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Serve a great side dish: Cooking and Nutrition Tips

THANKS TO THE COUNTLESS boxed mixes on the market, you can make complex side dishes like pilaf and risotto in a snap. In fact, it might take you longer to decide which kind to buy than to prepare it. To speed up your shopping, we examined the labels of dozens of boxed rice dishes. We eliminated brands made with hydrogenated oil (which is bad for your arteries) and disqualified those with too much sugar, fat, or sodium. Then we tasted the ones that remained. These four passed our tests for nutrition, and their flavor surpassed the others.
BRAND              NUTRIENT INFO            COMMENTS

Casbah Spanish     3/4 cup: 160 calories,   Zesty tomato flavor with
Pilaf              4 g protein, 0.5 g fat,  a chile kick; would make
                   1 g fiber, 480 mg        a good stuffing for
                   sodium                   peppers.

Fantastic Four     3/4 cup: 160 calories,   The orzo, wild rice,
Grain Rice Pilaf   6 g protein, 1 g fat,    brown rice, and triticale
                   2 g fiber, 480 mg        (a wheat-rye hybrid)
                   sodium                   offer a great variety of
                                            textures and flavors.

Lundberg Creamy    1/2 cup: 140 calories,   Perfectly creamy, with a
Parmesan Risotto   5 g protein, 1.5 g fat,  subtle cheese taste and
                   1 g fiber, 490 mg        flavorful flecks of herbs.

Marrakesh Express  1 cup: 210 calories,     Hearty, smoky wild
European Wild      5 g protein, 0.5 g fat,  mushroom flavor, with lots
Mushroom Risotto   1 g fiber, 450 mg        of sweet carrots and
                   sodium                   savory onions.

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