Protein Bar, a quick/casual restaurant that offers healthy, high-protein meals passed the test for me earlier this week. Currently, there are eight locations in Chicago and one in DC with another on the way in the District and another still in the Ballston neighborhood of Arlington, VA (very close to my home base.) The ambiance was pretty slick and chic and the customer service was top-notch. Our cashier offered suggestions and allowed us to tweak our items to exactly our liking. For an area like DC full of active and busy people, Protein Bar is a perfect fit.
So the idea of this place, the interior, and customer service is great. What about the food, Carrie?! Here’s a look at their menu offerings which, yes, are quite tasty! I was craving some keen-wah (properly spelled quinoa-Who just learned how to say that word?) and a smoothie.
I decided on the Spinach & Pesto bowl which includes all-natural chicken, organic quinoa, spinach, basil pesto, and shredded parmesan cheese. The nutritionals? Here they are: 371 calories, 21 g fat, 0 g saturated fat, 805 mg sodium, 18 g carbohydrates, 3 g fiber, 6 g sugar, 35 g protein.
In addition to the bowl, they had a special, seasonal smoothie that called to my inner pumpkin obsession. While a 12 oz was fairly pricey (about $5), I really enjoyed the combination of pumpkin puree, organic quinoa, almond milk, vanilla protein, pumpkin spice, and pepitas. For the 12 oz Pump-Quinoa treat, you are taking in 210 calories, 3.5 g fat, .5 g saturated fat, 85 mg sodium, 28 g carbohydrates, 2 g fiber, 20 g sugar, and 18 g protein.
I’ve never had quinoa in a smoothie before! I really enjoyed it and all this quinoa in my meal makes me want to have it more often. This whole meal yielded me 53 g protein. I was satisfied for a number of hours after it and plan to try more Protein Bar items when the Ballston location opens up. Go visit Protein Bar in Penn Quarter at corner of 7th & D soon! Have a great weekend all.