With more than 700 locations, Jamba Juice proves to the masses that nutrition can be speedy and delicious. Since the beginning, the company's product philosophy has revolved around choosing whole fruits and other natural ingredients over artificial flavorings, sweeteners, and preservatives. The menu is completely free of high-fructose corn syrup and trans fats, and it offers additional accommodations for vegan and gluten-free diets.
Blended drinks dominate the menu, with options including fruit refreshers—made with naturally hydrating, electrolytic coconut water—and pre-boosted smoothies that can fill nutritional gaps with infusions of protein, immunity boosters, or antioxidants that neutralize accidentally swallowed pool water. The drink list also includes organic house-blend coffee and Talbot Teas, including Paris Breakfast and SOHO Earl.
For those with heartier appetites, steel-cut oats steep in soymilk before being enhanced with toppings such as apples, cinnamon, and brown-sugar crumble. The lunch hour presents protein-packed mini wraps, toasted bistro sandwiches and California Flatbreads that pack only about 320–420 calories each.
With her team of ace pastry chefs at her side, Melody Larsen enlivens events with her pastries and a massive catering menu of hors d'oeuvres, sandwiches, and fondues. Her carefully crafted cakes incorporate a wide array of flavors and fillings creating many options for picky taste buds and an extra layer of indecision for those who want it all. Many of these cake flavors also find their way into batches of cupcakes, which Melody stuffs with fillings and tops with buttercream or whipped frosting. When her crew isn't busy readying eats and pastries for events, they serve clientele with sit-down breakfast and lunch service at the café, where diners can feast on quiches and cinnamon rolls in the morning and cold and hot sandwiches in the afternoon.
Tropical Smoothie Café whips up freshly blended fruit smoothies and wholesome café fare. Low-fat smoothies such as the Hawaiian Breeze transport landlocked taste buds to an exotic isle surrounded with a zesty blend of pineapple, orange, and nonfat yogurt. Supplement boosts populate supercharged smoothies such as the Lean Machine, which powers bodies with a mix of strawberries, banana, and weight-management and energizer supplements, plus three drams of raw horsepower.
Starting with only a single ice shaver and a hand-built hut, Bahama Buck's has expanded its icy empire to include a menu loaded with arctic indulgences and more than 91 gourmet flavors of Sno. Dessertsmiths drizzle complex flavors such as tangy kiwi, sweet sugar cookie, and emotionally ambivalent tutti frutti over fluffy mounds of pulverized ice to create Sno cones ($2.69+). Fruit juices and syrups spawn creamy smoothies ($3.99+), and frozen limeade ($2.79) puckers drinkers' lips, making them as taut as the bed sheets in a black hole's hotel.
From its humble beginnings in Kankakee, Illinois, in 1938, Dairy Queen has grown from a delicious experiment in soft-serve ice cream to a household name with more than 5,900 restaurants around the world. The shop's signature frozen delights are built upon frosty foundations of creamy chocolate or vanilla soft serve, which swirl idyllically into cones, cups, sundaes, Peanut Buster parfaits, and the chain's iconic Blizzard treats, blended with crumbled candy and other mix-ins. Ice-cream cakes cleverly conceal surprise fillings of fudge and chocolate crunch between layers of vanilla and chocolate ice cream, providing sweet, sliceable sustenance for birthday parties and other special occasions.
Fruit rules the roost on the other side of the slushy emporium, where Orange Julius blends its signature frothy drinks crafted from fruit juice, ice, and a "magic” powdered sweetener that explains why they disappear from most customers’ cups minutes after the first delicious sip. Real fruit purée forms the basis for the shop's smoothies, which also come in diet-friendly light versions that boast one-third fewer calories than regular smoothies.
Caffeinate at home, on the go, or both simultaneously if you live in an RV, houseboat, or floating apartment with today's Groupon. For $16, you'll get two 12-ounce bags of fresh-roasted coffee, plus two 8-ounce lattes ($2.75 value each) or two 8-ounce cups of coffee ($1.25 value each) from Cartel Coffee Lab, a total value of up to $32.