That’s where our new Local Eatery Spotlight comes in. Green to Go NOLA, “a family owned mobile food company dedicated to providing healthy alternatives to fast food with an emphasis on organic ingredients,” is on the fast track to providing New Orleanians with healthier food options.
Two years ago while sitting in her home, Gia Dileo wanted a salad. That simple, a salad. But she didn't know where to find one. “One night I was really hungry," she said, "and hunger i. I wanted a salad and realized that there was nowhere to get one quick where I didn’t have to sit down. I could have gone to the grocery store, but then I would have had to go in and then put everything together while at the same time wondering where the products came from, if they’re organic, how long they’ve been sitting out, etc. And knowing these things are really important. So, the idea just came to me in a flash, to start a salad company. All of our salads are made from scratch and you’ll find the nutritional value of each one laid out for you. Since we opened Green to Go NOLA, business has boomed! We started out with four salads and now we have close to twenty.”
Green to Go NOLA prides itself on the quality of their products with many of the ingredients being locally produced and organic. Now, when many of us think of organic, we automatically assume it means unaffordable. But not at Green to Go NOLA. “It’s important to us that organic food be available to everyone and we are priced so that everyone should be able to afford our salads. We want to make sure that everyone is able to eat organic, not just the affluent.”
Gia continued, “Louisiana is the fifth fattest state in the country. That’s not how I want people to perceive New Orleans. I love the idea that we have good music, wonderful culture, and great food, but why shouldn’t healthy food be a part of that?” Good question, Gia. Doesn’t healthy food have a place in New Orleans? We’re pretty sure it does.
And did we mention that Green to Go NOLA delivers these awesome salads on a bicycle??? Yep, not only are you getting healthy food, but you’re also helping the environment! “I use a lot of different concepts of green. For one, we use green energy because of the bicycling. We’re green because what we use is as organic as possible and we’re also green because it’s local. In fact, our packaging is also green. It’s not only recyclable, it’s also compostable. So, even our trash goes to an organic farm.”
If you think the salads at Green to Go are just lettuce and dressing, boy are you wrong. “One of our brand new salads, which is fantastic, is our quinoa salad. You have quinoa as the base with fresh celery, red onions, fresh mango, dried tart cranberries, and toasted almonds drizzled with a mango vinaigrette that we make.” And that’s just ONE of the salads you can get from Green to Go. There’s traditional mixed greens, spinach, and a Thai noodle salad with buckwheat noodles, among PLENTY of others.
Green to Go NOLA is already expanding with the purchase of a second bike to reach even more New Orleanians, both Uptown and Downtown. Now only if they would make their way down to Mid-City…just kidding…we know you guys are well on your way to making Green to Go NOLA accessible to all parts of the city.
In the meantime, before you think about going out to get that hot sausage poboy or fried chicken, think about the great, affordable, and healthy options at Green to Go NOLA. Your body will thank your for it!
For more information about Green to Go NOLA, please visit their website, Facebook, and Twitter.
UPDATE: Green to Go NOLA now has a physical location at the New Orleans Jewish Community Center (5342 St. Charles Ave.), serving breakfast and lunch (including soups from scratch and entrees), in addition to two bikes (Downtown and Uptown). Added Gia, “We are still providing fresh food, locally grown and organic as we can get it. And we have featured at least 30 different salads and at least as many soups. We also have a drop location at Well (3301 Veterans Blvd., Ste. 138) in Metairie, where we provide lunch and snacks five days a week. Our growth since we started rolling in January of 2012 has been exponential and we continue to work on expansion. It just goes to show that New Orleans wants to eat healthy and local and we are doing our best to make that happen!”