Sometimes making smart choices when you’re on the go isn’t always easy. Working in Downtown Sioux Falls, we’ve got a great selection of food just steps from our door. Enjoying a meal at a local restaurant shouldn’t get in the way of your fitness goals. With spring races right around the corner many of the runners we talk to at the shop have serious questions about food and eating out. With this in mind I tricked the boss into letting Lizzie Kasparek, MS, RD,LN, sports dietitian with the Sanford Sports Science Institute and myself grab lunch at two different local downtown restaurants.
The restaurants we selected were MB Haskett, and Sanaa’s. MB Haskett is known for their changing menu of fresh ingredients. I have always heard great things about Haskett’s from the customers here at the shop. So I was excited to try it for lunch. Sanaa’s is a healthy yet affordable place offering food cooked from scratch using fresh and seasonal ingredients. Their menu also offers food for people with different dietary restrictions such as gluten free, peanut free, vegetarian, or vegan. I am pretty opened minded when it comes to different food, but I was still worried I wouldn’t be able to find something I like, because I haven’t eaten much Mediterranean cuisine. After completing our meal Lizzie and I wished there was an option to just try everything on the menu! Everything looked so good! Both restaurants are made up of mostly if not all healthy options so you can’t go wrong with whatever looks good. Both places do offer a nice variety of desserts too, which are just fine in moderation.
“You don’t need to sacrifice to eat healthy, even when you’re eating out. I recommend, and always try to do this myself, to get a source of carbohydrates (grains, vegetables, fruits), a protein, and a fat in a meal. For example at MB Haskett, you can get a variety of sandwiches. Sandwiches have bread (carb), protein (meats), fats (spreads such as avocado, cheese, hummus, etc.) and vegetables (spinach on the bread or get a side salad, etc.). At Sanaa’s, a lot of the options had a meat protein or a vegetarian protein, such as beans, some source of carb from rice, quinoa, or pita, and fats from dressings, hummus, or cheese.
I think you should also always listen to what you really want though. If you’re going out and you REALLY want the 3-cheese pita, and you got a salad instead, it probably isn’t going to be satisfying. You can usually share with someone, or order both and get leftovers, or just eat the thing you really wanted and be satisfied with your meal choice, because in the end...its only one meal. If 80% of the time is healthy foods, then it’s okay to eat one single food group that may not be good for your health 20% of the time.”
Now the fun part, what we ate!
I chose the pesto salami sandwich on a whole grain baguette that came with provolone cheese and a good amount of spinach. Verdict: Yum! I loved that the bread was whole grain so it was nice and filling, not too much spinach but they definitely didn't skimp on it either, and a nice ratio of pesto to salami.
Lizzie got the "Skippin' Jenny" which was made up of prosciutto, onions, thyme, black eye peas, and two poached eggs, served over brown rice with corn bread.
I got the Shish Tawook which is Chicken breast bits cooked in red sauce with cumin, mustard, garlic and sesame seed paste, served on a bed of basmati rice. I selected the house salad for my side, which is romaine lettuce, parsley, cucumbers, tomatoes, onions and mint with bulgur wheat and garbanzo beans in lemon juice olive oil dressing. Verdict: again, YUM! I would get this over and over again.
Lizzie got Mussakhan Fateyer (like a calzone), which had chicken breast bits, sautéed with caramelized onions, roasted sweet red pepper, sun-dried tomatoes, and a mix of seasoning of cilantro and mustard sauce. She selected a mix of two different salads which were the house salad like I had and Tabbouli Salad: Finely chopped parsley, mixed with bulgur wheat, tomatoes, onions and olive oil and lemon juice dressing. Verdict: Very good and filling. Great portion sizes for what you pay for.
Kelli Vasquez is Assistant Manager at 605 Running Company. When she isn’t hanging out at store she enjoys spending time with her family and running competitively when she isn’t preggers. She will be periodically contributing to the 605 Running Co. Blog.