Then, when you have enough points, you can redeem them for:
- 100 points can be redeemed for any regular hot drink
- 200 points can be redeemed for a side or snack
- 500 points for a regular 6-inch Sub, Salad or Wrap
- 1000 points for a Footlong Sub
Yes, that’s right, you will need to spend £100 to get a free Footlong. However, Subway does offer promotions where you can get double points.
Your points will expire if you don’t use your card for a year.
For new members, use the code X-6JDNLUE when you join for an extra 200 points.
If you’re a fan of doughnuts, then I’m sure you love Krispy Kreme. But they’re not the cheapest around. When you make a purchase, you’ll find a code on the box. Enter this into the Krispy Kreme app and you’ll earn ‘Smiles’. For every £1 you spend, you’ll earn 10 Smiles.
Smiles can be exchanged for hot drinks or doughnuts. Unfortunately, this can only be done at a Krispy Kreme store and not at a supermarket.
At Costa, for every 8 drinks that you purchase, you’ll get the next one free. And if you use your reusable cup in store, you’ll get a free drink after just 4 purchases. Plus, the app offers some money off deals and a chance to earn your free drinks sooner.
Oh, and you get free cake on your birthday.
Long gone are the days when you would collect stamps on a physical card for a free chicken. Instead, it’s all done from the Nandos’ app.
Spend £7 and you’ll earn yourself a Chilli. When you reach 3, you’ve earnt a free 1/4 chicken or starter. 6 Chillies mean a 1/2 chicken or a single burger, pitta or wrap. And 9 Chillies gives you a free whole chicken, combo meal or salad.
Beefeater Rewards Club
This scheme gives you 5 points for every £1 you spend. Once you hit 500 points they can be exchanged for £5 off your bill, a free bottle of wine or two free starters or desserts.
And on your birthday, you’ll receive a free main meal. Well, as long as you purchase another main meal at the same time.
When you join, you’ll get a bonus 300 points and 50% off your first meal.
This is a bit of a limited loyalty scheme but still worth knowing about. When you buy a dessert from Toby Carvery, you’ll receive a stamp (only 1 stamp per day though). When you reach 3 stamps, you’ll qualify for a free pudding.
The app also offers special deals such as 25% off main meals and kids’ eat for £1.
This is slightly different from the above apps because you do need to pay a subscription, although they do offer a free subscription to new users. Membership gives you access to plenty of 2-for-1 offers at lots of restaurants in the country, including Pizza Hut and Prezzo, plus discounted cinema tickets.
Or take a look at my Tastecard review.
This works in a similar way to Tastecard and will give you 2-for-1 meals in various restaurants. But to qualify for membership, you need to purchase a product through Compare The Market.
But don’t despair, click on the button below to find out how you can get a membership for a little over £1.
Which apps give you cashback?
But discounts from restaurants aren’t your only option, with plenty of apps offering cashback from supermarkets.
All you need to do is check the offers available, purchase your chosen item and then send in a photo of your receipt. You’ll then earn cashback, usually around 50% but sometimes, you’ll get the item completely free.
You can combine this with receipt scanning apps that reward you with points for every receipt that you photograph. These points can then be exchanged for cash or vouchers.
Take a look at the best receipt scanning apps.
If you’re struggling with the cost of food, why not take a look at my post about where to find cheap and free food?