Monday, December 5, 2011

Critique: A Healthy Choice Meatloaf Meal throw down!

With all due apologies to Bobby Flay, I went out and bought myself a Healthy Choice Meatloaf Meal in an effort to see why the sky high price of $4.15 makes this TV dinner so much better than an identical Banquet version I reported on earlier in the year, and which cost only a buck to boot! I mean who is jacking who? While the Banquet meal tasted like a dream, for three bucks more, this one had better taste like a ‘wet dream’! Let the TV dinner throw down commence!

First off, I wanted to take a look at and compare some key nutritional items between the two meals. They have, after all, pretty much the contents; a serving each of meatloaf, mashed potatoes, corn and in the case of HC a desert! Here’s what I found:

Meal             Weight      Calories       CFF       Cholesterol    Sodium (mg)
Banquet         269            280          150                40                  1000
H.C.                349            350          80                 35                  550

OK then, some interesting numbers here. Remembering the cost differential was three bucks, I figure that the were it not for the desert I'm good to go with Banquet. That is, for the same money, I can get three of the Banquet meals. HELLO! Anyone argue with that? OK, so what if I'm getting hosed with sodium!  But, I mean is that difference really worth worrying about unless your old and hypertensive like myself? I dunno, you be the judge! Let’s move on to taste, shall we?


All things being equal, the overall taste is what I remember the most. Sure, the salt may pickle me and the cholesterol may clog my arteries, but the thing that really counts is taste! Healthy Choice doesn’t let you down on this count. The meatloaf was just the right texture and had a great aroma. The corn and mashed potatoes were also good, but the real seller was the desert. Anytime you serve apple bits in a sugary syrup you got my attention! I’ll also venture a guess it was the Apple Cranberry Crisps that added all the extra calories, but it did help make the meal, so it’s forgiven. High marks also for overall smell and texture.

This meal gets a solid 8 in my book and the old adage is evidently true; you do get what you pay for! While I would still buy the much cheaper Banquet product (mainly because I am cheap), people who can afford to spend the extra money should opt for Healthy Choice version.

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