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Dr. Gourmet's Food Reviews


Chicken Pomodoro and Chicken Penne Alfredo

There's a new world of gluten free products on the market. For those who are sensitive to gluten, this is a boon and over the next few months we'll include some of these products in our reviews here at Dr. Gourmet.

Glutino Chicken PomodoroThose who are sensitive to gluten have a lot of trouble in the marketplace because for those with celiac disease, even small amounts of gluten can be a major issue. So many products use preservatives and stabilizers that contain gluten, that it can be a real challenge to avoid it. On the other hand, more and more companies are labeling their products gluten free.

One is Glutino. They make a myriad of gluten free products including frozen TV dinners. Their Chicken Pomodoro with Brown Rice and Vegetables is good. Mind you, it’s not great, but it is every bit as good or better than many other mainstream frozen meals tested here at Dr. Gourmet. Chicken breasts in a light tomato sauce that has the predictable dried oregano and basil flavor, and is served over brown rice. Not earth shattering cuisine, but it is a frozen meal after all.

Glutino Chicken Penne AlfredoIf those who are gluten sensitive want to be treated like others who are not, this is proof that frozen TV dinners don’t discriminate. The rice is just a bit overdone and the chicken just a bit dry and the sauce as noted is predictable. Not a bad meal but not a great one either.

The Chicken Penne Alfredo fares about as well. The pasta is made with rice and this is a bit gummy. I’ve experimented with rice pastas and know that overcooking them is easy to do, so this meal was reheated carefully. Again, it’s a good alfredo but not a great one. The sauce is a bit bland and the chicken a bit dry.

As with a lot of specialty foods, there are far less preservatives than in the usual frozen fare and that really comes through in the aftertaste in both of these meals. The overall flavor is just cleaner tasting than many mainstream frozen meals.

So there are indeed good alternatives for those who need gluten free frozen meals, and they should feel good that there’s no discrimination here -- the dinners are just as average as Lean Cuisine.