by Kadie Hummel

Everyone has had those days where you forget to pack a lunch, you’re running late home from work, or you are literally juggling everything between soccer practice and tai chi. You are on the go, and you like to maintain a healthy, balanced lifestyle, but withthe plethora of fast-food options around, sometimes it’s hard to resist the flashy signs when your stomach is grumbling.

Well fear not, all you busy, on-the-go Calgarians – we found that fast food doesn’t have to mean unhealthy choices. We have discovered some of the city’s most nutritious and convenient to-go places that offer an array of healthy options, where you can feel better about what you’re putting in your body.  

Made Foods

Made Foods recently opened four stores across Calgary, priding themselves on nutritious meals made with locally sourced ingredients. They have a variety of ready-to-go options for every meal of the day, including snacks and smoothies. The dishes are all chef-prepared, using organic ingredients that you can actually pronounce, so you know what you’re eating. Chilled meals are individually portioned, and displayed in either the breakfast, lunch, dinner, or snack section of the store, making it easy to pick and choose from all the options.

The staff at Made work closely with a certified holistic nutritionist to ensure every dish has the ingredients to fuel an active body, with the ability to cater to many dietary demands. Delicious gluten-friendly, dairy-friendly, vegetarian, vegan and low calorie options are all available, packed with seasonal healthy ingredients. Personalized consultations are also on offer, to provide the information you need to make health-concise decisions when it comes to picking out your meals.

Tasty, honest-to-goodness dishes, such as barley mushroom risotto, curried lamb hash, and spinach and feta stuffed chicken breast, can all be found here – ready to go whenever you are.

Co-op Fresh To Go

Co-op Fresh To Go always offers a colourful spread of hot dishes and salad bars, created by award-winning red seal chef, John Humphreys. With four convenient locations across Calgary, finding a wholesome meal that is healthy and ready to go is no longer a chore. 

Chef-created dishes like shepherd’s pie, lasagna, and creole jambalaya, are all available to ensure there is a meal favourite for everyone. Sushi and sandwiches are also popular choices for someone looking for a filling meal that’s easy to grab and eat on the go.

Co-op also has an exciting curry bar in multiple locations across Calgary, serving hot and appetizing butter chicken, tikka masala, chicken vindaloo and vegetarian chana masala, with all the fixings. These hot and ready choices are great options for the Indian-food lover looking to add a little spice to their meals.

Fit Kitchen

Fit Kitchen in McKenzie Towne works hard to supply customers with meals that fit into their lifestyle. For the busy on-the-goer, whether you are looking to lose or maintain your weight, or fuel your hard-working active body, they can work with you to customize healthy meal plans for an easy grab and go solution. 

Dishes are divided into two categories: lean and performance. The lean label is for people who are wanting to lose or maintain their weight, and include portion-controlled enchiladas, Canadian salmon, or pork vindaloo – watching your calorie intake doesn’t have to be boring! The performance label caters more to the athlete, or anyone who requires the extra energy to maximize their well being throughout the day. Hearty chilli, Thai beef curry and Guinness beef stew, are some of the mouth-watering favourites that keep people coming back for more!

This dietician-approved menu is always fresh, with enough carbohydrates, healthy fats, and high-quality protein to keep your body energized and satisfied. With many gluten-free dishes, and a growing number of vegan and vegetarian meals, Fit Kitchen offers a variety of choices for those with dietary restrictions too.

Freshii

Freshii has six locations throughout the city, providing healthy options that are both accessible and affordable. They make it a priority to emphasize the foods you should eat more of, and eliminate the ones you shouldn’t. With a focus on meals that are rich in fibre, lean protein, and slow-burning carbs, they will provide you with the essentials you need in your day. Their healthy smoothies, quinoa wraps, satay bowls, and breakfast burritos are packed with nutrition that will last throughout your busy day.  

Juice cleanses are also part of Freshii’s menu; the one, three, or five day cleanses are chock full of energy boosting, detoxifying ingredients that will keep you nourished and satisfied. These grab-and-go juices provide your body with energy throughout your day, and come in tasty mixes such as kale and apple, and lemon and ginger.

All these health-concise, to-go options allow us hard-working, busy people to eat a satisfying, hunger-busting meal, without having to sacrifice a good diet. To-go doesn’t have to mean deep fried and greasy anymore, and with these healthy options available, you may just find yourself “forgetting” to pack a lunch more often.

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