On Trial: Kidfresh Frozen Foods
Tester: Latifah Miles and Miles Mitchell: A perpetually exhausted single-mom-and-kid duo that’s just about tired of eating the same 10-minute meals every night
Brief: My version of motherhood is not the Instagrammable kind. I am a single, co-parenting mom who is trying to squeeze in graduate school, work, relationships, some traces of a social life, and above all else, raise a well-adjusted, emotionally adept, smart, quirky 6-year-old. The Kidfresh fresh-to-frozen meals are a time saver (and lifesaver!) for me, and they're the first real food that gets my kid's seal of approval.
My apartment is tiny and my furniture isn’t exactly winning any style awards. My mom life is a bit chaotic, but the good kind that I’d go insane without. When it comes down to dinnertime — you know, that period of the day that comes after racing to school drop-off, commuting to work, jetting out in time for after-school pickup to dodge the $10-per-minute late fee — the last thing I want to do is scroll through Pinterest posts that require me to spend my small amount of pre-bedtime hours cooking.
My 6-year-old — the emotionally adept, smart, quirky one I mentioned above — well, he hates to eat just about everything. OK, not everything, but I have no doubt that, if left up to his own devices, Miles would happily survive on candy, toothpaste, and whole lemons (sounds like a new Hollywood diet trend coming on).
Finding that fine line between quick dinners that allow me to savor the few hours before bedtime and also satiate my son’s very picky — but oversized — appetite has been an ongoing battle.
Enter Kidfresh. I’ve seen frozen meals for kids on the freezer shelves of grocery stores plenty of times. I’m a kid of the ‘90s, so I’m almost certain my system is still trying to digest the amount of Kid Cuisines I consumed growing up. While I’ve always been familiar with the concept of frozen meals made for kids, I’m going to be honest — I spent entirely too much time turning my nose up at them, because while I loved them when I was 9, I refused to give my kid the frozen crap I had the delight of eating at his age.
Frozen food has a terrible rep, and I am a mom who thinks a lot about the food that goes into my child’s body because of how food can affect everything from his mood to his sleeping habits. That is, until the senior food/drink editor here at BP, Danielle St. Pierre, gifted me a box of Kidfresh frozen Mac 'N Cheese, chicken nuggets, and whole-wheat blueberry waffles.
After getting the food home, I let it sit. Again, I was apprehensive. But after a Saturday of running around the park for a solid 5 hours, I wanted to reach for a quick lunch that I thought he would like. I popped the Kidfresh mac and cheese into the microwave and called Miles over to eat. When I removed the film, I was immediately hit with the fresh-smelling aromas of gooey, cheesy goodness. The texture looked as though I had transformed into Martha Stewart and had just finished making a cheese sauce from scratch. I gave him his plate of food and walked away.
Minutes later, Miles appeared in the kitchen and emphatically said, “Mommy, this is the best mac and cheese I’ve ever had. If you give me this every day for lunch, even school, I will listen to whatever you say.”
This kid drives a hard bargain! A glowing recommendation like that doesn’t come easy from a 6-year-old who will eat lemons like they are oranges, but spent most of his life hating cheeseburgers because they had ketchup on them.
Kidfresh is a line of fresh-to-frozen, ready-to eat, kid friendly meals that cover everything from the delicious macaroni and cheese to chicken meatballs (Miles’ number-two fave), to whole-wheat waffles and pasta with meat sauce (the second runner-up, though I've always known him to hate spaghetti). While the fact that the meals are delicious and ridiculously easy to make (beat that, Pinterest), they are basically gourmet next to the frozen crap we devoured decades ago.
The mac and cheese that Miles gave his golden stamp of approval to, and the pasta with meat sauce that he surprisingly devoured? Well, both have pureed carrots in the sauce (I. AM. SHOOKETH). Sure, I can threaten time-out to get Miles to choke down a few veggies on his own, but this delivery method was a lot less dramatic and left him literally bargaining for more!
The brand believes in delivering delicious, convenient meals to kids without eliminating the nutrients they need. When you read their ingredients, you’ll immediately notice that you can pronounce and recognize all of them, and that just about every item has a super healthy bonus that your kid might not normally eat. Whether it's butternut squash mashed up in the Ham and Cheese Jr. Burritos or the chickpea flour used for the mozzarella sticks, every single meal gives my kid the extra good stuff, sans the crying whines.
Closing Argument: Parenting is hard enough with PTA meetings at odd daytime hours and judgy eyes at Target when your kid wants to have a sudden all-out tantrum. Give yourself a worthy break with frozen, ready-to-eat meals from Kidfresh that your little one will actually enjoy — and you won’t feel like crap for feeding it to him. Miles approves it, and he wouldn’t eat a plate of food cooked by Gordon Ramsay himself.
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