Common Questions

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Healthy Food Choices

Q: I have been trying to eat a healthier diet. Will I be able to find healthy food choices in the Bon Appétit café?

A: Congratulations on your nutrition goals! Nutrition is a personal issue for many people. In fact, when I talk to our guests, I hear about a wide range of foods, diets and eating patterns they define as “healthy.” Bon Appétit is committed to offering choices that fit many nutritional goals.

We start with a simple set of “Kitchen Principles” created to ensure the highest level of food quality. All Bon Appétit chefs follow these standards, which include use of fresh, sustainable ingredients cooked from scratch in all cafés.

The result of following these principles is a menu that reflects an ever-changing variety of healthy foods from basic fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins and healthy fats, to exotic ethnic, vegetarian, vegan dishes and more! You can request many items cooked to order in our exhibition-style stations, and find foods that meet many personal nutrition goals, be it disease prevention, sports performance or more specific dietary needs.

Our cafés also use a unique labeling program to help you identify café items with certain nutritional qualities. We use color-coded stickers to identify items that are vegetarian, vegan, organic, made without gluten, and in balance and/or abide by our environmental and community programs of Farm to Fork and Seafood Watch. In addition, please talk to our onsite chefs and managers who will be happy to direct you to the best choices for your specific needs.

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Calorie Labeling

Q: Where do I find calorie information about food in my café?

Starting in 2017, you will be able to find calorie information for everyday favorite items on the menu page on  This includes items regularly featured in your cafe such as those on the salad bar, at the deli, or at pizza station. Because these are regularly featured items, our chefs have developed standardized recipes, which allows us to provide accurate nutrition information. Make sure and click “view full menu” to see the entire list.

The majority of our menu; however, changes on a daily basis, depending on the season and availability of locally sourced products. As you may already know, Bon Appétit kitchens utilize a “scratch style” of cooking in which menu items are prepared fresh, from scratch in our kitchens each day. In this system, our chefs do not follow specific, standard recipes in which the ingredients are weighed or measured. We cook like many people do at home – tasting and adjusting throughout preparation so that the final menu items meet our standards for flavor and quality. Without a standardized recipe, specific nutrition information is likely to be inaccurate.

We do train our chefs to utilize healthy techniques for cooking however and feel our system allows us to avoid/minimize unwanted ingredients (like salt, additives and unhealthy fats) while increasing healthy ingredients like fruits, vegetables and whole grains. In fact, our chefs are trained in what we call “stealth nutrition” so that they think about core nutrition principles as they plan their menus.

We hope that this helps you better understand our café and please let us know if we can answer any additional questions for you. Also, please feel free to contact, Terri Brownlee, MPH, RD, LDN, Director, Nutrition & Wellness at if you have further nutrition questions.


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Café Offerings

Q: What types of choices should I expect in a Bon Appétit café?

A: The offerings will vary somewhat from café to café. However, all Bon Appétit menus are driven by our passion for great food.

A few examples of items you will always find in our cafés:

        • An extensive salad bar including fresh greens, twelve or more vegetables, beans, lean protein options, composed salads, crunchy toppings and house- made salad dressings.
        • A fresh deli bar featuring turkey and roast beef, slow-roasted in each kitchen as well as a variety of other meats, cheeses, vegetables, condiments, spreads and breads.
        • A selection of house- made soups, always including a vegetarian option.
        • Two or more hot entrée options with tasty sides including whole grains and fresh vegetables.
        • An exhibition area where we cook to order for you. The menu will vary from basic stir-fries to ethnic and regional favorites.
        • Our cafés also include an extensive grill, pizza and dessert menu, fresh fruits, beverages and a wide range of condiments.

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Q: How often do the café menus change?

A: The answer is simple—all the time! Bon Appétit does not run our kitchens from a corporate menu cycle. Our on site chefs write menus and create new items each week. While favorites may be repeated, you can expect new and exciting dining options each week. The menus in our retail operations are restaurant style with set items plus daily specials.

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Food Allergies

Q: How will you handle my concerns about a food allergy?

A: Bon Appétit takes food allergies very seriously. We are careful to train our staff on food allergy awareness issues, but because of the complexities of food allergies, we prefer to work individually with you on your specific dietary needs. Our onsite chef and/or manager will meet with you individually to develop a plan that may include special menu items, ingredient identification, special preparation and communication to necessary staff to ensure that you can eat safely. You may also use our corporate registered dietitian as a resource for food allergies.

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Special Dietary Needs

Q: I follow a specific diet for (lactose intolerance, celiac disease, diabetes, etc.) and need to be able to stay on my diet. Will this be possible in the Bon Appétit café?

A: The use of multiple stations and exhibition areas encourages a “have-it-your-way” system, allowing you to follow any personal diet that you desire. However, if you have trouble identifying which items meet your needs, we are here to help. The General Manager and Executive Chef can answer questions and help you get to know what foods work for you in the café. In most cases, the choices are already there. If not, we will also work with you to prepare items that meet your dietary needs. When appropriate, you and the onsite staff can also consult with our corporate registered dietitian for help with making menu choices.

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Disclaimer: We attempt to provide nutrition information that is as complete as possible. The nutritional values are based on USDA data, common cooking techniques, and data from our suppliers. Variations may occur due to the use of regional suppliers, seasonal influences, differences in product preparation at the kitchen level, recipe revisions, and other factors. This information is always subject to change and will be updated periodically. Aug 2013