I am often in a hurry to fix dinner. That means I don’t always take the time to cook from scratch. However, I am particular about what I feed my family so I seldom repeat failed experiments.
Everyone in my family likes pasta so I do serve it from time to time. One of my husband’s favorite pastas is the Knorr’s Creamy Garlic Shells. They come from the company’s Italian Sides collection.
Creamy Garlic Shells are just what they sound like, little conch shells of pasta cooked in a creamy garlic sauce with parmesan and romano cheeses. They are quick and easy to make and they taste absolutely delicious.
Knorr’s Italian Sides come in packets around 5 oz in size. A serving represents 2/3 cup of the finished dish. There are two servings inside each package.
There are 260 calories inside each serving. Of that, 40 calories are fat-related.
There are less than 5 grams of fat in Creamy Garlic Shells. Of that amount, 2.5 grams comes from saturated fat. However, there is no trans fat found in this dish.
The bad news is that there are 47 grams of carbohydrate, 4 grams of sugar, 660 milligrams of salt and 10 milligrams of cholesterol in Creamy Garlic shells. On the flip side, this pasta also offers some nutritional value. These shells include 8 grams of protein and 1 gram of fiber. Additionally, they contain 30% of the daily-recommended amount of folic acid and thiamin, 20% of the required niacin and 15% of the needed riboflavin. That’s not all. They also offer 10% of the daily-recommended amount of iron, 4% of the required calcium and 2% of the needed vitamin A.
Ingredients include B1 and B2, butter, cheese cultures, cornstarch, corn syrup, cream, enzymes, garlic and garlic powder, natural flavors, parmesan cheese, parsley, pasteurized milk, romano cheese, salt, soy lecithin, wheat flour and whey.
Fixing Knorr’s Creamy Garlic Shells is easy. They can be cooked on the stove or inside the microwave.
To microwave, simply pour 1 Â¾ cup of water, Â½ cup of milk, 1 tbsp. of butter and the shells into microwave safe bowl. Stir the ingredients thoroughly and then cook them on high for about 15 minutes.
I recommend removing the bowl after 10 minutes and stirring it again before completely the microwave process. You can microwave the shells for an additional 2 to 3 minutes if needed.
Remove the dish from the microwave. Allow the shells to sit and the sauce to thicken for about 1 minute. Then serve as desired.
To fix the shells on the stove, begin by bringing 1 Â½ cups of water, Â½ cup of milk, and 1 tbsp. of butter to a soft boil. Then stir in the shells and mix thoroughly.
Continue boiling the pasta for roughly 10 to 10 minutes or until it is tender. Remove the pan from the stove and pour the shells into a bowl. Let sit for 1 minute to rest and then serve as desired.
This is one of my favorite pre-prepared pasta dishes. It really tastes authentic and it is a guilty little pleasure. Here is my summary review:
Taste: 5 stars. Knorr’s Creamy Garlic Shells are delicious. Need I say more?
Ease of Preparation: 5 stars. This pasta dish is easy to fix and takes less than 15 minutes.
Freshness: 5 stars. Knorr is a stickler for freshness. I can honestly say that I have never had any of their products that didn’t taste as fresh as the day they were packaged.
Nutrition: 4 stars. Yes, it is high in carbohydrate and sodium. But it is low in cholesterol, fat and sugar. Additionally, it is packed with nutritious vitamins.
Reputation: 5 stars. Knorr has earned its good reputation. It never fails to please.
Packaging: 5 stars. Knorr’s Creamy Garlic Shells come in a white and green package with a blue banner identifying the product type. The Knorr and Italian Sides logos are prominently displayed. The package also contains the Lipton logo to inform customers of the merger between the two brands.
Green Value: 3 stars. While the packaging can’t be reused, it is minimized as much as possible.
Ease of storage: 5 stars. The package is relatively small, measuring in at 8 Â½” by 5 Â½” by Â¾”. It should fit well into any kitchen cabinet, pantry or drawer.
Availability: 5 stars. Most large grocery chains carry Knorr products. They can also be found in major discount department stores with a food section like K-Mart or Wal-Mart. A few convenience stores carry select varieties of Knorr products.
Price: 5 stars. The price fluctuates form store to store and whether or not it is on sale. I got mine for $.76 at the commissary on sale. It normally retails for around $1 there. It can be slightly more expensive at other grocer’s. The highest price I’m aware of is $1.79.
Product purchase probability: 5 stars. I love this dish and it will likely always be in my cupboard.
Final rating: 4.7 stars. This is a first-class product!
5 stars = outstanding
4 stars = good
3 stars = average
2 stars = below average
1 star = poor