The Kroger Co. has added to its Easy for You! quick-prepare meals menu and brought the program to more stores.
Since making its debut in January 2016 in Seattle, Easy For You! has rolled out to more than 350 stores across multiple Kroger Co. banners, spokeswoman Kristal Howard said, adding that the concept will be introduced in more cities and markets.
At launch, Easy for You! featured fresh prepared seafood with garnishes, which customers brought home and baked. Earlier this year, the program was expanded to include frozen seafood and, more recently, meat and poultry entrees plus a range of side dishes.
The frozen items are presented in Easy For You!-bannered self-service cases near the seafood and/or meat departments. Shoppers scoop out any amount and combination of items and put them in disposable buckets or plastic bags stored beside the case. Signs atop the case’s sliding doors highlight meal choices. When customers get home, they place the items in a skillet, cover at medium heat and cook for eight to 12 minutes.
Priced at $7.99 per pound, the frozen selection includes 12 to 18 items, which are flash-frozen combinations of meat or seafood with seasoning and/or sauce. Howard said popular choices include shrimp scampi, prime rib with mushroom gravy, and macaroni and cheese.
A Dillons supermarket in Wichita, Kan., for example, offers Easy For You! frozen entrees such as chicken tikka masala, Tuscan tomato chicken, chicken and sausage gumbo, orange mango chicken, prime rib strip with mushrooms and gravy, and chicken alfredo. Side dishes include roasted pepper mac and cheese, coconut turmeric rice, mushroom truffle risotto, cilantro lime rice, parmarella mac and cheese, and garlic-and-herb roasted potatoes. There’s also a selection of seafood: shrimp scampi, creamy pesto shrimp, salmon ravioli, Thai green curry shrimp, shrimp and sausage boil, and scallops in lemon tarragon and cream sauce. A screen atop the case plays a video that explains how to pack and cook the items.
Kroger offers the fresh program, called Easy For You! Oven-Ready Seafood, across its various store banners.
It works as follows: Shoppers go to the seafood counter and then choose a protein (catfish, cod, crab, salmon, shrimp or tilapia), a seasoning (lemon pepper, Cajun, rosemary garlic, Sweet Bourbon, California Garlic Medley, Backyard BBQ, Asian BBQ, Spicy Orange Chipotle, Sesame Ginger, Jamaican Jerk Rub, Nashville Hot and/or butter) and a garnishes (fresh dill, fresh cilantro, fresh thyme or lemon). The seafood associate seals the items in an ovenable bag that the shopper pierces on each side with a fork, places on a cooking sheet and bakes for a specified time.
Customers can find out more information about the program and view meal suggestions in brochures available at the seafood counter as well as online at EasyForYouSeafood.com.