Last week, I brought a box of Kraft Veggie Pasta Macaroni & Cheese Three Cheese Flavor Dinner for review. Yes, I’ve eaten perhaps more than my share of the original Kraft mac-and-cheese through the decades. Thus, I know very well how good mac-and-cheese products like this one should taste.
This somewhat healthier version of macaroni and cheese is quite satisfying to the palate (as long as I down the whole box). That signature Kraft cheese taste, in my younger life, set the standard by which all other near-instant dinners as this, have been measured by me ever since. The use of vegetable-based pasta by no means cheapens the filling cheesy flavor, and may actually make this product more filling. It’s thick, and it’s deliciously gooey. But this is not a low-calorie food. So eat in moderation.
Benefits, Pros, Advantages, and Features
- At roughly $1.38 per box, this veggie pasta-based macaroni and cheese product is still an economical yet tasty dish. However, the Veggie Pasta version is significantly more expensive than the original product by roughly sixty cents. I guess we must pay extra for extra healthy foods.
- I’m gratified to see that companies like Kraft are incorporating vegetable pastas into more mainstay products like this macaroni and cheese dinner brand.
- The additional cost notwithstanding, I’d recommend stocking up. In fact, this Kraft Veggie Pasta product keeps for many months in the pantry, so long as it’s kept cool and dry. So this product is great for storing; especially when you’re lucky enough to find bulk amounts of it on sale.
- Kraft Veggie Pasta Macaroni & Cheese Dinner contains 260 calories per serving out of the box, and 380 calories when prepared according to the box instructions. With the additional two or three slices of fresh American cheese that I add occasionally, the calorie count might top 460. Still, for the excellent flavor found in this vegetable-based macaroni dinner product, this calorie count seems none-to-excessive.
- Kraft macaroni and cheese dinner products are easily to find in most grocery stores, little or large. However, as this particular product is new (first time I’ve seen it at Walmart last week), those of you shopping at smaller stores may not come across it for some time.
- Clean-up of the cooking tools used to prepare this Kraft Macaroni and Cheese Dinner is simple, so long as you immediately rinse off the water in which the macaroni cooked from all utensils. The fact that vegetable pasta was cooked makes no difference. It cleans up just as easily as whole grain and white semolina pastas do. For dried-on pasta, just let the colander and cooking pot soak for five to ten minutes in hot water to soften any dried-on pasta mess and makes wiping it off a breeze with a sponge or dish cloth.
- The cooking instructions for this Three Cheese Flavored Kraft Veggie Pasta mac and cheese dinner are a snap. Though they hint that a certain preferred brand of margarine should be used, just about any good-tasting margarine works well too. I’ve prepared this dinner dish with “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter” margarine, and Shedd’s Spread. Both produced a wonderful-tasting course.
Disadvantages, Cons, Problems, Concerns, and Improvement Suggestions
- Indeed, this new incantation of the classic mac-and-cheese dinner is still a highly processed food in my opinion, in spite of the vegetable pasta. The list on the box of man-engineered ingredients is rather long. Most of these are contained in the cheese flavoring packet. This pasta is a cauliflower one that still contains some enriched grain flour.
- The calorie count for this product is no less than that of the whole-grain version, and not significantly different than the original version, that had no whole-grain flour.
- This Kraft product also contains enriched wheat flour as a prime ingredient. For further health enhancement, they might consider switching to all whole-grain flours to supplement the cauliflower; thus reducing the need to enrich with man-made vitamin chemicals.
- This cheese product comes bundled with significant sodium amounts per serving (580 milligrams). So if you’re watching your blood pressure, definitely consume this product sparingly; the veggie pasta notwithstanding.
Our Product Rating
Wrapping up then: I would indeed recommend this Kraft Veggie Pasta Three Cheese Flavored Macaroni & Cheese Dinner, as it offers good value and a great taste sensation. I’d rate this food at 88 out of 100.
Where To Buy Kraft Veggie Pasta Three Cheese Macaroni & Cheese Dinner
Look for it at most any grocery store, large or little, in the blue box with the pink strip on the front bottom. Have at it. You’ll love it.
- Cheese on Wikipedia
- Kraft Foods Website
- Macaroni on Wikipedia
- Where To Buy Kraft Veggie Pasta Three Cheese Macaroni & Cheese Dinner
- : Added whitespace and a References section, adjusted ad placement, reworked category and tag assignments, and tweaked the content.
- 2012-04-02: Originally published.