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If You Miss The Days of MicroMagic, Try These

I wrote on Tuesday about how much I used to eat and enjoy MicroMagic products.

If it is microwave hamburgers you are looking for, you do have a few choices still available in stores.

I had to go especially buy one to take a picture of for this post because, in the past, I kept eating them before I could get a picture.

I had to go especially buy one to take a picture of for this post because, in the past, I kept eating them before I could get a picture.

Pita Cheeseburgers made by Kangaroo Brands, Inc. remind me a lot of MicroMagic burgers (I evaluated the cheeseburger variety for the sake of my hunger, and this post.) They still possess the microwave convenience that you enjoyed of yesteryear. I will warn you right off the bat you only get a half a burger per package. The burger is also quite thin, but this allows it to heat more evenly. It has a good fake-smoke taste. Since it comes in a pita, there is no bun to get overcooked. They are good to get your burger fix on, if you only want a half a burger. (I usually eat one for lunch, then supplement with chips or cookies.) If you are a big guy, you would definitely want to pack at least two into your lunch box.

They are good, but I must admit that the cheese-like substance on it that doesn’t melt in the microwave does disturb me.

Meijer Frozen Microwavable Cheeseburger

Meijer Frozen Microwavable Cheeseburger

If you live where there is a Meijer store near you, you are in luck. Meijer had great frozen hamburgers, cheeseburgers, and chicken sandwiches. Great, ya know, considering it is a frozen, then microwaved highly processed burger.

What to do if that bothers you?

Put bacon on it!

Oh yes, they offer a bacon cheeseburger as well (Although the bacon does not come out of the microwave crispy:(

Nothing fancy here. They come on traditional sesame seed buns. and if you catch one of Meijer’s famous “10 for $10 and the 11th is FREE” sales, well, then that makes these burgers cheaper than pita burgers or McDonald’s–with the bonus that they will survive in your freezer for months! Perfect in case of an unanticipated zombie apocalypse.

Of course, there is always the option of White Castle frozen burgers. They satisfy my craving sometimes, but I feel like they are an acquired taste (READ AS: grease & onions).

Ore-Ida Extra Crispy Easy Fries

Ore-Ida Extra Crispy Easy Fries

I believe the only major microwave french fries available right now are Ore-Ida Extra Crispy Easy Golden Fries.  They are a good facsimile of the grease and cardboard taste of the old MicroMagic.

I knew of the burgers and fries listed above before I started this post.  They are actually what made me nostaligic for the old MicroMagic of yesteryear.  But I didn’t know of any companies currently selling microwaveable milkshakes in stores across the country. And even if there were, I do not think they would be as tempting to buy without the microwave fast food branded trifecta that MicroMagic represented.

Then I walked into the grocery store tonight and found this:

Homemade Milk Shakes

Homemade Milk Shakes

I found Homemade Brand Microwave Milkshakes.

Right down the road at my local grocery store, I was able to assemble this:


Yum!   Nostalgia (As close at it gets, anyway!)

I taste-tested the chocolate milkshakes.  They were good.  I erred on the side of less microwave time, so it was still thick.  It wasn’t super creamy, but definitely hit the spot.  Well, the half of the cup I managed to wrangle away from M, my two-and-a-half year old anyway.

I also found a company called Cold Cow Ice Cream that is apparently putting in freezer/microwave combo display units in convenience stores across the country to satisfy your need for sweet that cannot be satisfied with candy bars or the usual ice cream novelties found in party stores, or the ice cream store that is likely right next door or down the block. I am very glad they did not have one of these in my store when I worked there. I would have eaten one every day. There website has a “milkshake finder” option to find the space age milkshake vending contraption closest to you.

That is all for today.

Happy unhealthy snacking everyone!

I found this humorous how-to on I thought I would share.

Remember This?: MicroMagic Frozen Foods

This is a new feature I am starting where I reminisce about old products that I do not want to be forgotten to the tunnels of time. Most of my first submissions will probably be food-related. There is nothing like the empty hole that is left behind in your kitchen when a delicious food product disappears from store shelves.

Do you remember MicroMagic frozen food? Because I do, very fondly.

Behold!  The MicroMagic burger!

Behold! The MicroMagic burger!

MicroMagic products first appeared in the frozen food section of stores in the 1980’s. There were MicroMagic hamburgers, cheeseburgers, chicken sandwiches, french fries, and three flavors of milkshakes.

It was a perfect trifecta of 1950’s car hop food: burger, fries, and milkshake. It was something you expected to see on the tray of Richie Cunningham’s car outside of Arnold’s on Happy Days (there were more external scenes during the first season or two of the show).


It was like going to McDonald’s, without leaving your home.

There were several years of my life where my main food source was MicroMagic cheeseburgers. I bought them far more than any of the other products. I was a latchkey kid, so I would eat them before my mom got home from work, or for lunch during summer break. Sometimes I ate them for weekend lunches.

FYI--The ones I bought only had English on the packaging.

FYI–The ones I bought only had English on the packaging.

I liked the fries as well. They were sold in three packs. Two boxes of fries often counted as a meal for me.

I probably only had all three (burger, milkshake, fries) together probably once. The milkshakes were kind of a waste of money. I mean, it was a cup of ice cream that you put in the microwave to partially melt it. And I seem to remember it tasting a bit like ice milk. Although sometimes it was fun to eat the fries and chocolate milkshake together and dip the fries into the ice cream.

Chocolate was the only option for me.

Chocolate was the only option for me.

While I remember them fondly and wish I could consume them again, I have to admit that they did not come out of my microwave at the height of quality. If I followed the package instructions, the burger would still be cold in the middle. So I always over-nuked it, which led to a hard top bun and the cheese melted off everywhere. But it tasted like a burger, complete with fake smoke flavor.

The fries came in a cardboard box that was lined with silver coating, so that they would attempt to get crisp. The fries could be soggy or over-crisp, depending on how long you cooked them. They were always kinda greasy.

Seeing as I was a middle school kid who wasn’t old enough to drive and had no fast food place in town to walk to, this was as good as it got.

I haven’t seen them on store shelves in years. I searched the Internet, but cannot seem to find out anything about what company used to make them. Some similar products exist today to give you a sense of how awesome they were. I will talk about that in my next post on Thursday.

I searched all over YouTube and found a few MicroMagic commercials for you. I will appologize now for making you crave a product that is no longer available.

I love the 80’s outfits!

I had a black hat like that girl!

100% Real American Cheese! (Whatever THAT means!)

[TV Trivia: The guy with the girl in the last commercial with the dark hair is probably actor David Kaufman. I remember him most from a show called Dweebs also starring Peter Scolari and Corey Feldman.]

I also found a Micro Magic Facebook fan page. It only has 13 likes, so feel free to hop over their and “like” that page. And while you are on Facebook, like “I’m not staking you“‘s Facebook page as well.

What I Learned This Week – 11/11/2012

This week I learned that General Mills, owner of both Totino’s and Jeno’s frozen pizzas, has started making Jeno’s pizzas smaller.


Note the difference in box size and weight. Blasphemes. (Note: While it looks as thought the boxes aren’t lined up, I assure you that they were and this is an illusion of the camera.)

Totino’s and Jeno’s used to be the same size and pretty similar in taste. I always preferred Jeno, maybe just because the parent company treated him like Totino’s less popular little brother. That, and I used to be able to buy Jeno with Canadian Bacon topping. But then grocer’s in my area stopped stocking it.

But this has gone WAY TOO FAR!

I haven’t drafted my complaint letter to General Mills yet, but it is on my to-do list. I don’t know how they will respond, but I can guess some reasons why they would have shrunk my Jeno’s pizza.

1. Now Jeno’s and Totino’s have brand differentiation at a glance.

2. This solves the sticky issue of high trans fat and sodium. Just make the portion smaller!

I am guessing the old Jeno’s pizza (using cheese as the sample pizza) was probably close to the 9.8oz weight that Totino’s still is sporting. The new Jeno’s pizza is 5 oz. That is almost 50% less than it used to be. Totino’s still claims to be 2 servings. Now Jeno’s claims it is “Pizza for One”. (I’m sorry, but I always ate the old Jeno’s frozen pizza as one serving.)

Totino’s Nutrition Facts (from box)

Serving Size: 1/2 pizza

Servings Per Container: 2

Total Fat: 25%*

Saturated Fat: 25%

Sodium: 25%

* All % Daily Value based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

Jeno’s Nutrition Facts (Unavailable*)

*Unavailable because I ate the sample pizza (sorry) and the General Mills website only lists nutrition facts for a cheese pizza at 6.9oz size (Man, how long have they been downsizing their pizza’s on me AND raising the price?)

General Mills, shame on you for denying me my Jeno that I have been faithful to for all these years. He was my stand-by dinner on a non-payday Friday night when I was too exhausted to do anything but stay awake for 18 minutes and then eat. (Pay-day Fridays? Why, fast food, of course!)

What is this world coming to, when a girl can’t count on her frozen pizza to remain unchanged?

On a more serious note, THANK YOU to all the veterans who have served our country on this Veterans Day, including my dad.

Random Fact: Jeno Paulucci, who created the Jeno’s brand and pizza rolls, died with a $100 million estate.  There is a lot of money to be made in frozen pizza.

Like Father, Like Son

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I don’t write much about parenting on my blog. Mostly because my blog is my escape from parenting. Also, I only have one 20-month old son, so what the hell do I know about parenting? I was an only child. I never babysat as a kid. There was never anyone younger than me in my family to take care of. So, my husband and I spend a lot of time winging it.

Today I wanted to talk about how my son is going to take right after his Daddy. My husband loves to disassemble things. He always has. (Ask any of his family members. They will tell you about the television he took apart and didn’t put back together again.) When our TV started smoking a few months ago, my husband had that thing unscrewed before it had even cooled off.

Mostly, I find this be an endearing quality. It is incredibly handy too. When our pipes to our shower burst several winters ago, he moved the tub surround (all one piece, mind you), replaced the pipes and the faucet, insulated them so that they would stop freezing every winter, put the tub surround back, and built a faux wall where before there had been an ill-fitting shelf unit. My passenger-side window in my car got stuck in the down position a week ago. While I didn’t want to put the money into getting the new part to fix it, he took the car door apart and put the window in the up position for me (especially nice since that is our only vehicle with working air conditioning).

There are a million examples like that. He is very handy. For all the things he actually fixes, there are only a handful of things, such as a toy remote control helicopter, mantel clock, or gun, that sit around endlessly, waiting to be reassembled. And usually there is a good reason they are not yet back together. Usually a piece has gone missing. Usually, that piece is a spring.

I can already see these traits of extreme curiosity in my 20 month old son, M. He has a Thomas & Friends book that plays sounds and songs, complete with a steering wheel that turns. Yet, often, I find him with it flipped over, trying to figure out how to get into the battery compartment. Lucky for both of us, it requires a screwdriver. So curious to find out what makes it work.

My child. Highly fascinated by the VCR. “What is this analog?”

The other day, M was laying flat on the living room floor, with both hands in the VCR door, checking it out. Just so you know, it was upstairs and we only recently brought it down. So it is new to M. And apparently, there is great mystery with what goes on inside of it.

The most obvious example of M being like his Daddy happens every time I vacuum the house. I have a Shark Navigator. I believe it is a pretty early incarnation. The one featured in infomercials about two years ago. I hope the company has fixed the design issues that my vacuum has. (One of these is that the sweeper exhaust, that goes through the hepa filter, blows directly in front of it. This caused me endless frustration chasing dog hair around the house I could not catch. So I had to rig it so that it vented to the side instead.) The dust cup is deceptively small. I have two dogs. Sweeping only the downstairs once a week, I have to empty the dust cup five times. And that is when M swoops in.

My Shark Navigator

When you remove the dust cup on my Shark Navigator, two foam filters are exposed. As soon as I walk to the wastebasket with the dust cup, a certain adorable toddler runs over and takes out the foam filters. Then he has dirty little hands and he leaves dirty little hand prints all over the house I am attempting to bring some semblance of clean to. Oy.

I have many more years of disassembling ahead of me. After all, my husband already has a mini bike and a box of random old engines in the garage for M to discover someday. It is a good thing we had a boy so that they can man-boy bond in the garage for years to come. But that will have to wait. For now, the garage is not child-proofed.

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Meijer Moms Sing “Man In The Mirror”

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On Monday, I was at Meijer. I was shopping for a few staple items–lunchmeat, bread, milk, the book “The Age of Miracles” (which is really good by the way, you all should read it), diapers, etc.

It was just my 20 month-old and I. As we were walking through one of the frozen food aisles, I passed a woman with a small child riding in the cart (as mine was) and another child walking with her. The mother was singing along to the music that was playing in the store. It was Michael Jackson singing “Man in the Mirror”. I noticed because usually I am the only crazy person who sings in the store (although on this occasion, I was not).

I turned the corner and went into the next aisle of frozen food. And I once again passed a woman with a small child riding in the cart, singing along to “Man in the Mirror”. I did a double-take to see if it was the same woman. But it was a different one.

Since than, the news has been filled with stories about the Jackson family fighting over Michael’s three kids. I am sure Michael would have hated that his family is fighting over his precious kids and how public it all is. But, I bet if he saw the mothers singing his music as they grocery shopped, it would bring a smile to his face.

I’m not stalking you. is NOW ON FACEBOOK! “Like” that I’m not stalking you and get an update when there is a new post to read. (It is sort of like YOU are stalking ME.)

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