A Night off from Cooking thanks to Mrs Tinks

February 6, 2014

tastyI cook from scratch practically each and every night of the week, and generally thoroughly enjoy doing so. After all food and cooking truly are my passion and I spend a good part of my day thinking about what to cook for dinner!.  But just occasionally I relish a night off, having run out of all inspirational steam or indeed desire. Believe me it does happen. And then there’s those times we’ve been busy out and about and there’s no time for dinner prep. On those occasions it’s great to have a plan, ideally something healthy but yummy to magically pull out of the fridge or freezer and simply heat up. Enter Mrs Tinks.

I’ve recently been getting to know the lovely Julia the brainchild behind Mrs Tinks ready meals for kids. As is the way these days we met on Twitter and conversed there on in. Julia is a Mum of three and loves to cook herself but also appreciates a night off too. Initially set up as a local project in South East London Julia supplied nearby parents with good, honest and healthy meals so they could have a welcome night off. But she’s recently gone national with her range of extremely appealing and tasty meals being stocked by Ocado and Waitrose. And naturally I was delighted when Julia offered to send me her current product range to try out on my own kids, and indeed pretty excited about the prospect of a few nights off!.

I have to confess to not knowing an awful lot about the kids ready meal market in the UK. Actually make that nothing. Having been living until recently in rural France ready meals were not an option. Supermarkets did stock the odd one or two but they most certainly weren’t aimed at children, and resembled the first plastic ready meals of 80s UK. Not something I’d even be feeding a dog, let alone my kids. And since we’ve returned it’s not occurred to me to check them out, until that is Julia kindly offered us to trial Mrs Tinks.

Mrs Tinks Collage

My kids have now tasted them all, the Beef Lasagne, Fish Pie and Chicken Curry. All except the Fish Pie handily contain one of their 5-a-days, though I did serve with additional steamed veggies. I couldn’t help myself! The feedback from the monsters was all good, though the Fish Pie came out a definite tops, but it is their favourite homemade dish. Frannie wolfed down two portions (which equated to an entire box!), which is very out of character for her and proclaimed “I want to eat all of it in the world”. High praise indeed. I love the fact she adores fish pie with salmon but still protests how much she hates it when served plain. Kids eh. I noticed a good proportion of fish in the pies and in my grown up view thought it was really tasty. If I was to be pernickety I’d personally prefer to see a little more veg sneaked in there other than the few pieces of carrot. But that’s probably just me!.

The Beef Lasagne was their next favourite and I was pleased in my mumsy way to see more veggies (tomatoes, sweet potato & carrots) plus it had a good homemade taste. I would say that the least popular was the Chicken Curry but that would be true if my kids had homemade versions of all these dishes!. They did however both polish off their servings and Frannie commented “a bit spicy but not that spicy so I liked it”. Jacques said it was “yum”, as he did all the meals. The tomato and coconut curry sauce was very gently spiced and would definitely not be too spicy for kids, and pleasingly packed full of butternut as well as chicken.

I should also point out all the meals contain only real and natural foods, the ingredients line up resembles a recipe for each of the meals which says it all really. There’s no added salt, sugar, artificial flavourings or preservatives. And the packaging itself is fun, vibrant and extremely appealing to all ages, with lots of fab facts for slightly older kids. We definitely give Mrs Tinks a firm thumbs up and I’ll be buying more to keep in the freezer for a future night off or two. Thanks so much for sending us your yummy food Julia!

Do check out the Mrs Tinks site for reader recipes and tips and join in with #WhatsforTea events on Twitter, Facebook and Instragram (you’ve probably noticed the hashtags). There’s often fab prizes up for grabs for inspiring family recipes.

Disclaimer: I received Mrs Tinks meals to try but I was not required to write a positive review, no monies exchanged hands and any opinions expressed are my own.


24 thoughts on “A Night off from Cooking thanks to Mrs Tinks

  1. Sylvia

    Great idea! I’m always a bit sceptic when it comes to food in packets and especially for kids, but I’m glad you Jacques and Frannie liked 😉 there is no better recomendation than a happy tummy!

  2. Ren Behan

    Empty plates and bowls – always a good sign. Great to see some care and attention being brought to kids meals. I haven’t seen this range yet so thanks for highlighting it.

  3. Choclette

    If you can get healthy tasty ready meals, why not. We sometimes resort to beans on toast or a takeaway when we can’t face cooking. Sometimes life is just too busy.

  4. Heidi Roberts

    It’s always good to have a night off and when you know the kids are getting a nourishing and tasty meal it feels even better!



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