Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Frozen Meals - Healthy Choice Review and Giveaway

When I was younger and single, I used to eat a lot of frozen meals, especially for lunch. They were cheap and easy and I could quickly "pack" my lunch as I was running out the door by simply pulling one from my freezer. Plus, with so many options, I felt that it provided me with some variety for lunch. But, I was generally disappointed in the meals. The descriptions and the pictures did not deliver in the meal. Sure, there were some that were delicious, but they also seemed to be those that were full calorie meals - not the reduced calorie meals that I was seeking in an ongoing effort to lose or at least maintain weight. Sure, I found a few shining stars that packed a flavorful punch, but with a regular rotation of just a few varieties I was quickly bored with my selection and the meals were left in my freezer - as I sought out tastier options.

Frozen meals have come along way from then. Look at the number of varieties for one and a lot are starting to pack more fresh flavor in each bite. I was excited to try some of the new Healthy Choice selections when I was contacted a few weeks ago about "defying diet food". As someone that is trying to lose weight, I think it is important to not only choose healthy options for meals, but to maintain variety in my diet. Sometimes, with a busy schedule, it can be difficult to be creative at meal time, especially lunch - when I don't have the luxury of being in my own kitchen. It is good to know that now I have some new choices to include as part of my lunchtime routine.

I was sent two new varieties to try - the Balsamic Garlic Chicken Healthy Choice Cafe Steamer and the Roasted Red Pepper Marinara Healthy Choice All Natural Entree.

So, last week one day when I was packing my lunch and was pressed for time, I decided to try one. The first one I had was the Balsamic Garlic Chicken from the Healthy Choice Cafe Steamer line. The dish included chicken, whole grain pasta, mushrooms, spinach, tomatoes and vegetables in a balsamic garlic sauce. If your like me and hadn't tried this line before, the Cafe Steamers line feature a DuoTray Steamcooker - a bowl on the bottom contains the sauce and a steamer basket above holds the rest of the dish. According to the company, this "separation of ingredients and the steaming process utilized in these meals heightens the flavors, maximizes the crispness and crunch of the colorful vegetables and retains the optimum texture of pasta, rice or potatoes". I have to say that I really felt like the peppers benefited from this steaming, as they still had some crispness to them (not soggy like sometimes vegetables are in a single tray meal) and the pasta also still had a little bite to it. The steaming also worked well for me, because with the dish cooked separate from the sauce it was easier for me to pick out mushrooms (I don't eat them). After cooking (and for me removing the mushrooms), simply pour the pasta, chicken and vegetables into the bowl with the sauce and stir. This could also allow you the option to use less sauce if you desired. I enjoyed this filling meal (and only 5 Points!) and definitely would pick up more. I think I would most like to try the Lemon Garlic Chicken or the Sweet Sesame Chicken.

Later in the week, I tried the Roasted Red Pepper Marinara from the All Natural Entrees line. This dish was 9 grain cavatelli pasta in a roasted red pepper sauce, topped with parmesan, romano and asiago cheeses. The All Natural entrees are made with no preservatives, artificial flavors, or colors. I definitely liked that it was shredded cheese on top and not a grated cheese that was simply mixed in the sauce. The sauce was very flavorful and served atop the whole grain pasta, made it a very healthy dish. Again, this flavorful dish was only 5 Points and made a nice option for lunch. In this line, I think I would like to try the Lobster Cheese Ravioli.

Both meals had a nice, fresh flavor to them. With both of these meals delivering on the flavor, I am looking forward to trying more of the new Healthy Choice varieties and incorporating frozen meals back into my lunchtime menu plan.

You can learn more about the new Healthy Choice varieties on their website. While there, you can also get a coupon for $1/2 Healthy Choice Frozen Entrees.

Giveaway

Have you tried the new lines/entrees from Healthy Choice? Thanks to Healthy Choice, I have the opportunity to offer a giveaway of two coupons for a free Healthy Choice Frozen Meal.

To enter, visit Healthy Choice and then come back and leave a comment sharing which variety you are most interested in trying.

For Additional Entries (Leave a Separate Comment for each extra entry):
1. Subscribe to A Busy Mom of Two by e-mail or RSS feed (on my sidebar near the top). Leave me a comment letting me know that you subscribe. If you are already a subscriber, let me know that too - this isn't just for new subscribers.
2. Follow me on Twitter and Tweet about the giveaway and leave a comment with a link to your Tweet. This entry may be completed once each day.
3. Blog about this giveaway. Leave a comment with a link to your post.
4. Promote this giveaway on Facebook.

Giveaway will remain open until March 17th at 6 pm. Two winners will be selected using a random number generator. The winners will be contacted by e-mail (be sure to leave one!) and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be selected.

No compensation was received for this post. Healthy Choice contacted me directly and provided me with two frozen meals to sample for the purposes of sharing my review. In addition, they provided coupons for a reader giveaway.

51 comments:

Emily said...

I'd like to try the Cafe Steamer line, specifically the Chicken Margherita!

the.anonymous.ett@gmail.com

Emily said...

I subscribe via Google Reader!

the.anonymous.ett@gmail.com

The Bookworm said...

I haven't tried Healthy Choice meals, but their Grilled Chicken Monterey sounds delicious!

hawaiismn(at)gmail(dot)com

The Bookworm said...

I am a subscriber, via Google Reader.

hawaiismn(at)gmail(dot)com

The Bookworm said...

Following you on Twitter and tweeted: http://twitter.com/hawaiismn/status/10219611268

hawaiismn(at)gmail(dot)com

The Bookworm said...

Promoted on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#!/profile.php?v=feed&story_fbid=385189511132&id=100000877298034&ref=mf

hawaiismn(at)gmail(dot)com

JC said...

I'd like to try Sweet Asian Potstickers !

JC said...

I'm a subscriber.

tcarolinep at gmail dot com

JC said...

http://twitter.com/tcarolinep/status/10237271317 @tcarolinep follower

JC said...

Blogged.http://tcarolinep.blogspot.com/2010/03/giveaway-busy-mom-of-two.html

JC said...

Shared on Facebook wall.http://www.facebook.com/#!/tcarolinep?v=feed&story_fbid=391124830408&ref=nf

Jennah said...

The Meditteranean pasta sounds YUM!

jmrs2008@live.com

Jennah said...

I am an e-mail subscriber

jmrs2008@live.com

Sarah J said...

Yum the Chicken Alfredo Florentine looks good!

sarahkayjordan at sbcglobal dot net

NeedANap2 said...

I'd like to try the Cafe Steamers Sweet Sesame Chicken.

needanap2 at gmail dot com

NeedANap2 said...

You're on my bloglines.

needanap2 at gmail dot com

debbielynne said...

Chicken Margherita - mmm.

deborahcraft at yahoo dot com

The Bookworm said...

Daily Tweet: http://twitter.com/hawaiismn/status/10295037022

hawaiismn(at)gmail(dot)com

The Bookworm said...

Facebook entry: http://www.facebook.com/#!/profile.php?v=feed&story_fbid=399027914111&id=100000877298034&ref=nf

hawaiismn(at)gmail(dot)com

bison61 said...

I'd like the pumpkin squash ravioli

tiramisu392 (at) yahoo.com

The Bookworm said...

Daily Tweet: http://twitter.com/hawaiismn/status/10329965106

hawaiismn(at)gmail(dot0com

Kristin said...

I'd like to try the lemon garlic chicken and shrip cafe steamer.

Charlotte Prescott said...

All the new frozen stuff looks nummy--there's pasta in it! But today, the chicken soup with rice sounds most comforting.

Anonymous said...

I would like to try the natural pumpkin squash ravioli.

denise_22315 at yahoo dot com

Anonymous said...

email subscriber.

denise_22315 at yahoo dot com

Anonymous said...

I follow you and tweeted.

http://twitter.com/wiscmom24/status/10341451865

denise_22315 at yahoo dot com

Lori Sifuentes said...

I want to try the new pesto pasta.

Thanks
surveys4lori@rocketmail.com

Lori Sifuentes said...

Email subscriber.


Thanks
surveys4lori@rocketmail.com

Ashley Phillips said...

I would like to try the Chicken Alfredo Florentine. Thanks

Ashley Phillips said...

I am a subscriber by email.

The Bookworm said...

Daily Tweet: http://twitter.com/hawaiismn/status/10379853832

hawaiismn(at)gmail(dot)com

The Bookworm said...

Daily Tweet: http://twitter.com/hawaiismn/status/10438243706

hawaiismn(at)gmail(dot)com

Darlene said...

I've had several of the Healthy Choice meals. In the All Natural entrees, the Asian Potstickers are delicious.

forddarlene(at)hotmail(dot)com

Julie said...

I would like to try the Creamy Garlic
Shrimp

aunteegem@yahoo.com

Julie said...

email subscriber

aunteegem@yahoo.com

Heather said...

I would love to try the Creamy Basil Pesto meal. Sounds delicous. My favorite of their meals is the Asian Potstickers. SO good. Thanks for the opportunity!

The Bookworm said...

Daily Tweet: http://twitter.com/hawaiismn/status/10524378640

hawaiismn(at)gmail(dot)com

Anonymous said...

the chicken monterray! tracietrump@yahoo.com

Holly said...

the creamy basil pesto sounds really good!

matthollycart@gmail.com

The Bookworm said...

Daily Tweet: http://twitter.com/hawaiismn/status/10586367905

hawaiismn(at)gmail(dot)com

Jay said...

The creamy basil pesto sounds yummy!
rbjj32825[at]lycos[dot]com

Tamara B. said...

I would love to try their Lobster Cheese Ravioli and Tortellini Primavera Parmesan.
tamben7996(at)aol(dot)com

Tamara B. said...

I am a subscriber by email.
tamben7996(at)aol(dot)com

Heavenly Savings said...

I would love to try the Lobster Cheese Ravioli!

Kwhiz84(at)live(dot)com

Heavenly Savings said...

E-mail subscriber
Kwhiz84(at)live(dot)com

Heavenly Savings said...

Follow on twitter
kwhiz84
Kwhiz84(at)live(dot)com

Buki Family said...

Cafe Steamers Sweet Sesame Chicken... sounds yummy

wendym said...

Healthy Choice Completes Chicken Fettuccini Alfredo!

wendym at cableone dot net

Anne J said...

I'd like to try the chicken pad thai meal

ajolly1456 at gmail dot com

Anne J said...

I subscribe in google reader (Anne Jolly)

ajolly1456 at gmail dot com

Pattie F. said...

The Pumpkin Squash Ravioli sounds delicious!! Yum!

xmaswoman (at) hotmail (dot) com