Albertsons Targets Flash-Frozen Meals for Busy Families

Marian Zboraj
Digital Editor
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Albertsons Targets Flash-Frozen Meals for Busy Families
Albeertsons' Open Nature Savory Skillet Meals are flash-frozen to lock in flavor and shorten the time it takes to cook a meal.

Albertsons Cos. is lending busy home cooks a hand by expanding its Open Nature brand with new flash-frozen Open Nature Savory Skillet Meals.

Using high-quality natural ingredients that are free from antibiotics and artificial ingredients, flavors or colors, Open Nature Savory Skillet Meals are ready in minutes using only one pan.

“Our culinary experts have created easy and delicious meal solutions that make all of dinnertime — from prep to the meal to cleanup — more enjoyable for everyone,” said Chad Coester, SVP of Own Brands. “We know that this year especially, busy families are craving more variety at dinner time, and our Savory Skillet solutions deliver. While some of the staple flavors will always be available, we will continue to innovate and introduce new meals to help keep dinner new and fresh.”

The meals are inspired by traditional home cooking, restaurant favorites and global cuisine flavors. The following flavors are now available:

  • Prime rib roast with mushroom gravy
  • Chinese-style beef with broccoli
  • Shrimp scampi with pasta
  • Four cheese mac 'n' cheese
  • Mexican-style pulled pork with pineapple
  • Beef stew with vegetables
  • Chicken marsala meatballs
  • Chicken tikka masala
  • Pork roast stroganoff
  • Seafood and andouille sausage jambalaya
  • Lobster tortellini
  • Texas brisket fried rice

According to Albertsons, the meals’ flavor, nutritional value and freshness are all locked in with a nitro flash-freezing technology called enrobing. As the name implies, the sauce enrobes the ingredients and dispenses as it cooks. Since no defrosting is needed, these meals can go straight from the freezer to the dinner table in as little as 10 minutes.

The new skillet meals add more depth to the retailer’s Own Brands portfolio, which includes ready-to-eat, ready-to-heat and ready-to-cook options. The Open Nature brand alone provides more than 1,450 SKUs.Over the summer, Albertsons added a range of nondairy plant-based flavors of ice cream to the Open Nature brand. 

Featuring more than 12,000 products in the portfolio, the lineup of the grocer's Own Brands products achieved more than $12.8 billion in sales in fiscal year 2019.

Along with in-store availability, customers can order Open Nature Savory Skillet Meals for delivery or pickup through the retailer’s websites and e-commerce apps.

For the second quarter of fiscal 2020, Albertsons reported that sales and other revenue increased 11.2% to $15.8 billion during the 12 weeks ended Sept. 12, 2020, compared with $14.2 billion during the 12 weeks ended Sept. 7, 2019. 

Boise, Idaho-based Albertsons operates 2,252 retail stores with 1,725 pharmacies, 398 associated fuel centers, 22 dedicated distribution centers and 20 manufacturing facilities. The company’s stores predominantly operate under the banners Albertsons, Safeway, Vons, Pavilions, Randalls, Tom Thumb, Carrs, Jewel-Osco, Acme, Shaw’s, Star Market, United Supermarkets, Market Street and Haggen. The company is No. 8 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2020 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America.

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