We’ve had a rash of sickness running around this house; from the sniffles to random fever to mass vomitting sprees and now the teenager looks like he’s been hit with a sinus infection. OHMYBACTERIA.
I personally can’t stand being sick and when I’m sick, I turn into the biggest baby (oddly enough so do all the children. They must get it from their father). So imagine how much fun I have when it’s a teenager that’s feeling sick. A teenage boy no less (insert high drama and questions like, “is my face swelling up?” here).
Generally when the kids are sick I turn to stacks of tissues, extra vitamin C and all the liquids that they can handle. What I also like to ply them with is soup.
Soup is my go-to meal during the fall and winter (What a coincidence! That’s when everyone gets sick too!) I love to make a good hearty soup full of noodles, meat and so many veggies that there’s rarely room for any broth. A soup that will fill you up and make you warm and cure whatever ails you.
Though I’m not a soup conissour, I do have a few favorites that I like to make:
- Chicken noodle (or turkey if no chicken is available)
- Broccoli and Cheese
- Potato Soup (loaded please with cheese)
- French Onion
Again, I’m no soup expert but I know what I love in a good soup and I generally like trying out a new soup or soup recipe as well.
So when the teenager stayed home today from school (with a possible sinus infection), I knew that this would be the perfect time to try out the Bertolli Meal Soups that I was asked to review (courtesy of Bertolli) and participate in the Weeknight Meal Special Challenge (though we’re doing it at lunch since the serving size isn’t enough for our family of six).
Since I knew chicken would be better received in my house, I chose the Roasted Chicken & Rotini Pasta, found in the frozen foods section of the grocery store. It has roasted white meat chicken, pasta, zucchini, yellow squash, carrots and celery in chicken broth.
I will say this: We don’t normally do zuchinni and squash in our soups, I find them to not hold up very well they turn to mush very quickly so I was interested to see how this turned out. We’re also careful about anything with tomatoes in it; hubs is allergic to tomatoes so anything we make the tomatoes have to cooked thoroughly – otherwise he gets violently ill (think The Exorcist ill).
Out of the bag, I was concerned because I don’t do well with concentrated broths; they are usually high in sodium and I was right; Bertolli Roasted Chicken & Rotini Pasta Meal Soup (which serves 2, by the way) has 980mg of sodium (not exactly healthy for a person with a heart condition. Heh).
But I pressed on so I could see how this turned out.
The directions say to emtpy the contents in the pan with 1 cup of water and bring to a boil on high heat, stirring ocasionally. Admittedly this didn’t look like much at first:
But after coming to a full boil and simmering for five minutes like the directions require, it began to take on a soup that looked and smelled much more appetizing:
I wanted this to be a satisfying meal for the teenager; so I added some crusty french bread and grated mozarella cheese (because everything, simply everything is better with cheese)
And Voila… we had a lunch worth of a sneezing, sniffling teenager and it only took about 30 minutes (including heating the crusty bread and grating the cheese).
Overall, we both liked the Bertolli Roasted Chicken and Rotini Pasta Meal Soup. The teenager said he thought it tasted too salty and as I suspected, the zuchinni and squash quickly turned mushy. This actually averaged out to be a little more than two servings per package so at almost $6.50 per package, it’s roughly what you would pay at most casual restaurants for a bowl of soup.
I will say that for us this is both a luxury and convenience purchase because I know I can make a similar soup from scratch for around the same price (especially when the veggies are in season and gotten from our own garden or a local Amish produce stand) and feed our family of six as opposed to only two people with plenty left over for freezing.
Still, if you’re in the market for a tasty soup I will tell you that we weren’t disappointed with the flavor. Though the teenager would have liked less veggies while I would have liked more chicken. Would I buy this again? Probably no, simply because as I stated, I can do this cheaper and I really don’t like the high sodium count. I do have a heart condition – the less sodium in food, the better for me. We are working hard to do away with convenience foods on the whole but every now and then it’s nice to try something new.
*I have been compensated for my purchase of the Bertolli Meal Soup and participating in the Weeknight Meal Special Challenge. As always opinions, viewpoints, and content is my own*