North Kansas City spot goes plant-based with lasagna, chocolate pudding, power bowls

Executive chef Elizabeth Clay took some of our mother’s and grandmother’s recipes and created healthier plant-based versions.

Now she has made them accessible to consumers by doing the cooking and selling the menu items for preorder or grab-and-go — with nothing over $8 — at her new Fresh Healthy Fast in North Kansas City.

The shop has softly opened at 414 Armour Road, in the former Shaka Noodle Shack (by the owners of Longboards Wraps & Bowls). A grand opening is planned for later this summer.

The space now features an open layout with a few seats for dining in and a large cooler where customers can simply grab-and-go.

The menu includes banana bread muffins ($3); chia pudding ($5); Mexican chocolate pudding made with sweet potatoes ($5); quinoa and apple stuffed sweet potatoes ($8); lasagna made with zucchini, peppers, onions, tomatoes, parsnips, carrots, mushrooms, rice noodles and house-made marinara sauce ($7); and power bowls ($8) with a choice of sauces (marinara, sweet garlic ginger, white miso or hot salsa).

Clay said she had a strong career catering top events and serving gourmet foods in Kentucky. But it wasn’t the plant-based diet she preferred.

Her husband had developed rheumatoid arthritis in his mid-30s, and she started changing the family diet while he went on medications. Clay eliminated processed foods including sugar, and she incorporated ginger, turmeric, sage and garlic into her recipes.

“They make food dance on our palates,” she said. ”Now my husband is 100 percent medicine-free and has more energy and is more alert. If food is our medication, how can I help people?”

She saw a recruitment ad for a start-up plant-based meal preparation service in North Kansas City and teamed up with a silent partner in Fresh Healthy Fast.

Clay said most consumers think it is too expensive to cook plant-based meals and that they don’t have time to shop at two or three different stores to pick up the right ingredients.

This story has been updated to include the information on Shaka Noodle Shack.