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Acai Bowls Make Their Way From Brazil to Carney’s

Acai bowls have made their way from Brazil, to California, to Lower Campus, and now to Carney’s dining hall on Upper Campus.

The meals debuted at Carney’s on Thursday Feb. 18. Acai bowls are a frozen blend of fruit and superfood acai that is topped with granola and sliced fruit.

Acai bowls were first introduced at Addie’s on Lower Campus at the beginning of the school year. These bowls are blended with almond milk and topped with crunchy, gluten-free organic granola, which is locally sourced from Maine. The bowls at Carney’s, however, are blended with Greek yogurt.

After receiving overwhelmingly positive feedback at Addie’s, Boston College Dining Services decided to expand the option to Carney’s. They are being presented as a BC Test Kitchen item, and will be featured every Thursday from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

We will see how they sell and ask for student feedback,” Director of Dining Services Elizabeth Emery said in an email. “The bowls will be slightly different than what we offer at Addie’s with a larger serving size, and students can top their own bowls.”

Emily Bridges, a graduate nutrition intern at BC, wrote a report to the National Association of College and University Food Services praising the health benefits of the acai bowl.

“Packed with potassium, calcium, and fiber, the acai bowl goes beyond a sweet treat; it’s a nutritional powerhouse,” Bridges said in her report. “The bowl can easily be made vegan by omitting the honey granola, which makes it a great option for students adhering to a plant-based diet.”

The acai bowl is one of the many efforts BC Dining has made to provide healthy food for students. The Nourish healthy-eating campaign provides a monthly nutrition tip to students via social media and poster messages. Some of the past tips include to choose foods closest to their natural forms and to drink water instead of sugary beverages.

I would suggest that if students choose this item for [a] meal like some do for breakfast at Lower, that a source of protein is added since almond milk is low in protein,” campus nutritionist Sheila Tucker said in an email. “Grab a container with some yogurt, have some peanut butter on toast, or pair with an omelet.”

In March, the Nourish campaign will promote its newest tip: students should fill half of their plates with fruits and vegetables. BC Dining works to stress the importance of incorporating protein and vitamins into the diet in order to promote a healthy and happy lifestyle.

“Dining Services is always looking for ways to expand healthy offerings or to better market existing items,” Tucker said. “Students can watch for items in the Test Kitchen and be sure to give feedback when they want to see an item return to the menu. Dining Services also encourages customer feedback through the link on the Dining web site or through social media.”

Featured Image by Chris Russo / Heights Staff

February 21, 2016

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