Saturday, January 12, 2013

Product Review Saturday: Celebrate Health

To kick off the first Product Review Saturday, I'm introducing you to the Celebrate Health range. 

All of their products are:
  • Gluten Free
  • Dairy Free
  • Nut Free
  • Vegan
  • 100% Natural Ingredients

 Right away this brand ticks all the boxes for those with allergies, people who choose to live a vegan lifestyle and others with celiac disease. When you buy this brand you know there are no nasty surprises in the list of ingredients.

Celebrate Health Moroccan Quinoa

If you've yet to try quinoa and unsure if you'll like it, try this out first. It is so flavourful without being over powering.

Quinoa is perfect for vegetarians or those of you who are trying to cut down on your meat intake as it is a complete protein; it contains all nine essential amino acids. While quinoa is considered an actual whole grain, unlike wheat it is gluten free

The cooking instructions are easy to follow. There's only four steps to cooking the perfect quinoa and it requires very little attention. While it's on the stove you can be preparing the rest of your meal. It suggests two serves per package, however I think it could easily serve a family of four if you pair it with some steamed vegetables and tofu or meat.

I actually added some of this quinoa to the Mexican Tomato Soup I made earlier in the week for an extra protein boost.

Celebrate Health Indian Masala & Mediterranean Lentils

Like with the quinoa, these lentils require very little attention during the cooking process. Simply add the contents of the package to a saucepan with a cup of water, simmer for 15-20 minutes and they're done.

I cooked some vegetables with the Indian Butter Chicken sauce and served it with the Indian Masala Lentils with a dollop of Plain Chobani (not pictured) on top. There were enough leftovers for another three meals, so I put them in the fridge and reheated them for lunch and dinner. So simple, so healthy and so tasty. I honestly don't think I could cook lentils myself and get that perfect balance of flavours like Celebrate Health has managed to do. 

For another quick and tasty meal, combine the either flavour of the lentils with the Celebrate Health chicken stock, crushed tomatoes, onion, and garlic for a hearty soup Yes, I am one of those weird people who will eat soup in Summer. It's just one of many strange habits that I've picked up from my dad.

Chinese Beef Stir Fry, Indian Butter Chicken, Tuscan Meatballs

Vegans and Vegetarians, never fear, there's no reason why you too can't enjoy these sauces. The sauces themselves (like the whole Celebrate Health range) are vegan, so you can add whatever foods you like to them to make a meal. 

As shown above, I cooked vegetables in the Indian Butter Chicken and here I did the same with the Chinese Beef Stir Fry sauce which I teamed with some egg noodles.

With the Tuscan Meatball sauce, I added a little extra water and four serves of TVP (Textured Vegetable Protein) to make a vegan version of bolognese sauce, and served it on top of Kamut pasta. In ten minutes I had an under 300 calorie vegan meal, with 23g of protein.  Fast food never tasted this good.

What I love most about these stir fry sauces is that they're portioned controlled. There are four serves per package, smaller serves than what you would find in many stir fry sauce brands, however it's a reminder to eat mindfully.

I find that many of the pasta and stir fry sauces in the supermarkets today suggest far too large serving sizes which end up being empty calories. All of the Celebrate Health flavours provide more than enough sauce to cover a good amount of vegetables and meat for four people. For under 20 calories per serve you can have a delicious meal without the guilt.

Final thoughts:

There is sugar in some of the Celebrate Health range, however it is very little compared to other similar products. Stevia is used in some of their products too, an all natural sweetener which is only just beginning to make its way onto Australian shelves. It would be great to see only stevia used in Celebrate Health products down the line. (Note: I've been informed that once the new packaging reaches stores, only stevia will be used in the quinoa and lentils).

Would I buy Celebrate Health products? Most definitely. The Indian Masala lentils and the Tuscan Meatball sauce were the stand outs for me. They both have such a depth of flavour that makes every mouthful more enjoyable than the next.

I love the convenience of them, that they're vegan and such versatile products. You're really only limited by your imagination with how you use the Celebrate Health quinoa, lentils and stir fry sauces.

The Celebrate Health website will be up and running shortly. For now you can like the Celebrate Health page on Facebook for updates.

To buy Celebrate Health products head to your local Coles Supermarket. 

NOTE: These products were provided to me by Celebrate Health. I was not monetarily compensated for this post. All opinions are that of my own. 

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