“ Brand: Innocent / Type: Potato „
I have looked at these for a while but always been put off by the hefty £3.79 price tag. However these are currently half price in Tesco so I bought a few to try. A pot contains 390g.
You will find Innocent veg in the ready meal section. They come in plastic pots through which you can see the contents. The pot is surrounded by cardboard which contains the ingredients, cooking instructions and some fun facts about veg inside.
The packaging states that an Innocent veg pot is; 'a delicious meal of fresh veg, tasty sauce, wholegrains, herbs & spices giving you 3 portions of veg in every pot. With no colourings, flavourings or nasty things you wouldn't add yourself'
To cook the pot you need to remove the plastic lid then place loosely back on then in an 850 watt microwave you cook for 2 minutes, stir then cook for a further 2 minutes.
The pot smells really tasty after it is cooked, when stirring the pot you can see a good mixture of veg, it contains carrots, onions, beans, sweet potato, red peppers, sweetcorn and chilli as well as brown rice. Each of the vegetables are there in a good quantity. The pot is very colourful. The sauce over the veg is really thick too, it tastes really spicy but not overly so. I expected the veg to be a little soggy however it wasn't it was crunchy and really fresh tasting. There is also a good quantity of rice in the pot, this means that it is really filling. I also liked the fact this was quick to prepare, it is perfect for taking to work.
These pots are also low in fat each pot contains less than 3% fat. They are also really high in fibre the packaging states it contains 90% of your RDA.
I have rinsed out my pots and reused them as recommended by Innocent, I used mine to plant herbs in. The pot can't be recycled as it is a type of plastic that is suitable for the microwave. It does also say you can use them as jelly moulds, or stilts if you attach some string.
I was really impressed with this pot and I would give it 4 out of 5, my only complaint is the cost, it is so expensive for what is essentially beg and seasoning.
I have a new found desire for the innocent veg pot's, this one being Mexican variation and I am slowly plodding my way through reviewing them.
I tend to buy them when they are on offer only as at around £3.50 for a 390 gram pot it is very expensive. In Tesco recently they have had them on offer again at around £1.80 each, so I decided to buy 3 different ones that I have not tried to taste and review.
Each pot gives you a wealth of information upon it's cardboard surround. You get the usual information regarding the ingredients which generally speaking has things I have heard of and no mention of E numbers and chemical additives which is a nice change and makes the meal seem much more 1, appealing and 2, healthy. I also like the fact that the pots are made in the UK and that they make you aware that no aircraft supplied foods were used. That said they don't say whether all the ingredients are from the UK, so theoretically they could have been driven cross Europe.
Each pot gives a potion of vegetables count too which is good as we are all encouraged now to each five a day and this makes it simple and easy for people to understand, this pot has 3 portions.
The nutritional values are set out in per 100g, per pot and give you a guide for your daily allowance of each so each is well covered.
You find with the innocent pots that the manufacturers take a somewhat light-hearted note when it comes to there labelling. Each pot has "fun" things on the inside, In this pot you can find the following.
The "heat me to eat me" section which tells you simply how to cook your meal, either via microwave, cooker or campfire.
101 things to do with your pot - This I find quite entertaining this time it's a budget wine glass! Probably not something I would actually do but children might find it fun on a rainy day.
An office survival guide! Some dubious ideas to get ahead!
This pot is the Mexican sweet potato chilli veg pot. It comes with brown rice, roasted peppers and paprika amongst other ingredients.
Sometimes with microwave meals I tend to find that the rice in them does not always cook properly and you end up with hard little bullets. Not in this case, I was pleasantly surprised at how soft the brown rice was. I tend to have basmati rice at home but this has enthused me to try brown rice as I found the taste had a bit more depth to it than what can sometimes be bland white rice.
Inside you do get a variety of ingredients mixed in which include carrot, onion and sweet corn, which blend in well and don't particularly stand out from the rest especially as the meal is quite heavily spiced. I tend to not like really hot spicy food but this was on the edge of my abilities with the mixed peppers, paprika, chilli, pepper and Cajun seasoning. However, considering this is supposed to be a chilli veg pot I assume that most people will want something and expect something hot and spicy, in which case it may not deliver all you expect, So it loses a point there.
The sweet potato was abundant through the meal and was very soft, not soggy but cooked to perfection. I found the standard potato a little hit and miss I have to say, not to many pieces to be found but the ones that were there were nicely cooked. Two variety of beans are inside pinto beans and red kidney beans, these to were soft and not bullet affairs which is normally the case in ready meals set for the microwave.
Generally speaking a very nice ready meal which fills you up and is well prepared and cooks nicely in the microwave, I have not tried on the cooker. It is approved by the vegetarian society also.
*** Sweet and innocent ***
Better known for its fruit smoothies, Innocent recently launched a range of healthy meals in a pot. Designed for microwaving (but also cookable on the hob), they are ideal for a quick lunch or healthy snack. I had seen these around in supermarkets and been keen to try one out, but had been put off by the price tag (around £3.50). So when I saw them on offer for 2 for 1 in my local Sainsburys I thought this would be the perfect chance to give them a go! And the only ones left were the Mexican Sweet Potato Chilli, so I picked up two of these!
*** Veggie boost ***
I was drawn immediately to the claim on the front that these provide three portions of veg (although it doesn't specify if this would technically count as three of your "five-a-day"). Either way this appealed to me as I've been a bit concerned that I'm not eating enough veg at the moment! So this seemed like a nice, easy way to top up my veggie intake. It also has less than 3 percent fat.
*** Piping hot ***
The plastic pot has a cardboard wrap which, as well as cooking instructions, has lots of other quirky stuff on it (such as uses for your empty pot - the one I ate suggested using it as a finger bowl ... so not to be taken entirely seriously I guess!). This is a nice touch and it gives you something to do while your pot is being zapped in the microwave! It takes four minutes altogether, with a stir inbetween. After the four minutes was up, my pot was piping hot and needed a tea towel for me to pick it up.
*** Healthy eating ***
I must say there is a whole lot of veg in this pot, including sweet potato, onion, red pepper and sweetcorn. There are also kidney beans and pinto beans. So all-in-all it's a healthy list of ingredients. The veg is bulked out with rice, and there is also a fairly thick sauce to give it a bit of moisture.
It took a while for my food to cool down, and then I tucked in. The taste is rich and slightly spicy - but not at all overpowering. Every forkful has something different and there are lots of different textures, from the soft beans to the firmer chunks of sweet potato.
I liked the taste of this - I had one for lunch and it wasn't too heavy or spicy for a midday meal - in fact I wouldn't have minded if it had been a little spicier. What I wasn't so keen on was the range of textures - I guess this may just be me but there was just a bit too much going on in here! The chunks of sweet potato were a little too big for my liking and I wasn't sure of the point of having a tiny layer of spinach on the top of the pot.
*** A great idea ***
I think the idea of this is great and I like the idea of getting as many veggies as possible into a simple meal like this. The taste and overall flavouring of the product was really good too. But, for me, there were one or two too many ingredients in here, and I am not sure I would buy this flavour again. However, I would be tempted to try one of the others in the range - there are eight flavours to choose from including Bombay Curry, Moroccan Giant Couscous and Roasted Aubergine Moussaka. I am definitely keen to try out a few of the Indian flavoured versions - especially if I can find them again at a reduced price.
List of ingredients if you're interested...
brown rice (17%) (water, brown rice), tomato, water, carrot, pinto beans, red kidney beans, onion, sweet potato (5%), potato, red pepper (4%), sweetcorn, spinach, vegetable oil, red chilli (0.8%), cornflour, lemon juice, garlic, sea salt, cajun seasoning (spices, herbs, mustard seed, salt, sugar), smoked paprika (0.2%), green chilli puree, coriander, black pepper