Pumpkin spice is in the air, and so is our fall menu. To celebrate the autumn season, we sat down with our nutrition specialist Skylar Smith to learn more about the behind the scenes of what goes into planning our seasonal menus. Check it out:
Pumpkin is a fall staple, but are there any health benefits?
Pumpkins are actually full of health benefits! Pumpkin is packed with antioxidants that may promote skin and heart health.
Tell me about the cactus chili — can you really eat cactus?
Yes, you can definitely eat cactus! There are many different types of cacti that are edible. Our Fire Roasted Chili has nopalitos cactus, which is known to improve digestion.
What goes into developing a recipe for the seasonal menu?
For seasonal menus, we like to mix it up for our customers. We prioritize sticking to our brand standards, all while bringing something new to the table. Typically, we have an idea of what we want to feature, and from there, it is trial and error until the new recipe is absolutely perfect.
How have customers shaped the menu as time has gone on?
We strive to be the best part of someone’s day, every day. With that being said, we listen to our customers. We want to give them something to look forward to as the season changes. For example, the new Almond Butter Pumpkin smoothie was definitely something we knew our customers wanted. Who can say no to pumpkin during the fall craze?!
Is color a focus when determining a recipe?
Yes, we always pay attention to the way our food is presented. It is important to take into account taste, texture, and overall aroma. We always try to have a pop of color in our menu items as well. For example, in the Zen Bowl, the grape tomatoes not only add to the overall value, but the pop of red color really grabs your attention.
What’s your favorite item on the fall menu?
My favorite item on the fall menu is the Zen Bowl. I love the warm pho-inspired vegetable broth that is poured over the bowl. It gives you the comfort food feeling, yet it is a well-balanced, filling dish packed with nutrients.