Protein Bar up to par

Protein Bar successfully takes on the challenge of presenting low-calorie, high-protein meals with the flavors of indulgence.


Izy Scott, Assistant Pulse Editor

Walking into Protein Bar I expected a buff, high-energy crowd coming from the LA Fitness just around the corner munching on kale and pounding down protein drinks, but upon arrival the restaurant was flooded with casual business workers on lunch break ready for their daily dose of protein. With one glimpse of a customer’s golden and grilled “Bar-rito” and a waft of fresh veggies and sweet fruit, I was ready to go order my own and join the inviting sea of customers.

Faced with a menu of “bar-ritos,” salads, quinoa bowls, chilis and copious amounts of health-drinks, the Protein Bar presents mouth-watering options for all types of diners. After ordering from a menu presented on large wall screens, a pleasant staffer invited me to a complimentary sample of one of the restaurant’s protein juice cleanses. Fully informed on the different flavors and ingredients in their cleanses, the staffers knew what they were selling and presented a wholesome atmosphere to compliment the natural lighting, open kitchen and modern edge of the eatery. With walls of colorful designs, descriptions and digitized photos of the food, I was comfortably excited to try my meal.

The Spinach and Pesto Quinoa Bowl, complete with pesto-dressed chicken, perfectly cooked quinoa and fiber-packed spinach, packs a punch in the small, protein-loaded cup it is served in, satisfying my hunger in just a few bites. Hoping to be impressed again, I tried the Super Original Bar-rito which contains hunger-satisfying ingredients like all-natural chicken, black beans and avocado to name just some of what you can find in one of many signature Bar-ritos. However, despite a glistening appearance and a tangy aroma, my tortilla-wrapped package was overpowered by guacamole and tasted bland after a few chews compared to other options on the menu. Being the lower-calorie burrito on the menu, though, there were more flavorful options for those with adventurous taste buds like the Buffalo Bar-rito which tasted crisp from the restaurant’s Super 6 Salad Mix, yet savory from the vegan Buffalo sauce and hint of blue cheese.

I was unsure of how flavorful the Superfood Vegan Salad would be and had the fear of another bland combination similar to the Bar-rito, but I was pleased to find that the citrusy lightness of the Creamy Chia Dressing kept everything from the chickpeas to the marinated tofu to the toasted pepitas crunchy and flavorful. Paired with a pineapple-sweetened Hi-5 raw juice or a cold, espresso-infused Millennium Perk and a sweetly dense coconut walnut chocolate chip blondie, the Protein Bar knows how to give your stomach a meal as well as leave you with plenty to take home for later.