Restaurant Review – Lyfe Kitchen

Happy 2022! With January being the month of resolutions, this is a perfect time to check out Chicago’s healthy kitchens. According to a study from the University of Scranton, published in Forbes, the most popular New Year’s resolutions are about self-improvement, including living healthier– 23%, getting happy– 21%, and losing weight—20%.

Even in a restaurant-happy city like Chicago, there are plenty of restaurants specializing in healthy options and calorie counts. In Streeterville, Lyfe Kitchen has been serving “healthful, flavorful local fare” since 2013. Their pledge to their customers: “We N.E.V.E.R. use artificial ingredients because…ew.”

And they care about the environment as well, as they promise that they’re “working toward” 100% biodegradable, compostable & recyclable packaging, according to their website. 

Lyfe Kitchen serves a host of dairy-free, gluten-free, vegan and vegetarian options throughout the day. Breakfast lovers can start with a Grand Sandwich- a combination of eggs, crispy bacon, gouda, fontina, herb aioli, and arugula tossed in lemon vinaigrette, on a whole wheat ciabatta, with breakfast potatoes. Or a Keto Scramble, pairing cage-free eggs with roasted bell peppers, organic chopped kale, goat cheese, and applewood smoked bacon on the side. Some imaginative bowls include the Chocolate Almond Smoothie Bowl, with oats, banana, almond butter, almond milk, maple syrup, cocoa, and coconut flakes under an almond butter protein crumble. The Coconut Beet Smoothie Bowl pairs pineapple, beets, banana, spinach, ginger, coconut water, and blueberries with coconut flakes and a pecan crunch.

Besides coffees and a host of tea options, Lyfe Kitchen serves smoothies such as ‘Skin-refreshing’ Avocado Berry, pairing avocado, strawberries, blueberries, high-fiber chia, turmeric, and coconut milk. The anti- inflammatory Pineapple Jalapeno smoothie pairs pineapple, cucumber, fresh jalapeño & ginger, avocado, high-fiber chia, and coconut water. 

For a breakout hot beverage, try the Hot Ginger Tonic, with fresh ginger and lime.

Their all-day menu includes starters such as Superfood Guac & Baked Chips, with organic hemp, buckwheat, and house-made fire roasted salsa. Or Baked Sweet Potato Fries, served with ketchup or garlic parmesan. Crispy Brussels and Cotija pairs crispy baked Brussels sprouts with flavorful cotija cheese, and a lemon pepper aioli.

Entrees include flatbreads such as Roasted Mushroom Alfredo, with roasted Crimini mushrooms, mozzarella, parmesan, cashew cream alfredo, peppercorn, thyme, and parsley. Or a Margherita flatbread with local Mighty Vine tomatoes, mozzarella, basil, and pomodoro. 

Salad specialties include the Thai Crunch Chicken Salad, with soy-glazed grilled chicken, crunchy baked wontons, edamame, cashews, Napa & red cabbage, cucumber, shredded carrots, green onion, cilantro lime and almond dressing. Or the Superfood, with organic kale, roasted sweet potatoes, pickled red onions, honey-roasted walnuts, lil’ bucks sprouted buckwheat, pepitas, and tahini miso dressing.

Mega Bowls include Crispy Baked Chicken & Brussels, featuring their signature crispy baked chicken breast, crispy Brussels sprouts, cotija cheese, and lemon pepper aioli, as well as their Ahi Tuna Poke Bowl, with grade AA ahi tuna, quinoa, edamame, crispy baked wontons, spicy mayo, and house-made ginger-lime marinade.

Sandwich aficionados can enjoy Lyfe Kitchen’s Veggie Flatbread Sandwich, pairing perfectly crisp flat “bread,” roasted eggplant, cherry tomatoes, red onion, grilled sweet peppers, fresh basil, gooey mozzarella and goat cheese. Or a Turkey Havarti, with oven-roasted turkey, avocado, house-made dijon aioli, on hewn sourdough.

Local Guides and Google reviewers gave Lyfe Kitchen a host of reviews. One reviewer wrote, “The pineapple jalapeno smoothie was tropical and different. Love the healthy options. Staff were very nice.”

Another wrote, “Good selection of healthy options. Portions are reasonable. Enjoyed the lavender lemonade.”

Lyfe Kitchen is located at 270 E. Ontario Street, (Northwestern University) and is open 8am-9pm daily. For more information, click here.