Aug 18, 2012

Gardein Meatless Products Review and a RedBox To-Watch List

Have you ever had that really disappointing experience when you're all excited to buy something and then you get the store...and they don't have it? I guess fate knows what I want better than I do, however, because here's what happened.

Oh, and yes I am framing this like it's super-dramatic. When, in reality, it's about a grocery trip. No shame.

Anyway, I don't tend to go for the vegetarian meat-substitute products most of the time. Don't get me wrong, I love veggie burgers and tofu sticks and the such - but I like them to be pretty blatantly vegetarian, I don't need them to masquerade as 'beef' or 'clam' or 'chicken.' 

If I really wanted to eat beef or clam or chicken, I would. The thing is, I just don't like meat. So giving it up? Easier than flipping a pancake.

That's actually a poor example, as flipping pancakes isn't always that easy. How about easier than spending $100 at Hollister? Okay, moving on.

There were two exceptions to my dislike of meat - sausages and BBQed ribs. I really liked both when I was younger, especially in the summer, but haven't had either in quite a while (I've been vegetarian for about 5 or 6 years).

Okay, well I got some coupons for Gardein and, always a fan of a good deal, headed over to Whole Foods. I'd checked out their product lineup online earlier and knew exactly what I wanted - the classic style buffalo wings. I figured the flavor wouldn't be too overwhelmingly meaty, so I'd probably like them. But guess what? Whole Foods didn't carry them. Grrr.

So I got the BBQ Skewers instead, recalling my fondness for BBQed ribs, but still not really expecting them to be too fantastic.

They come in a four pack (two skewers is a serving, so one pack serves two) and are pretty decently priced. I can't remember what it cost exactly, but I think it was like 3 or 4 dollars - so about $1.50 to $2 per meal? Not shabby, especially considering that a complete frozen dinner is usually around $5 for one serving.

I also like that the serving size was a real-person serving size - two skewers with four cubes each, which ended up being quite a bit of food. Often food companies will make their serving sizes way less than they know any normal person would require, just to play with the nutrition facts.

They didn't, which I appreciated, and I also like that the skewers are made with some good stuff - like organic ancient grain flowers - and without some bad stuff (no biotech foods or high fructose corn syrup, even in the BBQ sauce)!

Can we just take a minute to admire all that BBQ sauce? They didn't skimp!

I love BBQ sauce. I'll order it on my subs at Subway all the time. BBQ sauce and mustard are, without a doubt, the greatest condiment inventions of all time.

You just pull the skewers out (and try not to drool over all the yummy BBQ sauce) and either plop them on the grill for a few minutes or on the stove for 2-3 minutes. I did it stovetop, of course, as this is actually from a few days ago in NYC.


I'd planned to serve both skewers on top of my mishmash salad (below) but I made the mistake of trying a bite before I prepped the salad. And then another bite. And another. And...only half of one skewer made it onto my salad. :P

1/2 a Meatless BBq Skewer, Salsa, Jalapeno with creamy dressing, fried onions, salsa, and mustard on the last of the lettuce in my fridge. SO YUM. Mishmash salads are the best.
They were chewy and moist and delicious, bursting with all the great flavor of ribs! The texture was also really close to that of ribs and I certainly preferred these - they were chewy and super tender, not stringy like cheap beef can be. 

I may or may not have licked every last of sauce off of the skewer.

My dad loves meat and, as a US agricultural scientist, does not appreciate vegetarianism (don't get me wrong - he likes veggies and beans and lentils and all that, but then he's like 'where's the meat?). If I ever come near him with tofu, his face takes on a look of extreme discomfort. 

It's quite entertaining, actually. :P

But I just know that he'd love these - these are definitely the kind of vegetarian food you can serve to meat-eating friends! I bet they wouldn't even know the difference. My dad really knows meat, so he might, but I'll just have to buy this again at home and try serving it to him. I think he might not and, even if he does notice that it isn't meat, I seriously doubt that he'll be able to resist asking for seconds, either.

So I obviously need to make (can you call warming something up for two minutes 'making?') these for my dad. Which brings me to one of the things I need to do with my mom. 


I made these for dinner with pasta.

And YES, I fooled my dad (though the fact that I was eating chicken made him highly suspicious). He loved it! And it was very authentically chicken - too much for me, actually. I wouldn't make it for myself again, as I prefer veggie products that taste like veggies, but my family wants to have them again!

Dinner success.

Okay, moving on - one of my favorite things to do when I'm at home is watch RedBox movies with my mom! Here's my RedBox to-watch list so far:

When in Rome. I've been wanting to see this movie for ages, if only because it's set in Rome - so even if it sucks, I have a pretty background to enjoy!

What to Expect When You're Expecting, because my mom and I love chick flicks!

and The Decoy Bride

and The Five Year Engagement

And I need to go watch Brave with my adorable little sister!

Honestly? I thought my list of RedBox movies would be much longer, since I haven't gone to the cinema all that often in the past few years. So help me out!

Is my RedBox to-watch list missing anything?

Have you tried any Gardein products? If so, what's your favorite?

Do you like ribs?

Don't forget to enter my coconut oil giveaway, it's your second-to-last chance!


  1. I'm gonna watch Brave next Thursday with my mom! So exciteeed! :D

    1. I'm going with my mom & little sis in an hour - so excited!

  2. I like your exampel with the Pancake :D
    I think I will use this in the next days ;)
    Tell me how Brave was ok? Maybe I am going to see it :)

    1. I'm going to go see it in an hour - I've heard it's amazing!

  3. That chicken substitute looks amazing. I'm going to look for this brand and give it a try. I never try products like that but it sounds great.

    1. It was really something, my whole family loved it!

  4. I LOVE Gardein!! It's, by fair, my favorite faux meat brand. I've tried almost all of their products and haven't been disappointed once!
    They're frozen chick'n 'scallopinis' and crispy chick'n tenders are both amazing! And, if you're looking for a good burger substitute, their meatless burgers are my families' favorite. I'm really glad that you enjoyed their products!
    Brave and When In Rome are both adorable! (:

  5. I'm not a fan of chicken substitute but maybe because I haven't tried one as delicious as your one :D
    And I love when in Rome!

    Choc Chip Uru

  6. I'm totally with you on giving up meat being no problem. I have a problem when a "meatless" product tastes TOO meat like, because I really dislike the taste of meat in the first place.

  7. Those skewers sound delicious! I used to like ribs, but I stopped when I realized that they were actually the ribs of an adorable cow. Maybe I can eat the Gardein ones! :P


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