The pros: Trader Joe's Ricotta and Spinach Tortelloni with Red Pesto is a filling and tasty meal for one. There were a good amount of veggies in this.
The cons: Those who don't love whole tomatoes might not appreciate their presence here. A bit high on the calorie side for a frozen meal.
The verdict: Prior to the start of me shopping at Trader Joe's, I would visit my local Pathmark and get various freezer meals. Too many of them tasted tasted like cardboard with a heavy splash of salt and some random heat flavoring. So many of them have been disappointing.
Well fast forward a few years and I've finally gotten to try Trader Joe's freezer meals. This one stands out because of its red pesto, which honestly isn't much of a pesto at all. The term pesto gets thrown around a bit too loosely. Pesto should be closer to a paste. Pesto frequently is thick because of the additions of nuts.
This pesto was thin. Very thin. Yes, there are pine nuts in this, but not enough to render anything paste like. Also, pesto is usually never cooked. Now, obviously they are making this a red pesto which tasted a lot more like a red pepper tomato sauce than anything else. I'm not sure I would call it a pesto other than to try to sell it to someone.
The pesto was fine, but there wasn't much of it. What did make up for the lack of sauce was the amount of veggies in this. Otherwise you would have a pretty dry pasta dish. The veggies are solid addition, but add some much needed hydration to each bite. If you are not a fan of whole tomatoes, then please avoid this dish. There are some people who really don't like eating the inside of a tomato.
The tortelloni came out a touch overcooked and soft in the microwave. The filling was fine, but nothing you couldn't do with a bit of meal prep at home and some simple ingredients. Besides, you'll have several meals that will cost you less and taste a bit better. For $1.99 it is reasonably priced and a decent quick meal. But it's nothing that stands out too much either. It's worth a try if you find yourself in a bind.
Here is the visual run down of what you get if you buy this product:
The box of Trader Joe's Ricotta and Spinach Tortelloni with Red Pesto:
The nutritional information:
How to prepare:
Out of the microwave you get:
After a good stir you get:
Would I buy this again? Yes, I would buy Trader Joe's Ricotta and Spinach Tortelloni with Red Pesto again. For a freezer meal it was pretty decent and had good flavor. I do think that boiling a pot of water for tortelloni and keeping some sauce on the side will results in a tastier dish.
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Did you try it? Let me know what you think in the comments section!