As part of the Foodbuzz Tastemaker Program, I received a few free samples of the new Birds Eye Chef’s Favorites frozen sides. I am unable to take part in many Tastemaker programs because they send coupons and I, sadly, don’t live near a grocery store and get almost all my groceries from FreshDirect. So I was SO excited when they sent me a box of the actual product to try.
Over the past few weeks, we have found multiple reasons to use them as a great side for proteins that we were cooking.
We first tried the mushroom and green bean risotto.
It was a creamier version of rice, but I’m not sure if I would call it “risotto.” It did taste quite good, however, and I especially liked the amount of flavor in the green beans. (I always worry about frozen veggies tasting like water)
We paired with with tequila lime shrimp and some sautéed spinach with shallots.
Next we tried the roasted red potatoes and green beans with parmesan olive oil sauce.
This one we heated in a pot instead of in the microwave. Just as easy (just dirties a pot, of course).
This was my favorite of the bunch. The potatoes were well cooked (not too mushy, not too tough) and the green beans were as good as the ones in the risotto. Yum!
We paired this with an awesome butter poached baked chicken and they went very well together.
We also tried the creamed spinach (which was so good that I didn’t even realize it came from a frozen bag until Mike told me). Separately, I was enjoying these so much that I ordered the Specially Seasoned Garlic Baby Peas and Mushrooms from Fresh Direct.
Perhaps I’m a garlic snob, but these were not nearly garlicky enough for me. They just kind of tasted like frozen peas and mushrooms. I found this one also needed salt more than the others.
I think the Chef’s Favorites are really the way to go with Birds Eye. They are perfect “afterthought” sides because they heated up in just a few minutes, so you don’t need to plan too much to use them. Since I find myself concentrating more on proteins than sides, this was a perfect way to make an easy meal. I was impressed with the flavor and quality, and will be buying these again (hey FreshDirect… please add these to your product list!)
(While I did receive these samples for free, I was not at all required to blog about them, nor provide a positive review accordingly. All opinions are expressly mine and reflect my honest take on the product.)