I have a soft spot for Amy’s Kitchen— especially as they’ve been adding more gluten-free items to their already exclusively- veggie line-up. And there’s something about the combined wonderfulness and terribleness of TV dinners that makes them intriguing. (The restaurant Tap in Detroit is even doing a “gourmet” style TV dinner.)
And yes, my first post back in the United States is a review of a vegan TV dinner. This can be read two ways: that the U.S. is full of pre-packaged food that provides instant gratification, or that while Central Europe has plenty of pre-packaged food, almost none of it is both gluten-free and vegetarian.* (Aside from the frozen vegetables.) Though I found veggie burgers at the Tesco in the Czech Republic, sadly, they were all full of wheat.
So when I saw Amy’s veggie loaf at Meijer, I happily snagged one. I like Amy’s brand— as a college student who didn’t always have a lot of time to cook, their frozen food was wonderful to have on hand. (Their lentil soup and tofu pot pies were two favorites.) Sadly, when I gave up gluten, I also gave up the ease of heating up an Amy’s bean and cheese burrito.
However, they’ve been adding more gluten-free products— meaning I can have frozen pot pies again! Of course, like any any frozen food, there are pluses and minuses. It’s quick, it’s easy, and while it won’t taste great, you know it’s not going to taste terrible. But while TV dinners have passed the taste-testors, they’re often full of junk. Like wayyy too much sodium. Which makes them tasty, but bad for you. (Glad they ditched the gummy baked-apple nonsense that the gluten version had.)
Sometimes, like during finals week or when you’re trying to find your way around your new roommate’s kitchen, TV dinners can be pretty awesome. Of course, they usually look pretty sad. (Does anything look good when frozen, though?)
Well, TV dinner’s aren’t that photogenic when cooked, either. And about taste: the veggies, the peas and corn, were a little hard. The potatoes felt like instant, and lacked flavor. However, the veggie loaf itself was really good— better than I remember the gluten version being, actually. The loaf tasted like real veggies, and had a nice texture. It paired well with the gravy (which was a tad salty.)
On to ingredients: Amy’s is pretty good with ingredients. Very little hidden weirdness.
However, about nutrition: of course, it’s full of sodium. 33 percent of your daily intake. So don’t eat more than three of these a day. Also, why is there sugar in this? 8 grams of it? And so, like both TV and TV dinners, consume these in extreme moderation.
*Both are true.