Typically my Thursday Thoughts posts include a little piece of inspiration floating around in my head from the previous week or something I emphatically want to press upon your hearts. This week, I’m thinking with my stomach and have a review to share with you on a product I you should check out if you ever need a super quick meal option.
You very likely have heard about these Barilla Microwave Meals from other bloggers already. Well, I’m just going to add my 2 cents of agreement to those other positive reviews. As you should (hopefully) know, I’m always honest with my reviews and very picky about what I review. I’ll only sign on to review something I believe I would naturally use/buy myself and that you all, as my readers, would likely enjoy hearing about.
About a month ago I discovered that, thanks to Fitfluential, I would be trying these Barilla meals through the month of September . When I originally signed on for the Barilla campaign I didn’t expect it would be for a microwave pasta. I just knew I liked and regularly used Barilla pasta. Let me tell you, when I saw it was for microwave dishes, I got a little worried…and almost backed out. What kind of chemically stuff would be in these? Would they be soggy, limp, disgusting excuses for a bowl of pasta? Would I like them at all? But I trusted my pals at FitFluential and went with it.
I’m so glad I did! These little pasta dishes saved a couple of lunches and dinners for this family. Here is some info about the product:
- 100% Natural Ingredients (absolutely nothing funky in those ingredient lists)
- No Preservatives
- Ready in 60 Seconds
- 9g to 11g of protein
- 320 calories or less
- good source of fiber, vitamin A, and iron
The big question, though? Do they taste good?
The pastas came in 5 different flavors:
- Mezze Penne with Tomato & Basil Sauce
- Mezze Penne with Traditional Marinara Sauce
- Mezze Penne with Spicy Marinara Sauce
- Whole Grain Fusilli with Vegetable Marinara Sauce
- Whole Grain Mezze Penne with Tomato & Basil Sauce
We tried, and enjoyed, them all!
I tossed a meal together using the pasta alongside a side salad.
I used them for an easy dinner for the kids. Makenzie loved it and called it “dip pasta”.
I packed one for Peter to take to work when we didn’t have any leftovers for his normal lunch of choice.
The pasta cooks up al dente, which I really like. Some said that they found the whole wheat varieties a bit more chewy, but I actually preferred those the most. The cooking instructions include tips to make the pastas a bit less al dente, so maybe that would help. The sauces cook in a separate part of the dish so you can add as much or little sauce as you prefer. I like my pasta sauce-y, so I generally used all the sauce and it was the perfect amount. The Spicy Marinara or the Vegetable Marinara were my favorite sauces as the others had a slight sweetness to them. Not in a bad way, but a bit different than sauce I traditionally use. For the big judgment, I asked Peter his thoughts. He is Italian and VERY picky about his pasta. I think it says a lot that he gave it two thumbs up.
So, would I buy these with my OWN money? Yes. And I already have.
I will always prefer home-cooked meals over pre-packaged and do my best not to rely on these options. It took me the full month to try them with my family because I wanted to use them only on a truly as needed basis. And those times are a reality – like when I had a bad migraine or didn’t quite make it to the grocery store as planned. I was glad to have the Barilla Microwaveable Meals for those moments. I truly did like them and feel good enough about the ingredients and nutrition that I would use them again. I honestly think they are one of the better tasting options of microwaveable meals out there…and without the freaky ingredients.
If you’re looking for quick meals to have on hand for work, travel in a hotel, or those days where you just don’t want to cook, then I suggest giving these a try. If you’re interested, you can find them in the pasta aisle. I found them for $2.29 in my local Kroger and Barilla currently has a $1 off coupon on their website. Let me know if you try them and how you like them!
Your Turn – Do you ever use microwaveable meals? What do you look for in one?
FitFluential LLC compensated me for this campaign. All opinions are my own.