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to think that people have no right to be smug about being somehow "above" ready meals?

(133 Posts)
frgr Sat 08-Jan-11 00:59:14

I hesitated to post this, but I'm not sure if I'm being unreasonable to get irked by people who smugly declare that they never buy ready meals. I am, of course, referring to another thread which I didn't want to derail, in which some posters are hinting that anyone who has eaten a ready meal with contaminated egg sort of deserves it for eating shite.

I don't eat a bad diet, due to finances I quite enjoy making soups and meals from scratch to bulk out in the week, but I do think there is a place, nay a NEED, for ready meals.

My nan can't mash potatoes due to weak wrists, I've heard a friend commenting "who'd buy that mashed up shite anyway", it allows her to easily eat mashed potato at a small premium, and she doesn't have to lift bags of spuds.

When I was ill in hospital after DCs, I couldn't drive to a takeaway, we live outside decent deliveries, and ready meals solved a problem of having an exhausted DH and me being too weak to make anything.

There is a space for ready meals as part of a wider, healthy diet. And I don't think i'm being unreasonable to think this. Any blanket statements about people being smug about not "eating shite" is being quite narrow minded. So there!

madhattershouse Sat 08-Jan-11 01:02:50

The reason people call it shite is that, that is what most of it tastes like!! But if it is the difference between beans on toast and a "real meal" then go for it! Woman cannot live on beans alone....or at least will be alone if that is all they eat (parp!!)

MissyPie Sat 08-Jan-11 01:03:13


I was in the supermarket this afternoon and some women behind me said "Eugh, I don't do reday meals"

I wanted to smack her one lol

Then again if people want to make life harder for themselves then so be it, but juts don't preach to us about it, hey?

MissyPie Sat 08-Jan-11 01:03:50

a few spelling errors in there...its getting late

BuzzLightBeer Sat 08-Jan-11 01:04:54

I don't eat ready meals but I can't bear the "I only eat hand-knitted lentils and free range organic eggs laid at the full moon" brigade. Well whoop de doo, have a medal.

cantspel Sat 08-Jan-11 01:06:04

my secret pleasure is morrisons ready mash with cabbage and onion. tastes better than any mash i ever made with a boiled spud.

No doubt by some holyier than thous my boys will be permantly scared from partaking of morrisons mash but i refuse to wear sack cloth and ashes over it.

Stangirl Sat 08-Jan-11 05:14:07

I love ready meals - mind you when I was a student I liked beanfeast and Smash.

In fact I've never made a lasagne because I don't see the point when the ready made ones are so lovely - particularly recommend the M&S one.

I don't buy many of them now because we don't have the money, I wouldn't give them to my baby and my DP won't touch most of them (though I consider him an unreconstructed food snob). I do however buy them occasionally as treats for myself for lunch.

RobF Sat 08-Jan-11 05:25:25

How about this for a ready meal: ategorized/2007/08/03/hungry_man_all_day_breakfast .jpg

and how nutritious it is:

Anyone feeding their kids stuff like that should be sent to prison tbh. Some ready meals aren't too bad I guess, but as an occasional thing, not everyday.

onceamai Sat 08-Jan-11 06:03:44

Overpriced. Just don't see the point of paying more for less. OK occasionally but for convenience not a treat.

fanjoforthemammaries7850 Sat 08-Jan-11 06:04:32

Yes, imprison people for giving their kids ready meals, no, why not just execute them? hmm FFS

Longtalljosie Sat 08-Jan-11 06:57:22

I agree. When my Nan lived in sheltered housing she lived on M and S ready meals which my dad and his brothers would pack into her freezer - she was too unsteady to cook and they were a lot nicer than meals on wheels!

These people getting all superior about the liquid egg food scare - do they make their own quiche? Blimey.

ChocolateMoose Sat 08-Jan-11 06:57:25

YANBU. I've seen lots of smug 'but why would anyone buy x ready-made when it's so easy to make?' Sometimes even half an hour faffing round cooking (plus washing up) is not attractive. Luckily we can afford it, though. It's harder to buy nice ready meals on a tight budget.

nikki1978 Sat 08-Jan-11 07:07:00

Well I suppose it depends. I buy some of stuff like M&S Steak and Ale stew which I guess is technically a ready meal. I also buy a few side dishes like red cabbage in a nice sauce to go with meals. I make some things from scratch and use bits of ready meal stuff.

Some of the Tesco Finest, M&S and Waitrose ready meal type stuff seems pretty nice to me. And the ingredients look ok to me.

Don't get me wrong I mainly do homemade stuff but if I am in a rush one day and need to do dinner with mash I will use a ready meal one. Also I cannot cook for shit so if I make a stew it tastes horrific - believe me I keep trying!

Anyway who gives a shit what everyone else does. I fucking hate people who spout of at every given opportunity about how healthily they eat blah blah blah. Twats.

TryLikingClarity Sat 08-Jan-11 07:29:11

OP - YANBU! I had been thinking the same thing too.

It is a bit of a MN phenomenon imo. Don't hear that many people in real life getting on like that.

It's the same as people who freak out about baby formula (but I don't want to descend into a bunfight about that) and baby food jars.

Ready meals do have their advantages in some situations - for people who aren't able to cook, in a rush etc.

nomoreheels Sat 08-Jan-11 07:39:25

I don't really do ready meals because the amount of fat and salt in a lot of them is shocking. They do have their place for convenience but I think anyone who eats them on a regular basis (eg I see people with trolleys full, looks like a weekly shop) are not doing their health any favours.

NoobyHoHoHo Sat 08-Jan-11 08:15:41

I think like most people we use a mix of fresh and convenience foods. A ready made chicken thing/lasagne with fresh salad or veg, or home made bolognaise with convenience garlic bread. As long as you're eating a good amount of fresh food, and avoid or eat a small smount of foods with salt/fat/sugar then what's the problem? I hate food snobbery/smuggery.

jester68 Sat 08-Jan-11 08:23:44


I make the majority of my food from fresh- usually casseroles/stews etc that I can chuck into the slow cooker in the morning and cook throughout the day si is easy to just serve up when ready in the evening.

We usually have 2 roast dinners a week and mostly use fresh veg but sometimes will use frozen sprouts etc depending on what we have in/money etc. Always use aunt bessies yorkshires.

For myself for lunch when my eldest is at school i may chuck a ready meal in the microwave

Missile Sat 08-Jan-11 08:31:33

My dad is loaded but single and lives on M&S ready meals lucky bugger

I cook from.scratch every bloody day and it gets to the stage where I'm bored of it. Every so often some Tesco Finest Steak Diane really hits the spot! Or dauphinoise potatoes mmmmmmm

Earthakitten Sat 08-Jan-11 08:36:21

I don't know if people have always been as smug as they are now.

It's quite a middle class things, isn't it? Being smug about run of the mill things like cooking dinner?

Anyone who gets a special warm glow inside over this kind of thing - or worse, gloats about it - really does need to get out more.

If there are any gloaters on this thread, just so you know, you come across as a complete twat. Just eat your dinner and shut up about it. grin

LovePinkBitsOfMyHorse Sat 08-Jan-11 08:43:30

I feel smug if I have managed to microwave a ready meal sometimes, half expect to be made a Dame for my services to Advanced Independent Domestic Skills. (as opposed to ordering a takeaway or just eating 1kg of houmous)

ModreB Sat 08-Jan-11 08:43:51

I don't use ready meals at all, mainly because I enjoy cooking. It is my wind down time at the end of the day, and a great stress buster as far as I am concerned, but I can see the attraction if you don't like cooking.

LovePinkBitsOfMyHorse Sat 08-Jan-11 08:44:00

Especially if I put it on a PLATE.

MamaVoo Sat 08-Jan-11 08:45:10

We love Goodfellas pizzas (3 for £5 at the mo)and probably have them once a week or so as we can't afford takeaway anymore. I couldn't give a toss if someone sneers at me for not making my own dough and organic tomato sauce because 'it's so easy and costs nothing'.

EauRouge Sat 08-Jan-11 08:57:19

I very rarely buy them because they are too expensive and not that nice. Being on a tight budget, I tend to cook in bulk and then bung the leftovers in the freezer.

I think it depends what you eat, deep-fried stuff covered in salt is not healthy even if you make it from scratch. As long as people are reading and understanding the labels then that's fine but I think there's a lot of misleading stuff on packaging like it'll say 'LOW FAT' in big letters but be loaded with sugar and salt.

Bunbaker Sat 08-Jan-11 08:59:08

I agree frgr. I cook from scratch 99% of the time, but IMO there are some things that are just not worth making from scratch.

For example I can make perfectly good pastry, but it is something I really can't be bothered to do so I buy it on the odd occasion I make quiche (yes I make my own rather than buy it, but that is because I can't eat cream).

I sometimes will buy a plate pie because making one from scratch is time consuming and a real faff.

Another reason where ready meals come into there own is where the individual ingredients may be difficult to find. When I make Thai curry I use a pre-made curry paste because kaffir lime leaves and galangal are as rare as hen's teeth round here. And, yes, sometimes I have been known to buy a complete Indian or Thai ready meal.

I also resort to convenience foods on holiday and often throw together some pasta with a bought sauce and serve it with a bag of preprepared salad - after all I am on holiday and don't want to spend all day cooking and OH doesn't want to spend all evening washing up.

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