The Happiest of Hours at The Kitchen

For years, I’ve passed The Kitchen  on my walk to work each morning and every time I’ve passed it, the same thought crept into my brain= I need to check out that menu. After about 300+ times of thinking that since October 2014, I finally crept on the webpage at work and knew immediately I’d need to actually go in-rather than walk by.

The concept of The Kitchen was created to embody a neighborhood style restaurant. One that acted as

A Center of Conversation and Connection

Since me and a few of my friends are on a path of “shredding for our weddings,” a topic we’ve spoken about is how to stay healthy while eating out-including at happy hours. Between that time of getting off work and actually arriving home, it’s hard NOT to think about dinner. In return, that means that sometimes happy hours are detrimental to your path of eating well-especially if you are shredding like me. After reading its concept or offering REAL food – not to mention it’s across the river from the loop (in the direction of most of our homes), The Kitchen is an excellent spot to enjoy a not-so-bad-for-you happy hour. PLUS, their menu is actually affordable.

Here are some reasons why I think The Kitchen is a perfect place to eat healthy(ier) and save some money in your wallet:

It’s low key

It’s not a stuffy River North restaurant that requires you to wear a dressed up outfit. I mean, don’t walk in there with sweatpants, but The Kitchen has an inviting and warm atmosphere where you can hang out and chat for awhile.

Prices are affordable

Especially if you are sharing with a few people, the happy hour prices (from 3-5p.m.) are such a great bang-for-your-buck deal, it’s crazy. For the quality and amount of nibbles/drinks  you can get for the price you pay, I’m thoroughly upset I did not discover this location sooner. I could have saved myself a few extra dollars…(For tips of what TYPEs of drinks or order, check out my post from last week)

Clean(er) Food than Most

Sure, eating carbs and fried items are not THAT great for you, but when the items are clean and local, it justifies your right choice a little more-at least that’s what I’m telling myself. Some items that I must encourage you to try are:

Roasted Beets – It may be just me, but I’ve never met a beet I didn’t enjoy. Of course, it’s an acquired taste, but throw some chevre (goat’s cheese) on top, and it’s a perfect little healthy bite.

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Goat Gouda Gougere – Okay, definitely not the healthiest at all, but goat cheese is semi healthier for you to choose over a lot of other cheeses. Not to mention that these are flaky little cheesy balls of heaven. Split this item with three girlfriends to limit your temptations to just one ball of goodness.

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Tostada – This is an excellent dish to share because it’s just one tostada on a plate = easy to share and eliminate your urge to eat the whole thing by yourself. You can really bypass the fried tortilla on the bottom and just eat the pulled pork and toppings for a healthier option.

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MEATBALLS – This is where it gets tricky. Unless you make them yourself and use paleo approved products, usually meatballs contain breadcrumbs, pieces of bread, carbs to make themselves fluffy and juicy. So right off the bat, if you’re ordering the meatballs, just be aware that there’s a serving of carbs attached. However, these meatballs are outstanding and tasty. Plus, they are loaded with local and cleaner ingredients. Since it’s not fried, it’s technically healthier than the Gougere, but again, sharing is caring (for your bod). Share with your happy hour partners and share the mini guilt.

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