Archives: July 2011

Ever go grocery shopping, with the intent of buying one thing, and then letting your stomach decide what you actually buy?

Yea. That’s what happened here. That’s how this Kashi Margherita Stone-Fired Thin Crust Pizza ended up in my cart, then in the stove, and then eaten by yours truly. It sort of happened like this…

I figured I would walk by the natural food section of my grocery store, just to browse( for the record, browsing in that section is NOT wallet friendly for me. I spend a LOT of money on food!!) and then  I passed by this pizza.  I’ve seen this pizza over and over at the store, and just never bought it. And after eating it, I’m really mad at myself for not buying it sooner.

Doesn’t this look delicious? Because it was delicious x 10

While it was cooking, my kitchen transformed to normal kitchen to a pizzeria. Seriously. It smelled so good! After it came out, I thought I would be disappointed because it was a VERY thin crust, but rest assured, it was delicious. I cooked mine on a pan, so the edges were a bit crunchy, but the middle part of the crust was nice and soft.

The pizza as a whole wasn’t super greasy, so that made me happy. The crust was even pretty flavorful, with a bit of garlic and a bit of spice weaved in.  It even tasted “doughy” despite the fact that it was a thin crust. The tomatoes tasted unbelievably fresh, and were juicy, as if they were cut straight from the garden. There were garlic and onion flavors mixed in with the cheese, of which there was just the right amount of. Not drowning in cheese, and not so little that I had to wonder if the company remembered to put any cheese on at all, but just right.

Overall? This pizza rocked. It also has whole grains and omega-3’s according to the box. I had half of the pizza left over that I left on the pan, which was devoured by another person as soon as they came home. So much for leftovers… ; )   5 stars

29 Jul 2011, Comments (6)

Marie Callender’s Cheesy Chicken & Rice

Author: Healthnuttxo

I  went to the store the other day to pick up some random things, including some frozen entrees for when I dont have time (or more likely, don’t feel like) cooking. I saw this meal, Marie Callender’s Cheesy Chicken & Rice, and knew I had to give it a try, especially since I liked the last Marie Callender meal I tried. The ingredients weren’t too bad, so I put it in my cart and bought it.

I was excited to try this. I picture a gooey, cheesy entree, with huge chunks of chicken and pieces of broccoli scattered throughout. Luckily, after I cooked it for the designated time, it looked pretty much as I had imagine it.

However, when I pictured cheesy, I pictured more of like a stringy, gooey cheese. In this meal, it was more like a cheese sauce, or something that had the consistency of a cheese dip that comes from a jar. But don’t get me wrong – it still looked delicious. And let me tell you, it was a long 8 or 9 minutes I waited for this entree to be done including rest time. Sort of like when I bake cookies – longest 8-10 minutes of my life.

So, moving on, I tried the pieces of chicken first. They were juicy and chewy, but also a tad salty. There was a good amount of them in the entree, which I liked. I think this help contribute to the 24 grams of protein in this meal, which made me and my gym-worked muscles quite happy.

Next up, the broccoli was tender, but not soggy, so it was perfect for me. I happy to be quite a fan of broccoli, so the fact that this was included in the meal made me happy on the spot.

Lastly, the rice was fluffy and delicious. There was white rice and some grains of wild rice. It thickened up with the sauce quite nicely, which had a cheddar flavor. The cheese sauce was actually a bit of a let down, as it had a bit of an artificial taste to it. I was expecting a real cheese flavor, and it had more of a cheese-from-a-can or jar flavor. It wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t my favorite.

Overall, pretty good. I would eat this again. I loved how it was high in protein, but it was VERY high in sodium for me, 1000 mg?! A bit more than I’d like in one meal.  All in all, I would give this 4 stars

What’s your favorite thing that’s CHEESY? I would have to argue that crunchy cheese doodles are one of my favorite cheesy things =)

Along with the delicious Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip cookie I was sent for free from Fabe’s, they also sent me some others, including the Sweetened by Nature Gluten Free Cranberry Orange Cookie. According to the wrapper, this cookie is also  vegan, egg free, dairy free, all natural, and has no refined sugar.

I’m always a bit skeptical when something says it’s free of a lot of ingredients, as are some of my friends who I have heard comment to me in the past. Well, if it has no refined sugar, no eggs, no dairy, no gluten…what’s it made of? And HOW could it possibly taste good?

Well. I don’t know….doesn’t this look delicious?


Well – no worries here, Fabe’s has you covered. This particular cookie was actually quite delicious. The first thing I noticed is that it was VERY crumbly. It literally started to fall apart as I opened the wrapper, but I liked how it was a bigger cookie. However, there are 2 servings (read 1 serving if you’re me) in this cookie.

There were are a good amount of cranberries, which were chewy and sweet, and slightly tart. The cookie had a melt in your mouth consistency, and had a different texture than any cookie I ever had. It was almost like a crumb cake in texture. It was VERY sweet, but delicious, with a predominant orange zest flavor, and a  coconut flavor as well!

Overall, Fabe’s has proved that even without eggs, dairy, gluten or refined sugar, yummy cookies can be made. If I hadn’t eaten the whole cookie myself (ooooops….) I would bring it over to my skeptical friends to prove them wrong. This cookie gets 4 stars, because I wish it was a tad less crumbly. Also, this cookie has two servings, and it’s WAY too hard not to eat both. So delicious!

Cranberries- are you a fan? I would say I’m on the fence. If they are sweet and dried, I like them. But if they are too tart, I could definitely do without them!


I’m not a pasta person – I’ll take rice, bread and pretty much any carb over pasta. However, an exception to the rule is macaroni and cheese. How can anyone possibly turn it down? Gooey, cheesy and super comforting – what’s not to love?

Ian’s Natural Foods is a brand that I happen to like, so I figured I would try the Ian’s Wheat Free/Gluten Free Mac & NO Cheese that I saw at the store. According to the sticker on the box, I paid $5.19 for it, which is a bit steep, but I also know from experience that gluten free foods tend to be expensive.

So I cooked this by the recommended method, via the microwave. Which, let’s be honest, even if it WASN’T the recommended method and the oven was suggested instead, I’d probably still pick the lazy route and use the microwave. So it was convenient for me the microwave WAS the preferred method =)

As it was cooking, it smelled like chicken noodle soup. Huh? I mean I knew this was called “Mac & NO Cheese”, but I was still hoping for a cheesy smell! After the cook time, here’s how it looked straight from the oven

I wont lie and say it was the most attractive looking entree. It looked kind of...mushy.

Now, finally onto the flavor. What happened to me is the sort of thing that I hope has happened to more people other than myself. When there are 2 cups on the table, say one with water and one with soda, and you go to drink the soda cup but accidentally grab the water cup, take a sip, and then are completely taken aback it’s not soda.

That’s what it was like with this mac and cheese. Or, rather, “Mac & NO Cheese”.

I was expecting at least somewhat of a cheesy flavor. However, I got nothing. It tasted like chicken noodle soup. Weird, I know. But honestly, it had the flavor of chicken noodle soup, but with a creamy sauce and noodles like macaroni and cheese.

I’m not saying it was bad, it was just unexpected. The noodles were pretty good, but had spots of funky-ness going on. Like some noodles on the edges were over cooked, and some on the bottom fell apart and were “piecy” almost.

The rest of/majority of the noodles were soft and had that baked, home-made mac & cheese consistency. The sauce surrounding the noodles was creamy, and not too salty, and there as a good quantity. So overall? I’ll give it a 3 star rating. I might eat it again, but it won’t satisfy a macaroni and cheese void for me.

If you had to choose only one to eat….would it be pasta/noodles, rice, or bread? I’d pick bread, hands down. =)

Got some free cookies, courtesy of Fabe’s, and of COURSE I had to try the Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies first =) Seeing as I love both peanut butter AND chocolate… well, I guess to be fair, there are a LOT of people who love peanut butter and chocolate… So, let’s just say I did the Fabe’s Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie for YOU guys first 😉

I dont know about you, but those gooey chocolate chips pretty much won me over  on the spot.


The flavor was pretty good. Chewy and soft, with a mild peanut butter flavor, and pieces of nuts scattered throughout. It was a very rich cookie, and sweet but certainly not overly sweet. In fact, the raging sweet tooth I have kind of wishes it was a bit sweeter. It kind of had the sweet and salty combination going on, especially when I bit into a chocolate chip. Which, by the way, receiving these cookies in the mail on a hot day was sort of like a gift. These tasted like they were fresh out of the oven. The chocolate chips were gooey, but definitely had a different taste than what I’m used to- being a milk chocolate chip. They kind of reminded me of the Enjoy Life Boom Choco Boom Non Dairy Rice Milk chocolate bar in terms of flavor. Had a chocolate-like taste, with a vanilla flavor as well.

The middle of the cookie had that “I-just-took-these-out-of-the-oven-ten-minutes-ago” appeal, and like it was at the point where you take out a cookie and your not quite sure if it’s done or not. Your afraid it could be raw, but you dont want to overcook it. Thats how these cookies were in consistency. I’m not saying they were raw, but they were like a few steps beyond it. In other words, just the way I like it 🙂

Overall, very good cookie. It is pretty calorie dense, and has 12 grams of fat and 19 grams of sugar, and it’s also VEGAN and has no refined sugar. In other words,  my kind of cookie. I’m not vegan, but I dont mind when products are, and I certainly like when products are sweetened with other things besides refined sugar. I think this cookie is worth a try.  4 stars

What’s your favorite vegan cookie or baked good?


21 Jul 2011, Comments (6)

ProScotti Almond-Orange Biscotti

Author: Healthnuttxo

I’m a total protein convert. Don’t get me wrong. I love my carbs (especially in the form of cupcakes and cookies…oh… and bread...=) ), but I’m much more into protein, especially since I have a high activity level. Greek yogurt? Yup. Cottage cheese? Yup. Protein shakes? You bet.

So, if given the opportunity to eat something dessert-worthy, like a biscotti, WITH protein? You know I’m going to be happy about that !

I already reviewed the Mocha Chocolate Chip ProScotti. These are soft biscotti cookies with protein and omega-3’s in them as the package states.

Next up, I tried the ProScotti Almond-Orange Biscotti. They came with 2 in a pack and had a really awesome aroma to them. I thought it kind of smelled like  a cranberry almond muffins my family used to always have in the house when I was little. Every Saturday morning someone would toast up the cranberry almond muffin, and the aroma would fill the house. The smell of these ProScotti reminded me of just that.

It was very soft and almost a bit crumbly when I bit into it. It was pretty sweet, and very delicious. It had a delicious orange zest flavor, but almond undertones, and a hint of vanilla as well. I certainly think this flavor will satisfy a sweet tooth, because I felt like I could taste the sugar in it. I looked at the nutritional facts and found there to be 20 grams of sugar in the pack, so it makes sense that they are sweet.

Overall, I like these! I liked them more thanI liked the Mocha Chocolate Chip Flavor. Even though I got these for free from the company, I would certainly buy and eat them in the future. I love the protein, the omega-3’s, and that they are made with pretty minimal ingredients. The only down fall is that the sugar content is a bit high. 4 stars

Oranges- do you like them? Or could you do without them? Personally, I hate eating oranges. I like orange juice, and I LOVE clementines (or rather, I like to eat the juice out of clementines!) but something about the pulp in oranges really turns me off. I’m much more of an apple kind of girl 😉


1 package is 194 calories, 5.2 grams of fat, 25 grams of carbohydrates, 20 grams of sugar, and 12.7 grams of protein.

I was provided this product to try for free from the company.

You could say I have had PLENTY of frozen meals in the past. Between eating them intentionally for a review, eating them because I haven’t had time to fully cook a meal, or the more likely option, I’m too lazy to cook anything, I have had a good amount of meals in the past.

I do have a couple standards when picking out frozen meals. They can’t have any trans fats, they have to be made with organic or natural ingredients, and they can’t be crazy high in saturated fat or calories. And in order for me to buy and eat it again, it has to taste homemade. If it tastes super commercially prepared, or bland, or just mediocre, I will not buy it again. I usually stick to Amy’s Kitchen Meals (like here are the ones I reviewed!), as they never have disappointed me in the past.

Well, I went shopping the other day and to my disappointment, there were HARDLY any Amy’s meals at that store. So, I went looking for another option. I saw these meals by Marie Calleender’s, and although the ingredients weren’t as nice as I would like them, they weren’t horrible either.

So I cooked this meal up, and noticed it cooked separately from the sauce. Here are pics before adding the sauce

and after adding the sauce…

So yea, it looked absolutely delicious. Why? Because it was!

I also steamed up some veggies on the side, because I felt this meal was lacking in the veggie department minus the few mushrooms thrown in.

There was a good amount of sauce to mix the meal, which I liked, and the smell was delicious. The mushrooms were chewy, tender, and actually pretty good. I cant say I’m a *huge* fan of mushrooms, they are more of a take-it-or-leave-it vegetable for me, but these were pretty good!

The rice was fluffy, and soft and absorbed the sauce quite well to really make a creamy risotto!  I was a bit disappointed that it was white rice instead of brown. The sauce was buttery and cheesy tasting, and really, when do the flavors of butter or cheese really disappoint? They certainly did not disappoint me. I will happily accept buttery and cheesy flavors on my food. =)

Lastly, the chicken. The chicken was sort of weird to me- it was cut into cubes so I was expected a very processed tasting chicken. However, it tasted like it was pulled right off of a rotisserie chicken! It was chewy and soft and really quite good! It was a tad on the salty side, but nothing I couldn’t handle.

Overall, very good. There were flavors of onion, garlic and cheese, and I really enjoyed this meal. I do think it definitely needs some veggies on the side, but nothing I couldn’t easily fix.And although the ingredients had a few things I wasn’t happy about, it tasted like homemade to me! 4 1/2 stars

What’s your favorite product by Marie Callender? I also really like the biscuit mix!


17 Jul 2011, Comments (5)

Reebok RealFlex Sneakers

Author: Healthnuttxo

As I mentioned before, I’m one of those people that loves to exercise. My primary forms of exercise include kickboxing, biking and strength training, along with occasional walks. I happen to love Asics when it comes to sneakers, and I was using Asics running sneakers knowing that I probably should be getting cross training sneakers. Which makes sense, doesn’t it? If I’m barely running, why get running sneakers?

Well, the story behind that is that ever since high school when I did track, I loved Asics, so I kind of just stuck with a brand name I loved. However, I went to the stores today and saw these sneakers that caught my eye. When the cashier told me I could use them as cross training sneakers, I knew I had to try them. I looked on the website about these sneakers, and saw they were meant for running as well.

I thought it was cute that the website said the shoes had “76 Running Buddies”, or squares on the bottom on the shoes.

I tried them on at the store, and I really liked them. They were super light weight on top, but felt very supportive and squishy on the bottom. I believe I even said It “felt like walking on mini marshmallows”. Don’t laugh at me =)

I got them for $90.00, which I thought was a bit steep, but a good investment. I rationalized that I wouldn’t need a new pair for another 6-8 months, so it was kind of like paying 12-15$ a month. I mean, if you could rent shoes and all…

But ANYWAY. The real test came when it was time to work out. I laced em up and used them at my cardio kickboxing classes. At first, they felt kind of weird. I was afraid I was going to roll my ankle because the top part of the shoe is very soft and cloth-like rather than a tough and thick top of a sneaker, like one made leather or what not. I felt slightly unsturdy with the ankle area, but only when we did lateral movements, like lunges where we lean to the left foot and then quickly to the right.

As class went on, I realized the support elsewhere was actually pretty good. I felt absolutely no pain or pressure in my knees, which I really liked. I also liked that the shoes felt so light, so kicking the bag felt easier than usual. I had to adjust the shoe once (untie and retie the knot) because after the lunges I felt my foot was slipping slightly in the shoe. I’m sure I will get used to them as time goes on.

Another thing I liked (which I have heard several times from people are the main reason they buy a shoe)? They looked really nice! I liked the color scheme, and they were attractive to the eye. I’ll be using these only indoors, so whoever goes to my gym or lives in my house will probably only see these pretty shoes until I buy a new pair. Which, again, I hope will be 6-8 months from now.

Overall? A pretty good shoe. I haven’t tried them running as of yet, but I’d love to hear your thoughts if you bought these or tried them out! 4 stars

I know what your thinking.

What are these doing on a healthy food and product blog?

If it’s any consolation, I didn’t buy these. A friend of mine did. But I took a peek at the ingredients, and well, they were natural. And, well, I was in the mood for a sweet treat. See the connection? =)

So out came Snackwell’s Fudge Drizzled Caramel Popcorn.

I tried a few pieces, and thought they were so overly sweet. They tasted like caramel popcorn, but very sweet caramel popcorn, with the added “fudge drizzle”. I don’t think the fudge drizzle is really even all that necessary, because while the flavor is there, its not that prominent. It was sort of like a chocolatey undertone.

There is only about 3 grams of fat and brown sugar is first ingredient, so it definitely has more of a candy appeal than a savory. It does have a slightly salty flavor as well, but certainly mostly sweet.

The popcorn is crunchy, which is good, and I would estimate about 25-35 pieces of popcorn per bag, which isn’t bad for 130 calories. Instead of eating straight up, I’d like to mix this in something. A trail mix, or even a bag of buttered popcorn as a “treat”. I think its way tooooo sweet to eat by itself, but if super sweet’s your thing, you’d might like this!

A friend of mine tried this, and she really liked it. But then again, she is guilty for buying carrot cake solely to eat the entire icing off the top and throw away the cake. Although she won’t admit it, but I’ve seen her do it.

I on the other hand, probably wont eat this again. There is 18 grams of sugar ( which I believe is 4 and a half teaspoons!) in one little bag, so really, it was way too sweet for me. In fact, I think I feel a cavity coming on ( just kidding). 3 stars


15 Jul 2011, Comments (0)

Stonyfield Giveaway WINNERS!

Author: Healthnuttxo

The 5 winners are, selected randomly by random.org is….

1.  Comment Number 25, Ellie

2. Comment Number 45, Nikki

3. Comment Number 12, Ashley

4. Comment Number 42, Lindsay

5. Comment Number 16, Sam.

CONGRATS! PLEASE check your emails from me, healthnuttxo [at] yahoo [dot] com thanks to all who entered. More giveaways to come!

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