With my continuing health crises, I’ve decided to make some changes in what and how I eat. I am moving toward more natural foods and away from those that contain additives, chemicals and preservatives. Granted, I haven’t made a full leap as of yet, but I’m slowly headed in that direction. I figure even if I make a few changes here and there it has to better for me than doing the same old thing.
Consequently, when I found Kashi all natural frozen dinners in my grocery mart’s freezer section, I jumped at the chance to try one. I opted for the Chicken Pasta Pomodoro. It consists of grilled chicken white meat; two kinds of peppers (red and yellow); two kinds of squash (yellow and zucchini) and whole grain pasta. The Penne was cooked in a basil and garlic tomato sauce.
This dinner boasts 19 grams of protein and 6 grams of fiber. It also contains 30% of the daily-recommended amount of vitamin C and 10% of the required amount of vitamin A, calcium and iron. Finally, is provides 510 micrograms of potassium.
On the negative side, it also contains 38 grams of carbohydrates, 6 grams of fat, 5 grams of sugar, 25 micrograms of cholesterol and 470 micrograms of sodium. Those watching their intake of any of those items may wish to steer of this meal.
There are 280 calories in the dinner. However, only 50 of those calories at fat related. Kashi Chicken Pasta Pomodoro contains no trans fat.
** brown rice,
** cheese cultures,
** chicken base,
** chicken fat,
** dehydrated onion,
** egg white,
** evaporated cane juice,
** green bell pepper,
** green zucchini,
** olive oil,
** onion powder,
** parmesan cheese,
** red bell pepper,
** rice starch,
** sea salt,
** skim milk,
** soy flour,
** yellow zucchini,
Fixing the meal is as easy as it gets. You can cook it in a regular oven at 350-degree Fahrenheit for 40 minutes or microwave it for about 5 minutes on high.
For oven preparation, take the meal out of the package. Puncture the film a few times to allow it to vent steam during cooking. Put the self-contained cardboard plate on to a flat pan or cookie sheet. Insert it into the oven for 20 minutes.
After the first 20 minutes, remove the dinner, peel back the film and stir the contents. Push the film back over the top and put the dinner back into the oven for another 20 minutes.
Once the 40 minutes are finished, remove the meal, peel off the film, stir, and serve. That is all there is to it.
To microwave instead, begin by removing the dinner from the carton. Loosen one corner of the film cover enough to allow for steam venting. Place the self-contained cardboard plate into the microwave and set the timer for 2 ½ minutes.
When the timer goes off, peel back the top film and stir the meal before placing back into the microwave for an additional 2 ½ minutes. Once cooking is finished, peel away the film, stir and serve.
Those unfamiliar with the Kashi brand should be aware the company is dedicated to providing food products that are better for their customers as well as for the Earth. Their packaging is made from recycled products that are reusable and/or biodegradable. All of their products are made in such as way as to help save trees and energy while reducing CO2 gases and waste.
Kashi Chicken Pasta Pomodoro is billed as flavorful and satisfying. I would say about 50% of that claim is true. I found that eating half of the meal was sufficient to fill me.
On the other hand, I found the food a bit bland and boring. If there are 510 micrograms of salt in there, I didn’t taste any of it or any other spices for that matter.
I did love the fact that Kashi used whole grain pasta. It is all I use these days. It is tastier overall. It also has a better texture and consistency. Finally, because it is hearty, it fills you quicker than white flour pasta.
The chicken in the dinner was cooked perfectly. It wasn’t raw, which obviously isn’t safe, nor was it overcooked and tough. The sauce was rich. The problem I had with the meal was that there wasn’t enough sauce. Even that would have been acceptable had there been more peppers or squash to help balance out the taste. A bit of spice would also have been nice.
I thought the meal was edible. However, it wasn’t tasty enough to ensure that I’d buy it again. The coconut chicken meal I bought for my daughter was apparently worse. She deemed it “inedible” and said it “tasted like dirt.”
Here is my summary review:
Taste: 2 stars. It is a bit bland and tasteless.
Freshness: 5 stars. If you keep the meal frozen until you are ready to cook it, the freshness should remain intact.
Variety: 3 stars. If the Chicken Pasta Pomodoro isn’t to your liking, Kashi has other meal options, but not that many at this time.
Reputation: 3 stars. Kashi is building a reputation. However, some of its food products are better than others.
Nutrition: 4 stars. It doesn’t get a whole lot better than all natural, except for fresh on the spot.
Green value: 5 stars. The packaging wins points with me for being made from recycled paper.
Packaging: 4 stars. The packaging carries the Kashi logo and color (green). A picture of the meal is posted on the front. However, it is a bit misleading. It looks full of sauce, peppers and squash. Trust me when I say that it is not.
Ease of storage: 4 stars. The package is smaller than the usual frozen dinner at just 6 1/2″ to 7″ inches. It fits easily into smaller freezer locations.
Availability: 2 stars. Kashi products are not found at every grocery store. It will take some time to find one that carries it. However, more and more stores are adding Kashi products each day.
Price: 3 stars. I paid $2.00 at the commissary, on sale. The regular price; however, is closer to $3.50. I think that is a bit high, especially considering the fact the meal isn’t all that good.
Product purchase probability: 1 star. I might buy it again if nothing else were available.
Final rating: 3.6 stars. There is room for improvement.
5 stars – outstanding
4 stars – good
3 stars – average
2 stars – below average
1 star – poor