CEDAR FALLS — A new Cedar Falls restaurant is catering to diners looking for quick but healthy food.
Freshii opened its doors Nov. 13 at 4505 Algonquin Drive, in the growing retail and residential area along Greenhill Road, near the water tower just east of Hudson Road.
“We want to bring healthy, convenient, affordable food to everybody and offer people lots of clean-eating options,” said Jen Adair, the restaurant’s operations manager and partner in the local franchise.
“Cedar Falls was the prime location for a restaurant like this because the community is very forward-thinking, very active, very health conscious,” she said. “We thought Greenhill Road, with all the development coming out toward this area, would be a prime spot.”
Freshii, founded in 2005 in Toronto, Canada, has more than 340 franchise locations in the United States and 14 countries worldwide. Previously, the nearest restaurants were in Minneapolis, Madison, Wis., and Omaha, Neb.
“This is the first location in Iowa and the first location with a drive-through as well,” Adair said.
The restaurant, which is located in half of a new commercial building constructed by High Development, was the busiest drive-to, as opposed to walk-up, Freshii franchise during its opening week, she added.
A University of Northern Iowa graduate, Adair and her family moved back to Cedar Falls to help open the franchise after finding it difficult to find fresh, healthy food for their kids while trying to balance that against a busy schedule.
Freshii’s menu follows its slogan — “Eat. Energize.” — with a variety of salads, wraps, burritos, soups, juices and smoothies all featuring fresh ingredients and super foods. Bowls served with brown rice or quinoa include vegetables and chicken, steak, tofu or falafel as a protein.
“My personal favorite is the metaboost salad,” Adair said. “It has lots of super foods in it.”
The Metaboost salad includes spinach, kale and field greens, goat cheese, mango, almonds, carrots, edamame and a balsamic vinaigrette. The store’s popular teriyaki twist bowl is made with brown rice, edamame, crispy wontons, broccoli, carrots, cucumber, green onions, sesame seeds and teriyaki sauce.
The business also includes a breakfast menu.
“We have a lot of vegetarian and vegan options as well,” Adair said. “We can cater to gluten-free and dairy-free, really to any diet.”
Freshii also makes all of its juices daily, sells juice cleanses, offers a daily meal box plan and can cater events.
“We want to put good healthy foods in our bodies that give us energy and not make us at 2 o’clock feel like, oh, why did I have the burger and fries for lunch,” Adair said. “We want to provide food that gives us energy and makes us feel good.”
Freshii is open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Sundays.