“ Brand: Asda / Type: Vegetarians „
Looking for something a bit different in the frozen vegetarian section of my local Asda the other week, I noticed this bag of meat free meatballs and decided to give them a try with some tomato and chill sauce over a plate of linguine. We were pretty impressed with them.
The bag costs around £1.97 although when I bought it it was part of a special offer across the Asda meat free range where any two were £3 so in effect it only cost me £1.50 which is a bit of a bargain.
The bag contained around 20 of these frozen balls of soya protein. I used about 6 each for our meal and that was about right. Each ball is at least two mouthfuls.
The great thing with these is that they can be microwaved straight from frozen. I have previously tried the quorn version of these and always struggled to get them hot all the way through when they had been cooked in a sauce, there was no microwave option given with those though.
For these ones you can zap 4 at a time for a minute and it thaws them through, another minute and they would be hot enough to eat but I wanted to cook them through in the sauce so I only zapped them once to take the chill out and then simmered them in the sauce for about 10 minutes and they were perfectly cooked and hot all the way through.
A portion of 80g (which by my reckoning is around the 5 ball mark) is 117 calories and 1.2g of saturated fat, this equates to only 2 weight watchers points per portion which is great considering how filling these are.
We were really impressed with these meatballs, the texture when cooked is quite realistic and they picked up the flavour of the sauce very well. The seasoning is tasty and they are very good served with pasta as I did.
As a healthy option these seem like a great idea to me and we will certainly be buying them again, another winner from Asda's own brand meat free range.
The only downside to this product is that on the two attempts I have made to buy them again they have been sold out, this may be simply due to popularity, I have just managed to order some with my online shopping so hopefully they will be stocking more!
With my mate being a Vegetarian and me staying with her of late and me ending up cooking the most out of the pair of us I have enjoyed buying lots of meat free products for us to try out and tried experimenting a lot. I usually love meaty meat balls and make my own spicy tomato sauce to go over them and to make a huge bowl of spaghetti too but haven't had that since staying with her and so when I saw these really fancied having a go with them and seeing what we could create!
The meatballs come in a light orangy/brown plastic bag which is a sort of squarish shape and easy enough to tear open (though not so easy to reseal but do-able). On the front of the bag there is a photograph of the meatballs on some spaghetti and I am told that they are Asda Meat Free Meatballs and that they contain no artificial colours, flavours, preservatives or hydrogenated fat and of course the Vegetarian symbol is clearly displayed and that they are 400g in weight (around about 16 balls give or take a couple) and there is an at a glance nutritional chart displayed. On the back of the bag other information listed includes being given a meal idea and told how to cook them, ingredients and allergy advice is given along with a full nutritional rundown chart and storage and contact details for Asda are stated. It's all informative enough of course though like I stated earlier the bag is hard to reseal if you want to pop it back in the freezer but thats my only small moan (these are freezable by the way!).
Made from 59% soya protein these are round and basically if your familiar with a meaty meat ball appear the same really and are of a dark brown minced up looking colour and they hold well together.
To cook them you have 3 options. You can shallow fry them, microwave them for less than a couple of minutes or oven cook them in about 10-15 minutes. I have used all of these methods of cooking with these and each way is perfectly fine in my opinion!
To me and my mate, these taste really great. Easy to cook and tasty they sort of taste meaty though no fat or gristle is in them of course. They have a slight taste of onion to them though you can't see it and they are very well seasoned though not overly so. I like they way they hold well together and are not messy to cook and look like a decent sized mouthful too.
These are moist enough (particular if they are shallow fried in oil) and to me are an excellent meat free product that looks great in a family favourite dish and they get a huge thumbs up from us!
Nutritional Information Per 80g Serving:
Saturated Fat: 1.2g
Only available in Asda stores (in the freezer section) at £2.00 a bag!