“ Brand: Asda / Type: Chicken „
Being on the weight watchers plan I am always looking out for lower fat versions of meals which I like and creamy pasta bakes are a bit of a favourite of mine. I saw this in my local Asda priced at £2.00 and thought I would give it a go, unfortunately I didn't particularly analyse the content as it was from the Good For You range and I got a bit of a shock when I subsequently did check it at home.
This tray bake is enough to feed two people and it contains penne pasta in a creamy sauce with chunks of chicken breast and bacon in it, the sauce is a bechemel and it looks impressive on the picture on the packet. This product cannot be cooked from frozen which is a bit of a pain, it can be kept in the freezer but must be defrosted before use. It takes about 35-40 minutes to cook in the oven.
Taste wise it is very nice. The bechemel is nicely balanced and tastes very creamy, there is also plenty of it and it coats the chunks of meat and the pasta well. The meat is also of a nice quality and tastes good. It really does not taste like you are missing out on anything - and really thats my problem with this product because coming from the Good For You range you expect much lower fat content but this product would struggle to class itself as a healthy alternative in my opinion.
Half of the pack of this pasta dish will cost you 622 calories and a whopping 13.6g of saturated fat! That equates to 14 weight watchers points and considering I only have 19 to spend per day it would mean using up around three quarters of my daily points on one meal. This renders it a pretty bad choice on my eating plan and I think that as far as 'healthy alternatives' go this is most certainly not one.
It is a shame because it does taste very good, but then if I was going to indulge in so much fat and calories in one go I may as well have a full fat version. I felt I had been a little cheated with this product although it did teach me a harsh lesson, that even if a product is in a supposedly 'healthy' range it may not necessarily be much better than a full fat version.
Priced at £2.70 for 800g this ready meal consists of tubes of chicken breast pieces, smoked roasted bacon pieces and Penne pasta in a béchamel sauce. The sauce is a creamy white with a crispy crumb topping.
Cooked from the fridge this meal is delicious and filling. I serve it for two with garlic bread and a salad.
The meal can be stored in the fridge until the use by date or frozen at home to store for a longer period time (how long depends on the freezer compartment you store it in and instructions regarding this are given on the packaging). The cooking instructions on the packaging produce a fabulous meal from the fridge but care should be taken when cooking after defrosting as I have found the pasta goes very hard if I follow the package instructions when I have previously frozen this meal (be warned, it should not be cooked directly from the freezer but must be thoroughly defrosted first) If cooking after defrosting It is best to take the meal out of the oven and stir it every 7 or 8 minutes to ensure the pasta is evenly cooked, otherwise you risk some of the pasta being burned and consequently you will waste some of the dish.
Each half pack contains 622 calories so this is not one for dieters I'm afraid. It is high in fat, containing 26.4g per half pack, but the salt content is medium at 2.2g and the meal is low in sugar with just 7.6g per half pack.
This meal is great if you're in a hurry but pricey for what it is and I'm sure it could be made from scratch at a fraction of the cost quite easily if you have the time.
Food facts. No artificial colour or flavours. No hydrogenated fat. Each 1/2 pack contains MED Calories 622 31%, LOW Sugar 7.6g 8.0%, HIGH Fat 26.4g 38%, HIGH Sat Fat 13.6g 68%, MED Salt 2.2g 37% of your guideline daily amount.
Ingredients: Creamy Sauce (44%) [Milk, Water, Soft Cheese (5.1%) (Milk), Onion, Mature Cheddar Cheese (3.6%) (Milk), Butter (Milk), Wheat Flour, Cornflour, Smoked Bacon with added water (1.7%) [Pork (86%), Water, Salt, Preservative (Sodium Nitrite)], Medium Hard Fat Cheese (Milk), Vegetable Oil, Salt, Cracked Black Pepper, Nutmeg], Penne Pasta (36%) [Durum Wheat Semolina, Water], Cooked Marinated Chicken with added water (12.5%) [Chicken (94%), Water, Cornflour], Bacon Lardons with added water (4.5%) [Pork (90%), Water, Salt, Antioxidant (Sodium Ascorbate), Preservative (Sodium Nitrite)], Cheese Crumb (3.0%) [Mature Cheddar Cheese (Milk), Breadcrumb [Wheat Flour, Yeast, Salt, Colours (Plain Caramel, Paprika Extract), Emulsifier (Mono and Di-acetyltartaric Acids Esters of Mono and Di-glycerides of Fatty Acids), Sunflower Oil, Antioxidant (Ascorbic Acid), Vegetable Oil, Wheat Flour, Turmeric Extract)]
Contains: Gluten, wheat and milk