Veganuary 2019 is already off to the most incredible start, with a vegan seafood range and 3 pizzas at Sainsbury’s, the Gregg’s sausage roll, the Jackfruit addition at Pizza Hut, the new vegan sandwiches at Boots, and now M&S have bought out a range of 60 vegan meals – and we’re only on day 3!
We have an M&S Food Hall down the road from us so we picked up a few bits for dinner last night. I’ll probably update this post as and when we manage to try other bits from the range, but I didn’t want to blow my entire loan on vegan mac & cheese in one night. Tempting, but potentially irresponsible.
It took us ages to decide what to get as the range is so extensive and everything looked amazing – you know at M&S you’re getting good quality food, too! There was Roasted Mushroom Stroganoff, Sweet Potato Katsu Curry, Pizzas – even a Vegan Potato Salad and Coleslaw, which I thought was really cool and well thought-out as it’s often the little things like that that vegans miss out on.
We eventually decided on the Cauliflower Popcorn, Cashew Mac, and Dirty Fries, as we were feeling junk food – not quite New Year New Me just yet. Each item cost £3, which is fairly expensive but we would have this in place of a takeaway or something I think, it’s not something we’d eat every night for dinner. Also, apologies for the less-than-appetising photos, but they are ready meals at the end of the day, they probably aren’t going to get top marks for presentation.
The Cauliflower Popcorn was probably my favourite; it had a bit of a scampi texture and taste to it, and the batter was really crispy. It came with a Buffalo Dip that was more Sweet Chilli than Buffalo, but delicious nonetheless! 8/10 from me, the main downside was the price for the portion size.
The Dirty Fries were topped with tomato sauce and bechamel sauce, which made them relatively soggy. A shame, as the chips themselves looked like they’d be quite crunchy but being cooked in the sauce must have been a bit of an overkill! They had literally like 4 strands of vegan cheese on too. They’d be much better with more cheese rather than the white sauce, and also maybe some kind of bacon alternative for a bit of saltiness. 6/10 would rather make my own but they do the job if you want something quick and junk-y.
The Cashew Mac was really tasty; the sauce was more creamy than cheesy, and looking at the packaging I realise it isn’t meant to be cheesy at all – that’s fine, it was still damn good. The addition of mushrooms definitely added a lot of flavour, and the crunchy breadcrumb topping was great for texture. 8/10 because my brain was expecting cheese.
This post will be updated as I inevitably eat my way through the entire range.
This is topped with tomatoes, a cauliflower sauce and spinach, which are kinda weird toppings for a pizza calling itself ‘Margherita’, as I’d usually expect that to at least have some cheese on it. I really enjoyed the crust on this and the general flavour, but it could definitely do with some cheese and a crispier base as it was pretty soggy. We picked this up for 35p but I wouldn’t pay full price for it to be honest. 6/10
Thai Curry & Jasmine Rice
My favourite item from the range so far! I absolutely loved this! It was creamy and delicious and spicy – like to be honest, much spicier than I thought it would be but that just made it even better. I’ve never cared about thai curry that much but this was so fragrant and filling; it’ll definitely be my go-to when I’m craving warm, comforting food but also feeling super lazy. So basically every night. 9.5/10
Danny described this as “quite nice but a bit squishy” and I’d have to agree. The spiced harissa sauce and vegetables have great flavour, but the aubergine is a bit squishy and with the couscous underneath (which has a nice herby taste) the texture is kinda boring and I wouldn’t have been able to eat one to myself. Nice as an accompaniment to a main dish, I would say! 6.5/10
BBQ Pulled Jackfruit Pizza
I looooved this, thought it was near enough perfect. We added some vegan cheese at home which brought it to a solid 10/10 – but without, I’d say perhaps 9/10.
Also bloody delicious. Is it mushroom mince? Either way it’s bangin, very tomatoey and garlicky with a little sprinkling of cheese for good measure. Not sure if I’d buy this full price purely because this is one dish that I can actually make fairly well/quickly/easily, but I’d say it’s worth trying out! 8.5/10
Sweet Potato Biryani Wrap
I bought this for Danny to take to work so I haven’t actually tried it, but he wasn’t overly impressed, he kinda just said it was fine but he wouldn’t get it again. However a friend of mine absolutely loved it and recommended it to me so who knows! It sounds like the kinda thing I would love but maybe the flavour is lacking a bit? I’m saying 5/10 based on Danny’s review.
I will almost definitely be adding to this post as and when I try more offerings from the range as there is at least 10 other things I want to try! Have you tried any of this range? What do you think of it? Let me know in the comments!