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Dr. Gourmet's Food Reviews


Southwest Style Chicken and Chicken Florentine

For those of you who follow these weekly reviews, you will know that I have been hunting for a decent frozen "TV Dinner." I have been pretty disappointed in what the freezer case has to offer. The most notable so far has been those by Ethnic Gourmet (reviewed 08/17/07). They were at best only fair, however.

I have noticed Kashi frozen dinners for some time now. I have hesitated in the past because I have not been all that impressed with Kashi products, but I did pick them up for testing. Surprise, surprise....

Kashi Southwest Style ChickenThese are really good. Heck, for frozen meals they are downright great. The Southwest Style Chicken has a slightly spicy southwest flavor that relies mostly on cumin. The treat was that the veggies (including peppers, onions, corn and black beans) are not cooked to heck and gone. They actually have a fresh flavor to them. The chicken is not all dried up, either, but is moister and more tender than any you've ever had in a frozen dinner.

Same with the Chicken Florentine. Almost fresh tasting chicken with red peppers and spinach in a creamy sauce. The spinach was actually bright green and also fresh tasting. It claims to have mushrooms but they were not as dominant as one would wish. The dish had a good balance of spices, especially tasting just salty enough but coming in at only 550 mg of sodium per serving.

Kashi Chicken FlorentineBoth dishes are served with the "seven whole grain" pilaf that Kashi makes its trademark. The Southwest Chicken includes sesame and the Florentine orzo pasta. This is a great idea because the whole grain mixture doesn't go soggy, as with so many of the dinners that include only rice or potatoes. At the same time the pilaf contributes to a respectable 6 grams of fiber.

Both are low in calories and fat and even the Southwest Chicken wasn't too bad with 680 mg of sodium. At about $4.50 each they are a bit pricier than most frozen meals, but you do get what you pay for and they're still a lot cheaper than fast food.

Look, I have had some bad frozen meals over the years of reviewing for Dr. Gourmet. But I have also had some pretty terrible meals served during banquets at hotels and on airplanes. This product is darn good, and if the hotels and airlines served it you'd be happy about it (and I would be, too).

Posted: September 21, 2007