Allergen-free ready meals…it can’t be true?!


Having opened my sample of Meatballs in Tomato sauce from Ilumi yesterday, I couldn’t wait to try them for dinner! It being date night for the hubby and I, I had prepared dinner for my oldest daughter, Orlaith and my 6 month old ‘troubled eater’ Emelie…I call her that as she reacts to foods, but we are not sure if this is allergy, intolerance, reflux or all of the above!

Orlaith had decided on mashed potato to have with her Meatballs in Tomato sauce, so I left that in the pan until I’d opened the packet onto her plate, anticipating that she would need a good serving of potato to help pack out her plate; how wrong I was!

Orlaith, age 2, weighs just 24lbs; she has done since being around 14 months old. She now eats adult portions on adult plates. Before ordering foods for Emelie to try, I thought it best to trial her on the individual ingredients separately, so I can identify what is causing any reaction quickly. Orlaith was therefore the guinea pig last night!

There were five large meatballs in the pouch I had received, covered in tomato sauce which I imagined, like most microwave meals, would be thin and ‘pointless’; I was wrong! The sauce was thicker than I had anticipated, it was rich in a meaty, tomato flavour and was nothing like what I’ve seen in any other microwave meal before…the meatballs tasted fresh, home-made sprung to mind, and I quickly realised that because of the consistency and texture of them, they’d be perfect to blend for Emelie.

Looking at the website Ilumi have to sell their products from, I quizzed my husband on what he would have paid for the packet, considering baby foods in pouches are priced around the 99p mark. His guess was between £2 and £3. He was correct. Considering that these are freefrom products however, which usually carry a premium, I would have imagined the cost to be much higher…again, I was pleasantly surprised.

Orlaith devoured her dinner, making use of the rich sauce by spooning it onto what was left of her potato and making enthusiastic noises throughout her adult-sized meal.

She also slept like a log last night! 🙂 so date night went along as planned; a bottle of wine; home-made bruschetta; Italian meats and cheese along with a gorgeous chorizo and baked Camembert!

This blog is more than just a review of a meal. It’s a review of a product which has arrived onto the market due to huge consumer need. It’s a review of a company, who in my opinion, understand the problems allergy suffers face in daily life, when choosing products in the supermarket, when cooking at home and in paying premium prices for products because they suffer from a condition, which is no fault of their own! I’d love to see a spin off into baby foods next! Basic recipes with ingredients that are known to be gastro-problem-friendly would be a complete Godsend.

Ilumi offers hope to many allergy suffers, (and their exhausted, frustrated parents!) and I will most definitely be trying other products in their range, once I quickly try Emelie on more common food ingredients…tomato next week! Fingers crossed!

*Disclosure* this product was a free trial, requested by me.


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