I’m not sure I’ve ever sung the praises of frozen food before. Sure I eat frozen food, but it’s usually not news! This time, though, I am happy to say there is indeed great news in the frozen food world. That’s especially true, if you are a vegan or vegetarian. Candle Cafe has entered the world of frozen meals!
I’ve loved Candle Cafe for years and I even shot an episode of my show “Green Goddess” there (featured in this clip: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y1fD9Rz_q7o :57 seconds in). Candle Cafe is a small vegan restaurant on the Upper East Side. It’s definitely one of the best meat-free restaurants in NYC. Heck if they were closer to where I live I’d be the all the time. Well now the idea is that their food is closer to me, because this new frozen line is sold at the Whole Foods near me (Columbus Circle).
There are already some vegetarian and vegan meals in the frozen food section, but not enough, so the Candle Cafe entrees are a welcome addition. It’s not cheap to produce meals like this so I really applaud Candle Cafe for entering the market. Of course the restaurant’s owners aren’t doing this just for the money, they also are doing it for the cause. Candle Cafe co-owner Bart Potenza says “The frozen food aisle has traditionally been a pretty chilly place for farm animals, we wanted to prove that not a single animal needs to suffer for you to enjoy the decadence of a gourmet meal and the convenience of a frozen dinner.” The owners even show their support for the Farm Sanctuary (one of my favorite organizations) on the packaging.
There are four varieties. It’s Seitan Piccata with Lemon Caper Sauce, Ginger Miso Stir-Fry, Tofu Spinach Ravioli, and Mac & Vegan Cheese. I bought all four to try. My favorite was definitely the Mac & Vegan Cheese.
What I liked about the Mac & Cheese is that there is real vegan cheese on top. Not just a cheese sauce, but actual shredded cheese as well. I could eat this by the bowlful! The 300 calorie dish has 300 calories and 8 grams of protein.
The meals sell for $5.99 at Whole Foods. I’m hoping that the line is a success and that they add a few more options. I’d love to see 10 entrees to choose from!