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Taste test: ready-to-go tuna salad

As the holidays wind down, many of us are ramping up our resolutions to eat healthier in the new year. Our tasters wanted to help by trying some of the ready-made tuna salads designed to go right from the can, container or pouch to the top of a salad or sandwich bread. Judges found one of these low-calorie offerings they could highly recommend.

 

Serving size One pouch One cup One can
Calories 100 80 220
Fat/Fiber 3g / 1g .5g / 0g 18g / 0g
Sugars/Sodium 0.5g / 410mg 5g / 330mg 4g / 320mg
Carbs/Protein 4g / 13g 7g / 12g 7g / 7g

Kathy Saunders, Times correspondent

 

Product/Score

(out of 100)
Starkist

Sandwich-Ready 70
Chicken of the Sea 36 Bumble Bee with

Crackers, Ready to Eat 30
Judges'

comments
Good tuna taste that didn't overwhelm the spread made this the top pick from our panelists. "It looks like tuna should," said one. "It's definitely a winner." The tuna salad was light-colored and blended with onions and relish. One judge liked the crispy chunks of celery in the salad as well. "This is guaranteed to give anyone tuna breath, but in a good way," he said. Judges enjoyed the sweet and peppery flavor of this tuna, but they were disappointed in the texture. "It's pasty and mealy," said one. Another said it looked overly processed. "Sorry, Charlie! I don't care for the pureed texture and the off-brown color," said another. Moist consistency and lots of carrots, onion, celery and pickle were welcomed in this salad, although the overall consensus was negative. "It's an attempt at gourmet-style tuna salad but it's off in flavor and color," said one judge. Another said the mixture had "a weird, canned tuna taste" with sugary undertones. "They should have named this 'A Hint of Tuna,' " he added.
Would

they buy?
Three of the four judges said yes. One of the four judges said yes. One of the four judges said yes.
Shopping information $1.39 for a 3-ounce pouch from Publix. $2.59 for a pack of two 2.8-ounce cups from Sweetbay. $1.59 for a 3.5-ounce can from Publix.


Panelists: Kay Studer, personal chef; Wayne Conery, manager of the R Bar on Treasure Island; Julie Overton, consumer and mother of four; and Jeff Jensen, public information officer for the city of Treasure Island. All foods were tasted blind.

Send suggestions for product testing to: Taste section, Tampa Bay Times, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg, FL 33731 or email them to jkeeler@tampabay.com. Please put TEST SUGGESTION in the subject line. To read past Taster's Choice columns, go to food.tampabay.com.

Taste test: ready-to-go tuna salad 01/01/13 [Last modified: Monday, January 28, 2013 8:20am]

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