By Kristin Boza
Since Whole Foods Market opened three months ago in Evergreen Plaza, 9600 S. Western Ave., the neighborhood rejoiced to finally have fast access to the popular organic and natural grocery chain.
The concept for Whole Foods Market is twofold, according to Kristi Malicoat, Store Team Leader at the Evergreen Park location. “There’s a misconception that everything is really expensive here, but I can feed my family a really nutritious meal that’s easy to make and also very filling for under $30,” she said. Malicoat encourages new shoppers to simply ask a team member for help when they shop, as they are trained to “build a basket on any budget,” according to Malicoat. She also encourages budget-conscious shoppers to check out Whole Foods’ 365 line, which is the company’s value-priced products.
Shoppers should also know that not everything at Whole Foods Market is organic; in fact, the store has both organic and natural options. “Natural means the product contains no artificial ingredients, like colors or sweeteners,” Malicoat said. “Our organic products are properly certified as organic. Any team member can help shoppers find what’s right for them.”
Malicoat grew up in South Bend, Ind., and worked in retail for years before landing her position at Whole Foods Market. One of the best things about the Evergreen Park location is that her team members, many of whom worked all over the city and suburbs for Whole Foods Market, can now work close to home.
“We had about 15 team members transfer to our store from other locations — now they’re coming to work much closer to home. Many of them used to commute up to two hours, and now they have a neighborhood store that’s 10 minutes from their house. Their passion during the interview process was incredible; they’d been fighting for this store location and waiting for it to open. Their passion about the community is what got me excited to work here, too!”
Summer grilling is easy with the help of Whole Foods Market products; Malicoat’s favorite is the Tequila Lime Spice. “It’s so good on shrimp, salmon or chicken, and you can also turn it into a dressing for a delicious salad,” she said. “You can get really creative with grilling, especially throwing vegetables and melon on the grill. We have many pre-marinated items for those in a hurry. We have plenty of fresh seafood, and also bags of frozen fish that can be thawed during the day and thrown on the grill for a simple and filling dinner.”
Grilling with Whole Foods Market
Tequila Lime Marinade and Dressing
Ingredients (amounts are specific to personal taste!)
Tequila Lime Spice
Shrimp, either precooked or raw
Whisk together the first five ingredients, then add in the shrimp until coated. Heat up the grill and spear the shrimp on a kabob; grill until cooked through.
Get creative with the ingredients!
Whole Foods’ Flavor Bomb Cherry Tomatoes
Dice all ingredients and pour the Tequila Lime Dressing over the top. Add the grilled shrimp for a complete meal.