Wednesday, January 19, 2011


Kraft is now taking advantage of creepy video analytics technology in order to predict what grocery shoppers might want to eat for dinner. The "Meal Planning Solution" kiosk will scan a shopper's face, determine his or her gender and age, and provide appropriate suggestions - which, obviously, will come from the Kraft family of products. I'm hoping that their recommendation for a 23-year-old female would be some sort of delicious mac and cheese, but I'm guessing it would probably be something boring like salad dressing. The kiosk can also send recipes and shopping lists to your smartphone, and it will dispense a free sample before you continue your shopping.

Read the full article here.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Heroin + Mac & Cheese = WTF?

Police in Portland, Oregon recently found over 4 pounds of heroin hidden in boxes of food in a drug dealer's home. This story would not have caught my eye were it not for the fact that some of the heroin was hidden in boxes of macaroni and cheese. It's not my job to tell people not to do drugs, but I do feel a responsibility to chastise these irresponsible individuals for tainting perfectly good macaroni and cheese with heroin. I don't even like it when people put peas or broccoli or mini hot dogs in mac and cheese, so hearing about someone contaminating this delicious food with an illegal drug (and not just any illegal drug, but one of the sketchiest ones out there) truly hurt my soul. Shame on you, Flavio Meza. Shame on you.

Read the article here.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Kraft Homestyle

I have been "saving" this macaroni and cheese for a really long time. For some reason, I had built it up in my mind to be the best thing I'd ever eaten. My mom has this recipe that takes like 5 hours to make and involves about 7 different cheeses and a ton of cream and who knows what else, and I was anticipating that this would be better than that. Perhaps I was hoping beyond hope, but, I mean, it comes with breadcrumbs and everything. They've also been marketing very aggressively toward adults, which I took as a sign they were attempting to do something very different than their previous products.

The preparation, while not as arduous as a legitimate homemade mac and cheese dinner, was nonetheless more involved than your typical prepared dinner. You have to prepare the pasta, then mix the "Special Seasoning" packet with butter, then add milk and cheese sauce and cook that before adding pasta. Then there's an optional oven finish, in which you put shredded cheese (not included) and bread crumbs (included) on top and bake at 425 degrees for a few minutes. I obviously did this, since I figured I had already come this far and might as well make it as good as possible.

It actually looked like this at one point. And I was scared.

They tell you to stir the pasta into the sauce, and at first when it looked like this I was worried there wouldn't be enough cheese for the macaroni.

But there was!


Out of the oven.



Flavor: 4/5. So when I stole a bite or ten before adding the breadcrumbs, it was pretty solid, but definitely still had a strong "artificial" taste. You know the one – where it doesn't taste bad, but you can definitely tell it's not real cheese. Not that I'd expect anything less from Kraft, but it certainly wasn't "Homestyle" unless your home is the Velveeta factory.

Consistency: 5/5. Creamy and, while I was worried there wouldn't be enough sauce for all the pasta, there definitely was.

Pasta Shape: 3.75/5. I like the elbows, and the ridges were a nice touch, but the whole time I was wishing they were shells or something similar. Elbows bore me. Personal preference.

Overall: 4/5. I really, really wanted this to be perfect. I wanted to genuinely be able to say that I've found a new supermarket mac and cheese that tastes like the real thing. Unfortunately, this isn't it. It's certainly not bad, but for the amount of effort you have to put in I would say it's probably not worth it. Just throw some bread crumbs on top of Velveeta and call it a day in about half the time.

Nutrition Information: Serving Size 3 oz (about 1/4 package), prepared. 340 Calories, 120 Calories from Fat; 8g Fat, 2.5g Saturated Fat, 0g Trans Fat; 15mg Cholesterol; 690mg Sodium; 41g Carbohydrate; 1g Fiber; 3g Sugars; 10g Protein.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Pasta Roni Shells & White Cheddar

I have a few boxes of mac and cheese I've been working through (and I use the word "working" pretty loosely) over the summer. For today's lunch, I was debating between a few different kinds. I chose the Pasta Roni variety, however, because I realized that many of my recent reviews have been of Kraft products, and while we all love Kraft, variety really is the spice of life.

I initially forgot that Pasta Roni products require slightly different preparation than normal mac and cheese meals, and therefore I had to start over after I accidentally boiled way too much water. After that, though, preparation was pretty uneventful.

Note: Actual pictures are coming soon, I just have to upload them from my sister's camera.


Flavor: 3/5. The flavor was just kind of weird. It didn't really taste like cheese, per se; it was more of an awkward creamy sauce with a lot of salt in it. My sister sampled my leftovers and commented that they were "gross."

Consistency: 5/5. This sauce was creamy and thick, a rare feat for a boxed macaroni and cheese product.

Pasta Shape: 4/5. I've stated my love of shells many times before. My only objection is that thick sauces such as this one tend to clump unevenly inside the shell. Which can be really delicious, or moderately annoying, depending on your preference. Most people probably wouldn't notice at all.

Overall: 3.5/5. Not a terrible option, but definitely not the best I've ever had (or even close to it). It's a lot of effort to put in, relatively speaking, when there are plenty of easier and more delicious options out there.

Nutrition Information: Serving Size 1/3 box, prepared; 290 Calories, 110 Calories from Fat; 12g Fat, 4g Saturated Fat, 1.5g Trans Fat; 5mg Cholesterol; 730mg Sodium; 38g Carbohydrate; 2g Dietary Fiber; 6g Sugars; 9g Protein.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


Boston restaurant Davio's is currently conducting a poll in which fans of their Facebook page can vote on which spring roll the restaurant will create. Well, one of the options is a mac and cheese spring roll, and therefore I am calling on everyone to head to the restaurant's page and vote before the end of the day! As a side bonus, Davio's will donate $1 to Kevin Youkilis's Hits for Kids charity with each new "fan" of their page. Mac and cheese wins, diners win, and charity wins. You can't go wrong.

Vote here.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Kraft Cheesy Alfredo with Pasta Twists

I'd first like to apologize for the lack of mac and cheese reviews as of late (since I'm sure the millions of people who read my blog are just beside themselves wondering why I haven't written more). Moving back home after college has led to a lot more of my mom's food, which includes things like fresh ingredients, vegetables, and all-around healthiness. Good for things like combating heart attacks and obesity, but terrible for this blog. On the flip side, though, unemployment has left me with a lot of free time at lunch, which should counteract the effects of Mom's healthy cooking.

I don't generally consider alfredo sauce a part of the cheese family. Though it does contain parmesan, it doesn't generally taste particularly cheesy, and cream seems to take center stage within the sauce. However, I'm willing to make an exception for Kraft because, let's face it, there's not actually all that much real cheese in their regular mac and cheese either.


Flavor: 4/5. This was actually a remarkably good sauce. It didn't taste like alfredo, per se, more like a hybrid of cheese and alfredo sauce.

Consistency: 4/5. Pretty standard; it could've been a little thicker but didn't necessarily need to be.

Pasta Shape: 4.75/5. Gemelli was a solid choice for the "alfredo" sauce.

Overall: 4.25/5. I actually enjoyed Kraft's attempt at alfredo sauce a lot more than I thought I would. Granted, it was not an alfredo in the strictest sense, but it was still good. I also found it interesting that a perusal of the ingredients revealed that the sauce even contained a touch of onion, and I wonder if we can attribute the sauce's deliciousness to this fact.

Nutrition Information: Serving Size 2.5 oz (about 1/3 box), prepared. 380 Calories, 130 Calories from Fat; 2.5g Fat, 1g Saturated Fat, 0g Trans Fat; 5mg Cholesterol; 650mg Sodium; 50g Carbohydrate; 2g Fiber; 7g Sugars; 9g Protein.