Susan's Healthy Gourmet
Southern California’s Favorite Healthy and Delicious Food Delivery Service
Susan Johnson launched Susan’s Healthy Gourmet in 1996 and has been going strong ever since. As a pioneer in the healthy food delivery industry in Southern California, Susan’s Healthy Gourmet stands apart because of the high level of customization they provide. Their meals are fully customizable and customers have the option of choosing everything from breakfast, lunch and dinner to snacks, sauces and desserts. Customers can order from one to three meals a day, for one to seven days a week, for complete flexibility. Susan’s Healthy Gourmet has a loyal customer following, including many celebrity clients throughout the years. She says, “Most people are very sensitive about what they eat and many call us with dietary issues that are personal to them. Celebrity or not, our customers know we care about what’s most important to them, whether that’s helping them drop weight safely or just maintain a fit and vital appearance.” Wayne Knight from Seinfeld offered to talk about Susan’s Healthy Gourmet as he was touted in People magazine for his amazing weight loss a few years back, with the help of a 1,500-calorie per day meal plan from Susan’s Healthy Gourmet.
Susan was inspired to launch her food business out of her personal desire to avoid the hereditary illnesses that run in her family. Her mother survived a ten-year battle with breast cancer, but then succumbed to heart disease when Susan was a young adult. “My decision to launch Susan’s Healthy Gourmet came from my own recognition that a healthy diet can help regulate diabetes and prevent complications such as cancer and heart disease,” says Susan. She was inspired to create her own business by her mother, a true entrepreneur who set a great example for her to draw inspiration and guidance. Susan does not have a formal culinary background but enjoys cooking and considers herself an entrepreneur who saw a need for fresh, great-tasting, healthy, delivered meals way before it became the vogue. “My passion was to fulfill that need with a team of professional chefs who would share my vision and could take traditional food that people loved and make it better for them,” Susan adds.
For those who want nutritionist-approved meals on a budget, the cost-conscious Good $ense Menu features an array of meals from their regular menu in different combinations for easy ordering. The Good $ense menu provides balanced meals in just the right portions. Starting off on Thursday, breakfast is Oatmeal with Brown Sugar and Raisins. The oatmeal comes pre-mixed and ready to eat, along with toppings in smaller separate cups. Included is a small carton of fat free skim milk to wash down the healthy breakfast. For lunch, the Egg Salad Sandwich is on the menu. Packed in a clear plastic container, there are two slices of whole grain bread saran wrapped for freshness, a cluster of fresh red grapes, a small bag of chips, and a cup of egg salad. This allows customers to put as little or much of the egg salad on each piece of bread. While the egg salad mixture was just right and not overly seasoned, it was plentiful on the mayonnaise with its extremely creamy texture. Dinner was a Mushroom Ravioli with a side of butternut squash. The mushroom blend filling of the ravioli provides ample flavor while the creamy pink alfredo sauce tops it off nicely. The butternut squash is fresh and light without unnecessary seasonings.
“More and more busy professionals and seniors are signing up each week for our Good $ense Menu, which is a value-added plan complete with snacks,” says Susan. Each day comes with pre-labeled snacks such as grapes with cheese twists, fruit cup, or chocolate chip cookie. Friday breakfast begins with a French Toast Soufflé that is tasty without being overly sweet. The Rosemary Chicken Salad Sandwich for lunch comes with a side of diced pineapple and string cheese. The chicken salad is deliciously seasoned and has generous chunks of white chicken breast meat in it. Friday dinner consists of Roasted Turkey, with two generous slices of turkey atop rosemary gravy along with a side of red cabbage. The turkey was extremely lean as it was breast meat and benefitted from the gravy in both texture and taste.
Saturday breakfast was a delicious treat of Turkey Frittata. The frittata is perfectly fluffy and filled with diced tomatoes, peppers, and chopped up roasted turkey. The thin layer of melted cheese atop gives it a nice finish. Lunch is Mini Mediterranean Pita Burgers with fruit salad and a cookie. The two individually wrapped mini pita burgers come with whole wheat mini pitas and a thin patty in between. The patty is seasoned perfectly with hints of cumin and herbs and gives a great deal of flavor to the mini pita burgers. Dinner is a Turkey Bolognese with penne pasta and a side of butternut squash and fresh snap peas. There is just enough sauce to coat the semi al-dente penne. The Bolognese is a heart blend of ground turkey with spices in a tomato sauce. Sunday breakfast is a Cranberry Banana Walnut Bread that is satisfying with its chopped walnuts and dried cranberries without being too sugary. Lunch is a Barbeque Meatloaf Sandwich along with an orange, veggie sticks and potato salad. This light but satisfying lunch featured a half sandwich with a thick slice of meatloaf and barbeque sauce on the side to add as desired. The meatloaf is amazingly delicious and goes great between two slices of bread. Dinner is Beef Burgundy featuring a beef burgundy stew with carrots over egg noodles. The sauce coats the noodles and packs enough flavor without using msg or too much salt.
All Susan’s Healthy Gourmet meals are prepared fresh at their 15,000 sq. ft. commercial kitchen facility in Irvine, California. The facility is a shared location for Susan’s Healthy Gourmet and its two sister companies, where Susan is also the founder and CEO – Xan Confections, a healthy chocolate company, and LifeSpring Nutrition, which prepares nutritious frozen meals. While her menu offers many fabulous gourmet items, some of their most popular offerings are comfort foods like Turkey Sausage Lasagna, Chicken Enchiladas, Pan Seared Salmon, and Grandma’s Meatloaf. They make all their salad dressings and baked goods from scratch, as well as having healthy Kid’s Meals that moms love. Susan’s personal favorites are the BBQ Chicken Salad, Cheesy Turkey Noodle Casserole, Creamy Wild Mushroom Penne, Lemon Oregano Chicken, Gouda Stuffed Chicken, Cranberry Orange Pork, Blueberry Cheese Blintzes, and the Inside Out Cheeseburger.
Her business was originally named Healthy Gourmet, but after several people said they could not remember the name because it was so generic, she put her name on the business since it is her passion. Susan shares, “My name on the business says there is someone very real and accountable for everything that goes on here. Anyone can speak to me at any time. Integrity and ethics are very important to us and we are who we say we are – a local business that is passionate about delicious, fresh food that’s good for you, prepared and delivered the way you want it to be. We believe our name describes our brand.” Susan’s Healthy Gourmet issues a new menu each fall, with weekly specials that are often seasonal and based on the availability of delicious locally produced items. Their customer service team adds a personal touch to each order by working with customers to ensure food preferences and allergies are addressed weekly. They even have their own felt of vans with full-time drivers, so they can personally guarantee quality control and customer service from the moment they take orders to point of delivery.
Susan’s Healthy Gourmet already delivers to all of Southern California in Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino and San Diego Counties. In coming years, they intend to bring Susan’s to Northern California and are possibly to the retail marketplace. Currently they operate independently as meals are prepared fresh in their kitchen without preservatives. In closing, Susan says, “Healthy eating does not have to be boring! When you look through our 22-page menu, you realize that there are many, many options for healthy dining at home or at the office. Whether you order Susan’s or not, don’t be trapped into thinking healthy eating has to be unappetizing. Enjoy!”