Summary: Soda doesn't have to be nasty colas with high fructose syrup, it can be delicious beverages that can be a special treat, without feeling gross after you drink it. One of our favorite discoveries is Nature's Flavors, which crafts USDA Certified syrups with no toxins, chemicals, or synthetics. Their syrups are vegan, gluten and alcohol-free, as well as kosher.

Soda doesn’t have to be nasty colas with high fructose syrup, it can be delicious beverages that can be a special treat, without feeling gross after you drink it. One of our favorite discoveries is Nature’s Flavors, which crafts USDA Certified syrups with no toxins, chemicals, or synthetics. Their syrups are vegan, gluten and alcohol-free, as well as kosher.

While they have many flavors, their mango chili syrup caught our attention because we love the mix of sweet and spicy. Here is our favorite recipe for mango chili soda.

Vegan, Gluten-Free and Organic Mango Chili Soda

1 cup of filtered water
1 cup of organic, vegan sugar
1/2 cup Natures Flavors mango chili syrup

Bring all of the ingredients to a boil in a heavy saucepan, then turn down the heat to low-medium, letting the syrup simmer until it’s reduced to about half of it’s volume. Remove from the heat and let it cool. Transfer it to a glass bottle with a tight seal. When ready to serve, combine syrup with carbonated water over ice. Start with a few tablespoons, taste, and add more if you’d like a stronger taste.

To add to this soda, consider additions such mint or blackberries to add a unique flavor to the beverage.

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Summary: We were very excited to be invited to the Boulder Native Foods Cafe Pre-Openinig Party! Well, maybe party isn't the right word - but they are treating us to lunch, and we get to go this weekend! (they officially open next Tuesday, May 29th).
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We were very excited to be invited to the Boulder Native Foods Cafe Pre-Openinig Party! Well, maybe party isn’t the right word – but they are treating us to lunch, and we get to go this weekend! (they officially open next Tuesday, May 29th).

Here is what our invitation said:


Dear Special Friend of Native Foods,

We are incredibly excited to invite you to join us for a Complimentary Meal in celebration of the first Native Foods Cafe in Boulder, Colorado.

We are open to the public on May 29th, but invite you to join us prior to opening as a way to thank you for welcoming us to the community and to fine tune the last details of our training and introduce you to our new team members who are so excited to meet, greet and feed you!

Please CLICK HERE to RSVP for any one of our complimentary lunches or dinners this Friday, May 25th or Saturday, May 26th, for you and up to 3 of your friends!

This invitation is being sent to a select group of Native Foods friends. Please do not forward this link around! It’s just for you, our special guests. All food (including dessert) is free. All beer and wine will be served at $2 each with 100% of the proceeds being donated to five great local charities.

We can’t wait to see you and meet all our new friends in Boulder!

Eat Peace,
The Native Foods Family

We’ll be sure to report back!

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Summary: We are so excited that Native Foods Cafe is coming to Boulder, Colorado soon! The all vegan fast food and vegan comfort food (including gluten-free vegan food!) is currently setting up shop in the location previously filled by Rumbi Grill, at 29th Street Mall next door to the Smiling Moose Cafe. Rumour has it that they will be open by May, and judging by the progress we see whenever we are in the area, we think that is probably right. The Native Foods Cafe Boulder menu is already up by the door, and it looks fantastic. They are set to become the first openly kid-friendly vegan restaurant in Boulder (with a separate child-friendly menu), and they even have separate gluten-free and soy-free menus! Here is a small taste (no pun intended!) of the Boulder Native Foods Cafe menu:
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We are so excited that Native Foods Cafe is coming to Boulder, Colorado soon! The all vegan fast food and vegan comfort food (including gluten-free vegan food!) is currently setting up shop in the location previously filled by Rumbi Grill, at 29th Street Mall next door to the Smiling Moose Cafe, which has a wonderful vegan vegetable soup and lots of other vegan, and gluten free, options as well). Rumour has it that they will be open by May, and judging by the progress we see whenever we are in the area, we think that is probably right. The Native Foods Cafe Boulder menu is already up by the door, and it looks fantastic. They are set to become the first openly kid-friendly vegan restaurant in Boulder (with a separate child-friendly menu), and they even have separate gluten-free and soy-free menus! And we love that they are not only all vegan, but whenever possible use only organic and locally-sourced ingredients (all of their food is made fresh, from scratch). Here is a small taste (no pun intended!) of the Boulder Native Foods Cafe menu – remember that anything that sounds non-vegan (such as cheese, or meat) is actually their vegan version:

Nuevo Native Nachos
Homemade corn tortilla chips covered in black beans, Native Taco Meat, Native Chipotle Crema, Native Cheese, salsa fresca, and guacamole. Topped with corn, green onions, cilantro and jalapenos. (YUM!)

Tandoori Kabobs
Grilled skewers of Native Original Seitan and tofu, marinated in Tandoori spices, topped with mango-apple chutney and served on a bed of baby greens with our homemade raita yogurt sauce.

Native Chicken Wings
Our crispy battered Native Chicken wings. Ranch dressing on the side.

Chili Cheese Fries
Seasoned potato fries smothered in our homemade Native Chili. Topped with Native Cheese and diced red onions.

And that’s just the appetizers! Their full menu includes such amazing sounding items as a “Double Cheeseburger Deluxe Pizza”, featuring crumbled seitan smothered with marinara sauce, melted cheddar cheese, pickles, onions and tomato, and topped with a “secret sweet mustard sauce”; the “Soul Bowl” featuring vegan fried chicken, red beans, rice, steamed veggies, kale and ranch and barbecue sauce; a portobello and sausage burger; and a “Chicago Dip Au Jus” with “thinly sliced Native Peppered Seitan piled high on a freshly baked baguette smothered with our homemade “giardiniera extraordinaire,” and au jus to dip.”

Let us repeat: YUM!

And their desserts are too decadent to even mention here; just think lots of chocolate, cheesecake, and cupcakes.

Native Foods Cafe is a small chain which started in Southern California and now has locations in Portland, Chicago, and Boulder.

Here is how Native Foods Cafe describes themselves, and their origins:


Native Foods Cafe is a vegan restaurant designed to meet the needs of today’s discriminating, health-conscious diners looking for great-tasting food… both vegetarians and meat-eaters alike.

Native Foods was founded 17 years ago by acclaimed vegan chef Tanya Petrovna. Author of two cookbooks (and working on a third!), Chef Tanya has been featured on the Food Network, in many publications and has made many TV and radio appearances. Native Foods Café is her vision and she works full-time as Executive Chef.

Chef Tanya’s roots are firmly grounded in the culinary world. Chef Tanya was raised in a gourmet household and she helped her father at catering events as a teenager. In her family, mealtime was a celebration of taste, texture and companionship, which always began in the backyard garden. Family vacations were global explorations of food and culture, visiting relatives in far off lands and discovering ethnic flavors and traditions.

Her idea for a vegetarian restaurant came to her at a very young age.

After developing a lifelong bond with her cat Muchka at a very young age, Tanya then met (and pet!) a dairy cow on a family vacation which forever changed her perspective on animals. She loves them! So Tanya’s quest began: how to maintain a healthy, balanced and nutritious diet using 100% plant-based foods. Well, much to Tanya’s delight, she learned that contrary to the fears and concerns of some people, it’s not only possible to live a healthy vegetarian lifestyle, but it’s also healthier for the planet as well as its people.

The result is Native Foods Café, which serves delicious, healthy, fun food that honors the environment and harms not a single animal in the making.

We at the Happy Gluten Free Vegan are awaiting their Boulder opening with excitement and anticipation; we are sure that we will be frequent visitors, and we can’t wait to say “Welcome to Boulder” in person!

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