Lafayette is a great place to be for someone who likes to eat. The decision of what to eat for any particular meal is met with seemingly endless options. But sometimes those options can lead to overindulgences, tempting us to take care of our appetites and our desire to try everything instead of taking care of our health. Some people believe that eating good food that tastes great should not necessarily be met with having to worry about nutrition, weight gain, and overall health concerns. Those people operate Sandra’s Cafe and Health Food Store.
Located near the intersection of Camellia Boulevard and Johnston Street, Sandra’s has been providing healthy food options, in the form of both hot prepared meals as well as clean and healthy groceries to prepare at home, since Sandra Theriot followed her dream and opened her health food store in 1982. Sandra has since passed on, but the business was preserved when Glenn Murphree purchased it in 2007. He kept the name and grew the business into what it is today.
Sandra’s sells all manner of health-conscious goods including nutritional products, organic meats, vitamins, skin care products, organic produce, all natural and organic groceries, and so much more. It’s from this stock that the cafe draws its ingredients to create the daily rotating menu of nutritional plate lunches.
At the helm is Becca Murphree. She is the marketing representative for the business and says there is a set menu every day. Monday is Hamburger Steak, Tuesday is Chicken Shawarma, Wednesday is Spaghetti & Meatballs, Thursday is Rotisserie Chicken, and Friday is Shrimp Fajitas. “We see many of our regulars on their favorite meal day!” she says. Each day, in addition to the set meals, Sandra’s offers two to three other meal options plus a soup, salad, and sandwich option. This allows plenty of variety for those who may not be into a particular day’s set offering.
Becca says her favorite items are the Homemade Pizza and the Mexican Plate. She also says she likes to have bok choy with every meal. “Best vegetable ever!” she says.
At this point, you may be worried about sacrificing flavor for nutrition in your lunch choices. Becca is ready to alleviate your concerns. “We serve up healthy plate lunches,” she says, “Our plate lunches are a good home cooked meal made from ingredients that we get from the grocery section of our store including many local products.”
Becca says Sandra’s has something for everyone. She explains, “We have burgers that taste like burgers and cookies that taste like cookies and kale that tastes like kale!” She says that the offerings available at Sandra’s are just regular food made with clean ingredients.
Sandra’s Health Food Store is open at 111 Rena Drive in Lafayette Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and on Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. The store is closed on Sundays. The cafe is open Monday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. The cafe is closed on Saturdays and Sundays.
10 oz DeBoles Artichoke Lasagna Pasta
2 Tbl. Olive Oil
1 Medium Onion, Chopped
1 Red Bell Pepper, Chopped
1 Large Zucchini, Sliced
1 Large Squash, Sliced
8 Oz. Fresh Mushrooms, Sliced
10 Oz. Fresh Spinach, Chopped
12 Oz. Mozzarella Cheese, Shredded
12 Oz. Swiss Cheese, Shredded
16 Oz. Ricotta Cheese
26 Oz. Spaghetti Sauce (we love Muir Glen)
Optional: Chopped Fresh Basil Leaves for Garnishing
Heat oven to 375 F.
Boil noodles as directed on box.
Prepare ricotta by draining excess water and crumble into bowl.
Mix shredded Swiss cheese with ricotta.
In a skillet over medium heat, cook olive oil, onion and bell pepper for 2 minutes.
Add zucchini, squash, mushrooms, and spaghetti sauce and cook for 5 minutes; remove from heat and turn in fresh spinach.
In 13x9 in pan, spread 1 ½ cups vegetable sauce mixture.
Layer noodles and spread half of ricotta and cheese mixture and top with half of vegetable sauce mixture.
Repeat layer once more.
Finish with shredded mozzarella.
Cover tightly with foil and bake 55-60 minutes or until lasagna is fork tender.
Let stand 10 minutes before cutting. Garnish with fresh basil leaves.