Dr. Gourmet's Food Reviews: October 12, 2007

On a Roll....

This is the third time in a row that I am able to report on a pretty good frozen dinner. A few weeks back I told you about the Kashi meals and last week the Lean Cuisine Penne Pasta. Respectable offerings for you to have on hand and eat in a pinch. This week's test dinner would actually be a good choice for lunch as well.

It is also a Lean Cuisine product. Their Santa Fe Style Rice & Beans is a bit spicy so those who have GERD may not want to try it. But only a bit spicy. There's a mild poblano flavor heavily spiced with cumin. The rice is good, and not overcooked, which is rare for frozen meals. I think that this would have been better with brown rice and would have added a lot more fiber. My guess is that the folks at Lean Cuisine don't see the majority of their customers ready yet for healthier rice.

Lean Cuisine Santa-Fe Style Rcie & BeansThat said, it does have 5 grams of fiber, and a lot of this comes from the black beans and pinto beans. Like the rice, these aren't overdone and go well with the rice and corn. The whole thing is topped with a sour cream sauce and cheddar cheese. This would be a good dinner wrapped in a whole grain tortilla with some lettuce, tomato and a splash of salsa.

The meal is easily as good as anything you would get at a fairly good Mexican restaurant but at only 290 calories and 5 grams of fat it's a lot healthier. There's only 530 mg of sodium, which is a reasonable amount, and surprising for Lean Cuisine because their meals are usually higher in salt.

So persistence is paying off. A fairly good meal to add to the others to have in your freezer for an emergency.

Eat well, eat healthy, enjoy life!

Timothy S. Harlan, M.D.
Dr. Gourmet

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