What do you think of when you hear the word “diner”? For me, the word evokes images of greasy food, huge portions and lots of fat-laden dishes. And in truth, that’s what many diners are; however there is one diner in Sioux Falls, South Dakota that offers at least a few healthier options. And I was thrilled to get a chance to eat lunch at the Phillips Avenue Diner today.
Sure, they have the high-calorie shakes, burgers and blue plate specials, but they also have healthier options like sticky noodle salad. It was a very reasonable portion (meaning it was served on a medium plate) and it had romaine lettuce, rice noodles and grilled peanut chicken. It was also suppose to have snap peas, but apparently they were out as they substituted bell pepper and carrot strips. It was accompanied by a light sesame lime dressing on the side, and it was a pretty healthy dish. I do kind of have an issue about the substitution as I think the snap peas would have really made the dish. Plus, I think they should at least tell you when they are out of an ingredient. As it was it was just so-so, but it was a healthy so-so. With all the ingredients, I think it would have been great.
Charles, on the other hand, really liked his modern taco salad, which had no substitutions. It had romaine lettuce, shredded chili lime pork, pepper jack cheese, avocado, pico de gallo and crushed Doritos. It was served with a srirachi ranch dressing (on the side), which is one of my favorites. Personally I would have asked them to hold the Doritos, but Charles seemed to like it well enough; in fact, he gave it a two thumbs up.
So there you have it – it is possible to eat healthy(er) in a diner. You just have to pick the right diner and choose the right menu items.