REVIEW: Healthy Choice Rotini & Zesty Marinara Sauce Fresh Mixers

I once thought about following in the footsteps of Morgan Spurlock and make a documentary called, “Super Slim Me,” which would involve me eating nothing but Healthy Choice meals for 30 days straight to see if I would lose weight and be healthy. My freezer would be a green box sea of Healthy Choice frozen meals and ice cream bars; my cupboard would be filled from top to bottom with Healthy Choice soups, pasta sauces, and breads; and my trash can would be filled will circular sheets of plastic with vent slits in them.

But that dream died a horrible death when I determined that it was impossible for me to do what Spurlock does so easily — make movies and grow that Hulk Hogan/70’s porn star facial hair. Nowadays, whenever I eat something from Healthy Choice, all I do is reminisce about what could’ve been, but these Healthy Choice Rotini & Zesty Marinara Sauce Fresh Mixers have got me thinking about buying some Rogaine for my face and trying to create my documentary again.

The Healthy Choice Fresh Mixers are a clever idea because they’re a microwaveable meal that doesn’t need to be refrigerated or frozen and can conveniently be kept in your desk drawer; away from dickheaded co-workers who steal your frozen meals from the company refrigerator, even if it has your name written on it in big black Sharpie pen letters. However, they involves more physical labor than what is necessary for a frozen meal. The plastic packaging consists of a large container that holds the rotini pasta, a smaller container in the large container that holds the marinara sauce, and a lid that has a bunch of holes. The smaller container is removed from the large container, water is added to the large container, the lid is placed back on, and then microwaved for three and a half minutes. The holes on the lid turn the container into a colander when you drain the water. Then the smaller container of sauce is microwaved for 30 seconds. Once that’s done, the sauce is poured with the rotini and you get to enjoy a meal that you worked on harder than you should have.

The Rotini & Zesty Marinara Sauce was pretty tasty, although the serving size probably won’t satisfy those who are bigger eaters. The rotini was cooked well and the marinara wasn’t too zesty and had a nice slight onion flavor to it. There was enough sauce to coat all the pasta, but since it comes in a separate container you have the power to put whatever amount of sauce you want.

The biggest problem I have with the Healthy Choice Rotini & Zesty Marinara Sauce Fresh Mixers is that the containers are made out of a plastic I can’t recycle here on this rock in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. If I do my documentary and eat Healthy Choice meals for 30 days, I’ll probably have enough plastic containers to fill a landfill, and that would not be worth growing Hulk Hogan/70’s porn star facial hair for.

(Nutrition Facts – 1 package – 300 calories, 3.5 grams of fat, 1 gram of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 600 milligrams of sodium, 930 milligrams of potassium, 56 grams of carbs, 7 grams of dietary fiber, 11 grams of sugar, 10 grams of protein, 10% Vitamin A, 0% Vitamin C, 4% Calcium, and 15% Iron.)

Item: Healthy Choice Rotini & Zesty Marinara Sauce Fresh Mixers
Price: $5.25 (retails for $3.49)
Size: 6.95 ounces
Purchased at: Safeway
Rating: 8 out of 10
Pros: Tasty. Simple to make. No refrigeration or freezing necessary. Excellent source of potassium. Low fat. 7 grams of fiber. Hulk Hogan/70’s porn star facial hair.
Cons: Serving size might be small for bigger eaters. Plastic is difficult to recycle. More labor intensive than frozen meals. High in sodium. Asshat co-workers who steal lunches.

REVIEW: Kashi Honey Sunshine Cereal

I didn’t buy the Kashi Honey Sunshine Cereal because of Kashi’s world-famous seven whole grains, I purchased it because I’m hoping the sunshine it provides will protect me from vampires and the overwhelming hype surrounding Twilight.

If you don’t know about Twilight, it’s a book about vampires who live among regular humans and it’s popular with the younger crowd. The book was recently made into a movie that has attracted to theaters a whole lot of teens and pedophiles. I haven’t seen the movie or read the books, but I want to stay as far away from them as possible because I’m afraid of again getting sucked into reading books meant for kids under the age of 18. The last time it happen, it started with Harry Potter and eventually ended up with me reading Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret by Judy Blume, which caused me to occasionally chant out loud, “I must, I must, I must increase my bust.”

As many of you know, though books. movies, and television shows, vampires hate sunshine, it’s like kryptonite and Superman, milk and the lactose intolerant or men and Lindsay Lohan. The problem is that sunshine isn’t around 24 hours a day in most places and I need protection for those times when Helios, the Greek sun god, doesn’t have my back. I’m hoping that Kashi Honey Sunshine Cereal can defend me from blood-sucking vampires and the money-sucking freight train of Twilight, but even if it does, I don’t know how much of this cereal I can take.

While the cereal looks like Cap’n Crunch, it certainly doesn’t taste or have the same texture like Cap’n Crunch. The box says the whole grain cereal has been kissed with honey, but after tasting it I was hoping it would’ve been French kissed with honey, because that might’ve given it the honey flavor that would’ve tickled my tongue and occasionally shoved down my throat. But then again, I didn’t expect a super sweet cereal from the health-conscious Kashi.

Overall, for something that supposed to be good for you, it’s not bad. But again, I don’t think I could eat this on a regular basis if I wanted to protect myself from vampires, which actually doesn’t matter since I just found out that the vampires in Twilight aren’t affected by sunlight. I guess if I read the book, I would’ve known that. So I’m going to go read the book now and if you happen to see a 30-something male sitting alone in a showing of Twilight surrounded by pubescent girls, there a chance that he’s not a pedophile, it could just be me.

(Nutrition Facts – 3/4 cup – 100 calories, 1.5 grams of fat, 0 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 125 milligrams of sodium, 70 milligrams of potassium, 25 grams of carbohydrates, 6 grams of fiber, 6 grams of sugar, 13 grams of other carbohydrates, and 2 grams of protein.)

(Editor’s Note: gave the Kashi Honey Sunshine Cereal a glowing review.)

Item: Kashi Honey Sunshine Cereal
Price: $3.99 (on sale)
Size: 12 ounces
Purchased at: Safeway
Rating: 6 out of 10
Pros: It’s not bad. Looks like Cap’n Crunch. Way healthier than Cap’n Crunch. Six grams of fiber. Kashi’s Seven Whole Grains. Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret
Cons: Doesn’t taste like Cap’n Crunch. Doesn’t have a strong honey flavor. Being a 30-something year old male in the middle of a theater of teenage girls. Won’t protect me from vampire in Twilight. Vampires.

REVIEW: Kraft Easy Mac with Bacon Cups

Are you tired of being overweight? Are you tired of not having the financial freedom that you want? Are you able to lose weight, but still a broke ass mofo? Are you livin’ large, but also livin’ large?

If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, the FLIMFLAM Plan might be right for you. The Financial and Loot Increase Mixed with Fat Loss thru Accurate Manipulation Plan is not just a weight loss strategy and it’s not just a economic program — it’s a lifestyle change that gives you the body of a supermodel with enough money to buy the superficial things that you deserve.

Do you wish to be skinny enough that no prison cell can hold you and have enough money to bribe people? Would you like to have the ability to hide your entire body behind a lamp post or a telephone pole and buy a five gallon tub of mustard just because you can?

If you replied with a “yes” to any of these questions, the FLIMFLAM Plan is what you need to turn your body skinny and your wallet fat. Some of you might be saying to yourself that the FLIMFLAM Plan sounds difficult and there’s probably many steps, but it has only one step and that step kills two birds with one stone. We leave the multi-step plans with the alcoholics and sex addicts.

How much would you expect to pay for a program like this? Thousands of dollars? Hundreds of dollars? What if I told you that for about five dollars a day you can get the body that you want with the financial security that you deserve? You’d probably say I’m crazy, but you know what’s crazy? Wasting five dollars a day on a Starbucks coffee or spending five dollars to feed an entire Ethiopian village for a year. With that five dollars, you can some closer to looking like an Olsen twin and have a fraction of the fortune they have.

The secret of the FLIMFLAM Plan is its one step, which is to eat only one Kraft Easy Mac with Bacon Cup for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Its inexpensive price will give you the money you need to buy whatever impulsive purchase you want and its small portion will help you lose the extra weight, and probably muscle, that you don’t want.

The Kraft Easy Mac with Bacon Cup is quick and easy to make. All you need to do is fill the cup with water to the fill-line in the cup, microwave it for three and a half minutes, and mix in the powdered cheese sauce. The FLIMFLAM Plan not only saves you money and helps you lose weight, it also gives you more time to spend with your family, friends, WoW guild, or that special someone you don’t want your significant other to find out about.

The powered cheese sauce contains the bacon bits, but once it’s stirred with the macaroni, it’s difficult to see any. It’s like trying to find Waldo or Tila Tequila at a troll convention. It’s only when you take a bite of it that you’ll notice the tiny bits of bacon, which adds a very slight smokey flavor to the feast of cheese and perfectly cooked macaroni. The very slight smokey flavor did help the cheese sauce which was a bit watered down and not as strong as I hoped, but the Kraft Easy Mac with Bacon Cup tasted as well as I expected it to taste.

So what are you waiting for? If you want to save money and lose weight at the same time, order the FLIMFLAM Plan today!

(Fine Print: FLIMFLAM Plan is not recommended by the FDA. Side effects may include malnourishment, high blood pressure, a nauseating feeling when around cheese, a nauseating feeling when around macaroni, messy microwaves, and an urge to sing the Oscar Mayer song.)

(Nutrition Facts – 1 package – 220 calories, 4.5 grams of fat, 2.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 5 milligrams of cholesterol, 580 milligrams of sodium, 38 grams of carbohydrates, less than 1 grams of dietary fiber, 5 grams of sugar, 7 grams of protein, 0% Vitamin A, 0% Vitamin C, 6% Calcium, 8% Iron, and 10 grams of almost instant satisfaction.)

Item: Kraft Easy Mac with Bacon Cups
Price: $1.29
Size: 2.05 ounces
Purchased at: Safeway
Rating: 6 out of 10
Pros: Decent tasting. Quick and easy to make. Inexpensive. Being able to buy five gallons of mustard because you can.
Cons: Small portion. Cheese sauce was not as strong as I hoped. Bacon bits were small tiny. Sodium is high for something so small. Doing the FLIMFLAM Plan.

PRIZE DRAWING: Because The Coupon Queen Was Right

I remember seeing a news story on television many years ago about a woman the news reporter dubbed, “The Coupon Queen.” She had cut out more pieces of paper than a scissor-happy serial killer who likes to leave notes formed from newspaper clippings. In her little coupon bag, with alphabetical tabs inside and floral pattern outside, there were coupons for 25 cents off this, 10 cents off that, free lettuce, buy one get one free, and many more price saving pieces of paper. I laughed at her obsessive-compulsive need to clip coupons, because I couldn’t see myself wasting time by looking for coupons, cutting them out, arranging them, keeping track of expiration dates, and carrying them around in a floral coupon bag.

Now that I’m older, wiser, and not living off of mom and dad, I realize that The Coupon Queen isn’t crazy and she’s probably living large with all that money she saved using coupons, because 25 cents saved here and 10 cents saved there can add up over years and years. I’m thinking maybe I should go find The Coupon Queen and make her my Sugar Momma. She is probably in her mid 70s by now and even my flabby, hairy and pale body would look good to her. Until then, I shall spread the gospel of coupons and will do so by giving away coupons that are good for one free Bertolli frozen entree, like the Bertolli Chicken Parmigiana Penne Oven Baked Meal we reviewed last week, in a TIB prize drawing. At regular price, Bertolli frozen entrees can cost up to $9.99 and this coupon will cover up to that amount, not including tax. I have seven coupons to give away to seven lucky TIB readers.

To enter this prize drawing, just leave a comment for THIS post with whatever you want to say. Please fill out the email field, because I’ll be emailing the winners for their mailing addresses. The Impulsive Buy will stop accepting entries on Sunday, December 14, 2008 11:59 p.m. Hawaii Standard Time. Only one entry allowed per person and it is only open to those 18 years old or older. The coupon is only valid in the United States, so unfortunately the drawing is only open to those in the US or people from other countries willing to use the coupon in the US.

Good luck!

Fine Print: The Impulsive Buy promises your email address will not be used to send you emails with a link to a funny picture we saw on Digg. The Impulsive Buy also promises your mailing address will not be used to send you information about how Progressive Auto Insurance is better than your current insurance. Bribes will not be accepted. The Impulsive Buy will not be responsible for lost mail, damaged mail, or the eventual cancellation of Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles.

REVIEW: Carl’s Jr. Charbroiled Steak Sandwich

Carl’s Jr. has been promoting their new Charbroiled Steak Sandwich by saying it’s a cheap way for guys to get a steak dinner on a date, but I don’t think it’s the best strategy.

The cheapest way for some dude to get a steak dinner on date night is by going to an expensive steak place (Tip #1: Morton’s or Ruth Chris), ordering the most expensive steak on the menu, and when the bill comes, patting the pocket he usually keeps his wallet in and then frantically patting all of the pockets on his body (Tip #2: Wear cargo pants on the date because there will more pockets to pat). The dude should then deeply sigh, grimace, apologize, say he forgot his wallet at home, and ask his date if she could pay. After she does, he should tell her that he’s worried about identity theft so he needs to go home to find his wallet and he’ll call her later. When he gets home, he should call his date, tell her that he found his wallet, and then say he never wants to see her again because she is ugly and needs better personal hygiene, like flossing better or not putting on perfume that makes her smell like old fart.

(Tip #3: Get a new phone number after doing this. Actually, get a new phone number, move to a new city, and grow/shave off facial hair, because hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.)

The attack on her self-consciousness will help her forget she just spent $100 on him and the only payment he’ll have to make is guilt, which goes away with a lot of alcohol.

(Tip #4: This freeloading has no gender bias. Women can also use these techniques on men.)

The Carl’s Jr. Charbroiled Steak Sandwich is probably the next cheapest way to get a steak dinner on a date. It’s significantly more compassionate than the best way, but it’s also significantly less tasty because it’s quite unexciting. The sandwich is made up of a 100% sirloin steak, topped with breaded onion rings, lettuce, tomato, and mayonnaise in a toasted roll.

The steak that comes with it is an actual piece of steak and not any of that ground Angus stuff that Burger King tries to push as a steak in their Steakhouse burgers. The steak was a little tough and didn’t really taste like steak, instead I thought it tasted more like pork chops. Being that there’s an actual piece of steak and the onion rings hardly added any flavor to it, I was hoping Carl’s Jr. would’ve added a steak sauce to it, like A1 Steak Sauce, Heinz 57, or maybe Worcestershire sauce.

The Carl’s Jr. Charbroiled Steak Sandwich is hearty like an steak, but unfortunately its flavor doesn’t match. It maybe a cheap way to get a steak dinner on date night, but I wouldn’t try it because hell hath no fury like a woman who is expecting a real steak dinner.

(Nutrition Facts – 1 sandwich – 700 calories, 38 grams of fat, 8 grams of saturated fat, 85 milligrams of cholesterol, 1080 milligrams of sodium, 58 grams of carbohydrates, 7 grams of sugar, 3 grams of dietary fiber, 32 grams of protein, and 0 grams of self-consciousness destruction.)

(Editor’s Note: See the Carl’s Jr. commercial for their Charbroiled Steak Sandwich below.)

Item: Carl’s Jr. Charbroiled Steak Sandwich
Price: $5.99 (sandwich only – $4.69 in the rest of the country)
Purchased at: Carl’s Jr.
Rating: 5 out of 10
Pros: Hearty sandwich. Has an actual piece of steak. Lot of protein. Onion rings added a slight crunch. Getting a free steak dinner though deception.
Cons: Unexciting taste. Sirloin steak tasted like pork chops. Onion rings didn’t add much flavor. No steak sauce. High in sodium. The fury of scorn women. Guilt.

Carl’s Jr. Big Country Breakfast Burrito Winners Announced!!!

I have chosen the winners of the Carl’s Jr. Big Country Breakfast Burrito prize drawing, which consisted of me closing my eyes, pointing at my Samsung monitor, frantically using the scroll wheel on my Logitech mouse to move up and down all the comments for 15 seconds, and then opening my eyes to see whose comment my finger was pointing at.

Here are the four winners of the Carl’s Jr. Big Country Breakfast Burrito Prize Drawing:

Comment #20 – Kevin
Comment #33 – Cyn
Comment #47 – Maudelle
Comment #50 – Scott

Each winner will receive a coupon for a free Carl’s Jr. Big Country Breakfast Burrito.

Thanks to everyone who participated and thanks to the folks at Carl’s Jr. for sending me the extra coupons to give away.

Be on the lookout for a new prize drawing really soon!