Monday 17 May 2010

Asda's Great Stuff range for kids - great healthy snacks and meals

The sun has got his hat on, hip hip hip hooray, the sun has got his hat on and he's coming out to play ! Yes, the sunshine has arrived - I'm not sure how long it'll last but for now, the girls are practically living outside, just running in every now and again to yell "Mum, I'm hungry" or "Mum, I'm thirsty" and then running back outside again after a quick refuel ! In an ideal world, I'd be there in a frilly pink pinny doling out fruity smoothies, healthy home-made orange juice iced-lollies and fresh fruit salad. Sadly, the reality is more likely to be a bag of crisps or a chocolate biscuit and a glass of squash because I'm in the middle of feeding baby brother or doing the washing up.

Well, Asda to the rescue ! They've extended their Great Stuff range of healthy kids' meals and snacks and have some absolutely delicious healthy treats available that are perfect for snacks in the sun and impromptu picnics. They're so tasty, the kids won't even realise you're feeding them healthy food and they're really practical, so they're also great for stashing in your handbag or the car for long journeys. As they're individually wrapped in kid-sized portions, they're also great for lunchboxes (not just for the kids either, I've been taking them along to work for lunch too !).

My absolute favourite product is the pre-packaged and pre-prepared fruit. "Asda’s extended range of Fresh Fruit Snack Packs now include succulent Orange Wedges, Pineapple Lollies, Cherry Tomato and Cucumber Wedges (44p per pack) and mums can snap up three packets for just £1." I love fresh fruit but sometimes, it's just too messy and time-consuming to be practical. Apples and bananas are great. Thick skinned oranges are impossible for little fingers and kids invariably end up dribbling orange juice down their tops and squirting it in their eye ! Pineapples are delicious but labour-intensive when you have to peel and core and slice them - plus they're so big, you end up overdosing on pineapple because you have to keep eating it before it goes off in the fridge ! Well, the little sachets of orange wedges and pineapple "lollies" are brilliant - no fuss or mess, no waste and they stay lovely and juicy (I thought they'd be a bit dry but they taste fresher than when they been lovingly prepared by me and sat in the fridge for a day or two !). Kids who sometimes turn their noses up at fresh fruit will love the fact that they can just eat a small amount and share it with their friends. I've also found that it's great for smoothies because the portion-sizes are ideal. We made a cracking instant fruit salad with a few bags of oranges and pineapple with a banana and a few grapes quickly chopped and thrown in.

If you still can't get your kids to eat fresh fruit, Asda have another sneaky trick up their sleeves. (Maybe Asda stands for Abets Sneaky Dietary Additions !) They have a delicious range of fruit-juice based drinks called Juicy Water which count as one of your five-a-day portions of fruit and veg. With the name Juicy Water, I was expecting a boring, bland, watery drink but it's delicious - refreshing, sweet and really fruity. It is in fact made with 75% juice and contains no artificial sweeteners or added sugar, although it does obviously contain natural sugars from the fruit. They're just the right size for kids to drink (unlike the big cans of fizzy pop that are always way too big to drink in one go) and the square cartons are easier to get into without making a mess than the squishy pouches. (Top tip : pull up the "ears" on either end of the carton before pushing in the straw - it gives you something to hold on to and gives you extra space for the drink in the carton so spillages are less likely to occur !)

Another fantastically kid-friendly product is the Fromage Frais bugs, that are just like the squishy pouches of fruit puree you can buy. Asda say, "Taste-tested by kids and endorsed by Asda nutritionists, Squeezy Bug Yoghurt Pouches (£1.32) are free from artificial colours and flavours and are the perfect way to fill up tummies between meal times. With three packs for £3, mums will have pennies left over after a day out entertaining the troops." They're so much more fun and less messy than the usual yoghurt pots and are great for hassle-free and healthy munching on the go. They need to be kept refrigerated but are fine if you keep them in a cool bag (or even a school bag, for a short period of time) prior to eating. They're delicious - sweet but not sickly, nice and thick and creamy and really easy to suck out of the pouch. Big thumbs up from the kids and Mum !

The whole Great Stuff range is designed as "an ideal way to get your kids eating plenty of fresh fruit and veg from a young age". Asda explain, "Loved by mums around the country, the ready meals take the hassle out of tea time planning and the pre-packaged fruit portions are ideal for summer picnics. All products in the range have tightly monitored levels of fat, including saturated fats, salts and sugar to meet children’s lower daily requirements."

It's easy for parents to feel guilty about not being perfect, especially when bombarded with healthy-eating messages all the time. Usually we know exactly what we should be feeding the kids, but we haven't always got the time. Asda have taken away the whole problem by providing healthy, appealing and economical treats and meals that are perfect for the whole family to enjoy. Stuff a load in a bag, grab a blanket and a frisbee and you have an instant picnic - just hurry up before the sun disappears again !

star rating : 5/5

1 comment:

  1. Very exited to purchase some of this. Love finding great products for cheap prices :)! Great review.


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