Thanks to Human for giving me 24 tickets to go check out all of the healthy items at the Taste of Chicago! I am excited to tell you all about their Healthier Choices program at the Taste and all opinions are my own.
If you’re anything like me, you’ve avoided the Taste of Chicago because you figured the temptation of unhealthy Chicago favorites would be too hard to resist. Well, put on your walking shoes and head on down to the Taste from July 8th to July 12th because this year they are featuring 55 healthy food options – from 24 Chicago restaurants, representing the largest list ever of healthy items.
GET EXCITED: We’re event giving away 24 tickets to the taste to one lucky winner – see details at bottom of the post!
There are also six gluten-free items from the restaurant Dia De Los Tamales!
The healthier food options are pare of Humana’s Healthier Choices program. Healthy items can be identified by a green apple on the menu boards at participating restaurant booths.
A panel of five top Chicago-area physicians with expertise in diet and nutrition collaboratively judged each item to assure that nutritional values were met. For an item to be considered, restaurants must submit nutritional details including calories, sodium content, saturated fat and the list of ingredients.
Here are the Humana Healthier Choices for Taste of Chicago 2015 (vegetarian options noted by a V and my favorites are highlighted!):
Appetizers/Starters – Less than 320 calories, 300 mg sodium and 2 g saturated fat
- Taste Portion of Veggie (Vegan) Burger (V) – Beat Kitchen
- Taste Portion of Mustard Fried Catfish – BJ’s Market
- Taste Portion of Grilled Chicken Taco – Carbon Live Fire Mexican Grill
- Taste Portion of Grilled Steak Taco – Carbon Live Fire Mexican Grill
- Corn on the Cob (V) – Mariano’s
- Roasted Celtic Corn on the Cob (V) – O’Brien’s Restaurant
- Taste Portion of Doner Kebab (V) – DönerMen
- Taste Portion of Shrimp on a Stick – Haire’s Gulf Shrimp
- Taste Portion of Avocado Toast (V) – Farmer’s Fridge
- Taste Portion of Watermelon Hibiscus Gazpacho (V) – Farmer’s Fridge
- Taste Portion of Chap Chae (V) – Jin Ju
Main Dishes – Less than 500 calories, 500 mg sodium and 4 g saturated fat
- Veggie (Vegan) Burger (V) – Beat Kitchen
- Mustard Fried Catfish – BJ’s Market
- Grilled Steak Taco – Carbon Live Fire Mexican Grill
- Grilled Chicken Taco – Carbon Live Fire Mexican Grill
- Taste Portion of Smoked Alligator – Chicago’s Dog House
- Taste Portion of Smoked Rattlesnake with Rabbit – Chicago’s Dog House
- Watermelon Hibiscus Gazpacho (V) – Farmer’s Fridge
- Avocado Toast (V) – Farmer’s Fridge
- Vegetable Spinach and Plantains (V) – Iyanze
- Taste Portion of Jerk Chicken – Iyanze
- Chicken Ke-Bob Curry Rice with Vegetables – Kasia’s Deli
- Malnati Salad (V) – Lou Malnati’s
- Grilled Chicken Satay with Peanut Sauce and Cucumber Salad – Star of Siam
- Doner Kebab (V) – DönerMen
- Kebab Salad (V) – DönerMen
- Chap Chae (V) – Jin Ju
- Vegetable with Cheese Sandwich (V) – Gino’s Steaks Truck
- Taste Portion of Chicken Tacos – La Cocinita
- Black Bean and Cheese Arepa with Venezuelan Guacamole (V) – La Cocinita
- Taste Portion of Grilled Cheese (V) – The Fat Shallot – mmmmmm! Cheese.
Desserts – Less than 320 calories, 300 mg sodium and 2 g saturated fat
- Taste Portion of Lemon Sorbet (V) – Caffe Gelato
- Blood Orange Sorbet (V) – Caffe Gelato
- Taste Portion of Peach Cobbler Gelato (V) – Caffe Gelato
- Chocolate Hazelnut Gelato (V) – Caffe Gelato
- Italian Lemon Ice (V) – Franco’s Ristorante
- Taste Portion of Italian Lemon Ice (V) – Franco’s Ristorante
- Italian Watermelon Ice (V) – Franco’s Ristorante
- Taste Portion of Italian Watermelon Ice (V) – Franco’s Ristorante
- Lemon-Lime Paleta (V) – La Mexicana
- Strawberry Paleta (V) – La Mexicana
- Taste Portion of Strawberry Paleta (V) – La Mexicana
- Mango Paleta (V) – La Mexicana
- Watermelon Paleta (V) – La Mexicana
- Taste Portion of Watermelon Paleta (V) – La Mexicana
- Sliced Watermelon (V) – Mariano’s
- Mango Sorbet (V) – Star of Siam
- Chocolate Frozen Baby Banana (V) – The Fudge Pot
- Chocolate Dipped Strawberry (V) – The Fudge Pot
- Taste Portion of 2 Dinky Donuts (V) – Dinky Donuts
- Red Velvet Cupcake Mini (V) – Ms. Tittle’s Cupcake
- Frozen Mango Kefir with Granola (V) – Starfruit Café
- Taste Portion of Frozen Mango Kefir (V) – Starfruit Café
- Frozen Original Kefir with Fresh Blueberries (V) – Starfruit Café
- Taste Portion of Frozen Original Kefir (V) – Starfruit Café
The following items, available from Dia De Los Tamales, do not meet the Humana Healthier Choices nutrition criteria but provide options for Taste-goers with gluten-free dietary restrictions:
- Slow Roasted Cuban Pork Tamale
- Taste Portion of Slow Roasted Cuban Pork Tamale
- Spicy Black Bean & Corn Tamale (V)
- Taste Portion of Spicy Black Bean & Corn Tamale (V)
- Buffalo Chicken with Blue Cheese Tamale
- Roasted Pepper Goat Cheese Tamale (V)
Humana Tent at Taste of Chicago
Take a break from the heat by enjoying a shaded seating area in the Humana tent, which will feature a backyard barbecue/tailgating theme, trivia wheels and a photo booth.
You can also pick up a pedometer at the tent and track your steps for the day and beyond. I personally use the S Health app on my android to count my steps, but if you don’t have a smart phone, a pedometer is a great way to track your steps for the day!
Humana will host a healthy food cook-off between Chicago Bears alum Tom Thayer and WXRT DJ Mary Dixon at 12:30 p.m. CT on Saturday, July 11.
The cook-off will feature special guest judges, including fellow Chicago Bears alum Tom Waddle and WXRT DJ Johnny Mars.
GIVEAWAY! If you are interested in receiving 24 tickets to the taste, just comment below on which healthy item (or items) looks the best to you. I’ll pick on winner on Wednesday, July 8th at Noon!