Want to do some good in the world but need to fuel up first? These 11 restaurants are doing both! From donating food to offering employment programs that are changing lives, these restaurants are taking 'good eats' to a whole new level. Dive into our list, pin their locations on your map and get ready to help change the world one bite at a time.
Zambrero's Restaurant is fast and healthy Mexican food with a mission. This chain serves up fresh tacos, burritos, nachos, and quesadillas using locally sourced chicken and environmentally friendly practices. Their plate four plate program donates a meal to someone in need in a developing country, and since opening, they have donated over 23 million meals. Zambreros also wanted to help locally, so for every superfood muesli bar or packet of black rice a customer purchases from their retail range, Zambrero will donate a breakfast meal to an underprivileged Australian community. Zambrero recently expanded to 2 more countries including the United States with locations in Rhode Island and Massachusetts.
Rosa's Pizza is just your average local pizza joint, a place to get a significant slice and chat with your neighbors except for one thing- this pizza joint donates up t 100 slices of pizza to homeless locals EACH DAY. So how does it work? Customers can choose to add $1 to their total and write a note on a post-it to stick on the wall. Any homeless person can come in, grab a post-it note and redeem it for a slice. After their cause had gone viral, they were able to hire more employees using an agency that employs homeless locals, furthering their give back program.
3.Even Stevens Sandwiches
The Salt Lake-native craft-casual restaurant serves sandwiches, salads, bites, and local craft fair unique to each store’s location. Even Stevens takes great pride in the craft process and by using local ingredients and allowing the menu to evolve based on customer advocacy, this brand honors tradition while leaving an open door for creativity. Even Stevens now donates on average 120,000 sandwiches per month to 80 non-profit partners across six states and 20 stores. Partnering non-profits say Even Stevens’ donations allow them to save cash on feeding clients, and instead direct resources towards programs that address the root causes of food insecurity – homelessness, disability, displacement, and unemployment among them.
4.Ninety Nine Restaurant and Pub
This local restaurant and pub loved to give back to their community and has even raised over $1.7 million for local charities in 2017 alone! Over the past 35 years, their team members have prepared and served over 500,000 restaurant-style meals to Pine Street Inn, New Englands largest homeless shelter. Last year, Ninety Nine also helped to raise $530,000 for Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and since 2008 they have donated over 2 million for local chapters of Boys & Girls Clubs. This pub even participates in a job training program, helping local homeless people find employment.
5.Natural Garden Cafe
The Welcome Home Foundation is a non-profit, non-governmental organization serving the deaf people of the Philippines. Their cafe, Natural Garden Cafe, promotes healthy eating and sustainable practices while employing and entire deaf staff. Diners enjoy interacting with, and learning about the culture of the deaf population; likewise, many enjoy learning the basics of sign language over the course of a few meals.
Maud's Cafe serves up coffee, lattes, specialty drinks, food and an 8-12 week employment training program for the youth from Volunteers of America, Utah’s Homeless Youth Resource Center, Young Men’s and Women’s Transition Homes. This SLC based cafe helps people transition into self- sufficiency while providing valuable job skills.
Cafe Momentum is a nonprofit helping at-risk youth get off the streets and out of trouble with intensive culinary, job and life-skill training, as well as continued mentorship and support, enabling them to achieve their full potential. The job training is 12 months long, and upon completion, the kids are placed in a job with one of their community partners.
8.Mission Chinese Food
Mission Chinese is known for their incredible food and as a perk, for every meal sold they donate $0.75 to The San Francisco and Marin Food Bank and have donated funds that have translated to over 400,000 meals since 2015. On top of that, for every red meat dish ordered, 25 cents is donated to Zero Footprint, to certify Mission Chinese Food as a carbon-neutral restaurant.
9. Homegirl Cafe
Homeboy Industries has an extensive list of services they do for former gang members from job placement to tattoo removal, and Homegirl Cafe is just one of the great things they do to assist former gang members in turning their life around. At the cafe, employees work side by side former enemies in every aspect of the restaurant from cooking to managing all while working with a caseworker for education and mental health needs.
10.Sisters of the Road
In 1979, Sandy Gooch and Genevieve Nelson opened Sisters of the Road with just $10 and a dream. Sisters Of The Road is a nonprofit Cafe in Portland’s Old Town/Chinatown neighborhood working to create systemic change that will end poverty and homelessness by providing nourishing meals in a safe, dignified space. Anyone can come in and buy lunch with a drink for just $1.50, the same price it was in 1979. If customers can not pay the $1.50, the cafe accepts SNAP benefits/EBT cards, meal coupons, and barter cards. The cafe is run by volunteers working for a meal or just to help.
11. Oregon Public House
The Oregon Public House is the first-ever nonprofit pub. When you get a drink or a meal here, you get to choose where you want your funds donated from a list of local nonprofit organizations and all profits after operating expenses and contingency savings are donated! This pub not only supports local nonprofits but helps get them recognition as well by featuring different organizations to support.