Life Alive: Urban Oasis & Organic Café

Mastermind Weekend 1/16

Hey there!

I'm Tina

I’m the owner of Carrots ‘N’ Cake as well as a Certified Nutrition Coach and Functional Diagnostic Nutrition Practitioner (FDN-P). I use macros and functional nutrition to help women find balance within their diets while achieving their body composition goals.

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I’ve partnered with Harvard Pilgrim on this sponsored post, but the thoughts and opinions expressed are my own. You can find more ways to be well at HarvardPilgrim.org/CountUsIn.

As part of the “Well-Together Challenge,” the next thing Sarah and I decided to try together was eating some raw/vegan/healthy food from Life Alive, an “urban oasis and organic caf锝 in Central Square in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

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Sarah had heard great things about Life Alive and it seemed right up my alley: “Scrumptious Unprocessed, Whole Meals.” It sounded great! Ok, pretty much as soon as Sarah said “juice bar,” I was on board. I love fresh juice and there’s no where near me that makes it (that I know of), so I was especially excited about visiting.

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At Life Alive, all of their meals are made fresh to order from organic produce, which is delivered daily, so as soon as I walked in, it was the first thing I smelled. It was like being at a farmers’ market!

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The menu at Life Alive was really something special. It included warm meals, cold meals (salads), soups, sides, smoothies, and juices.

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I have to admit, the menu was a little overwhelming, but only because there were so many delicious-sounding options. There were also number of ingredients that I wasn’t familiar with, but the staff was friendly and willing to help. They described the various flavors and answered all of my questions.

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Even still, it took me a little while to decide what to order. I wanted to try so many different things! (FYI: Life Alive offers Demi portions, which are a smaller version of their meals. I didn’t realize this until after I ordered, but ordering two Demi portions and maybe a side or two would be a great way to try a few different things.)

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Random side note: I loved that the condiment bar was loaded with nutritious and various diet-friendly options””from nutritional yeast and liquid aminos to ginger sugar and gluten-free mustard.

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Deciding on what juice to order was a piece of cake. The “Jive Alive” immediately caught my attention. It was made with cucumber, celery, kale, lemon, and ginger. The lemon and ginger flavors really came through, and it tasted fresh and clean.

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After much debate, I ended up ordering “The Lover,” which was steamed shitake mushrooms with dark greens, shredded carrots, beets, and broccoli flowers tossed in a zesty, garlicky Ginger Nama Shoyu dressing and served over short-grain brown rice.

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The veggies were only lightly cooked so they retained flavor, crunch, and nutrients, and the brown rice added texture and satiety to the meal.

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It was a fairly large portion and ate the entire thing. It was awesome.

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If you’re looking to try something different, I highly recommend Life Alive. My first experience was really great, and I’d love to dine there again soon. It’s sort of a hike from where I live, but I’d totally make the trek. Maybe next time with Mal? He’s sometimes skeptical of places like this because he’s worried the food will taste too healthy, but I wouldn’t hesitate to take him. The menu offered so many different dishes and the flavors were interesting, but not weird, and I think most people would enjoy them. Plus, you’re getting tons of nutrients in each and every bite of the food. I honestly felt healthier after eating at Life Alive!

Question of the Day

Have you ever eaten at a place like Life Alive? What’d you think? 

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53 Comments

  1. I love Life Alive! My favorite is the the Adventurer – lots of dark leafy green, broccoli and almonds for a crunch. There are other locations in Lowell and Salem, but I think those are even further away from you -_-

  2. Looove Life Alive. My favorite is the Green Goddess. I don’t think it’s technically a raw food restaurant though is it? Just because things are warmed and the brown rice is cooked? I don’t know what the technical definition of raw food is though.

  3. I need to move. We don’t have places like that (That I’m aware of) in Omaha. There was a restaurant I ate at in Columbia, MO called Main Squeezed that had a vegan/vegetarian menu, and I loved it. So did my mom. Dad, not so much, but he doesn’t eat his vegetables.

    I miss it. We have this one organic place in Omaha that’s been here since my mom’s college days, but we’ve never gone. Really want to, though.

  4. That place looks really good. I wish I knew about it when I was working in Cambridge.
    By the way, what happened to your post about taco night? It was in my reader but when I clicked over to give you a page view it 404’d on me.

  5. That place looks awesome! I probably would be a bit overwhelmed with the extensive menu [hellooo Cheesecake Factory] but I just looked at their site and there are so many options I bet it would be hard to choose something not too tasty… I usually am not a fan of small plates because I feel like I have to order so many to feel satisfied, but that’s a great idea for a place like that where you’d wanna try a few different dishes!

  6. I’ve heard such great things about this place! I work in Harvard Square so this could very well turn into a healthy option for lunch.

    How are the prices? I’m guessing it’s a little on the expensive side?

  7. There’s nothing like this where i live that I know of. I live in Kentucky right near Cincinnati 🙁 Soo sad… I think I would absolutely love it tho! Tina I have another question about your sweet breakfast scramble; Do you ever use butternut squash? I was going to try it since I have leftovers. Also after squash is made is good all week long? Thanks!

  8. I love Life Alive! Im glad you got to try it 🙂 My favorite is the Innocent. They also have delicious iced lattes with homemade almond milk that I’m sure you’d love!

  9. Wow. That place looks like my dream restaurant! As a vegetarian and someone who eats healthy most of the time, I always have a hard time ordering at restaurants. There are usually only 1-2 things on a menu that I can choose from. So I would be completely overwhelmed (in a good way!) with the menu at Life Alive! I can’t relate to being able to order almost anything on the menu. Seeing restaurants like this makes me want to go open one of my own! 🙂

  10. Love Life Alive! Definitely hear you on the overwhelmingness-of-the-menu front, but I’ve never had anything I haven’t enjoyed. And while it is a hike, you could set up shop right down the street at Clear Conscious Cafe and work from your laptop – I used to do it all the time, makes it more of a substantial trip!

  11. Such a coincidence! I ate at the Lowell location yesterday. It was amazing! I got “the romantic” with brown rice on a wrap. AMAZING. I will be frequenting that place more often, as it’s right down the street from my classes.

  12. What a wonderfully funky place! Everything looks fantastic! There are a lot of similar places like that in Asheville. We visited there last spring, and I really loved Rosetta’s Kitchen the most–I got a Buddha bowl with a fantastic sea vegetable salad.

  13. We first went to the Lowell location, after going to the quilting museum. The Lowell location is smaller but seemed bigger as there were not as many people standing in line to place their order (be sure to visit the restroom to see pretty way they repurposed the bathtub!). We saw on the menu that it was in Central Square/Cambridge too.

    Since then we’ve been walking to Central Square a few times a week and have tried all the salads and all the hot meals – some of the other things too. Everything tastes delicious. My husband and I split a salad and hot meal for dinner. If we stick to the basics it’s around $20.

    They also have Live Alive in Salem, we haven’t been there yet.

    I just heard from the owner: A cookbook is in the planning stages – look for it in a few years though as they are busy arranging the new store in Jamaica Plain!

  14. Pingback: Annie, Are You Ok?

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