I have to be completely honest here. I don't feed my boys ready made meals that I buy from the chilled sections of supermarkets very often. Its not that I am a ready meal meal snob, its simply that I enjoy cooking and making little meals for my children. On the rare occasion that I have bought anything like this for them, I have tended to buy M & S or Little Dish because I trust the quality and nutrition of these recipes and their ingredients.
Little Dish have recently carried out a make over on their range of tasty meals for toddlers and have added some new characters known as The Little Dish Zoo Crew to the packaging. I was asked if my two boys would like to sample some meals from the range and I decided I would to see how they would enjoy them because Burton is quite fussy, in that he prefers home cooking to food made by restaurants or supermarket retailers !! Jenson hasn't acquired that toddler -ism of being really faddy yet with food (keeps fingers crossed that it never will!!).
Here is the complete set of Little Dish meals - I have highlighted the ones we were sent
I think that the Little Dish meals are great value for money and a brand you can trust to provide your children with healthy and nutritional food. The meals only take a few minutes to cook in the microwave - they can also be cooked for longer in the oven - and once cooled down they do look quite appetising and home made like.
I think that the cottage pie in particular does.
The meatballs in the spaghetti & meatballs meal, disintegrated a bit when cooked but actually this was better for Jenson because being almost 17 months old he struggles to eat chunks of meat and prefers it to be minced. Well he polished off the whole lot!
Personally, I found it to be a little bland but thats probably because I pack lots of garlic and basil in my pasta sauces, and I am an adult with adult tastes of course!!! However, Jenson really enjoyed it.
The chicken risotto was a revelation because its the first time Jenson has actually eaten rice and not spat it out!! He ate all of it! I was shocked! Out of the four dishes, this was the tastiest to me.
Burton tried the lasagne (I don't have a photo of this as I was at his Granma's and didn't have a camera to hand!) and he didn't eat it all, but about half. He tried it though, which for me is something!! I don't know if this is a reflection of the lasagne itself or my toddler was simply having a fussy food moment! I tried it and again to me was lacking in flavour, but thats only because I add a lot of added extras to my lasagne, which are probably too strong for the majority of little tastebuds. However, the lasagne was meaty and beefy in flavour and had a nice amount of white sauce so it wasn't dry, which can often be the case when meals are cooked in the microwave.
In my opinion Little Dish meals will never be as good as my own homemade ones. Well I would say that wouldn't I? *ahem*!
However, I think they are very good for when you need a quick, tasty and nutritious meal to satisfy your toddler's tummy. The food looks home made and of a high standard which are important factors when considering what to feed those you care about the most.
The Little Dish team really do seem to have got it right with their recipes which do actually taste nice and fresh and have the official seal of approval by Jenson.......... and possibly Burton!
Little Dish meals can be found in the chilled aisles of many well known supermarkets
I was sent four meals for the purpose of this review. All comments and opinions about the Little Dish meals I was sent are my own and honest.
Also, I will only let my children sample products which I feel are relevant and suitable to them.