I walked past these kits many times when going down the aisle to buy broth. Yes I know how to make my own broth but it’s not cost effective where I live, so I buy it. When I finally decided to pick one up out of curiosity I was pleasantly surprised to see real food ingredients. We don’t eat wheat because I get full body swelling and arthritis flares, since I’m the one cooking no one eats wheat at home. That dietary restriction meant I only grabbed 3 out of the 4 flavours available; Thai chicken and rice, Chicken tortilla, and Hearty beef and barley, the flavour I did not try was Vegetable medley and orzo. To be honest I actually forgot 1 ingredient in 2 of the recipes but they turned out well regardless.The soup kits were really useful because it allowed me to meal plan very easily for the week.
First I made the Hearty beef and barley. The extra ingredients required were broth, steak, mushrooms, and spinach.After browning the beef and mushrooms you add the kit and broth, bring to a simmer and ignore it for 45min, add spinach and serve.
Barley, dehydrated vegetables (onion, carrot, cabbage, shiitake mushroom), red wine powder (red wine [sulphites], maltodextrin), sugar, lemon juice powder (maltodextrin, lemon juice solids), dehydrated garlic, sea salt, herbs and spices, spice extracts.
Total cooking time: roughly 1 hour.
The flavour was rich and satisfying, this one was my favourite and will be kept stocked in my kitchen for when I just don’t feel like making something from scratch. I forgot the spinach in this one.
Next I made the Chicken tortilla. The extra ingredients required were broth, chicken, diced tomatoes, and red bell pepper. Throw everything in the pot, bring to a steady simmer and ignore it for 25min. Shred the chicken prior to serving if you wish.
Rice, dehydrated vegetables (onion, green pepper, corn, garlic), dehydrated cooked black beans, modified corn starch, sugar, sea salt, lime juice powder (corn syrup solids lime juice solids, natural flavour), masa harina corn flour, corn flour, canola oil, herbs and spices, spice extracts.
Total cooking time: roughly half an hour.
This one was my least favourite because I found the cumin to be a little too strong, that said I did forget the tomatoes which may have mitigated the cumin. I’ll try making it one more time WITH the tomatoes before deciding if I want to keep it on hand for occasional meals.
Lastly I made the Thai chicken and rice. The extra ingredients required were broth, chicken, mushrooms, coconut milk, and lime juice. Throw everything except lime juice into pot, bring to a steady simmer and ignore for 20 minutes. Add lime juice and serve.
Rice, dehydrated vegetables (onion, carrot, red bell pepper, garlic, shiitake mushroom), sugar, dehydrated fish sauce (anchovies, maltodextrin, salt), sea salt, herbs and spices, spice extracts, canola oil.
Total cooking time: just under half an hour.
I really enjoyed this one, there is a little heat without being hot, and the flavour is rich and well rounded. If I had eaten this in the middle of summer instead of heading into fall it probably would have been my favourite.
Now I know someone is going to implode their keyboard once they feel inspired to point out 2 ingredients that are not absolutely perfect (maltodextrin, canola oil) and 1 iffy ingredient (sugar). Before you have an aneurysm I would like to direct your attention to the nutrition labels. Each package assumes 6 people served and a 2,000 calorie diet. If you go to the section on carbohydrates it tells you how much of the carbs is sugar. Each one is 3g, 2g, and 4g respectively, the amount of sugar and maltodextrin is very minimal. For the 2 that have canola oil the amount in the package is significantly less with only one having a measurable amount per serving at 0.5g (chicken tortilla).
I do feel that switching the grain related ingredients for organic would improve them wonderfully, however as far as a pre-prepared food product goes these are extremely good in a world of shit food. Many within the millennial generation lack basic life skills like cooking from scratch, these offer an excellent entry point without heavy compromise on price or quality. Using a product like this can give someone the confidence to keep trying until they master the skill of cooking, something which takes time and money to do. Mastering the kitchen is the start of mastering your health, if products like this can help people do that, then I’m all for it. Plus if you are not happy with the ingredients you are free to not eat it.
I did a video review on youtube, you can view it here: https://youtu.be/boAZb96JcP0