Thursday, July 10, 2014

Noodles & Company has Salads

Sure this place is mainstream and corporate, but I just had to share with you the awesome salads my mom and I got at Noodles & Company.

Who would think to go there for a salad? But honestly, they have really been putting in the effort to have a diverse and cultural menu and I think it's paying off. They have soup, salads, flatbreads and sandwiches in addition to noodle dishes now and the website lists very clearly the ingredients in each dish and the calories.

My mom and I were looking for a quick bite one afternoon and decided on Noodles located at the Shoppes at Fox River in Waukesha. My mom and I are creatures of habit and typically order the same thing every time we go - pesto cavatappi.  But for some reason the salads really stuck out on the menu that day.

I'm trying to watch what I put in my body and make sure I eat for nutritional value as well as taste and this salad seemed to hit the spot. From the website: Spinach & Fresh Fruit Salad Seasonal fruit, crumbled bacon, pecans, house-made croutons, red onion and blue cheese atop spinach with a balsamic fig drizzle. This is right up my alley as I have really been enjoying sweet and savory salads. The onions and bacon brought out just enough savory, to make the strawberries seem extra sweet. The dressing is already on the salad but it wasn't overpowering. I'm sure you can ask for it on the side. 

My mom went for the Chinese Chicken Chop Salad  - Grilled chicken, sesame-soy tossed mixed greens, Asian sprouts, cabbage, red bell pepper, cucumber, carrots, crispy wontons and black sesame seeds. She too raved about the great flavor of all the ingredients together and said she would definitely order it again. 

Her salad came in at 480 calories and she was full but not stuffed. My salad came in at 650 and I too felt satisfied and not full. I'm sure if I took off the bacon, the count would be lower. 

I went back to Noodles today on Capitol Drive in Pewaukee and ordered The Med Salad with Chicken Grilled chicken, romaine, mixed greens, tomato, cucumber, red onion, olives, cavatappi pasta, spicy yogurt dressing and feta. The noodles in the salad were a unique touch that I liked.

When they say spicy yogurt dressing, you better believe it. Because I ordered it to-go, my chicken and dressing were in separate containers. I tasted the dressing before putting some on my salad and thought it had a kick but would be okay. Apparently I should have used just a 1/4 of the container instead of half because I was feeling the burn. It wasn't overpowering, but eventually it was all I could taste. The kalamata olives are very tart too!  If I would order again, I might suggest getting the balsamic fit drizzle from the spinach salad or using another dressing I have around. But I wouldn't change anything else. 

Noodles has figured out salads just like they have pasta and I hope they keep diversifying their menu to stay current.  

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