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Your freezer prep sorted: We've rounded up the healthiest (and tastiest) frozen meals at the supermarket.

If you’re not sure what to eat right now, you’re not alone.

Faced with a very real possibility of working from home and living in lockdown to help keep Australians safe from the spread of COVID-19 (you can find out the most up-to-date coronavirus information here) for the near future, planning out meals for your household will become even more important.

WATCH: FYI, here are 5 foods you definitely shouldn’t reheat in the microwave. Post continues after video.

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One option is frozen supermarket meals, but before we fill our freezers with them, we have some questions:

Are they actually healthy? Or are they just bowls of salty mush you’ll regret the moment it touches your tongue?

To find out, we turned to Jono Steedman, Accredited Nutritionist and Dietitian, who investigated the best frozen meals on his Instagram page.

 

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Keep scrolling for his findings on the very best frozen meals you can buy from the supermarket that hit the mark nutritionally (including some great veggie options) and taste great, too.

Best healthy frozen meals.

Core Power Foods meals.

Best options: Core Power Foods Naked ChickenCore Power Foods Honey Sesame ChickenCore Power Foods Portuguese-Style Chicken and a veggie option, Core Power Foods Southern Style Chilli.

Price: $9.

Portion: 310-350g.

Where you can buy: Online at Core Power Foods and at selected Coles, Woolworths and IGA stores.

Jono’s verdict: “These are stupidly good numbers-wise nutritionally. They’re very high in protein but… they’re expensive. The vegetarian option is a bit high in saturated fat BUT is super low in sodium (salt).”

best frozen meal
Core Power Foods Naked Chicken. Image: Supplied/Jono Steedman.
best frozen meal
 Core Power Foods Honey Sesame Chicken. Image: Supplied/Jono Steedman.
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best frozen meal
Core Power Foods Southern Style Chilli. Image: Supplied/Jono Steedman.

Coco and Lucas' meals.

Best veggie options: Coco & Lucas' Meatless Cottage PieCoco & Lucas' Beefless Patties Sweet Potato Mash & Veggies and Coco & Lucas' Spaghetti Vegie-nese.

Price: $8.

Portion: 350g.

Where you can buy: At all major supermarkets.

Jono's verdict: "The cottage pie and spaghetti both have a hefty serve of protein, but both are high in sodium and saturated fat. The beefless patties are lower in sodium but higher in saturated fat."

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Coco & Lucas' Meatless Cottage Pie. Image: Supplied/Jono Steedman.
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Coco & Lucas' Beefless Patties Sweet Potato Mash & Veggies. Image: Supplied/Jono Steedman.

Super Nature Foods meals.

Best option: Super Nature Super Protein Lamb & Sweet Potato Wellness Bowl.

Price: $6.30.

Portion: 350g.

Where you can buy: At all major supermarkets.

Jono's verdict: "I hate everything about the marketing of this company (and "wellness" generally) but this meal is actually pretty legit. Has all the good things you need."

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Super Nature Super Protein Lamb & Sweet Potato Wellness Bowl. Image: Supplied/Jono Steedman.

Fitness Outcomes meals.

Best option: Fitness Outcomes Portuguese Chicken and Sweet Potato.

Price: $9.

Portion: 350g.

Where you can buy: Online at Fitness Outcomes and at selected Woolworths and IGA stores.

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Jono's verdict: "Like the Core Power Foods meals, this one is great for you. Also expensive."

best frozen meal
Fitness Outcomes Portuguese Chicken and Sweet Potato. Image: Supplied/Jono Steedman.

On The Menu Power Bowls.

Best option: On The Menu Power Bowl Beef In Belgian Ale.

Price: $7.50.

Portion: 450g.

Where you can buy: At Coles, Woolworths and independent supermarkets.

Jono's verdict: "This is a decent option on all nutritional fronts but it's a little high in sodium and saturated fat."

best frozen meal
Image: Supplied/Jono Steedman.

Lean Cuisine meals.

Best veggie option: Lean Cuisine Veggie Moroccan Tagine.

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Price: $4.50.

Portion: 300g.

Where you can buy: At all major supermarkets.

Jono's verdict: "This would definitely need some extra protein, but it's cheap and low in sodium and saturated fat."

best frozen meal
Lean Cuisine Veggie Moroccan Tagine. Image: Supplied/Jono Steedman.

How to make frozen meals healthier.

As Jono points out, "Every single frozen meal in existence is low in vegetables, but this is very easily fixed! You may find you need more protein for your individual needs."

Here's a list of ways to quickly and conveniently bulk up frozen meals and liven them up with veggies and protein:

  • More protein = pre-packaged pulled chicken, canned tuna or smoked salmon.
  • More plant-based protein = canned beans and chickpeas, nutritional yeast flakes or hemp seeds.
  • More vegetables = steam fresh frozen veggie packets or pre-packaged baby spinach.
  • You can also eat your meal with a protein or veg snack like yoghurt or carrot sticks.

The verdict on frozen supermarket meals.

"In an ideal world, we’d all be eating meals made by tossing together some home grown produce we recently picked from our backyard vegetable garden with some kind of sauce we’ve lovingly tended for six hours... but sometimes, things just don’t quite go that way. These types of meals aren't a great long-term alternative to meal prepping or cooking at home, from a cost and nutrition perspective," Jono concludes.

That said, working them into a weekly meal plan can work for people who usually buy lunches, find themselves ordering UberEats for dinner, don't enjoy cooking or aren't physically able to, or need quick, nutritious meals on hand for emergencies (i.e. during a COVID-19 lock down).

So, the final verdict is:

Frozen supermarket meals don't get an A+ on the healthy food score card, but as Jono points out, neither does a lunch time kebab.

You can find out more about Jono Steedman on Instagram and on The Sports Dietitian website. Feature image: Instagram/@cocoandlucas and @supernaturefoods.

Do you have any great frozen meal recommendations? We'd love you to share them with us in the comments below!

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