Author Topic: Prepared meals at Costco?  (Read 21793 times)

Kitsune

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Prepared meals at Costco?
« on: July 11, 2016, 06:57:42 PM »
Hey guys, I am outside of my usual area of expertise, and I need help.

I need 2-3 weeks worth of prepared dinners. The local grocery store is lacking, and my other option is Costco. Except that I don't usually ever buy prepared foods, so I have no idea what's good/bad/good value/etc. Help? Suggestions?

Particular requirements: no seafood or ground meat of any kind. Just to be complicated.m

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #1 on: July 11, 2016, 07:05:16 PM »
Do you mean like put-on-a-cookie sheet prepared food, or hot and ready to eat prepared?

I like their rotisserie chicken and find it to be a good value. You could make sandwiches if there are leftovers. Haven't tried their other stuff.

Kitsune

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #2 on: July 11, 2016, 07:07:28 PM »
I mostly meant frozen-toss-in-the-oven-and-eat food, not ready-to-eat now food. Though I could do with some salads or something for the first few days...

Rotisserie chicken, noted. Thanks!

lbmustache

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #3 on: July 11, 2016, 07:10:33 PM »
Are you talking frozen, or their ready-to-eat stuff? Costco has a wide variety of both, in large portions, both in the Kirkland brand and regular grocery store brands.

Frozen: Most stuff is good outside of the standard Hot Pockets fare. I like their frozen veggie and hamburger patties. There are some cheese and beef chimichangas that taste good with hot sauce. Blanking on the brands for all of these but I assume most Costcos carry the same stuff. I love
the Kirkland frozen cheese pizzas - they are regular size (not the jumbo size that doesn't fit in the fridge or oven) and 4 for $9.99.

Non-frozen: Lasganas are pretty good (I believe turkey and veggie), as are the tamales. The Kirkland soups are also good, my favorite is the chicken tortilla.

Hope this helps some. Should be very easy to find food to meet your needs.

StarBright

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #4 on: July 11, 2016, 07:12:56 PM »
Not sure if they carry them in the summer but my husband is obsessed with their Chicken Pot Pies.  He would eat them all the time if he could. They are huge and could feed a large group of people and also make good leftovers.

He also really likes their Chicken Alfredo.

I also like their frozen fish patties to make fish burgers.

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2016, 07:22:02 PM »
I've mostly eaten seafood (frozen salmon) but all the samples I've tried of other stuff has been good.

Remember that if you accidentally buy something gross, they'll give you your money back!

Kitsune

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #6 on: July 11, 2016, 07:24:09 PM »
I've mostly eaten seafood (frozen salmon) but all the samples I've tried of other stuff has been good.

Remember that if you accidentally buy something gross, they'll give you your money back!

Wait! Really?? How does that work? You bring back the receipt, or the receipt and whatever is left of the gross thing?

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #7 on: July 11, 2016, 07:29:50 PM »
I've mostly eaten seafood (frozen salmon) but all the samples I've tried of other stuff has been good.

Remember that if you accidentally buy something gross, they'll give you your money back!

Wait! Really?? How does that work? You bring back the receipt, or the receipt and whatever is left of the gross thing?

They guarantee EVERYTHING. Even if the item is in no way defective, like the time I got my money back for some mittens that my kid just didn't like and wouldn't wear. It helps to have the receipt but is not essential--they can look up all of your purchases by your card. They prefer that you bring back the remainder but IME, if I tell them I threw it away (the cheese that went bad, etc.) they take my word for it and refund my money.

It's part of what you pay for with the membership, so I say take advantage!

Kitsune

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #8 on: July 11, 2016, 07:43:02 PM »
I've mostly eaten seafood (frozen salmon) but all the samples I've tried of other stuff has been good.

Remember that if you accidentally buy something gross, they'll give you your money back!

Wait! Really?? How does that work? You bring back the receipt, or the receipt and whatever is left of the gross thing?

They guarantee EVERYTHING. Even if the item is in no way defective, like the time I got my money back for some mittens that my kid just didn't like and wouldn't wear. It helps to have the receipt but is not essential--they can look up all of your purchases by your card. They prefer that you bring back the remainder but IME, if I tell them I threw it away (the cheese that went bad, etc.) they take my word for it and refund my money.

It's part of what you pay for with the membership, so I say take advantage!

Huh. Good to know! I think I personally would feel bad bringing back something that's not to my personal taste - risk of trying food and all that. But "this is gross" or things that go bad, now, that's an option I didn't know existed. Thanks for letting me know!

kimmarg

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #9 on: July 11, 2016, 07:45:45 PM »
Can you cook the meals somewhere before this 2-3 week period? If so I HIGHLY recommend getting a 1 month membership to www.onceamonthmeals.com and just cooking a bunch of meals from that site and freezing them.

Kitsune

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #10 on: July 11, 2016, 08:21:36 PM »
Can you cook the meals somewhere before this 2-3 week period? If so I HIGHLY recommend getting a 1 month membership to www.onceamonthmeals.com and just cooking a bunch of meals from that site and freezing them.

Not an option. My problem is that I'm pregnant, morning sickness = all-day nausea and puking, and I can't face food. I'm basically living on bagels and frozen fruit, but the other people in the house also need to eat. Hence buying prepared meals. It's not my usual solution, but it's a decent band-aid until I stop puking at the sight/smell of meat.

geekette

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #11 on: July 11, 2016, 08:27:41 PM »
I'm not much of a vegetable eater, but I really like their frozen spanakopita. The name on the package is Cuisine Adventures. Quick in the toaster oven.

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #12 on: July 11, 2016, 08:48:02 PM »
Quote
Hence buying prepared meals. It's not my usual solution, but it's a decent band-aid until I stop puking at the sight/smell of meat.

In that case, do whatever the hell it takes to get through the next month or two! We don't do the frozen prepared stuff from Costco because it is all full of dairy, but my aunt gets those things to feed my grandmother and they are all great. Lots of frozen lasagnas, mac and cheese, mashed potatoes, etc. I almost wish we ate that way because it would be super easy. Another option is Trader Joe's if you are lucky enough to have one near by. Their frozen and fresh prepared main dish options are great and I am absolutely obsessed right now with their broccoli kale salad mix. Seriously obsessed, as in I will buy four bags at a time and eat them all myself, except for the salad that my 2 year-old stuffs in her face before I can eat it all out from under her. :)

lhamo

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #13 on: July 11, 2016, 09:16:20 PM »
Their frozen meatballs are good. Microwave for four minutes and then throw in with a jar of pasta sauce. Cook a package of pasta separately. 15 minutes tops including the time it takes for the water to boil.

I always get a package of Romaine hearts, which keep a couple of weeks. Bad experience with mixed greens, which tend to go slimy really fast.

centwise

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #14 on: July 11, 2016, 09:27:05 PM »
So sorry you are suffering! I hope you are getting enough nutrition and that things improve soon. I don't buy many prepared foods at Costco but here are some ideas:

Do you mean you can't face preparing meat, or you can't be around meat at all? If it's the former, I second the suggestions that others have made: The tamales and rotisserie chickens are excellent.

For vegetarian fare: you can get big bags of very good "Pasta Prima" frozen spinach/mozzarella ravioli, and buy prepared sauces or pesto in the deli section. I like it simply tossed with pesto and topped with walnuts.

For nutritious side dishes and snacks:
There is a tasty shredded kale salad kit, with dressing included.
Since you are already buying frozen fruit (mangoes, strawberries, blueberries, mixed fruit -- it's all good) how about making smoothies? Just blend fruit, juice and good fatty yogurt to make creamy nutritious smoothies.

Sailor Sam

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #15 on: July 11, 2016, 09:51:02 PM »
Can you cook the meals somewhere before this 2-3 week period? If so I HIGHLY recommend getting a 1 month membership to www.onceamonthmeals.com and just cooking a bunch of meals from that site and freezing them.

Not an option. My problem is that I'm pregnant, morning sickness = all-day nausea and puking, and I can't face food. I'm basically living on bagels and frozen fruit, but the other people in the house also need to eat. Hence buying prepared meals. It's not my usual solution, but it's a decent band-aid until I stop puking at the sight/smell of meat.

Wait. Are these other people in the house under 4-feet, and therefore deserving of having someone cook for them?

If you have a Trader Joe's around, they also excel at packaged food. Their tamales are amazing. I've also recently noticed that regular grocery stores are selling family sized frozen meals - lasagna, mac & cheese, pot pies. Not sure if that's new, or I just suck at noticing things.

Just brainstorming possible alternatives, or gap planning. If you're not feeling great, a huge trip to Costco might be unobtainable, while a quick run to the local store could be possible. Trader Joe's is sometimes cheaper than Costco, too.

centwise

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #16 on: July 11, 2016, 10:04:04 PM »
Not the most healthful option, but my nephews LOVE the SeaPak frozen Shrimp Poppers. Heat them up in the oven and serve with a side dish (rice? salad? fruit?)

Kitsune

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #17 on: July 12, 2016, 06:31:23 AM »
Can you cook the meals somewhere before this 2-3 week period? If so I HIGHLY recommend getting a 1 month membership to www.onceamonthmeals.com and just cooking a bunch of meals from that site and freezing them.

Not an option. My problem is that I'm pregnant, morning sickness = all-day nausea and puking, and I can't face food. I'm basically living on bagels and frozen fruit, but the other people in the house also need to eat. Hence buying prepared meals. It's not my usual solution, but it's a decent band-aid until I stop puking at the sight/smell of meat.

Wait. Are these other people in the house under 4-feet, and therefore deserving of having someone cook for them?

If you have a Trader Joe's around, they also excel at packaged food. Their tamales are amazing. I've also recently noticed that regular grocery stores are selling family sized frozen meals - lasagna, mac & cheese, pot pies. Not sure if that's new, or I just suck at noticing things.

Just brainstorming possible alternatives, or gap planning. If you're not feeling great, a huge trip to Costco might be unobtainable, while a quick run to the local store could be possible. Trader Joe's is sometimes cheaper than Costco, too.

Most other people in the house are under 4 feet, except for my husband, who is finishing house construction and deck before the inspector comes (yay time limits), while already simultaneously toddler-wrangling while I'm sick and exhausted, and doing all the housework while I lie on the couch and try not to puke. He can only do so much, so... This is basically my band-aid solution for the food, considering that I've already functionally shoved everything else I usually do onto his plate.

I'm in rural quebec. My options are basically IGA (expensive, and the one near me is lacking in prepared foods is a serious manner, it's tiny) or Costco, which is near work. I am terrifically jealous of the people who live near Trader Joe's, don't think I'm not!

Ceridwen

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #18 on: July 12, 2016, 08:32:29 AM »
Hello from a fellow Quebecker!

The only prepared foods I've tried are the rotisserie chicken and lasagna.  Both are good.  My in-laws like some of the prepared salads.  I believe there's a quinoa one with lots of parsley? Looks good.

When I travel for work (I'm the cook in the family), my husband buys the cooked and sliced chicken breasts.  They come in plain and seasoned.  Makes for easy meals and salad toppers.

bogart

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #19 on: July 12, 2016, 09:01:29 AM »
Congratulations on your growing family!  I'm sorry to hear about your "morning" sickness.

Besides what others have mentioned, there may be a "sausage" Costco lasagne (is "sausage" different from "ground meat?"), and even if not, they've got a vegetarian one that I think is spinach-based.  I haven't actually eaten either but I love their traditional meat lasagne (ground) and would hope the others are as tasty. 

Besides the rotisserie chicken, they also do bbq ribs, at least where I live.  We find these kind of bland, but DH slathers (store bought) bbq sauce on them before warming them up in the microwave, and likes them then. 

They sell canned black beans (and other veggies) in vast quantities.

Another option could be cooked bacon (they sell that), and maybe your DH has enough time to whip up some scrambled eggs?  Or would hard-boiling some being something you are up to (no judgment if not, but since the eggs stay in shell and the work is relatively little, I thought it might be one thing that would be feasible).

Don't discount the possibility of feeding the kids on cereal and/or oatmeal for a few weeks, they'll survive. 

Hope the nausea resolves.

mm1970

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #20 on: July 12, 2016, 09:56:15 AM »
In the fresh area of Costco, they have quiche (2 packs) that you can freeze.  I think they are pretty good.

I like the Kirkland brand frozen pizza (pepperoni).  Not the healthiest, but we eat it once every 2 weeks.

The refrigerated section has meatballs (I know you said no ground meat, but that's what I bought!)  The teriyaki are good and chicken basil also.

That's all I've tried really.

Sailor Sam

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #21 on: July 12, 2016, 10:03:37 AM »
Can you cook the meals somewhere before this 2-3 week period? If so I HIGHLY recommend getting a 1 month membership to www.onceamonthmeals.com and just cooking a bunch of meals from that site and freezing them.

Not an option. My problem is that I'm pregnant, morning sickness = all-day nausea and puking, and I can't face food. I'm basically living on bagels and frozen fruit, but the other people in the house also need to eat. Hence buying prepared meals. It's not my usual solution, but it's a decent band-aid until I stop puking at the sight/smell of meat.

Wait. Are these other people in the house under 4-feet, and therefore deserving of having someone cook for them?

If you have a Trader Joe's around, they also excel at packaged food. Their tamales are amazing. I've also recently noticed that regular grocery stores are selling family sized frozen meals - lasagna, mac & cheese, pot pies. Not sure if that's new, or I just suck at noticing things.

Just brainstorming possible alternatives, or gap planning. If you're not feeling great, a huge trip to Costco might be unobtainable, while a quick run to the local store could be possible. Trader Joe's is sometimes cheaper than Costco, too.

Most other people in the house are under 4 feet, except for my husband, who is finishing house construction and deck before the inspector comes (yay time limits), while already simultaneously toddler-wrangling while I'm sick and exhausted, and doing all the housework while I lie on the couch and try not to puke. He can only do so much, so... This is basically my band-aid solution for the food, considering that I've already functionally shoved everything else I usually do onto his plate.

I'm in rural quebec. My options are basically IGA (expensive, and the one near me is lacking in prepared foods is a serious manner, it's tiny) or Costco, which is near work. I am terrifically jealous of the people who live near Trader Joe's, don't think I'm not!

Sub 4-footers definitely deserve to have food produced for them. As do hard working husbands. Also, dang, my next suggestion was going to be Safeway or Amazon delivery, but I suspect that won't work very well in hinterland Quebec.

There are Costco experts with greater knowledge than me chiming in here. Though I haven't seen any suggestions for the soups. I'm usually happy with the taste and quality of Costco prepared soups.   

Bracken_Joy

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #22 on: July 12, 2016, 10:14:49 AM »
I love Costco's prepared hummus and guacamole. They also have pre-boiled, pre peeled eggs. I know at least two of my friends swore by eggs as the only thing they could keep down. TMMV, but at least they're easy snacks for little hands anyway.

+1 to the frozen enchiladas. They were tasty back when I ate them in college =P Their chicken bakes were pretty stellar, too.

I have a veggie friend who gets some sort of frozen black bean burger there they like.

I know lots of people like their alfredo, but I think it's way too salty and not creamy enough- the texture is weird to me. Their pizzas and rotisserie chicken is great though.

They sell bulk chili and canned soups, and those can be a good easy option. No risk of spoilage before getting used, either.

They sell a good flavorful premade box chicken stock. Quick meal I will do is egg drop soup. Just as fast as reheating the broth plain. Egg drop is my survival meal.

Best of luck, and I'm sorry you're having so much nausea with this pregnancy. Worried nurse side note: be sure you're not getting dehydrated. If you can't keep enough down and stay hydrated and nourished adequately, please please let your doc know. Hyperemesis gravidarum is nothing to play around with. With vomiting, you're losing all sorts of electrolytes that water alone can't replace, and they're all vital to fluid balance. I'm sure you know all that, I've just seen a few of your posts and been worried! Sending good vibes your way.

Tyson

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #23 on: July 12, 2016, 10:19:11 AM »
Costco has some great gluten free frozen pizzas, Street Tacos, Teriyaki Chicken rice bowls, Potstickers, all are very good.  They also have perhaps the creamiest vanilla ice cream I've ever had. 

They also have good pre-packaged Guacamole.  One thing we do is buy the frozen Taquitos (basically a rolled up taco), and dip the Taquitos in the Guac.  It's a nice easy meal/snack.

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #24 on: July 12, 2016, 10:28:47 AM »
Unfortunately I don't think the tamales are available in Costco Canada.

Another not-very-nutritious option: there is always ramen (Mr Noodles, available in boxes of 24 packs). Cook two packages of ramen, add frozen peas and stir in some raw egg and you have a quick family meal.

How about party trays?
Put out a tray of sliced cheese and cold cuts with bread or crackers. Add a tray of mixed fruit to round out the meal. All of those items will keep well in the fridge for several meals. For something a little different, add tomato and pop the sandwiches in the toaster oven to make melties.

Best of luck to you!


Kitsune

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #25 on: July 12, 2016, 11:26:44 AM »
Thanks for the suggestions! I got the quinoa salad (and am eating some for lunch - so far a half-cup of salad and a half-glass of water is staying down, I'm about to celebrate). Confirmed: it is very tasty.

I also got some of the frozen pizzas that people were recommending, because they were very affordable and will go down well for the small human. Someone recommended chicken pot pie: check, it looks good, bought. Also lasagna. Also potstickers, and ravioli + sauce, and some hummus and veggies... Basically, if someone recommended it and I looked at it and didn't feel nauseous, it came home. Yay freezer-foods for the next 2 weeks. :)

How about party trays?
Put out a tray of sliced cheese and cold cuts with bread or crackers. Add a tray of mixed fruit to round out the meal. All of those items will keep well in the fridge for several meals. For something a little different, add tomato and pop the sandwiches in the toaster oven to make melties.

OMG this is an excellent idea I'll put that on the list for when we run out of what I got today. Thanks!!


The ground meat caveat is that the look/smell/picture of ground meat (... most meat, realistically), or most fish, makes me throw up these days, as do eggs. This SIGNIFICANTLY limits the options for "quick and easy", since our go-to is eggs in stuff, *sigh* Meat lasagna may be doable, since it doesn't look like meat (if that makes sense).


tonysemail

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #26 on: July 12, 2016, 11:52:01 AM »
we are big fans of the kale salad.  we buy one every two weeks for the convenience.

our kids like the chicken nuggets, meatballs and ravioli.

I'm a red panda

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #27 on: July 12, 2016, 12:58:35 PM »
Are you sure you don't have a meal prep place anywhere nearby?

I live in a city in the middle of nowhere, and we have a place that does scratch-made freezer meals- for like $150 you get 15 three serving main course dishes.

seattlecyclone

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #28 on: July 12, 2016, 01:04:53 PM »
We don't buy many freezer meals, but have tried and enjoyed frozen vegetable yakisoba noodles and frozen pizzas from Costco.

patchyfacialhair

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #29 on: July 12, 2016, 02:36:19 PM »
Frozen Stir Fry
Frozen Lasagna
Frozen Pizza
Rotisserie Chicken plus frozen veggies, perhaps some minute rice

Canned beans plus tortillas and shredded cheese?

Tuna in some form?

Kraft mac n cheese with cut up hot dogs?

Loaded baked potatoes (bacon bits, sour cream, and cheese can all be purchased pre-made)?

I'm trying to think of the easiest options to prepare and that's all I got.

Kitsune

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Re: Prepared meals at Costc
« Reply #30 on: July 12, 2016, 03:49:06 PM »
Are you sure you don't have a meal prep place anywhere nearby?

I live in a city in the middle of nowhere, and we have a place that does scratch-made freezer meals- for like $150 you get 15 three serving main course dishes.

Let's put it this way: you live in a city/town. There is a sheep field between me and my nearest neighbors, and the nearest restaurant is 40km away. Usually great for the restaurant budget, but...

Hmm.... There's an m&m near work. Maybe the next time I drive in I can check that out.

sisto

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #31 on: July 12, 2016, 06:02:38 PM »
Kale salad
Quinoa salad
Quinoa and brown rice nice easy side dish
Kale and Quinoa another nice easy side dish
Tamales
Lamb shanks all you do is microwave them
Prepared pasta is good and really easy to boil and they sell sauce that's really good to put on it
Meatballs
Stirfry bowls

That's all of the semi healthy things that are easy to prepare that I can think of.

Choices

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Re: Prepared meals at Costco?
« Reply #32 on: July 12, 2016, 06:57:34 PM »
+1 to the kale salad, rotisserie chicken, terriyaki chicken bowls, and veggie lasagna.

For frozen food, the orange chicken is also good, and they have some breakfasts like waffles and pancakes that are pretty good too. Since you have kiddos, they'll love the bucket of cookie dough that lets you scoop and bake only as many as you want at a time.

They also have babybel cheeses and granola bars that are good snacks, healthyish popcorn, and baked peas. Ours also has name-brand bagels in 6-packs.

While it won't last as long as frozen food, the turkey/cheese roll-ups, chicken parm, chicken alfredo, and other premade refrigerated meals and a veggie tray with dip will probably keep in your fridge for a week or so.

I hope you feel better soon!