Monday, 1 July 2013

Ilumi gluten-free foods review

Quite often I review easy foods along with a smattering of my own recipes, I really do need some fast but tasty meals now. I have just added to my very busy home life, hubby,teens and a lovely Grandma I care for permanently,by breaking my finger. Sounds really slight but it is torn ligament and broken bone, it will be along time mending and I am not allowed to use the whole hand.

So the lovely people at ilumi who have just launched the range exclusively online sent me some dishes to ease my days.

Now the most important thing I can tell you is that ilumi make allergen free meals. I always worry about this, as you know I used to joke that many 'free from' foods had a 'free from' taste label in my mind. Since being a blogger and reviewing some fine brands I have had to change my thoughts. I have tried biscuits,risottos,cakes but not meals that were allergy free. So people with say gluten, dairy or nut allergies don't just have to cook meals from scratch to ensure their health.  

The second stand out feature are these meals,sauces and soups are straight from the cupboard, I love these foods,they are fab,my fridge is always overflowing and too small by far. 

My first try was the Slow Cooked lamb Casserole, this was the meal that stood out as I make this dish, so it would have to stand up to home cooked. The serving is a lovely sized portion for one person, so  if your family who do not have allergies fancy their fave takeaway or quick meal, its simple for you to have a meal without the faff of preparing.

One other benefit is camping,a simple easy warming soup or stew, again the ease of prep will make the camp meal easy, warming and tasty. I would heat it in a pan,although at home the microwave is recommended.

Its easy to heat, you just massage the pouch,I noticed though unlike some pouch meals it was  not all clumped together,I could feel chunks of meat which was a good start.

Then its a heat in the microwave for 2 mins and stand for 1 minute,just leaving time to serve your preferred vegetable.

The taste is good,I do have that second where I hope something I am trying isn't too bad, a processed or just plain strange taste. Happily its good, lovely tender lamb, thin perfectly cooked slices of potato and sweet carrots, delicately flavoured with rosemary and mint. 

As I eat I have to look at the pack as its got a lovely thick gravy,curious to see the thickening agents as most are flour, the ilumi meal is made with potato flour, rice flour and corn flour. 

I thoroughly enjoyed the slow cooked lamb,it met my expectations and went beyond for a pouch meal.

I decide I am taking these meals camping definitely,one for ease,two for storage, great when a fridge is not available.

Oh and as for 'free from' ,I guarantee it may be free from many products that certain diets prohibit,but its certainly not free from taste!

Popover to the facebook page,they have some lovely offers to try the meals with discounts too

ilumi products are manufactured by experts in gluten-free foods, the Tanfield Food Company, at its County Durham site. No nuts are used in the factory, or allowed on the premises, providing 100% reassurance that ilumi products do not contain nuts. The range has been developed by Annette Peters of The Food Practice, who has also worked as a consultant for M&S and Duchy Originals.

Unrivalled in the market when it comes to taste and quality, every product in the range is guaranteed to be free from nuts, gluten and milk.

Chicken Cacciatora

What’s on the menu?
Creamy soups, flavoursome sauces, main dishes and accompaniments; whether you’re planning a meal from scratch or looking for something convenient to heat up after work ilumi provides quick and delicious meal solutions. Unlike other allergen free options, the ilumi range explores world foods as well as British tastes, with soups such as the Thai flavours of Tom Kha Gai and comforting Spicy Butternut Squash, while main dishes include Indian inspired Kerala Chicken Curry and traditional Slow-Cooked Lamb Casserole. Exciting sauces such as Sweet Soyand Ginger Stir Fry Sauce and Shallot and Peppercorn (great with a juicy steak!) add to the varied range to prove that having an allergy does not mean meals have to be uninspiring.
Spanish Style Rice and Vegetables

Rather than taking the allergens out of meals, ilumi products are developed using only the best allergen free ingredients from beginning to end. The recipes are rigorous and totally transparent, so that every ingredient has a purpose. Even the packaging is designed with allergy sufferers in mind, with all the important information displayed clearly on the front of the pack. In case you need more proof of ilumi’s allergy friendly status, the brand new range will be launched at the Allergy and Free From Show, Olympia, London on June 7-9 2013.

Nutritionist Dr Janet Aylott said: “It is reassuring to see that the traditional ‘free from’ market is addressing the needs of allergy-sufferers; namely providing variety, taste and convenience, whilst providing an absolute transparency on the ingredients. Until now it has been hard to find restaurant quality food suitable for allergy sufferers, so ilumi will be  a breath of fresh air for the ‘free from’ category.”

The new website provides a host of information for people looking for the latest news and advice in the world of allergy-free food.  Visitors will find health tips, expert advice, cookery tips and serving suggestions, along with a weekly magazine and fantastic special offers.

ilumi products are available exclusively from from 20 May 2013.
Prices range from £1.00 to £3.25.

Disclosure: I receive ilumi products to try, this in no way shaped my opinion or this review.


  1. These look really nice, and having to be careful about what I eat, I'll definitely give these a try!

  2. Looks good. I am glad they are helping you out ;-)

  3. These look like they would be great for some of my family membes

  4. very interesting- will look out for these

  5. Its great to see a really appetising recipe for someone who cannot tolerate gluten.