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Pad Thai Noodle Bowl and Kung Pao Noodle Bowl Review by Dr. Anne Margaret WrightAnnie Chun's
PO Box 2418
San Rafael, CA 94901
Let me just start off this review with a big complaint! Here Annie Chun's is kind enough to send us two Noodle Bowls to sample for this review, a Pad Thai and a Kung Pao flavor, and I barely got to taste either one! Why, you ask? Because my kids practically swarmed me like they had not eaten in weeks when I made these delicious single serving bowls. Three of my sons all tried to be the first in line to get the next bite. I sat there helplessly watching their usual favorite snacks sit unattended while the boys took turns begging for another bite. It was pretty pathetic! What is a mother to do when her young sons want to try a healthy food and enjoy it enough to fight over who gets the next bite? Out of desperation, I informed them in my most grown-up voice that I needed to have a few bites too so that I could write an informed review. They were not impressed with this argument, but I still managed to taste enough to write intelligently about this topic.
Now, down to business. Annie Chun's Noodle Bowls are single-serving, on-the-go meals that will make you never want to go back to plain, dry ramen noodles. The noodles are precooked, not dried, the sauce is a thick, rich liquid, not a powder, and the vegetable toppings add even more flavor and texture. I had never tried Pad Thai or Kung Pao before, but both were wonderful, with a delicious, restaurant-quality flavor. It only takes a few minutes to make a meal, so they would be great for a healthy and quick meal that does not taste like a fast meal. The Kung Pao was spicy but not overpowering, and the kids loved it. There were also additional ideas and recipes on the packages, such as adding meat or vegetables for a complete meal. Annie Chun was born and raised in Seoul, Korea, and came to Northern California as an adult, so the flavors are authentic and part of a great American success story.
My only complaint about the Noodle Bowls is the price ($2.99 from her website or about $2.00 from other sources, such as www.amazon.com). With five kids and one income, I'm a self-confessed tightwad, and that is more than I would normally pay for one serving. That being said, the quality is vastly superior to the $0.14 ramen noodles that we normally buy, and for special occasions (or if we caught a good sale), I would definitely stock up. We ordered some other Annie Chun's products from www.amazon.com after trying her Noodle Bowls and have enjoyed those immensely as well. She also sells traditional sauces, soup bowls, rice dishes and meal kits. I was very impressed with the delicious flavor of these Noodle Bowls, the ease of making them, and the obvious kid appeal. I assumed this was a "grown-up" type of dish, but apparently not! If you love good Asian food, it would be hard to find anything that tops these delicious meals!