Thursday, December 7, 2017

Product Review: Luvo Healthy Meals

Product Review: Luvo Healthy Meals

Disclaimer:  I received 12 Luvo Healthy Meals to review as part of being a BibRave Pro.  Learn more about becoming a BibRavePro (ambassador) and check out to review, find and write race reviews.

Also, I am not a registered dietician or nutrition expert so feel free to add in/correct things if you are!

I'm not really into frozen entree meals but my curiosity was picqued when seeing positive review upon positive review of the Luvo meals from my fellow BibRavePros so I gave them a try.  I have been able to test 5 different meals to date so I thought I would provide an initial review given that my first few Instagram posts generated some questions and comments about the meals.

How/Where to Buy
You can purchase Luvo meals from their website and they get shipped to your doorstep in a dry-ice packed styrofoam cooler.  You really cannot get more convenient than that.  I came home from work one day and voila - 12 lunches were ready to go in my freezer.

Alternatively, there is a link on the website where to find the meals in store.  I liked the online option because I didn't have to worry about whether the exact meals I was interested in were available at stores in my area.

Nutritional Content
This is the area that I think sets Luvo apart from competitors.  The brand follows the "3-2-None" approach which reflects the right balance of protein, whole grain and veggies, not too much sodium or added sugar and no artificial colors, flavors or sweeteners.  Each Luvo meal that I have tried to date has been between 230-330 calories.  Several of their entrees are Vegetarian, Vegan, or Gluten Free.

One thing that has turned me off of frozen entree meals in the past is how much sodium they contain.  The American Heart Association recommends no more than 2300 mg of sodium daily, with an ideal limit of 1500 mg daily.  If you divide that by 3 meals, that means you have about 500 mg (ideally) and no more than 766 mg of sodium per meal to work with.  The Luvo meals that I have tried to date have averaged 400 mg sodium. (I compared the sodium content to another well-known frozen entree brand and the Luvo meal had 1/3 of the total sodium of the other brand's meal!)

Here are the nutrition labels for my favorite two meals thus far:

Roasted Vegetable Lasagna

Mighty Masala & Greens

The brand partners with two organizations, Why Hunger and A Sense of Home.

Each entree is priced at $5.99 - $6.99.  (If you use the code BIBCHAT at checkout, you can save 10% off your online order.)

These meals all are easy to make in the microwave, which makes them super easy to pack for lunches during the work week. (Our office has a microwave.)  I typically take leftovers in my lunch for work however, there are usually 1-2 days a week where the leftovers don't stretch to my two kids AND myself and then I'm usually buying my lunch.  It has been more cost-effective (and easier) for me to grab one of these out of my freezer on those days.

One of my friends asked me how full these make me feel.  Lunch is my biggest meal of the day.  The amount of food that I eat is something my coworkers like to make fun of.  So, one of the Luvo meals by itself would not cut it for all of my lunch, but I very rarely only eat one thing for lunch.  I usually pack fruit, leftover roasted veggies, and/or cheese and crackers as supplements to my Luvo meal.

Ok, let's get down to "How do these taste?"  I have been keeping a grading chart at my desk.

Two of the five that I have tried have received an "A":
I will be buying these again!

The following two entrees received an A/B grade:

The last of the five that I tried, Thai-Style Green Curry Chicken, I didn't care for.

The meals that I have left to try are:
Chicken Chile Verde
Tandoori-Inspired Spiced Chicken
So Cal Kale & Beans
Hawaiian Un-fried Rice
Great Karma Coconut Curry

What do you usually eat for lunch?  Have you tried Luvo meals before?

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