The Frozen Kid Cuisine Dinner We Can't Believe We Forgot About

Kid Cuisine box
Kid Cuisine box - Instagram/laurennntaps

For those of us who grew up in the 1990s or early 2000s, you probably remember Kid Cuisine. If the name alone doesn't ring a bell, picture brightly colored boxes lining the frozen foods aisle with a cartoon penguin named KC — short for Kid Cuisine — surfing, swinging from vines, or doing some cool trick move on a skateboard while bragging about how totally awesome and nutritious Kid Cuisine dinners are. This line of frozen meals enticed kids with promises of chocolate brownies and gummy snacks, while promoting all the nutritious facts right on the front of the box in order to ease the minds of concerned parents. The company website claims that Kid Cuisine meals are "a good source of valuable protein and a great source of family fun."

With all the Kid Cuisine meals that caught our eyes as kids, there is one meal option that totally slipped our minds until now: The Pizza Painter. This interactive dinner option transformed a cheese pizza into a blank canvas for young artists to practice their art skills with marinara sauce in place of paint. While the Kid Cuisine meal is one of many frozen food options that we are likely not getting back any time soon, we do look back on it fondly.

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The Pizza Painter Kid Cuisine Brought Out Our Inner Artist

Kid cuisine pizza painter
Kid cuisine pizza painter - Kid Cuisine

Whether you were really into arts and crafts as a kid or you just loved to play with your food, the Pizza Painter frozen dinner from Kid Cuisine was the perfect meal option. In addition to a personal cheese pizza with extra sauce for drawing, the meal also came with a side of fruit or veggies along with a sweet dessert, all in one easy to heat meal. Some photos show the Pizza Painter Kid Cuisine boxes with a side of sweet corn and a chocolate brownie. However, commercials from 2006 via YouTube show KC the Penguin showing off a side of peaches and chocolate pudding to "keep the fun going" after you've enjoyed your pizza masterpiece. Regardless of what sides you remember enjoying, the Pizza Painter meal brings back some serious memories that have us ready to finger paint with marinara next time we grab a slice.

Tragically, kids in this day and age may never know how fun it is to paint with pizza sauce because this once popular frozen dinner was discontinued by Kid Cuisine. Fortunately, you can still taste the flavors of your childhood and introduce the next generation to the few Kid Cuisine meals that are still available on shelves today -- but be warned, it may not be as tasty as you remember.

You Can Still Find Kid Cuisines In Stores, But Are They Any Good As An Adult?

Kid Cuisine boxes in store
Kid Cuisine boxes in store - The Image Party/Shutterstock

If you asked a bunch of '90s babies what the best brand of TV dinner was when we were kids, we most likely said Kid Cuisine. But memories of the frozen dinners complete with rainbow sprinkles for the chocolate pudding and spoonfuls of sweet corn were formed when we had less sophisticated palettes. One Reddit user recalling Kid Cuisine on the r/nostalgia thread admitted, "I was so excited eating these, but now I realized they were horrible."

In order to decide for ourselves if Kid Cuisine meals live up to the nostalgia-fueled hype, this Daily Meal writer took a trip to Walmart and snagged a Kid Cuisine to try for the first time in nearly 20 years. While the cartoon penguin has gotten a 3D animation makeover, the frozen dinners look exactly as I remembered. The only meal I could find was the mini corn dogs with crinkle cut fries, sweet corn, and the beloved chocolate brownie with rainbow sprinkles. After following the box instructions for microwaving the tray, I sat and ate a relatively unsatisfying meal. Every element of the dinner ended up at a different temperature, leaving me with cold corn dogs and a molten lava hot brownie. I couldn't even finish the uber-sweet corn and dry french fries. However, my nine-year-old couldn't get enough of it, so Kid Cuisine seems to still be a hit amongst its target audience.

Read the original article on The Daily Meal.