Lunch: The Most Important Meal of the Day - Benefits of Eating a Large Lunch

 

It has been ingrained in our brains that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, that eating a big, healthy breakfast sets up your day for success, and even that breakfast should be the biggest meal of your day! Yeah, yeah, yeah. We’ve heard it all before. I am here, ladies and gents, to tell you that it is not breakfast that should be capturing your attention and tummies, but lunch. I am here to tell you that lunch is the most important meal of the day - and here’s why.

 

There are many diets out there that range from caloric intake to keto and paleo. Diets are always trending, and it’s up to us to stay on top of each trend and decide if we feel it is a good fit for our lifestyles. Or you could be like me, and just not diet at all! (Don’t be like me people, I get winded after a flight of stairs). One of these diets has to do with the time of day that you eat, and how much you eat during each time frame. This isn’t a foreign concept of course, but if we apply it to different areas of our 24 hour days, let’s see what the results might be.

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According to a study published in the International Journal of Obesity, people who ate the majority of their calories before 3 p.m. lost more weight than those who ate the majority of their calories after 3 p.m. In layman’s terms, this means that people who made breakfast and lunch their biggest meals of the day lost more weight than those who made dinner their biggest meal of the day. Weight loss is a main benefit of eating a large lunch, but it is not the only one! I consulted the help of EmpowHer to find out some other benefits of eating a larger lunch; let’s find out!

 

Because of the larger caloric intake throughout the day rather than at the end of the day, your body has more fuel to keep it energized and functioning. It also helps to build a higher metabolism! By not skipping lunch and taking in the majority of your calories before 3 p.m. you build your body’s metabolism and keep it functioning healthily throughout the whole day, rather than letting the majority of your food sit in your stomach at the end of your day when physical activity lowers. And lastly, forming this new habit with healthy foods can help suppress unhealthy cravings. New habits replace old ones eventually!

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There are lots of benefits to eating a larger lunch, and we hope that you spend some of those lunch hours with us, whether it be in one of our restaurants enjoying the Spinato’s Experience, or at home creating your own experience with our retail frozen Broccoli Crust Pizzas. As always, we are so happy you joined us here at The Spinato’s Family Table. Alla Salute!

 

 

Images: The Family Table - The New York Times

Back to School with Spinato’s

 

Parents love it. Kids dread it. You know what time it is. Back to school time! This time of year always comes with a multitude of challenges and opportunities. Lots of exciting and new things happen around back-to-school time. Well, fear not, families. Because The Spinato’s Family Table has you covered on how to successfully bring in the new school year! Let’s dive right in.

What to do what to do. Kids are back in school and you’re back to the grind of the mundane. Get them up, dressed, to school, then get them home, fed, and spend time together before homework and bedtime. There’s a lot to do in only 24 hours! I won’t assume how much sleep we’re all getting a night, but let’s all make it a goal to get our 7-8 hours in for health reasons. That only leaves us with so much time in a day to get everything done! But don’t worry. We are here to take at least one thing off your plate (literally)! Dinner can be the most challenging part of anyone’s day, especially with young children. We want to give you back some of that precious time that we all cherish to ourselves and with our families. Spinato’s has the answer!

You’re running around all day, trying to get things done. Maybe you worked an 8-hour day, maybe you ran errands and paid the bills and cleaned. Whatever you did today, you did it hard. Now the kids are coming home from school and they are starting to get hungry for dinner, But you’re exhausted! You want to give your family a healthy meal, but you’re also not trying to break another sweat today. We have the solution for you. Spinato’s frozen pizzas are the perfect Monday night dinner for the family. You have picky eaters you say? HA! We laugh at the thought that our delicious pizzas in several flavors could disappoint anybody. We got 3 cheese, tomato basil, margherita, primavera, and mediterranean options that will suit anyone’s preferences.

Oh wait, you have celiac members in the house? Again, we got you. Our broccoli crust pizzas are always gluten-free, AND, the broccoli crust makes for a crispier and more nutritious crust than any other gluten-free or plant-based crusts. Your kids win, your health wins, and parent, you win. Kids will love it and you for making Monday night pizza night! Guilt-free, too! Congrats!

 

Back to school is going to be a breeze. Your kids are going to excel and enjoy the year, all while being fueled by delicious and healthy food that you are providing for them. Parent of the year! As always, thanks for joining us at The Spinato’s Family Table. Until next time, alla salute! 

School of Brocc:

Kids Really Do Say the Darndest Things at DGM

A tale as old as time, getting kids to eat veggies - let alone like them - is a challenge for perhaps every parent on the planet. We have already broken the system with our Broccoli Crust Pizzas, loading veggies in our delicious pizza pies. But, not everyone knows about our innovative breakthrough, say, kids. So, we have put together a fun little experiment to put our pizzas to the ultimate kid test. Welcome to the School of Brocc, where we take our Broccoli Crust Pizzas to a school and throw the kids a pizza party with a healthy twist. Staying true to our Arizona roots, we chose a small, local school in a neighboring city to our Spinato’s HQ to hold our little experiment, and invited our local Channel 3 News to come hang out with us. We wanted to share this super fun and enlightening experience with all of you at The Spinato’s Family Table!

 

Desert Garden Montessori is a small, local school that emphasizes the ideals of health and well-being. These kids even wash their own dishes at school! A garden a chicken coop provide organic produce that the school kitchen uses every day in cooking meals for the kids. We chose DGM because the unique curriculum and setting of this school gave us a really great opportunity to dive in and get in the field with these kids to do a little R&D (and have tons of fun at a pizza party at the same time)! We got there early to work with the amazing staff to get everything set up and ready for our little taste test.

     

Channel 3 News showed up just in time as the pizzas were being pulled out of the oven. We sat the kids down and fed them each an initial slice to let them taste, and then we asked them what they thought! And, you guessed it, turns out that kids LOVE pizza! We panned the scenic picnic tables that we were all sitting at to see the expressions on the kids’ faces as they had their first bites. Each of them smiling and barely having time to answer our questions between chomps, each response was positive and something along the line of “yummy!” Then, after the kids had downed a couple pies, we gave them the big reveal… it’s made with BROCCOLI!!! Some kids’ jaws literally dropped (it’s true, we have on film - Channel 3 local news check it out), some squealed in confusion and shock, and others kept chomping away at their slices unbothered. We kept pumping out pizzas, the kids kept eating, and the adults talked business with the news guys. I myself was too busy having a pizza party with our Broccoli Crust Pizzas!

We had a blast at Desert Garden Montessori giving these kids a healthy pizza party, and we can’t wait to keep doing fun events like this around the nation as the love of Spinato’s broccoli Crust Pizzas grows.  We hope you enjoyed reading about our School of Brocc Party. Keep an eye out for pics, videos, and coverage on this super fun event on our socials. As always, thanks for joining us at The Spinato’s Family Table! Alla Salute!

Up Your Veggie Game this Summer: 5 Ways to use Fresh Veggies in your Summer Celebrations

 

Summer is here and boy is she strong! The summer heat makes it harder to do… well, everything. It’s a time to kick back and enjoy yourself a little more with friends and family - preferably in the air conditioning! Finding new and fun ways to keep things fresh (literally) is always a challenge. We are here to help! One of the best ways to keep energies high is through good company and even better food. Not just better food, better-for-you food. Veggies! Here are 5 ways to freshen up your summer with great produce.

 

1. Broccoli Crust Pizza
There’s no easier way to get your veggies this summer than a pizza! Our new Broccoli Crust pizzas are made with REAL BROCCOLI! They’re gluten free, easy on the body, and just straight-up delicious. And a bonus - some of these pizzas have veggie toppings to get a double dose of healthy!  Trust me, you’re gonna want to put a few of these in your cart on your next shopping trip.

2.Veggie Salad - with Spinato’s salad dressings

I know what you’re thinking: “A salad is already based with veggies. This isn’t anything new!” Well hold your horses, you haven’t heard me out yet! Instead of lettuce, try making the base of your salad out of your favorite chopped veggies. I like snap peas, peppers, and broccoli the best as my base. Then I add tomatoes, pickled onions (YUM!) and sometimes if I’m feeling really bad, I’ll even add croutons in there *gasp!* Mix all these up in a big bowl while tossing it in one of Spinato’s outrageously tasty salad dressings. And voila! A fun, different, and extraordinarily healthy alternative that is sure to impress guests!

3.Add veggies to pizzas

Have leftover chopped veggies from that awesome veggie salad you just made? Don’t let them go to waste! These next two recipes will put them to great use. Any fresh or leftover pizza, pasta, etc. that you have can be easily and healthily amped up with those chopped veggies you worked so hard on. Throw them in a skillet with your favorite seasonings and some oil, and put those bad boys on top of your meals. You truly can’t go wrong.

4.Veggie Juices

Alright, this one you caught me. Not too original. But still effective and delicious! And I know, not everyone has a juicer, but still, it’s so good it had to make the list. If you don’t have a juicer, I definitely suggest you treat yo’self and get one before the summer is out. Juicing veggies is easy, fast, and you can always add a little something extra to personalize your juices to exactly what you want them to be. Carrots, celery, cucumbers (the 3 C’s, if you will), beets, and peppers are perfect juicing veggies. Try to stay away from juicing raw leafy-greens, however; just cook them before juicing! And a little cheating secret: add an apple in there for a little extra sweetness to your juice!

5.Skip the ranch - Veggies and hummus!

Veggies and ranch are a classic combo, but the ranch sometimes steals the show! Don’t get lost in the sauce. Sub out hummus this summer instead. Way healthier and still delicious enough to scoop up with a carrot or two. Plus, kids still love it!

 

There are lots of ways to freshen up the summer, and I hope you found at least one that you will try to beat the heat with. Let us know in the comments which Fresh Veggie Recipe you’ll take home this week! As always, thanks for joining us at The Spinato’s Family Table. Alla Salute!

Many Diets at One Table

Welcome back! This week we are going to dive in to a topic that touches every home, and, go figure it’s food. How many people do we know who are gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan, keto, paleo, organic, local, etc. A lot! When it comes to feeding everyone at your table, how do you do it? Let’s submerge into the fabulous world of Spinato’s and come out with ideas and solutions to make sure everyone at your table is satisfied!

So, Martha is gluten-free, Thomas is dairy-free, and little Sara Grace is young and picky. How do we feed this family without breaking the bank or your back with three different meals? What if I told you that all three people can be fed and satisfied, AND have a unique, connecting experience around their meal? Brace yourselves, because we are about to blow… your… minds.

PIZZA!!!

“But pizza is definitely not gluten-free. I know that pizza isn’t dairy free. And unless that pizza is plain cheese, little Sara Grace is going to have a conniption.” I know, I know. But hear me out. Spinato’s has created a solution! Spinato's will soon be launching broccoli crusts that are available a la carte in two’s are going to be your canvases for family fun that feeds all. These crusts AND our sauces are gluten-free (I’m looking at you, Martha)! And here’s the fun part: You get to dress up your pizzas any way you want! Thomas can get himself some vegan cheese (you’re taken care of, buddy!), and little Sara Grace can make half a pizza with extra cheese and absolutely nothing else, and the other half whatever mom and dad want! Bada bing, bada boom, everyone is having fun making their own pizzas with any toppings they want, and all dietary restrictions and preferences are respected! Pretty neat, huh?

And what a unique opportunity to create a family masterpiece with old-world flavors and foods, but with individual tastes and specifics. Surround yourselves and your loved ones around a gluten-free base that promotes clean eating and connection. That’s what we like to call, “the art of pizza.”

Let us know what gluten-free, dairy-free, or picky eaters you know and whether or not you think our pizzas should make an appearance in their homes! As always, thanks for joining us at The Spinato’s Family Table. Alla Salute!

 

Escape The Fate frontman CRAIG MABBIT                                        Joins Us at Spinato’s Tempe for Dinner!

 

At Spinato’s, every guest who walks in our doors is family, and we aim to treat them as such. We value and appreciate each one of them equally, and we never want them to forget that! Some fun news happened with us at our Tempe location this weekend, and we couldn’t wait to share it with you!

Now, everyone put your drinks and forks down, because we hope this fun happenstance is as exciting to you as it was for us.

Friday night, punk band Escape The Fate’s frontman Craig Mabbit joined us at the bar for drinks and dinner with a guest. This Arizona native is always on the road recording, touring, writing, doing photoshoots, going to  events, and countless other things that famous artists do! Understanding this, we were excited that he chose to spend some down time at home with us at Spinato’s. It was especially appreciated by a few employees who immediately recognized the rockstar, but of course wanted to let him and his guest enjoy their pizza and drinks in peace. Once they were finished, Craig was kind enough to take pictures with 3 of the Tempe employees! They were absolutely thrilled! He thanked us for the food, and was on his way, full and happy. And so were our hearts!

Here are a few pictures of the fun we got to have with Escape The Fate frontman Craig Mabbit for you to enjoy with us! As always, thanks for joining us at The Spinato’s Family Table! Alla Salute!

 

Family Members of the Month

Our team members are more than just employees - they’re family. And to show just a little appreciation for them, we like to recognize a different individual from each location every month. And we never call them employees. Always family members. So without further ado, a drumroll please for this month’s Family Members!!!

The Ahwatukee location Family Member of the Month is Steven Williams in the Heart of House. Steven has been with the family for 8 years and has done every position in the kitchen, including manager! He helped open our Ahwatukee location as “Sugar Steve” - the sole dessert chef. Since then he has made big moves working his way up at all our locations and has recently been at our Central Phoenix location for the last 3 years. Steven is one of the happiest, most positive people we’ve ever met and even on our most stressful nights keeps spirits high with his infectious laugh and dope dance moves. When he’s not at work you can probably find him at almost any Relentless Beats festival around Phoenix or watching sports at his favorite local dive bars. Our kitchen would not be the same without you Steven, we love you!

Spinato's in North Scottsdale would like to congratulate Kassie Connelly as our Family Member of the Month. She has been a part of our family for over 2 years. She has a wonderful spirit and embraces our culture with dedication and commitment to excellence. With a drive to always do more and move up in the company, her talents in our restaurant are priceless. Some days you will see her in the kitchen and then she will be serving you at your tables. Recently, she moved up into her new supervisor roll! Kassie loves to spend time with her family and her pets outside of work. The next time you have the pleasure to see her, please congratulate her! Great job, Kassie!

Our Central Phoenix location congratulates Andrea Guerra as our Family Member of the Month! She's always been amazing at taking care of our guests or handling a full section with grace and a smile. Excitingly, she's been learning how to bartend, too! Come in soon to watch her pour a perfect pint or order a Manhattan to test her skills and give her a high-five for her achievement!

Our Family Member of the Month for our North Phoenix location is Andrew Dorsey. He is a great asset to the North Phoenix team! Andrew Dorsey has been a family member since December of 2015, and he will be joining the Heart of House lead team this summer. Andrew enjoys playing pool and video games in his spare time. Thanks, Dorsey for all your hard work and dedication!

Store 5 is pleased to announce Bert Rubio as our Family Member of the Month! Bert has worked for Spinato's for 5 years and recently became a full-time employee. He loves working with his family members, making guests smile, and giving the Spinato's experience to every guest. (His exact words, this is why he's Family Member of the Month). His favorite menu item is the Chicken Pesto Pizza. In his free time Bert enjoys sports, movies, and traveling.

Tempe is proud to announce our most recent Family Member of the Month, Robert Desko. Rob has only been with us a short time but he has really made an impact quickly. His commitment to excellence and teamwork has not only shown in how he treats his tables, but has rubbed off on the rest of us. You can catch him helping his team-mates with anything they need, chatting with his tables about football, or giving fantastic Scotch suggestions. Next time you see him give him a pat on the back for a job well done!

WELCOME TO THE FAMILY

Are you excited? Because we are.

Welcome one and all to the resurrection of the official blog for Spinato’s! We are positively stoked to have a platform where we can connect and interact on a deeper and more personal level. Here, you become an official member of the Family with inside looks, tips, tricks, and discussions revolving around things that matter to us and things that matter to you. We are so excited to embark on this digital journey with our favorite people (psst! That’s you!) and explore the Spinato’s world together! Let’s kick things off the right way – a little introduction.

Meet the Spinatos

We all know that the Spinato name first lit up in 1974 with the first Spinato’s Pizzeria in Tempe opening. Since then, the family has continued owning and operating their now 5 locations across the Arizona valley. Ken, Elaine, Anthony, Jaime, Nicole, and so many more Spinatos are fully immersed in the daily processes and nitty gritty of what makes our food and the experience unmatched. From HQ and budget meetings to jumping on the pizza line at the Scottsdale store, you are guaranteed to see a Spinato running around at any point in the day. Working alongside the Spinato family is unlike your typical 9-5 in all the best ways. Let me show you what I mean. Let’s get to know some of these mystical Spinatos beings and learn a little more about what makes them…them!

Our Favorite Husband and Wife Team: Anthony and Jaime Spinato

I sat down with two of the big Spinato leaders, Anthony and Jaime, and asked them just a few questions about themselves so that we can all feel a little more in-tune and familiar with the Spinato family. Enjoy these conversations and leave a comment about who’s interview you enjoyed reading about most!

Anthony Spinato

What is your favorite part about your day-to-day running and operations?

  • Building something that’s better. Enhancing the lives of others by making today better than yesterday, and tomorrow better than today.

Tell me about what free time looks like for you. If you had a full day to do anything you wanted, what would your day entail?

  • A morning of scripture, then off to the gym, and finishing the day by spending time with family to make connections and form community.

What is your favorite “secret menu” item?

  • Pizza! With spinach, Canadian bacon, and onion. *Italian finger kiss* Muah!

What is your greatest strength and/or favorite thing about yourself?

  • Understanding the calling to love others.

What is one thing you can’t live without? (people don’t count! Ex: water bottle, phone, chapstick, etc.)

  • A good cup of Joe and a fresh pastry. Very Italian.

What do you want your legacy to be? Outside of your business, what do you want to be remembered most for?

  • For the behind the curtain man to be the same as the front man. To be someone who can be counted on: Counted on to do what is right, fight the good fight, and remain consistent.
Jaime Spinato

What is your favorite role to play and why?

  • Jaime started out her creativity by doing hair! Needing a creative outlet, recipe             development and experimenting in the kitchen is her calling.

Tell me about what free time looks like for you. If you had a full day to do anything you wanted, what would your day entail?

  • Going to the gym for some yoga, meal planning, grocery shopping (alone preferably, just like me!), and extending that creative outlet at home with husband and two girls.

What is your favorite “secret menu” item?

  • Jaime’s favorite secr4et menu food is a calzone that Anthony made for her when she was only 15 years old. With spinach, mushrooms, garlic, sausage, onion, and ricotta, it was love at first bite! *swoon*

What is one thing you can’t live without? (people don’t count! Ex: water bottle, phone, chapstick, etc.)

  • Esthetician. Smart girl!

What is your greatest strength and/or favorite thing about yourself?

  • Her klutziness! Because Anthony loves it about her.  A woman after my own heart!

What do you want your legacy to be? Outside of your business, what do you want to be remembered most for?

  • A good wife, a good mother, and a woman who modeled Christ to the best of her ability.

Getting to learn new things about our favorite husband and wife team is always fun and enlightening. I feel closer and more immersed in the Family after getting to conduct these interviews, and I hope you feel the same after reading them. Leave us a comment about which interview you liked reading most, or what your favorite answer was!

Thanks for joining us at The Spinato’s Family Table! Alla Salute!