Welcome to my food blog! I am your average home cook and I want to share my love of food with the world. I'll divulge my recipes as often as possible. Feel free to comment or to email me at nodessertpodcast@gmail.com! Don' forget to come by often for new posts... I love having you visit me!

August 6, 2013

Restaurant Review 14 - Sweet Tomatoes

My friend's salad creation
Ever since I have lived in FL (21 years now, holy cow!) my family has been eating at a restaurant called Sweet Tomatoes. They are a chain, and they also go by the name Soup Plantation in other regions of the country.  On the surface it seems like a large salad bar, but Sweet Tomatoes also serves a variety of soups (which change on a regular basis), fresh baked goods (including muffins, breads, and foccacias), a few different pastas (some change seasonally, others are standard like the macaroni and cheese), and frozen yogurt with different toppings choices.  Wholesome, health, made-from-scratch food that can cater to a variety of dietary needs like gluten free or vegetarian.  While meat is not predominant on the menus, you can add grilled chicken to your meal for a surcharge, and some of the soups contain meat, like the chicken noodle or the Mexican meatball soup.
My salad bar creation
The price is a fairly good value, and if you become a member of their Club Veg, they will email or mail you coupons on a regular basis.  Lunch prices are around $8 and dinner around $10, but with coupons you can usually get a reduced price.  Often they send me coupons where I get 20% off, lunch and dinner for $1 or $2 off the normal price, and sometimes they have coupons where 2 can dine for around $19, including beverages.  Not too bad for a healthy alternative to fast food or casual dining.
Bakery and Pasta options, including garlic cheese foccacia, Greek pasta, and Lemon Caper Pasta
Avgolemono Soup
When you walk in to Sweet Tomatoes you are sent down the main salad bar.  This bar feature 2-3 premade salads (made fresh several times a day).  One salad is usual a seasonal item, and the caesar salad is always present and my favorite premade item.  This month they have the caesar as usual, then they feature an Outrageous Orange Salad (vegetarian AND gluten free!), and then Wonton Happiness which has Asian flavors.  Then you get to make your own salad with a very large variety of items. You can put anything on it and you can make it as big or as small as you like.  Tip, I usually get 2 plates for my tray.  On one I put the premade salads (my caesar, and then they have pasta and specialty salads down the line, some of which change weekly or monthly), and on the other I put the salad I create myself. There are several kinds of lettuce, spinach, corn, peas, carrots, tomatoes, cucumbers, squashes, radishes, onion, chickpeas, pasta, cheeses, croutons, and many other toppings.  They also have several dressing choices, including fat free choices.  You then decide on a beverage, pick up your silverware, and then pay for your meal.
Bakery items - sourdough, blueberry muffin, lemon muffin
Depending on how busy they are, you can either seat yourself or they will seat you.
Once inside the dining area there are more food areas.  There is a soup bar, a place to make your own potato (fixings like sour cream, scallions, cheese, bacon, etc), and then the bakery.  The bakery always has a foccacia that is reminiscent of pizza, one that is like garlic bread, and sometimes a seasonal foccacia.  There are also bread choices (sourdough, delish!), muffins (blueberry is my favorite! Their seasonal choices are often very yummy too), and other baked goods.  As I mentioned earlier, there are also pasta choices.
Mexican Meatball Soup
For dessert they have sugar free options such as mousse or gelatin's, and there is fresh fruit.  I always opt for the frozen yogurt, three kinds and then a toppings bar that includes chocolate sauce, caramel sauce, sprinkles, nuts, etc.
I love that there are so many options for so many dietary needs.  Vegetarians, diabetics, and people who eat gluten-free will find a multitude of tasty choices to fill up on.
If you have a Sweet Tomatoes or Soup Plantation in your area, go eat there!  A great all-you-can-eat meal, at a good price with plenty of healthy options. They now have a breakfast buffet on Sunday mornings now, so if you're in the mood for brunch, not a bad option!  One of my favortite things about Sweet Tomatoes is that they have their standards but they also are constantly putting new things in according to the seasons.  For instance, in the spring, either April or May is lemon month and they have the best lemon pastas, soups, salads, and baked goods.  Sometime during the summer they do an "around the world theme" where 1/2 of a month will be Greece, the other 1/2 Mexico, then the next month will be 1/2 Italy and 1/2 something else.  Very cool!  For more information including what they are currently featuring, and their locations, visit their website at:
Sweet Tomatoes/Soup Plantation Website
Don't forget to sign up for Club Veg to get your discounts!

Breakfast Buffet on Sunday's!

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