Restaurant Row isn’t exactly the home of healthy lifestyle choices. I love dipping juicy morsels of carbs into melted cheese or diving into a steaming bowl of ramen with ajitsuke tamago and chashu, although that ideally shouldn’t happen for every lunch.
David Osterweil (Founder), Chef Andrew, and the Fitlife Foods Orlando team—with the help of the Forksom!—recently debuted Orlando’s first Fitlife foods. The shop offers dozens of chef-made meals in small, medium, and large sizes. All meals are made in the Fitlife Lakeland central kitchen and are low in unhealthy carbs, sugars, and sodium. Plus, all the meals are clearly marked with carbs, protein, fat, and fiber.
Okay, so these chef-made meals are healthy but are they tasty? Fitlife gets a solid yes from me. Anywhere else along Restaurant Row, I know I should order sauces and dressings on the side because the giant calorie bomb in some lunches is something I need to avoid, for cholesterol’s sake. Fitlife includes just the right amount with a meal for a thoughtful, not gratuitous compliment.
Chef Andrew prepped a Chicken Pesto Tortellini at the grand opening, which is a handy texture-building alternative to prepping a Fitlife meal in a microwave if you have a few extra minutes. All the meals are made to have at least a 5-day shelf life, but I don’t think I would need that big a window to enjoy the poppy flavor in this chicken pesto.
The Miso Salmon (520 cal), Osterweil’s favorite, meal was served with a touch of sauce, sesame seeds, and quinoa. The carrots were tossed with red peppers and snappy pea pods. The light mustard sauce gave the salmon a nice extra tang, enough for a boost but not to hamper the nice flavor of the salmon itself. I am not a fan of reheated salmon, but this was actually good.
The Supercharged Chicken (330 cal) most resembled something I would make myself at home, except for the depth of flavor in that Chardonnay sauce. The portion size was solid, and I get a kick out of knowing how many carbs (good or bad!) I’m eating without having to do higher math or educated guess-work. At home, steaming both the sweet potato and broccoli wouldn’t take too long, but add grilling a flavorful chicken to the mix and suddenly easy turns into 45 minutes to an hour.
Fitlife Foods has healthy, convenient chef-made meals down to a science, but they also have an on-site Fitlife Wellness Coach available to anyone with or without a membership. The certified wellness coach can help determine caloric intake versus calories to burn, BMI, and recommend ideal foods based on a simple consult—Fitlife calls it Project U.
Mr. Forkful and I have tried 2 local healthy meal food delivery services and neither came close to the flavors and varieties Fitlife Foods offers. Fitlife also has an entire selection of healthful drinks like Mother Kombucha (St. Petersburg, FL) lavender mojito—which is pretty amazing if you love tart, slightly sweet drinks. Even the desserts like the Chocolate Chip Cookies replace ingredients like butter with low-fat cream cheese for a little lighter spin an a traditional favorite. Price points average from USD 5.95 to 10.95, so nice to know that Restaurant Row has a healthy, affordable take-out option for breakfast, lunch, and/or dinner that won’t break the bank or cholesterol scale.
Website: Fitlife Foods
Disclosure: The food and beverages mentioned in this post were provided by Fitlife Foods, although the views and opinions expressed in this post are purely my own. This post was not reviewed by anyone else in any way.