Chicken Piazzola

The second meal I tried was the chicken piazzola. Described as “a tender butterflied chicken breast topped with a rich tomato and herb sauce with whole baby plum tomatoes”, this was essentially a large thin chicken breast in a tomato sauce. It tasted fine but I had expected something a bit more interesting and again the sauce was extremely watery, though I have since been told that this may depend on the power of your microwave.
I had this dish with plenty of veg which made a relatively filling meal - you could also have potatoes with it but then you may as well cook your own chicken from scratch and throw a few herbs and a tin of tomatoes over it. The actual recipe is a bit more complicated than that but this is a pretty simple dish.
Sweet Potato Curry
The same cannot be said for the sweet potato curry – this is something that would take a lot longer to make at home. Described as “succulent chunks of sweet potato with red peppers and spinach in a fragrant curry sauce”, this was not too spicy (I don’t like spicy foods), filling and really tasty, and something quite unusual that I would definitely choose again. I had it with some extra veg and had no need of rice – but if you wanted to serve it with rice then the curry would serve two.
Singapore Noodles
As I don’t like spicy food I wasn’t keen on the Singapore noodles – described as "delicious noodles, tender seared chicken, juicy king prawns and vegetables in a spicy oriental style sauce.” I would have preferred the mixture of flavours but without the spice, though as I don’t like certain vegetables I also spent ages picking the green beans and peas out, so for both those reasons this isn’t a dish I would have again. Also, a stir fry is pretty quick to make at home, though it does need quite a few different ingredients that you may not have to hand, so I can see a place for a ready meal of this type far more than the salmon pasta.
Meatballs & Pasta with a  Spicy Tomato Sauce
That’s not to say I’m against pasta as a frozen ready meal altogether, I just wasn’t impressed by the salmon one. I have to admit I didn’t try the roasted vegetable pasta – there was really no point as I don’t like any of the vegetables in it. But the Meatballs and pasta with a  spicy tomato sauce is a dish I have actually had a few times now as I really enjoyed it. In this meal you get “beef and pork meatballs with penne and whole baby plum tomatoes in a spicy tomato sauce”. It’s not too spicy but has a little bit of a kick and the meatballs are really filling and tasty. I counted seven which is quite a lot as they are fairly large; this is a great meal to take to work and put in the microwave if you want something hot and filling at your desk which is also syn free. Unlike the salmon pasta, I didn’t find the sauce in this dish watery either, so it’s definitely a winner for me.
The photo isn't great as I transferred this into a plastic container to eat at my desk but it does actually look quite appealing on a plate.
16 syn-free Beef and Pork Meatballs

You can buy the meatballs on their own in a bag and pop them in the freezer; you get 16 in the packet which I found was plenty for dinner for my boyfriend and I when served with freshly cooked spaghetti and tomato sauce. My boyfriend is very picky about food and usually dislikes low fat alternatives that I buy, for instance when it comes to sausages, so I wasn’t sure what he would think of these meatballs. I didn’t tell him they were Slimming World and at the end of the meal asked what he thought; he said they were good and was quite surprised when I said they were Slimming World! So these are definitely something I will keep in the freezer for us to have again.

Syn-free Pork Sausages
You can also buy a packet of syn-free sausages which is the holy grail for some Slimming World members. The Facebook groups are full of discussions over which is better – Linda Mccartney which are syn-free, Quorn which are one syn each, something called Heck which I haven’t tried yet or the various low fat versions from different supermarkets – or do you just blow the sysn budget and have proper sausages? I was very hopeful that the syn-free sausages would be good – and I wasn’t disappointed. The texture reminds me more of bratwurst or even a little like saveloy and they are quite different to other sausages but I really liked them. The sausages are not cheap – you only get 6 for £3 – but these are so good (and syn free) that I would buy them again. I made syn free Slimming World chips and felt like I was having a very naughty sausage and chip dinner when in fact it was completely syn free!
Beef & Veg Crush
I had been putting off trying the Beef & Veg Crush as I didn’t particularly like the sound of it – “chunks of tender beef in a deliciously rich onion and balsamic vinegar gravy with a carrot and swede crush.” In fact it was a pleasant surprise. All too often in a ready meal the beef is chewy or fatty, but this was a much higher quality meat in a flavoursome sauce. The carrot and swede mash wasn’t my favourite as I don’t really like swede but I quickly decided it was OK and it went really well with the beef.
 Chicken Tikka Masala
Finally the chicken tikka masala. It didn't come with rice so I cooked my own; this is quite a big portion so with enough rice it would serve two. It was fairly mild which I liked - I actually thought the Singapore noodles were more spicy! The sauce was still quite watery though, even though I cooked it for as long as the pack instructed. Even so, I would have it again.

So overall I had mixed feelings about the Slimming World ready meal range; I liked some more than others but I don't really eat ready meals anyway. It is good to have them in the freezer for convenience though and I like the fact that the have the recipes on the back, so really you get the best of both worlds!