Waffles and bagels and soup? Oh, my!
Tehachapi Natural Market and Juice Bar
February 15, 2020
There's a new restaurant in town serving plant based foods. Okay, it's not new and it is not really a restaurant but they are serving a delicious array of plant based, gluten free soups as well as plant based bagels, waffles and salads. What is this mystery restaurant-that's-not-a restaurant? It's Tehachapi Natural Market and Juice Bar, located in the old Curves building in Old Town.
From the day the market opened two years ago they have made world class smoothies and juices from fresh, organic vegetables and fruits. Last fall they began serving the most amazing acai bowls (a frozen berry treat topped with fresh strawberries and bananas, granola and coconut). Recently, they expanded their menu to include organic bagels with regular or vegan cream cheese, plant based or gluten free waffles topped with real maple syrup, "homemade" soups and a fantastic selection of salads.
When asked about the recent additions to their menu, co-owner Sarah Rose explained, "This has all been driven by customer need. We were being asked, practically begged, on almost a daily basis to make healthy things to eat. Teresa and I put our heads together to come up with simple to prepare items that would be not only tasty but nutritious. Soups were the first thing that came to mind. We came up with six (now seven) delicious, organic, plant-based and gluten free soups that we now serve on a daily basis."
Sarah described customer reaction to the soups as being almost overwhelming. "Overwhelming," she said, "but in a good way. At first, we couldn't keep up. We don't have a full size kitchen so the employees trying to fill juice orders would be running into the person trying to make the soup. We were also running out of soup by mid-afternoon. It took a few weeks but we finally worked out all the kinks. We make a double batch in the morning before the market opens then we have ingredients for the next batch already prepped. That way, we can make sure that we have soup right up until closing."
One step into the market and you will be assailed by the wonderful fragrance of the soup bubbling in the crockpot. Sarah laughs, "That's the first thing practically every person who walks in the door says: It smells so good in here! Every customer is offered a sample of the soup. If we get busy or forget, please ask us. We'll be happy to provide a taste to all.'"
What came after the soups?
"Waffles were next on my brain. I was obsessed with making a good, plant based waffle made with all organic ingredients. It's always been about quality ingredients for us. Food that not only tastes good but is good for you."
From there, their menu expanded to include bagels and bagel sandwiches. Bagel sandwiches?
"Yep!" Sarah says, "Bagel sandwiches. We top an organic, toasted bagel with either our chickpea salad, tofu salad or a chopped cauliflower-broccoli salad. I'm a little addicted to them and customer response has been great!"
The market has a regular schedule of daily soups. Head on over on the day your favorite soup is served or every day for any one of their wonderful offerings. See their ad on this page for daily soup menu.
Tehachapi Natural Market is located at 20221 W. Valley Blvd., in Old Town Tehachapi.