A Healthy Lunch: 545

My local Whole Foods (in South Lake Union) has one of the best lunch deals around on weekdays: 545 (or, Five For Five). As in, five dishes for $5. Every day features a variation on the same theme: tofu, a bean salad, a kale salad, a quinoa salad and another vegetable salad. Yesterday’s lineup was:
  • Sesame-orange tofu
  • Chickpea-carrot salad
  • Tahini kale  
  • Quinoa with slivered almonds, dried cranberries, green onions 
  • Spinach/summer squash salad
Most people have their preferences, and I am especially partial to the day when they have peanut tofu and Sriracha kale (in the immortal words of John Mellencamp, it “hurts so good”).
It’s a 2-mile round trip from Whole Foods to my office, so on days when I have enough time to walk there and back (and have time to eat), it’s a treat. When I was picking up my 545 box yesterday (they have some ready to grab, or if you can ask them to dish up a custom box if you don’t care for one of the items), I asked if any other Whole Foods were offering 545. Turns out the SLU Whole Foods is the only store that does it every weekday (the Bellevue and Roosevelt stores do it occasionally). 
One reason is the the SLU Whole Foods sees a HUGE lunch crowd (if you’ve been there at lunchtime, you know what I’m talking about). The store is deep in the heart of Amazon.com land, with Microsoft and various biotech firms putting in a fair showing, too. I can’t even imagine how crazy the lunch hour will be when Amazon’s three city blocks of new office towers are finished and filled up. Crazy!