Nearly 2 weeks ago, before my blogging vacation, I had a fun girls night out with Tina, Lauren and Shannon. We originally planned on trying a new cupcake place in Harvard Square, but then figured some dinner before that would be a good idea. This is when Tina came through for us with a fabulous (free!) dinner.
We met Jeff, the founder and CEO of Ready Health Go, outside of Au Bon Pain in Harvard Square. Jeff told us a little bit about his company before we dug into the goods. Apparently the idea for the business came to him in college, where as a student he was not satisfied with dining hall food (eww, nasty!) or the greasy fast food/delivery food options. We all know that fine dining for college students is just not an option (except for those rare occasions when parents come to visit and pay – yeah!), and most students don’t have the time or the space to cook for themselves. So the idea for a healthy fast food delivery service was born and a little while later Jeff and his partner (I believe the partner is no longer around) started working on Ready Health Go. They hired a chef and a registered dietitian to come up with a nutritious and delicious menu, a design team to create the packaging, and the rest is history (well the business is only a few months old, so I guess short history, but still… ). Before I get into the quality and taste of the food Jeff let us sample, I just have to say how much I love this business idea! I could not wait to try the food!!
The goods: salads and sandwiches…
And Jeff… (hehe, I asked him to pose with the sandwich bite )
All right, let’s get to food. We started by tasting the grilled asparagus sandwich: grilled asparagus with smoky eggplant spread, parmesan, field greens and a balsamic vinaigrette on a baguette.
How gorgeous is this asparagus?!! The grilled asparagus was SO fresh and delicious and was perfectly complemented by the smoky eggplant spread. I really loved the eggplant spread – it reminded me of something I used to eat in Israel by the tub (!!). And who doesn’t love baguettes? All of this for 335 calories… I was more than impressed! (By the way, full nutritional information for all products is online and also right on the packages! We all know how much I love restaurants that provide nutritional info. )
Next up: chipotle spiced chicken with sweet pea “mockamole”, roasted tomatoes, field greens and light cheddar cheese on ciabatta.
Another winner! The mockamole is genius!! It’s a mix of avocado and peas – the peas have the same color and texture of the avocado (when mashed) and because they’re quite neutral tasting, they bulk up the mockamole for very few calories. I liked that not only is it a low calorie addition, but it also boosts up the nutritionals (peas have vitamins, right?). Everything again was perfectly cooked and the combinations were well thought through. This guy is 464 calories.
Everyone else then tried the roasted portobello sandwich and loved it but unfortunately one of the key ingredients in this was onions, so no portobello sandwich for me
No sweat, the next guy made up for it Just veggies wrap with edamame hummus, avocado, tomoato, carrots, sprouts and honey-mustard vinaigrette on whole wheat lavash.
Lots of veggies in this one and the creamy edamame hummus was awesome. 390 calories of yum!
Vietnamese tofu wrap – marinated, baked tofu with an asian veggie mix, carrot-ginger dressing, and rice salad on whole wheat lavash.
This picture made me happy. The food is definitely photogenic with all the beautiful colors and textures. The big slabs of tofu were baked to perfection (they press the tofu for a while before baking to make sure there is no water in it so it can really get that crunchy on the outside, soft on the inside texture… and soak up all the flavors!). I do that with my tofu too The carrot ginger dressing made the whole thing very Asian-y (Asiany-y is a word, right? ) and I love Asian flavors! 440 calories.
Last wrap … turkey green apple – roasted turkey breast with granny smith apples, light cheddar cheese, mixed lettuces and a roasted apple vinaigrette on whole wheat lavash.
This is Ready Health Go’s highest calorie product (at 570 calories) but also has a whopping 50 grams of protein! I don’t know if your body can digest this many proteins at once, but I’m sure all those gym body builders love the protein action of this sandwich to help their muscles recover after a long workout (Ready Health Go products are sold at a few gym cafes). All I know is that the thick slices of turkey and cheddar were very flavorful and the apple vinaigrette was like nothing I’ve ever had before. I actually didn’t think I liked turkey + apple together, but I loved it! The apple vinaigrette was like binding glue for the fresh apple slices and turkey (+cheese! Hello I love cheese!!!). The only thing after a few bites I felt a little onion taste (shallots?) and couldn’t wait to wash it down with something else. It was a great sandwich, my onion aversion got the best of me towards the end, though.
All right – let’s get to salads!
Sesame glazed salmon with an Asian vegetable mix, edamame and a honey-soy vinaigrette on field greens.
I was getting full at this point (and we still had cupcakes to sample!) so I only had a few bites of the salmon. Yep, delicious! I know you’re shocked… I only used “delicious” 50 times in this post
Herbed chicken with herbed and marinated chicken, grapes, walnuts and a shallot vinaigrette on butter lettuce.
Sorry for the blurry picture. I was lucky enough to grab another one for lunch the next day, so here is another shot of this salad:
The mention of the shallot vinaigrette instantly scared me, but Jeff said that I likely won’t taste the shallots because they roast them before pureeing and the red wine vinegar is much stronger tasting than shallots. I was still apprehensive but took a small bite. No onion taste at all! I was SO happy because I love walnuts and grapes and chicken. Like I said, we had one extra salad and I quickly volunteered to take it off everyone’s hands 380 calories (with dressing, I probably only used 1/2 of it). It was still extremely fresh the next day and reminded me of why I love healthy foods. Healthy doesn’t mean flavorless!
Last salad – jicama and citrus with seasonal citrus segments, sliced jicama, and a citrus-cilantro dressing on spinach.
I’m not a huge fan of grapefruit and funny enough, I tasted shallots in this dressing right away. This was was not for me, but the girls seemed to like it
And that’s Ready Health Go in a nutshell! As you can see, I loved (almost) every single thing I tasted. The menu I am sure can satisfy anyone (not just those that are healthy conscious!). I also really loved that they have a registered dietition on the team, so the sandwiches and salads are nutritionally well balanced. Check out their website for locations near you (in Boston and Cambridge) and if you happen to stop by the SOWA market in the South End this summer, Jeff will also be there selling his products. I KNOW there will be a trip there very soon. I need my husband to taste the stuff! (I’m probably going to have the grilled asparagus sandwich or the herbed chicken salad first… I’m craving them already!).