Posts Tagged ‘@DollarTree’
I’ve written a whole lot about the products from Cincinnati-based Advance Pierre, the premiere “heat and eat” and “gas station sandwich” maker in the U.S. Often, besides in vending and C-stores, you’ll find their frozen products at dollar stores.
You know how much I love chicken fried steak? I’ve tried it all over the country, both from restaurants and the heat and eat varieties.
This product was made in the plant pictured below, and is comprised of beef, mechanically separated turkey, and, not kidding, about 150 other ingredients. Nuke of 90 seconds, stir “gravy,” nuke another 30, let sit for 30, and then “enjoy.”
Now ordinarily, I’d put this product in the category of “I tried so you don’t have to.” But I didn’t really “try” it. I had one bite and it was so awful, I couldn’t go on.
That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.
Circle A Ranch Country Fried Beef
I’m always searching out economical food buys, for three reasons: 1) I like to eat/maximize my own budget, 2) I have a special sympathy for groups like seniors and the economically disadvantaged in times of skyrocketing food prices, and 3) I’ve been through a few economic ups and down cycles in my life, tho largely of my own devising. In that regard, my history has been, “make a lot of money, meet a woman, lose the money, lose the woman.” Rinse. Repeat. Think I’d learn? Yeah, I did. This time around I outsmarted the situation. Ha.
As a result of the three reasons stated above, I’ve tested a lot of foods from dollar and discount grocery stores, and “most” aren’t all that bad. Some are astonishingly good, even, like the egg rolls, and empanadas. I don’t really mind the heat and eat burgers, either. The ‘fishwich’ is as good as any fast food offering at 1/3 the price or less.
At Dollar Tree, management has wisely created house brands, instead of selling manufacturer close outs. They can control consistency, quality, and inventory that way. Dollar Tree’s distribution company is called Greenbrier International, and it serves the 5000 Dollar Tree stores and thousands of others, as well.
Breckenridge Farms is one such store brand, and their breakfast of scrambled eggs, sausage links, and hash browns (for a dollar!) is manufactured by a division of Idaho’s JR Simplot, one of America’s largest privately owned food processors, and certainly number one in the potato processing business. (Irrelevant sidenote: did you know ten percent of the entire potato crop in the US goes to McDonalds?). (Another irrelevant sidenote: there are massive french fry processing plants along the Columbia River in Oregon, and you don’t wanna know what they dump in the river, fo sho).
My breakfast was made in N. Charleroi, a Pennsylvania burg of 1200 souls, just off I-70, on the Monongahela River, 30 minutes south of Pittsburgh. It’s one of nearly a dozen Simplot plants in the US. (They have some in China and other international locations as well). The Pennsylvania USDA plant (# 9969) is capable of making sandwiches, tray and bowl meals. Not sure of the Google map accuracy on this one, but they show the plant as along the river (below).
My 300 calorie breakfast was heated for 3 minutes in the microwave, and the end product is relatively free of undesirable ingredients, and fairly decent in the RDA department. No corn syrup to be found on the ingredient list, the sausage is pure pork, no ‘mechanically separated poultry’ (whew) as ingredients. The eggs are……eggs.
Would I buy it again, recommend it? Yes. There are other varieties as well, pancakes, waffles and such. Stock the freezer, feed the kiddies.
Breckenridge Farms Breakfast Review
I have previously wowed you with my reviews of other products from AdvancePierre, like the Big Az cheeseburger. We’ve also taken a look at “Dollar store” (generically using the name) foods like cheeseburgers, fish sandwiches, and empanadas. I actually preferred the fish sandwich to any of the fast food outlet offerings.
AdvancePierre, based in Cincinnati, is a leader is providing products to food service, vending, and c-marts. They have eleven factories across the U.S.
So these are a buck for two sandwiches, which ends up being about 25 – 33 % less than White Castle six packs. Instructions call for wrapping in a paper towel, heating for 60-70 seconds, and letting sit for 30 seconds prior to consuming.
The only curiosity (to me) was that in the manufacturing process, the two burgers share a single slice of cheese. (see pic).
Verdict? If you like frozen White Castles, you’ll find these OK. They have a “grill flavor” in place of W.C.’s “onion flavor.” They taste beefy and are parked on ultra soft-buns. Load them up with condiments however you like, and enjoy.
I have to admire AdvancePierre, frozen heat and eat foods has got to be one of the toughest segments in the industry, and they do a bang-up job.
Frozen Sliders Review