After all, I live in the real world. There are times when I’m not operating at ideal. So being prepared with a few quick and easy options just makes it easier to stay on course.
There are a few companies, of course, that continue to make LC convenience foods. A few even do it right. So when I heard from Dave at Homestyles about doing a product review for Homestyles Chili, I wondered if his company was one of them. There’s a big difference between a product that’s been tweaked for marketing to low carbers versus a product created by LC true believers. I figured I’d be able to find out which this was in pretty short order. I usually can.
Last night, I pulled out these two boxes to give this stuff the dinner test! The chili does not need to be refrigerated before opening. Plus one for convenience. You take out the container, peel back the corner of the film cover and microwave for 90 seconds–you can’t get much easier than that! Or the box has instructions to cook via stove-top if you’re an old-fashioned sort. I opted for microwave. No special treatment from me! Homestyles would have to stand on it’s own merits.
I was a little concerned when I first saw the package size–it didn’t look like it would be that much food. Would one of these be enough to feed a man for dinner? Well, don’t let the package size deceive you.
Serving size is a cup, making the nice sized bowl of chili pictured. The nutritional info is also for the full package. Score one for honesty. (Don’t you just hate when manufacturers diddle the serving sizes to make carb counts smaller?)
But the real test: my husband takes a big bite of the beef chili. No cheese, no adornments of any kind. Just the chili, as it came and microwaved according to package instructions. I asked him what he thought.
“That’s damn fine chili,” he says. “Couldn’t tell it from any high carb version.” I tasted and agreed! We were similarly satisfied with the chicken. I did prefer the beef, but I do like traditional chili better than chicken chili.
Who may not want to eat this? While I was comfortable with the ingredients and nutritionals, there is some soy for those who try to avoid any whatsoever. Some online reviewers also brought up the sodium content, so if you have to watch your sodium intake, it might not be your best choice. See the manufacturers website for full listing of ingredients and nutritionals.
But if you’re just going on flavor and net carbs, you’re good to go! The two do have different flavors, different spices, but are pretty similar overall. If you like one, you’ll probably like the other. It could easily pass for homemade; it was pleasantly spiced, but you could add spices if you like your chili hot.
My conclusion: if it fits into your personal nutritional plan, it’s a solid choice. It took less than two minutes to make and tasted very good. The carb counts are low, the listed serving amount is just right for a single serving meal and it’s filling. I plan to order some, to have on hand for those too-tired-to-cook nights.
You can get this online from various LC stores, including Netrition. As of this review, it sells for $2.69 a box.
If you’ve tried this, let us know what you thought in the comments!