The Lean Cuisine Bacon Alfredo Diet

by Jason Roth on July 31, 2009

I discovered this gem of modern nutritional science in a copy of my wife’s Self magazine. (Where and why I was reading this magazine would take some explanation not entirely appropriate for a blog about food, so you’ll have to take my word for it that my reasons were entirely innocent.)

Lean Cuisine "bacon alfredo pizza". Goes great with a Weight Watchers diet cheeseburger flavored milkshake.

Lean Cuisine "Bacon Alfredo Pizza". Goes great with a Weight Watchers Diet Cheeseburger Flavored Milkshake.

Presumably, the Self magazine ad for Lean Cuisine’s Bacon Alfredo Pizza was directed at women who believe they have too much self. So, we’re talking about a good chunk of women for whom the words “bacon”, “Alfredo”, and “lean” combined in one product description are like “gets you higher, faster” and “no more prostituting yourself necessary” coming from the mouth of your crack dealer. We’ve now entered dreamland, and long-term thoughts such as “What happens if I get thin but still like eating stuff like bacon Alfredo pizza?” are not likely to be considered.

What better way to train one’s self to eat healthier than to camouflage healthful food as junk. Does this pizza perchance come with an electronic grinder of some kind, and a funnel, so you can gorge yourself on its nutritional goodness even faster?

My first reaction to this pizza was: does this even sound appetizing to someone? I would think, if the idea was even somewhat enticing to a mainstream audience, I would have heard of a non-Lean Cuisine version of this. Wait a second. Domino’s would sell this. Domino’s has an Alfredo bread bowl pasta, for Christ’s sake.

Come to think of it, Domino’s is a perfect partner for Lean Cuisine. And Lean Cuisine is a perfect introduction to Domino’s. There’s gotta be some kind of cross-promotion to be had here. A free cheesy crust pizza with the purchase of every five or ten Lean Cuisine entrees? Oh, wait, cheesy crust is Pizza Hut. They’ll have to partner with Weight Watchers. No, I got it. Nice and simple: create a Lean Cuisine membership program. Call it, say, Lean for Life! Give members a membership card. Did I say “membership” card? I meant “discount” card. Good for half off your second Domino’s pizza, and two liters of Diet Coke for the price of one.

And always, always: add free bacon and Alfredo sauce to any order. But just one per Lean for Life! member, please!


{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Jackie March 28, 2011 at 2:37 pm

Why are you so angry at a pizza? I am a nutrition conscious college student. Most of my meals are homemade and consist of whole grains, tons of vegetables, eggs, a little bit of meat, and low amounts of cheese. However, after I go out for a night of drinking, I come home to this pizza rather than ordering a fatty, unhealthy pizza. Sometimes I also eat it for lunch or dinner. It is delicious. I find it amusing you wrote a review of a product while admitting that you had no idea what it would taste like.

Even if I wasn’t nutrition conscious, this pizza could help me get there. Some people need veggies snuck in a subtle way (the spinach) in order to eat them. My view it… it is better than no veggies! It is telling the person; you can have cheese, you can have bacon, you can even have alfredo and lose weight! The trick is portions, sneaking in vegetables, and whole grains. By eating this pizza, rather than your typical bacon pizza, the person is relearning appropriate portions sizes.

Jason Roth April 5, 2011 at 8:06 pm

I guess I thought it was obvious that it’s not the best training for someone trying to eat right just to switch to “lean” versions of what in the non-bizarro world would be absurdly unhealthy. A similar line of products are the dozens (or hundreds) of “diet chocolate” snacks and desserts. I am not arguing against pizza for people trying to eat better, but against bacon-alfredo pizza. Maybe it’s better to gradually modify one’s tastes so that a pizza doesn’t need bacon and alfredo sauce to sound appetizing. But since I am trying to lose some weight myself, you can feel free to file my advice in the trash can.

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