Working a nine-to-five has its perks but there are times where back-to-back meetings, constantly being on “the go” and endless “to do” lists require a quick lunch to make it through your day. Given that I’m already rushing out the door in the morning just to make it to work (that’s a whole other post), I know that my lunchtime meal presentation to date has been a bit subpar. I’ll typically piece together some not-so-appetizing leftovers or an unbalanced meal that has zero greens in sight. On my worst days I’ll find myself munching on bags of potato chips, eating more empty calories than intended in one sitting.
Although “desktop dining” may be necessary from time to time, it’s typically something I try to avoid. After several weeks of this behavior, I was looking to leave the basic girl lunches behind and take my palette and “#summerbodygoals” to a whole new level.
I noticed that my co-workers had a knack for salads and at first, I constantly wondered why one would subject themselves to just eating leaves every day? Do salads keep you full? Are they tasty? How do you eat the same thing every day without getting tired or bored? My perspectives on salad where limiting and partially fueled by my own ignorance but with the help of my co-workers and some light research I was ready to try something new.
I decided to take a plunge. One day I came to work vowing to have a salad. Now I have had my try at a variety of salad companies that didn’t make my love for salads stick. One company would have one or two salads that were good, but after having it a day in a row I was over the taste and back to munching on potato chips from the vending machine. I peeked into the bowls of my co-workers’ salads and saw that their meals didn’t just consist of croutons, grape tomatoes and iceberg lettuce (beginners have to start somewhere!). They had ingredients that I would have never thought to put in a salad that according to my co-workers tasted out of this world. I spotted sunflower seeds, tofu, goat cheese, kale. And when I asked them where they got it from? They all echoed with deep smiles: sweetgreen.
I went through my serial questioning – why is it so good? Can’t I just make that salad at home? What’s the big deal? Most sweetgreen locations I had seen across New York City have lines out the door for lunch at most of their locations, which initially piqued my interest when I walked in the door for my first try. As a new salad snob, I was also slightly intimidated on how to arrange my salad. Most of the ingredients were foreign to me so I steered clearing of “making my own salad” in fear of being too basic or mixing together a concoction that I would regret. I stuck with my guns and asked the salad preparer what’s the most popular salad on their menu:
Avocadoes? Okay, sis! I love that stuff. Chicken and tortilla chips? I can do that! I thought to myself. This looks like a yummy upgrade I could get behind. I decided to order a Guacamole Greens salad and watched as my meal was prepared right before my eyes. Not for nothing, that was my favorite part – sweetgreen prides itself on using fresh and real ingredients in its meals. I even saw signs in the shop that explained exactly what farms certain ingredients were coming from; it was clear that Sweetgreen was all about economic revitalization and long-term sustainability. The staff was also super knowledgeable about most salads. If I asked them what one tasted like, they’d either reassure me or offer a suggestion on how to swap out ingredients to get the desired taste I wanted. Sweetgreen’s salad making process is an art; their food though is what really made me a fan for life.
When I finally bit into my first bowl of Guacamole Greens, I kid you not I felt like I was in heaven. Everything tasted so fresh and so good! I literally didn’t realize how quickly I scarfed down the meal because I was enjoying every morsel. I could now see why my co-workers were hooked! Sweetgreen salads and grain bowls offer a delightful experience for your palette and keep you full on complex carbs, fibers, and nutrients that make you feel good afterward. I didn’t have that tired cranky feeling after lunch – moreover, I felt re-energized and ready to conquer the rest of my day.
Sweetgreen salads have become an experience that I share with all my friends. I now have become the cult-like follower that loves to bate my friends into trying their food, and bate my taste buds into trying something new (Mexican Corn Elote Bowl please come back to me!). If you haven’t given them a shot I highly recommend you find a nearby sweetgreen location and try one of their salads or warm bowls. You will not regret it!