Life has been pretty stressful just recently. I've been swamped with work, and as much as I do want to eat healthily, I feel like I just don't have the time to take out of my day for cooking at the moment.
As you may already know, I'm a big fan of Mindful Chef recipe boxes for healthy eating and weight loss. This week though, to save myself some time, I've decided I'm going to give Mindful Chef healthy frozen ready meals a try.
Why Mindful Chef frozen ready meals are healthier than most
Mindful Chef ready meals are a bit different from most ready meals. Normally, when I think of ready meals I think of added salt, sugars, sweeteners, preservatives, as well as low quality, over-processed, mass-produced ingredients.
Mindful Chef ready meals are not like that though - in keeping with the underlying ethos of the brand, these ready meals are super-healthy and here are a few of the reasons why.
- The meals are cooked by hand in small batches, then immediately frozen to lock in the flavours and nutrients (in contrast to many ready meals, where much of the nutritional value is lost during heavy industrial processing in factories).
- Each ready meal contains only fresh, real ingredients - no added sweeteners, or dubious-sounding additives and preservatives.
- These ready meals use only the highest quality, sustainably-sourced ingredients.
- Each ready meal is gluten free, dairy free, and free from refined sugar and refined carbs.
In short, the Mindful Chef frozen ready meals contain exactly the same high quality, fresh, healthy ingredients as their recipe box meals - the only difference is that with the ready meals the cooking part is done for you! (For more information on the Mindful Chef healthy frozen meals range check out the help articles on their website).
The Mindful Chef healthy frozen meals range
Mindful Chef have an ever-increasing selection of nutritious meals to choose from. As of writing, there are 25 healthy ready meals available, 12 of which are meat based, 10 vegan and 3 are fish based meals.
My final choice of meals for this week are the chickpea tikka masala with red rice, the Moroccan chickpea tagine with tricolour quinoa, the aubergine moussaka with lentils, the veggie shepherd's pie with sweet potato mash, and finally, because I'm trying to keep my meat intake to a minimum at the moment, just one meat meal - the smoky chipotle chicken (note: the chipotle chicken meal has now been discontinued).
How much do Mindful Chef ready meals cost?
Mindful Chef ready meals are generally priced between £4.50 and £5.50 per meal. Currently, they only offer meals for one person, and each one person portion is a consistent 400g in size.
Mindful Chef do often add small discounts to their frozen meals, which brings the price down further. As of writing, the cheapest ready meal available is the Moroccan chickpea tagine, reduced from £4.50 to £4.05.
The Mindful Chef bundles
It's also possible to get further discounts if you purchase meals as part of a 'bundle.' The bundles contain items from across the Mindful Chef shop range, which includes ready meals, soups & broths, smoothies, healthy(ish!) desserts, and breakfasts.
For example, the Fearne's Favourites Bundle (Vegan) contains 5 ready meals and 2 packs of 5 smoothies (so 10 individual smoothies in total). This bundle is currently reduced from £47.50 to £39, so you would save £8.50 over buying the items separately.
Currently, the Work from Home Superbundle is one of the best offers Mindful Chef has available. This bundle is currently reduced from £65.05 to £48, so it will save you £17.05 over purchasing the items separately.
So it's definitely always worth browsing the Healthy Bundles section, if you're looking for a good deal.
Mindful Chef ready meal delivery
Mindful Chef offer free next day delivery on shop orders over £24 placed before 7pm. I placed my order at around 10pm in the evening, and was shocked to find that I still got next day delivery - my meals arrived around 12pm lunch time, the next day.
Perhaps I was just lucky on this occasion. That's ridiculously speedy though - I'm not even sure how they managed that!
Cooking Mindful Chef ready meals
The Mindful Chef ready meals can all be cooked straight from frozen. Simply throw one in the microwave for up to 10 minutes, or throw it in the oven for around 45 minutes. Personally, I like to go for the oven option even though it takes longer, as I think things always taste better when cooked in the oven!
Mindful Chef ready meal nutrition
Below is a sortable table, to make it easier to compare the nutritional information of each Mindful Chef ready meal.
Perhaps you're looking for a low carb meal. Click on the 'carbs' header to sort the carb values from low to high and you will see that the Pesto Salmon with Provencal Veg and Tricolour Quinoa is the lowest carb meal currently available. Or perhaps you're after a high protein meal. Again, click the 'protein' header to sort the values from high to low and you will see that the Mexican Beef Barbacoa with Brown Rice and Beans is the highest protein meal currently available. Similarly, the Moroccan chickpea tagine with tricolour quinoa is the lowest calorie Mindful Chef ready meal, with just 79 calories per 100g (316 calories in the entire 400g meal).
As I mentioned above, each ready meal is for 1 person and is a consistent 400g in size (which also has the benefit of making portion control incredibly easy!) Just click on the table headers to sort the table values from high to low:
Mindful Chef ready meal nutritional information (per 100g)
|Meal||Calories (kcal)||Fat - saturated (g)||Fat - unsaturated (g)||Carbs (g)||Sugar (g)||Fibre (g)||Protein (g)||Salt (g)||Meal Type|
|Chicken Korma with Black Rice||120||2.6||2.3||11.3||3.0||1.9||7.5||0.67||meat (chicken)|
|Chicken Makhani with Brown Rice||124||2.8||2.4||12||3.7||1.8||7.1||0.61||meat (chicken)|
|Saag Channa Masala with Butternut Squash and Brown Rice||107||1.7||2.4||13.1||1.9||2.7||3.4||0.58||vegan|
|Veggie Red Thai Curry with Black Rice||138||1.2||2.8||13.4||3.1||2.8||4.6||0.69||vegan|
|Broccoli and Butternut Squash Dhal with Brown Rice||115||2.6||1.9||14.1||1.9||2.0||3.6||0.54||vegan|
|Butter Bean and Mushroom Bake||107||1.5||4.4||8.4||3.6||3.0||4.0||0.48||vegan|
|Cashew and Chickpea Korma with Black Rice||121||2.6||3.0||12.6||1.9||2.7||3.7||0.65||vegan|
|Chicken Cacciatore with Sweet Potato Mash||85||0.6||1.4||9.7||5.1||1.9||6.1||0.46||meat (chicken)|
|Chicken Tikka Masala with Brown Rice||120||3.3||1.7||10.2||2.0||1.2||7.4||0.55||meat (chicken)|
|Chickpea Tikka Masala with Red Rice||122||3.0||1.9||14.3||1.9||2.6||3.4||0.50||vegan|
|Chili Con Carne with Brown Rice||100||1.2||2.7||10.8||2.3||1.6||5.0||0.58||meat (beef)|
|Chipotle Chicken with Sweetcorn and Brown Rice||92||0.2||0.8||13.3||5.0||1.3||6.7||0.86||meat (chicken)|
|Fish Pie with Sweet Potato Mash||106||2.3||1.7||9.4||4.0||1.4||5.6||0.67||fish (salmon)|
|Keralan Cod Curry with Black Rice||127||3.9||2.7||9.7||1.3||2.0||6.1||0.65||fish (cod)|
|Lamb Shepherd's Pie with Sweet Potato Mash||93||1.5||2.2||9.6||4.8||1.6||4.7||0.46||meat (lamb)|
|Mexican Beef Barbacoa with Brown Rice and Beans||107||0.5||1.7||11.0||1.9||1.9||9.9||0.45||meat (beef)|
|Moroccan Chickpea Tagine with Tricolour Quinoa||79||0.2||2.0||11.1||3.2||2.8||3.1||0.36||vegan|
|Moroccan Lamb Tagine with Tricolour Quinoa||108||0.6||2.8||10.8||3.6||2.2||8.4||0.41||meat (lamb)|
|Aubergine Moussaka with Lentils||90||2.1||2.1||8.9||3.4||3.6||3.8||0.56||vegan|
|Panang Chicken Curry with Black Rice||115||3.0||2.1||10.1||1.9||1.7||6.9||0.86||meat (chicken)|
|Pesto Salmon with Provençal Veg and Tricolour Quinoa||103||0.8||4.4||4.7||2.1||2.4||8.1||0.78||fish (salmon)|
|Satay Chicken with Thai Veg and Black Rice||140||3.1||3.8||10.8||2.2||1.9||8.0||0.74||meat (chicken)|
|Sunflower Mince Bolognese with Sweet Potato Mash||79||0.5||2.0||10.4||5.4||2.4||2.9||0.66||vegan|
|Thai Green Chicken Curry with Black Rice||117||3.3||1.8||10.0||1.6||2.0||7.9||0.81||meat (chicken)|
|Veggie Shepherd's Pie with Sweet Potato Mash||83||0.4||1.4||12.8||5.5||2.9||2.8||0.74||vegan|
The verdict on Mindful Chef ready meals
The Mindful Chef healthy frozen meals taste just as good as the main Mindful Chef recipe boxes. These ready meals are strong in flavours, and actually taste of 'real' food, in stark contrast to your typical heavily-processed, nutritionally-depleted ready meal. In fact, they don't just taste of real food - they are real food - and that's what sets them apart from many other ready meals.
They're perfect to have on hand for those evenings when you're feeling too busy, too tired or too exhausted to want to cook, and yet you don't want to compromise on eating healthily.
I know that I have completely appreciated having these meals on hand this week, and I know that I'll be keeping at least a couple on hand in the freezer for those times when I'm too busy to cook.
Purchasing your Mindful Chef ready meals
If you'd like to give Mindful Chef ready meals a try, simply head over to the Mindful Chef shop, fill your shopping cart with your chosen healthy ready meals (and perhaps also some nutritious smoothies, soups & broths, healthy(ish!) desserts, and breakfasts), then head over to the checkout to pay for your goods. You won't have long to wait - for orders over £24 placed by 7pm there is free next day delivery.