Healthy Choice Five-Spice Beef & Vegetables Cafe Steamer

Healthy Choice Five-Spice Beef & Vegetables Cafe Steamer - Ad

Healthy Choice Five-Spice Beef & Vegetables Cafe Steamer

Looks: Everything’s on the up-and-up, except for the usual problem that the directions instruct you to stir the meal, but the meal on the box is obviously not stirred. Come on! 4.5 out of 5

Taste: When I saw “five-spice” on the box, I expected something spicy. (Five-spicy, to be exact.) But the sauce had no spice, only sweetness – it tasted and smelled like gingerbread cookies. Also, the beef was dry, as most microwave beef is, and the rest of the ingredients had no taste except for the overwhelming sauce. (Note: the ingredients list does not list “beef”; it lists “cooked beef and binder product.” Take that for what you will.) 2.5 out of 5


  1. Anonymous says:

    (long time reader, first time commentator)
    Five-Spice, while sounding like it should be spicy, is actually a combination of spices like star anise, chinese cinnamon, fennel, ginger and something.
    I use it with chicken a lot… but it is deceiving!

  2. FoodIRL says:

    Aha, thanks for the explanation!

  3. Blurgle says:

    ‘Binder product”? They don’t even tell you what it is? Food safety FAIL for Healthy Choice.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Do you always eat food like this, or do you also have fresh food? Sorry, I was just wondering. 🙂

  5. FoodIRL says:

    I have something like this maybe 3 days a week for lunch; other than that, I do actually cook and eat real food. (Except for the pop-tart I have every morning for breakfast.)

  6. Florian says:

    Another example where your picture looks better than the box. And as others have mentioned “five spice” is a type of Asian spice and not necessarily hot spicy.

  7. Anonymous says:

    I’ve been eating a lot of these cafe steamers lately (on sale), although not this particular flavor. I find the flavor pretty good for microwave food. My big gripe with them is portion size. I’m not sure there’s actually enough food in the box to make their display picture, even if you scraped it all to just the side of the plate as it’s shown.

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