We reviewed a bunch of new frozen dinners to see if they're worth our precious freezer real estate. (Seriously, that cold compartment is PACKED!) Here's the lowdown on what is (and what isn't) worth your hard-earned dough...
Cedarlane All Natural Green Chile, Cheese & Ranchero Sauce Egg White Omelette PER SERVING (1 omelette): 240 calories, 10g fat, 700mg sodium, 21g carbs, 2g fiber, 5g sugars, 18g protein -- PointsPlus® value 6*
This heat 'n eat omelette may be the best frozen breakfast of all time. The egg whites are SUPER fluffy and stuffed with gooey, cheesy goodness. And the sauce is totally unique and tastes INCREDIBLE. Go. Get. This.
Healthy Choice All Natural Entrées, Portabella Spinach Parmesan PER SERVING (1 meal): 270 calories, 7g fat, 600mg sodium, 40g carbs, 5g fiber, 2g sugars, 11g protein -- PointsPlus® value 7*
This entrée is surprisingly sour and overly garlicky. The textures aren't good at all -- the spinach is practically pureed and the pasta is not very firm. In a nutshell? Disappointing. Skip it.
Michelina's Lean Gourmet Snackers, Baked Pepperoni Pizza PER SERVING (4 snacks): 250 calories, 8g fat, 670mg sodium, 33g carbs, 2g fiber, 4g sugars, 11g protein -- PointsPlus® value 6*
Tasty little pizza-fied nuggets... but wait a sec! Six of them come in a box, yet FOUR of them are considered a serving? That means if you eat the recommended amount, you'll be left with half a serving. Lame, Michelina. These are delicious, just a little deceptive. (Psssst! If you eat the whole box, it's 375 calories, 12g fat, and a PointsPlus® value of 10*.)
Healthy Choice All Natural Entrées, Lobster Cheese Ravioli PER SERVING (1 meal): 250 calories, 6g fat, 580mg sodium, 37g carbs, 4g fiber, 8g sugars, 10g protein -- PointsPlus® value 6*
Frozen-entrée lobster DOES sound scary, but this dish actually isn't bad. Sure, it's slightly fishy but, um, what did you expect? The pasta is PERFECTLY al dente, and the filling is like cheesy lobster stuffing. You'll probably want to add steamed veggies (there's plenty of sauce) or have a salad on the side, though, if you want a truly satiating meal.
Morningstar Farms Lasagna with Sausage-Style Crumbles PER SERVING (1 entrée): 270 calories, 6g fat, 590mg sodium, 41g carbs, 6g fiber, 5g sugars, 20g protein -- PointsPlus® value 7*
We were SO excited when we spotted this new meatless meal in the freezer aisle of our local market, and we were even MORE excited once we tasted it. This stuff is really good and just as delicious as the more fattening frozen lasagnas out there. The sausage-esque crumbles are a nice addition, and the sauce is terrific. Plus, there are carrots on top! WE LOVE CARROTS!
Lean Pockets Seasoned Crust Pizzeria, Grilled Chicken Mediterranean PER SERVING (1 piece): 330 calories, 7g fat, 710mg sodium, 46g carbs, 3g fiber, 6g sugars, 20g protein -- PointsPlus® value 8*
This adorable crust-enclosed pizza item is fun, cheesy, and perfectly seasoned. The filling is really unique -- pizza-ish with a garlicky Mediterranean flair. And there are herbs in the crust! Mmmmmmm! This one isn't huge, though, so pair it with a bowl of greens to get the most bang for your calorie buck. (P.S. Even though the serving size is listed as "1 piece," it's the whole pizza pocket.)
Healthy Choice All Natural Entrées, Tortellini Primavera Parmesan PER SERVING (1 meal): 220 calories, 4.5g fat, 500mg sodium, 35g carbs, 6g fiber, 7g sugars, 9g protein -- PointsPlus® value 5*
Another nicely cooked stuffed pasta dish. The tortellini filling isn't anything super special, and neither is the sauce. But the portion size is nice, and this meal would make a GREAT base. We'd add some steamed broccoli slaw and go to town!
Lean Cuisine Spa Cuisine, Apple Cranberry Chicken PER SERVING (1 package): 300 calories, 4g fat, 500mg sodium, 54g carbs, 6g fiber, 24g sugars, 14g protein -- PointsPlus® value 8*
SO GOOD! A lot of great stuff in this one, including cranberries, apples, and grains! It's sweet, but not overly sweet, and it contains a fair amount of high-quality chicken chunks. (We CAN'T overemphasize the importance of chicken quality in a frozen meal!) This fruity friend can hang out in our freezer anytime.
Healthy Choice Select Entrées, Pineapple Chicken PER SERVING (1 meal): 380 calories, 7g fat, 210mg sodium, 68g carbs, 5g fiber, 30g sugars, 9g protein -- PointsPlus® value 10*
Awww, boo. We love pineapple chicken but this meal made us sad. The portion is super small: just a few meager lumps of fried (WHY?!) chicken, an itty-bitty serving of rice, and some carrots 'n peppers. The sauce is VERY tasty and the rice is whole grain, but that serving size is too disappointing for the calorie count. BTW, chicken quality = so-so.
Yikes, people. Just YIKES. This dish is a bit of a disaster. The sauce is both bland and a little too sweet at the same time. Also, the pasta is mushy, the chicken is spongy... Shouldn't this gimmicky steamer cook things to be crisper and firmer? What happened here?
Lean Cuisine Spa Cuisine, Roasted Honey Chicken PER SERVING (1 package): 280 calories, 4g fat, 600mg sodium, 44g carbs, 5g fiber, 18g sugars, 18g protein -- PointsPlus® value 7*
Wow -- one of the BEST chicken entrées out there. Talk about TOP-QUALITY chicken... The poultry is delicious and actually tastes home cooked! The whole-wheat pilaf is a nice change from standard noodles or rice, and there's a decent amount of veggies. That sweet honey sauce is really fantastic, too. Way to go, LC! We've found ourselves fantasizing about this repeatedly since our taste test!
Um, something went wrong here. It's a good idea -- with the brown rice, barley, and garbanzos -- but poorly executed. The sauce is under-seasoned and somewhat sour, plus the eggplant is NOT cooked well. Sorry, Healthy Choice, we don't mean to pick on you. It's just that your latest offerings are sort of unimpressive compared to the competition. We call 'em as we taste 'em. Step it up!
Michelina's Lean Gourmet Flatbreads, Chicken Club PER SERVING (1 flatbread): 290 calories, 7g fat, 870mg sodium, 42g carbs, 2g fiber, 3g sugars, 15g protein -- PointsPlus® value 8*
This one's a tad small, but it'll seem larger if you eat it open-faced rather than folding it (fun little trick -- feel free to use it!). It's kind of decadent with the ranch sauce, bacon, and cheese. If you want a little indulgence for a nice low price, you'll like this. (We do appreciate budget-friendly guilt-free bites!)
Morningstar Farms Sweet & Sour Chik'n PER SERVING (1 entrée): 340 calories, 6g fat, 550mg sodium, 56g carbs, 4g fiber, 12g sugars, 14g protein -- PointsPlus® value 9*
Whoa. WHOA!!! Stop the train. This soy-protein meal is GREAT. It's not at all dinky -- in fact, we'd say it's borderline hefty! It has brown rice and a delicious sauce, and the tempura-style "chik'n" tastes better than the real chicken in some other freezer meals. SO GOOD!!! Morningstar... you're our new SUPERSTAR!
Healthy Choice Asian Inspired Café Steamers, Chicken Pad Thai PER SERVING (1 meal): 270 calories, 3.5g fat, 540mg sodium, 40g carbs, 5g fiber, 10g sugars, 19g protein -- PointsPlus® value 7*
First of all, there isn't enough chicken. Second, the sauce is CRAZY sweet (not in a good way). And, um, it's so NOT Pad Thai! This dish is more like noodles in a coconut-curry sauce, which we'd actually be okay with if it tasted better. The one upside: The amount of noodles is pretty impressive. (If you're into quantity over quality.) We love you, Healthy Choice, just not these latest frozen entrées.
Lean Cuisine Spa Cuisine, Thai-Style Noodles with Chicken PER SERVING (1 package): 310 calories, 7g fat, 590mg sodium, 41g carbs, 5g fiber, 13g sugars, 20g protein -- PointsPlus® value 8*
Mmmmm! The noodles are soft without being overdone. The sauce is peanutty, thick, and perfectly sweet. And the chicken is superb! This meal is yet another fine example of the people at Lean Cuisine getting it right. (Can we high-five them through the computer?) We are truly impressed!
HG Heads Up! The nutritionals listed here come directly from the product packaging and may vary from manufacturer websites. Always refer to the packaging itself for the most up-to-date and accurate nutritional stats.
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*The PointsPlus® values for these products and/or recipes were calculated by Hungry Girl and are not an endorsement or approval of the product, recipe or its manufacturer or developer by Weight Watchers International, Inc., the owner of the PointsPlus® registered trademark.
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