One of the hardest parts of being a new vegan (or even an old seasoned vegan) is trying to keep up with all the new products out there. I must have spent over $50 looking for the "right" vegan cheese my first year being a vegan and I have over 50 vegan/vegetarian cookbooks in my arsenal but not all the recipes are the greatest. I’m the first born so I’m used to being a Guinea Pig and now I’m your Vegan Guinea Pig. So here are my recommendations and critiques. Let me know what you think!

Friday, December 18, 2009

The Gardein Saga Continues - New Seasoned Bites

My parents are the best. Home for the holiday’s and the refrigerator is stocked with soy and almond milk and the pantry with nooch (nutritional yeast), vital gluten, quinoa, soy flour, not-beef and chicken broth and the list goes on and on! My mom was also nice enough to buy a couple gardein products for me. One I haven’t tried before is the new Gardein Seasoned Bites. Since the box didn’t offer much direction on what dishes to use these little bites in I decided to make tacos with them. I sautéed some red onion and green bell pepper, chopped up the bites to smaller bites and added a couple teaspoons of my taco seasoning.

It looked divine, smelled like the most delicious tacos ever created (mind you I was starving so just about anything would have smelled delicious at this point). I toasted my taco shells, and stuffed them with the seasoned bites, lettuce and fresh salsa. It was so beautiful that I spent 5 minutes looking for a camera to take a picture of my magnificent lunch but the growling from my stomach said that photos would have to wait for another day and it was time to chow down. I took my first excited bite and was disappointed. The texture was fine, and my taco seasoning is always amazing but there was one fundamental problem that I’ve begun to notice with gardein products – all the sauces taste the same. These seasoned bites tasted just like the Gardein Tuscan Breast. Basically, these were just the Tuscan Breast cut up and repackaged. I was expecting a clean slate to work with but that’s not what I got. I’m really disappointed at the lack of originality in the sauces that Gardein uses. These would’ve been perfect if they were just lightly seasoned, with no sauce, and allow the bites to be a clean palate that are versatile enough to incorporate into any dish or recipe.


  1. I haven't tried any of these products (I'm waiting for them to go on mega-sale), but I wonder if you could sort of rinse them off before cooking to get a cleaner slate? It definitely seems like a weird thing to do, but if the texture and taste of the actual "chicken" is good, maybe it'd be worth it.

  2. Hi, Alicia! I did rinse these in a colander; then simmered them in peanut sauce which I tossed with linguine noodles. Jackie

  3. Good to know Jackie. But I can't see buying these again if I have to wash all the sauce off. I'm still in the process of trying and reviewing the rest of gardein's products and they actually have a frozen product that is much more of a clean slate to work with. Look out for that review soon!

  4. I wish that I liked Gardein products but I detest the texture. Very disappointing since so many other people seem to think Gardein tastes fine.

  5. I made the Gardein Picatta recipe tonight from the conscious cook book tonight and it was amazing, my non vegan husband loved it!!!


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