Thursday, November 15, 2012

Eating Paleo at Cheddar's, Part 2 11-15-12

   Yum. This is the second day in Cheddar's menu, sorting out some Paleo Diet choices, and I am getting hungry. Read yesterday's post for Appetisers through Classics. Today finishes with Steaks through Kids' Meals. With a name like Cheddar's, and Paleo allowing no dairy, grains, legumes, soy, you might think the list would be short. One of the reasons my husband and I love Cheddar's is because no matter who we take there, they always find something they like to eat. My 95-year-old mother-in-law wants to know when Cheddar's is coming to Georgia. I am your server, and today's specials are:

STEAKS AND COMBOS: (Sides listed separately.) These are served with Onion Straws, which are sometimes oily and limp, and the breading is not Paleo, but they have lots of flavor. Choices: Sirloin or Ribeye, several ways; Steak and Grilled Shrimp; Steak and Grilled Chicken (strips or breast); Steak and Baby Back Ribs; Chicken Tenders and Shrimp--only if both are grilled; Baby Back Ribs and Grilled Shrimp. You stand a better chance of getting the tenders cooked without breading if you go when they are not packed, since this is definitely a special request.

BURGERS: NO BUN, no cheese, with Coleslaw or another Paleo side (no fries or beans, including edemame, no mayo). Original; Bacon Cheeseburger-no cheese (what's the point? but their bacon is terrific and allowed); Mushroom Burger; 3-Cheese Hickory Burger--get the Original and ask for Hickory BBQ Sauce--much cheaper; Smokehouse Burger--ask for BBQ sauce, not BBQ Ranch. I request that the bun be left off, but you don't have to--just don't eat it. Lettuce, mustard, ketchup are ok. (I'm ignoring the sugar in the sauces, but you can always leave those off. "Diet" sauces usually are loaded with soy and artificial sweeteners. Pick your battles.

SIDES: NO SOY (edemame.) Ask for Fresh (Steamed Vegetables), although this seems to be the bagged broccoli, carrots, squash, and zucchini, not fresh food. Add steak seasoning, and they are tasty. Steamed Fresh Broccoli (does not come with cheese sauce, and is usually charred a little--a good choice); Sweet Baby Carrots; Coleslaw (not enough dairy to matter for Paleo); Southern Green Beans. NO WAY: Rice, corn, french fries, mashed potatoes, baked potato, broccoli cheese casserole, or red beans and rice.

DESSERTS: NONE so far, since no grains (bread/cake/crust), and no dairy (creams, ice cream, pudding). You could ask about the Virgin Daiquiri IF it is not dairy-based.  I haven't found any "fresh" fruit here, but some of the toppings pretend to be fruit. I tell myself, "Eat More Carrots."

KIDS' MEALS: (no bread, dairy, soy (edemame), or potatoes. One of these meals might fit your hunger, and I have never had a server refuse me one. Since I take leftovers home, I usually go for the adult meal and have extra for later. Junior Burger, fresh vegetables, broccoli, carrots, coleslaw, or green beans; Grilled Chicken Breast with fresh vegetables or other Paleo side; Monte Dog--IF not pre-breaded and they will cook it bare, with fresh vegetables or othr Paleo side. Some kids are eating Paleo, too, of course, but if you have to consider true allergies, do a lot more research and don't be afraid to ask your server to find out what you need to know.

Now, go out to eat somewhere. Don't use the restaurant as an excuse to go off your Paleo eating, but you have to be responsible for your choices. Cheddar's, here I come.

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