If you’ve been to Cava Grill before, you know it’s God’s gift to man. If you haven’t been, you should surely drop what you’re doing right now and head to the nearest location, stat. Cava Grill is oftentimes called the “Chipotle of Mediterranean food,” but I’m going to push the envelope by saying it’s way better than Chipotle. Don’t hate me…
When you walk through the door of your nearest Cava Grill, don’t let the line deter you. That just means people are obsessed with this place. At the first station, you will be prompted by what “base” you would like. Options are a salad, pita sandwich, rice bowl, greens and grains, two mini pitas, or one mini pita and seasonal soup. I always go for the greens and grains because I want to be healthy and eat salad but I’m actually addicted to carbs. I always get the rice on the bottom so it looks like I only ordered lettuce. Deceiving.
Next, you arrive at the “dip” station. You get three scoops of whatever dips you’d like. All are gluten-free, but I typically go with one scoop regular hummus, one red pepper hummus, and one spicy harissa. Best part about this is that Cava actually distributes a few of these dips to local grocery stores. Yep, definitely stalk to the hummus aisle when you’re at Whole Foods next and shop local!
Next are the proteins. Not all of Cava’s proteins are gluten-free, so be careful. However, you still have grilled chicken, braised beef and braised lamb to choose from (stay away from the falafel and beef/chicken meatballs). I’m afraid of committing to one single meat, so I always get half-and-half with chicken and braised lamb.
Up next is the fun part – toppings. Here’s where you can get a massive amount of food without paying extra. Hint: get all of them. Highlights in this section include cabbage slaw, quinoa tabbouleh, cucumber with olive oil and lemon, and pickled banana peppers, by local small business Gordy’s Pickle Jar.
Lastly, there are five dressings for you to choose from: sriracha Greek yogurt, lemon herb tahini (my personal fave), Greek vinaigrette, yogurt dill, and spicy harissa. Don’t be afraid to tell them how much sauce you want – they definitely don’t skimp on this stuff.
Don’t forget to buy a drink, because Cava makes all of their beverages in-house and the menu changes based on availability. Highlights from this summer included Raspberry Ginger and Watermelon Mint. The perfect addition to your amazing meal, all for less than $10.