Archive for Product Review

Product Review – Grilled Cheese & Tomato Soup

I love grilled cheese & tomato soup. Love, Love, Love! It’s pretty much the only way I like vegan cheese. So I set out to try a few new things. I found FIG Food Co at Whole Foods. Easy to make (empty package, fill package with water or non-dairy milk, stir together, heat…done)

Wonderful flavor, not too salty or too sweet. Tasted great with the grilled cheese dipped in it!

Price: 2/$6.00

Overall Rating: 4 piggies – homemade might be better

The BF back in his PV days liked grilled cheese with ham on it. So we opted to try the Lightlife Smart Deli Ham. Um, it was a big failure. The BF did not like the taste of the ham at all. He said it was weird and he couldn’t even finish his grilled cheese. Bummer!

Price: $3.59

Overall rating: 1 piggie

I opted to try two types of cheese’s. First theres the Follow Your Heart Cheddar. It was on sale and even said on the package “It Melts!”. I have no idea what it takes to melt this, but it did not melt. I grilled up my sandwich, even adding a few drops of water to the pan, then covering it to create steam to help the meltiung process…a slight softening of the cheese happened, but no real melting. Flavor was good, what I’d expect, didn’t have a weird texture, just didn’t melt!

Price: 2/$6.00

Overall Rating 2.5 piggies

Teese, from Chicago Soy Dairy was the second option I got. I’m a big fan of Teese and they’ve recently updated their products to make it more melty. No joke, this baby melted sans steam action. Creamy, melty, delicious. This cheese rocked.

Price: $3.99

Overall Rating 4.5 piggies (it’s my dislike of cheese that knocked it down 0.5)

As you can see here in my side by side compare…Follow Your Heart is on top – zero melty. Teese on the bottom – melty heaven!

Yes, the grilled cheeses & tomato soup rocked my world…or at least my lunch!

Overall satisfaction level: 5 piggies

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Product Review – Gardein Savory Stuffed Turk’y

I tend to stock up on freezer items when they are on sale. I get these for three reasons, either to have something on hand for The BF, myself if I haven’t cooked, or to try something new. This met two of those criteria. The BF came down and was hungry and I wanted to try out this new Gardein item. The package had two turk’ys in it along with a gravy packet. Note: you need to cook both or be okay with only eating one of them with gravy and the other without as there is only one gravy packet.

I did the combo cooking instructions where I cooked them for 2 minutes in the microwave and then into the toaster oven for about 15ish minutes.

Smelled good, looked good. Time to try it. I took two bites and had to stop. It tasted too much like actual turkey for me. It totally freaked me out and I spit out the second bite. The BF loved them. I loved the gravy (really good gravy!). I think this item is great for any new vegans, anyone who enjoys their mock meats, or for some omni friends/family. For those of you who don’t want to taste something remotely similiar to dead animal (as I like to say) back away from this item.

A note on the cooking, although the time took a while it came out crispy and cooked well. I think this item is definitely one you plan to make for someone and not something to have for a “quick” meal (read: under 5minutes)…although in the grand sense, it’s pretty quick. Freezer to table in under 20 minutes.

Cost $3.00

Overall rating: 4 piggies (I know I didn’t like it, but overall texture, cooking, presentation all rocked…it was just too similar for me…so flavor was great if you don’t mind that turkey taste…and that gravy really was fab!)

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Product Review – French Meadow

This was from a company I haven’t tried before – but it sounded yummy & was on sale (always a nice combo). The BF came down and needed to be fed (and all I had was things the man either doesn’t like or would need to eat the entire contents of my freezer to be full – like I siad he eats a lot!)

Into the microwave this baby went and proceeded to cook for 9 minutes. That’s basically forever in microwave terms. Personally if it’s not done in under 5 minutes it’s too much of a hassle and I might as well actually cook something. A

The flavors and textures were wonderful. It tasted fresh as if I just cooked it myself. So I was very pleased with the way it turned out. Most of the time you’re left with something that you know was from the microwave, not this time.

Cost: $2.50 (sale, reg is roughly $3)

Overall rating: 3 piggies – it was really good, but cooking time took forever

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Product Review – Amy’s Indian Vegetable Korma

Sometimes I just want something fast and different. Amy’s to the rescue! I’ve always been a fan of Amy’s products and this is no exception. I’d say the only failure is that the dish does not look like the picture, except for the rice. But it tasted fantastic, cooked in the amount of time as directed (microwave) and was a very nice dinner for myself.

Cost: $3(ish) – it was on sale and I can’t remember entirely but these usualyl cost between $3-4 at my Whole Foods.

Overall Rating: 3.5 piggies – its good, really good, but not home made.

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Christmas – The Day of Food – Part 2

The day after Christmas The BF & I made the trek to his Mom’s house for our second Christmas. For dinner The BF got us the Field Roast Hazelnut En Croute. The meal was simple and nice and I enjoyed being there. I snacked a ton throughout the afternoon and was actually quite full by the time we sat down for dinner. So my plate was small…but good:

Starting with the roll, going clockwise: Roll via Whole Foods, Sweet Potatoes (It was mashed with pineapple, brown sugar, and topped with walnuts – it was good, but I much prefer regular sweet potatoes), Hazelnut En Croute, Cranberry Sauce, Green Beans with Pine Nuts, and a mixed field greens salad with cranberries and walnuts.

The Field Roast was wonderful. I might have to try that for a future holiday’s, a bit more fancy for holiday gatherings than a Tofurky. Flavor was great and it went well with the cranberry sauce. Dessert I failed to picture (sorry!) it was the vegan pumpkin pie from Whole Foods. Good, but my pie is way better.

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Product Review – Larabars

My friend Liz brought me this snazzy box of Larabar’s as a hostess gift at Thanksgiving. I hadn’t had these before so I was super excited to try them out. These abrs are awesome because they don’t have a bunch of extra fillers in them. They are truly simple in their ingredient list AND they’re vegan – rock on! They are all moist and soft, with a bit of crunch with the nuts that are within each bar. My personal fav was the Cashew Cookie bar…yum!

imageSecond would be the Apple Pie. Really great flavor and a great preworkout snack (read: not if you’re planning a mega workout, I mean a simple short run or easy spin on the bike!)
imageThe Cherry Pie was good, but just a  bit too tart for my personal preference. Although, by the time I ate the entire box the tartness grew on me.

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Vegan MoFo – Day 26 – Thanksgiving Day – The Meal

Thanksgiving. A time for friends, family, fun, and food. We had all of that. I invited a few friends over and to my surprise, two came! One for the full on dinner experience, one for snacks and fun since she had a lunch time extravaganza which left her quite full. In another surprise twist The Dad flew in from Connecticut too. The day started with a quick morning freak out (by me) because I forgot the sweet potatoes…so I rode my bike to the store asap to secure the most important item on the menu! Once I returned The BF & I enjoying some of the Pumpkin Oatmeal Bread topped with Earth Balance.

Then I did some online t-day shopping/browsing. The Dad arrived in time for lunch (snobby joes!)

After lunch we got to the real fun, prepping all the dishes. On Wednesday I shared the plan…here’s what actually happened:

Appetizer: Hummus & Olive Tapenade (Homemade by my friend Liz), Pita Bread from Garden of Eatin’, Pita Chips from Kangaroo, Crackers from Doctor Kracker, Lentil & Rice Salad from Casbah, carrots.

I don’t know how much the store bought pita bread, chips, and crackers cost but they all went well with the appetizers we had. They all get a solid 3.5 piggies.

Side Dishes: Roasted Brussels Sprouts – recipe is here.

Carrots & Red Potatoes –  cooked with the Tofurky!

Candied Yams – recipe is here.

French Rolls – I cheated and did store bought, frozen rolls from Alexia.

Price: $3.99

Overall Rating: 3.5 piggies – it’s good, homemade is better, but this is a great time saver and everyone seemed to like them!

Main Dish: Tofurky – mega on sale, I couldn’t say no. I thawed it and made the marinade/basting broth that is on the package. Added Potatoes, Onions, & Carrots to the roasting pan too.

Price: $9.99

Overall Rating: 4 piggies. Easy, convent, tastes good, crowd pleaser. This is a great dish for those new to vegan or serving your omni friends/fam on the holiday. It’s flavor is similar to turkey and its texture is pretty great too. I was planning to do something different for Thanksgiving this year…but this baby was 1/2 off, so I went for it.

Along with dinner we had gravy, again taking an easy way out I found a packet of gravy from Road’s End Organics. This was quick and easy and had good flavor too. Everyone enjoyed it. It cooked quickly and then as soon as I turned the heat off that gravy thickened up super fast. It was good.

Price: $0.99/packet each packet makes 1 cup.

Overall rating: 3 piggies

MY plate was quite full…

Dessert: Pumpkin Cake with Chocolate Glaze (From Vegan On The Cheap) served with ice cream or pumpkin spice cream, depending on your mood. Yes, I tried it both ways.

Adult Beverage: Our Daily Red (vegan wine) I love this wine, great flavor and affordable. I can drink and entire bottle myself. We also had Orleans Hill wine, which I didn’t care for at all. I can’t really explain exactly why I didn’t like the wine, I don’t know much about wine tastings or various aspects of wine, I just know I really like Our Daily Red…it’s good with food, it’s good alone.

Our Daily Red: Price: $8.99 (reg, on sale it’s usually $7.99)

Overall Rating 4 piggies

Orleans Hill: I honestly don’t remember the price and I really didn’t like the wine, so that’s the extent of my rating.

So the meal was great and I’m very much looking forward to my leftovers for lunch and eating more cake when I get home!

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Vegan MoFo – Day 20 – Product Review – Chocolove


I love chocolate (um, I don’t know many people who don’t so…there you go). I’m also a huge fan of Chocolove. They have a massive amount of flavors that are also conveniently vegan! Although not everything is vegan a large amount are. See my last post…3 different kinds in the vegan swap! This seemed interesting to me, the sweetness of chocolate with a hint of salt. Yeah, it was great. Made even more fantastic by chowing down on it with Dandies too. NO joke, I was sitting on the couch, bowl of chocolate and dandies…watching a movie with The BF!

Price: $4.99

Overall Rating: 4.5 piggies (I really like the orange…)

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Vegan MoFo – Day 17 – Oatmeal

I amde some oatmeal an this one was a bit different that I usually do. I had some walnuts so I toasted them in a pan (touch of oil and then medium heat, stirring often, until a nice smell comes from the pan – yum)imageThe I cooked Old Fashion Oats with Silk Pumpkin Spice soymilk (freaking yummy!) once cooked I added about 1tbsp ground flaxseeds and the toasted walnuts. This was a great fall dish.

The Silk Pumpkin Spice Soymilk was great. I love the flavor and wish it was around year round…but it makes it special to have it only in the fall – which could also be why I love it so much!

Price: $2.50 (on sale 2/$5)

Overall Rating: 5 piggies (did you doubt how much I love it??)

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Vegan MoFo 2010 – Day 10 – Bathroom Products Pt. 2: Hair Styling

On the weekends I use some different products – I’ve yet to find the perfect hair styling product so I bounce around various vegan styling aides. This first product (Aveda‘s Defining Whip) is great for putting in wet hair and then blow drying to get some added volume. I personally think my hair ends up to “crunchy” if I use it once my hair is dry. But it does work well in combo with a pomade…it sort of cuts the greasy feel of pomade and adds some stiffness to the hair without over doing it.


Price: $22

Overall rating: 2 piggies

I’ve also tried this Shaping Wax from Aveda. It holds really well and stands up to helmet hair from biking. However, it is very difficult to wash out. This stuff stays in your hair for a very long time. I only use it when I know I’ll be in need of something to style my hair and for it to stay without the stiff feeling of hairspray. image

Price: $24

Overall Rating: 1.5 piggies – sure it holds well, but I want it to wash out well to!

The lastest product I’ve tried is this Redken clay. It smells pretty good and works well. It holds for most of the day – if I know it’s a late night type of day, I need to touch-up before heading out. This also washes out well without any residue. image

Price $24.

Overall Rating: 3 piggies

I have yet to find that most wonderful styling product I can’t live without…so I’ll keep trying different things until something magically does everything I need it to (hold while riding bike around town, not chrunchy feeling, washes out, not sticky – you know a dream product!).

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