Adam and I have a mailbox down near the road, but UPS and FedEx don’t often employ it for delivering packages. They don’t attempt our driveway either, so the A.D. Bowman and Son Lumber office has become the drop-off for all my food review packages.
Yesterday, when I received my package from Conte’s Pasta package for review, I was ecstatic. This is one product I have been dying to try. Blame my Italian side, but life without pasta seems like death to me; so, finding gluten-free pasta options for my husband and you, my readers, excites me. 🙂 (..and yes, the office secretary laughed at me for my excitement.)
Last night, the product review process began, and it is my pleasure to review a meal that Adam had for the first time in 7 years: stuffed shells in marinara sauce.
Allergy-Related Information: Gluten-free
Pros: There’s a lot to be said for the beauty of good Italian food. I’ve cooked a lot of gluten-free Italian food now, and to be honest, some noodles are better than others. Some gluten-free noodles and spaghetti dishes just don’t look appetizing. This pre-made meal, on the other hand, looked delicious!
Heated up quickly for only 6 minutes in the microwave, the noodles were soaking in a smooth, cheesy marinara sauce and steaming with an aroma that makes me drool just remembering. 🙂
Cons: I love saucy Italian food, but I think what I love more is cheesy Italian food. I would have liked to see some extra cheese covering the shells, but that is more personal preference than anything.
Pros: I was definitely impressed with the taste of Conte’s pasta. I did not have the thick rice or corn taste of some other gluten-free pastas I have tried. The pasta tasted authentic, and it was well-seasoned. The ricotta cheese filling for the shells was also well-balanced, not over-stuffed, and lightly seasoned. Overall great flavor!
Cons: I think the most disappointing factor with Conte’s stuffed shells was the marinara sauce. Although it was flavorful, both Adam and I felt it was a little “tomato-ey” for our taste and could have used some additional seasonings.
Pros: I thought it would be nearly impossible to have a microwaveable, gluten-free pasta dish that would not either offer crunchy noodles or a mushy mess. However, Conte’s Pasta has proven me wrong by offering wonderfully al dente noodles that held up well and yet were easily eaten without any crunch or toughness.
The cheese filling was creamy but hearty; and the sauce was smooth. It was overall a great mixture of textures, and the meal was overflowing with delectable moisture!
Cons: I really have no cons regarding this aspect of the stuffed shells meal. Great job, Conte’s Pasta!
What I Love
I still smile when I think of how excited Adam was to try this product last night, so I have to start off saying that what I love about Conte’s Pasta stuffed shells is the ability that the company gives me to offer my husband a meal he loves and hasn’t enjoyed for far too long. Overall, in regards to the product itself, I really loved the noodle texture. Conte’s Pasta has mastered the ability to produce quality pasta shells, which is extremely hard to do gluten-free!
What I’d Improve
As I mentioned earlier, I wasn’t too impressed with the marinara sauce. It wasn’t a bad sauce – don’t get me wrong – but some richer flavors with intention seasoning would move this product from an A to an A+ for sure.
Secondly, I would say larger portions would be amazing. The microwaveable meal is perfect for a bring-to-work lunch portion, but I think marketing the shells as a full-sized, pre-made dinner meal would increase its worth in any gluten-free kitchen.
Overall Rating: A
Buy these amazing, gluten-free stuffed shells here!!
1 thought on “Product Reviews: Conte’s Pasta Gluten-Free Stuffed Shells in Marinara Sauce”
I love stuffed shells and microwavable? awesome! It’s crazy how many people I know who have a gluten allergy, glad they have more options now!