Product: Aldi liveGfree Gluten Free Cheese Pizza – $4.99
The other night, I blogged about the liveGfree gluten-free product line, which was introduced to the market at the beginning of May (also Celiac Awareness Month…so I see what they did there!). They have an entire line of mixes, snacks, pastas, and even some frozen items. I was blown away the day I stopped in at Aldi…and pretty much walked out of there with one of everything (save for the mixes, because I have so many at the moment I need to work through first!).
I walked out of my local Aldi with a lot of food…and all of it rang up under $30.00. This is huge for me because my budget on groceries is ridiculous. Seriously. I am always over budget…but I have to eat and I have to buy specialty foods in order to do so. So, I make cuts other places in order to be able to properly feed myself.
Now, recently, I had been moving away from having a lot of processed foods in my apartment. And that meant I had a rather empty freezer. But that changed. Oh…boy…did that change.
One of the products that I returned home with that afternoon was the liveGfree Gluten Free Cheese Pizza.
I am actually very, very picky about my gluten-free pizzas. You might have noticed. HA! And it is very rare that a gluten-free frozen pizza really intrigues me. There are some that do, and, there have been some that have been really good. Heck, some have been better than some gluten-free pizzas I have had at restaurants. I was actually a little reluctant about cooking this up for dinner…because I didn’t want it to suck. This was dinner, after all. That might have been the reason I baked up some kale chips to have with the pizza. Subconsciously, of course.
That being said…I got home from work tonight and pulled out my pizza stone. I arranged the racks in the oven and got my stone in there to warm as the oven preheated. I pulled the box out of the freezer and flipped it open, checking to see how much pizza I would be eating that night. After checking and double checking the serving size (it’s a small-ish box), I realized that my roommate and I were to feast off the pizza over the course of two nights. Two nights! Four servings…two slices each.
I opened up the box and removed the pizza. It was smaller than a standard dinner plate. In fact…it was just small. The pizza itself was on a pale crust. I removed my now warm stone from the oven and took the plastic wrap off the pizza. Barely any crust or sauce was evident under the layer of frozen cheese that was on top. I placed the pizza on the stone and tossed it into the oven to bake. It takes about 10 minutes at 450°F.
Ten minutes later, I pulled the pizza out of my oven…and was amazed. The frozen cheese had gotten that nice bit of golden color to it, and it had turned all gooey and rich and melty. The sauce was now visible through the cheese. And the crust…had plumped up. WHAT?! No cracker crust??!! A little bit of joy spread through my heart when I noticed that.
I got out my pizza cutter and sliced the pizza into fourths, then cut those into two slices each. I actually was glad I made the kale chips because these slices of pizza were so small! Little-bitty-baby pizza slices. Ah well. I put them on the plate with a healthy helping of kale chips and dinner was served.
Point of interest. The pizza didn’t suck. In fact, it was decent. Cathy compared it to Totino’s Pizza. You know…those crappy, but you love them, frozen pizzas you used to eat?! I haven’t had one in years…so I don’t even remember what they taste like!! But, that’s what Cathy said it reminder her of eating. And she loved how much cheese was on there. I concur. Usually frozen pizzas skimp of the toppings, but the cheese was the star of this Cheeze Pizza. The crust had a bit of thickness to it, and turned a nice golden color. It was soft, not really crunchy…but still good. I appreciated having an actual crust more than anything. The toppings were basic and simple, but they melted and warmed up beautifully in the oven. When it involves gluten-free pizza…it’s all about that crust. And I think the liveGfree crust on the Gluten-Free Cheese Pizza definitely shines.
Ingredients in the crust of this pizza are basic…rice flour, corn starch, whole eggs, water, canola oil, baking powder, sugar, salt, tapioca dextrin, yeast, guar gum, xanthan gum, and sodium alginate. The toppings on the pizza include tomato sauce, mozzarella cheese, romano cheese, roasted garlic, and olive oil. Not the best of ingredients, but not a laundry list and not too horrible in the grand scheme of things. And definitely not bad for budget gluten-free frozen food!
Nutritionally speaking, this cheese pizza serves 4 people (small people with small appetites, I guess), with a serving being 2 slices. This serving will provide you with 170 calories and 7 grams of fat. These two slices of pizza also provide 40 mg of cholesterol, 210 mg sodium, and 2 grams of sugar. This serving will also give you 2 grams of fiber and 5 grams of protein. Trust me…you will not feel full after eating just 1/4 of this pizza.
But…at least it tastes good.
I know…it’s frozen…it’s processed…but it fits my budget…it’s quick…and it actually surprised me…it tasted good! I really hope Aldi keeps the liveGfree line in their stores. They will definitely see me there more often if they do! I can’t wait to see what the other products I purchased taste like!