Priano Single-Serve Vegetable Lasagna (Aldi)

Stock image of Priano Single Serve Vegetable Lasagna packaging
A great frozen meal.

I was in a bind, and desperate for something to eat for dinner one evening, when I decided to run to Aldi to pick up something quick, cheap, and easy. My wife was going to be gone for most of the evening, so I just needed enough food for me. I thought about my usual fallback options--macaroni and cheese, a pizza of some sort, or a bag of chicken nuggets--but none of those things seemed enough to satiate my hunger. After a little bit of looking, my eyes settled on this Priano Vegetable Lasagna. The fact it was “marked down” (from $2.29 to $1.89…amazing how encouraging forty cents off can be) sealed the deal and I grabbed this and headed home.

Well in a bizarre turn of events, I ended up eating something else as a snack, and then we made a surprise ice cream run, which further filled me up. All of a sudden, this once delicious-looking lasagna just didn’t look appetizing to me at all…and neither did anything else. I was pretty stuffed.

I decided to just make it my lunch for work the following day, which was a welcome break from a peanut butter and jelly, or chicken salad sandwich. All it takes is between 5-7 minutes in the microwave (for reference, our crappy microwave at work is 700 watts and it only took five minutes). The end result looks like a crazed mess of deliciousness, with six different vegetables all globbing themselves on the top…don’t get it if you’re expecting it to look like the neat lasagna on the front of the box.

I’m a meat guy through and through, but I don’t mind trying vegetarian spinoffs every now and again. I was a little curious to see how flavorful it was going to be, both without the meat, and considering it’s a frozen dish. I guess given the fact there are six different vegetables in here, it shouldn’t be surprising, but I was a little shocked at just how complex and tasty this is.

For starters, the noodles have the perfect texture—not too soft or tough, and perfectly ridged—that makes them the perfect foundation for the veggies. I did not count the layers, but I’m pretty sure there are three, with a good bit of veggies in between each layer, as well as on top. Most of the vegetable flavors shine through…of the six (red pepper, onion, spinach, kale, broccoli, and carrots), I could distinctly taste four—and surprisingly the onion is not one of them (the red pepper was also indistinct to my limited palate). Still, those four remaining veggies, along with a delicious tomato sauce, combine to form a formidable flavor combo.

It's really like a dance on your taste buds, given all the different flavors at work, and especially for under $2, this is a pretty excellent little frozen dish. Even for its regular price of $2.29 this would be well worth it, as there's enough to fill up the average person. I definitely still prefer my lasagna with meat, but this is definitely a real nice alternative that I will pick up as it becomes available during future Special Buy cycles.

Overall: 8/10. I wasn't expecting much from a $2 frozen entree, especially one sans meat, but this multi-veggie lasagna from Priano is actually quite good. The combination of six vegetables sounds like it would clash, but it actually gives the flavor a kind of complexity that I was not at all expecting—it's like a flavor overload, but in a good way. Also surprisingly, I could clearly pick out four of the six vegetables by taste (shockingly, the onion was not one of them; this can be a good thing for all you onion haters out there). Of course, being cooked in the microwave there wasn't much texture or crunch to them, but the flavor was there. Decent amount of cheese between layers, too. Overall, this won't permanently replace the delicious meatiness of a “regular” lasagna for me, but I would definitely get this again in the future as a welcome change from the norm.

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