Tired of the weekly food battle with the kids? Cupertino’s newest restaurant may be the secret weapon you’ve been hoping for. LYFE (love your food every day) Kitchen‘s motto “Feed. Your. Self” is all about enhancing the quality of life through food by showing people that “healthy food can be delicious, approachable and affordable.” Everything on the menu is under 600 calories, and under $15. The whole family (yes, even the kids) love it.
Making Healthy Food Good Again
“Gross!” is one word that comes to mind when people think about what’s usually considered a healthy food option, but at LYFE Kitchen taste is one of the most important factors when creating their nutritious new recipes. You’d be amazed by some of the vegan and vegetarian dishes—Even if you’re a happy omnivore. Each dish is prepared fresh, without the use of a microwave or fryer (like the unfried chicken pictured below). And even though LYFE Kitchen uses grass-fed meat and organic produce whenever possible the pricing is great. (The majority of dishes are priced under $10, with a handful of entrees between the $10-15 range.)
Sauces and juices are also made fresh daily in-house. LYFE Waters, which are waters infused with ingredients like fresh fruits and veggies, Chia seeds and agave are available in Cucumber Mint, Hibiscus Beet, Orange Ginger Chia, and Ginger Mint Chia. Tasty smoothies like Kale Banana and Mango Cucumber Lime are also available, or fresh-squeezed juices such as orange juice, classic lemonade, and ginger-pomegranate lemonade.
Cupertino became the sixth LYFE Kitchen restaurant in California (there’s one in Palo Alto, too) when it opened late March. Chef Kim, the head chef for all recipes created out of the Memphis-based food company, personally flew out to train the restaurant’s on-location chefs for weeks prior to the doors opening. She shares that this personalized hands-on training is what allows for consistent food quality in all of their restaurants, and being present for the opening allows her to see how customers from different areas respond to the dishes.
Keeping Kids Front and Center
Customers are greeted with a hydroponic plant wall full of herbs for kids to learn about and try while waiting in line for the healthy breakfast, lunch or dinner item of their choice. Sometimes restaurants serve a lower quality food in the kids meal offerings, but LYFE Kitchen Little Lyfers meals contain the same high-quality food as the adult menu while maintaining a typical kids meal price point (between $2 and $6). Though everything is made fresh, LYFE Kitchen chefs prepare the food relatively quickly so the kids don’t get too antsy (yay!).
Chef Kim shares that kids are the toughest critics to appease when it comes to food, so it really means a lot that so many kids are excited about the dishes in the restaurant. From cheesy flatbread and unfried chicken to fish tacos and pancakes, each mouthwatering meal item comes with a choice of sweet potato or fruit (with vegan meal options available). Add a chocolate chip cookie fresh from the oven, Chocolate Budino with pomegranate, Chia seeds and toasted almond or Banana Coconut Budino with Chia seeds, nut crunch and toasted caramel for a healthier dessert to reward a great dinner.
A Friendly Atmosphere
Since food tastes best when shared with friends, there’s a full list of shareables and flatbreads, as well as local craft beer and wine on tap. The overall atmosphere at LYFE Kitchen is very comfortable and welcoming, too. Choose from patio, chair, bar, or soft sofa-like bench seating. Anyone can walk up to the water bar for their choice of glass and water — ambient, sparkling or chilled— and the staff is eager to answer any questions. Picking up for a dinner at home or event? LYFE Kitchen caters, but also allows for phone-in and car-side pickup!
All photos by Shari Wargo Stamps
19399 Stevens Creek Blvd., Suite #5
167 North Hamilton Ave.
Palo Alto, CA
Hours: Monady -Thursday 7 a.m. – 9 p.m., Friday 7 a.m. – 10 p.m., Saturday 8 a.m. – 10 p.m., Sunday 8 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Have you ever been to a LYFE Kitchen restaurant before? What did you think?
–Shari Wargo Stamps