Powering Up With Chad Owens

Rich Miano, Chad Owens and Jason Kim hold some of the items from Good to Grill’s new Power Up! by Chad Owens menu | Anthony Consillio photo

While home during his recent off-season, Canadian Football League MVP Chad Owens was often seen eating at Good to Grill in Kapahulu. He discovered it while staying with his brother-in-law, who lives nearby, and would go to the locally owned eatery to order, well, his own made-up plate.

“I looked at the menu and said, oh, can I get this from this, but use this from that,” explains Owens. “(For example), can I get the salmon, but put it with the pasta? And once I started eating the Cajun Salmon, I fell in love with it and ate it every single day.

“I used to wonder if they were getting irritated with me, but they kept doing it. They never said, sorry, we can’t.”

As a professional athlete, Owens constantly is aware of what he eats. He’s now back in Toronto, where his season with the Argonauts runs through November, but before he left Hawaii, he partnered with Good to Grill owner Jason Kim to develop a special menu with healthier options.

“I barely eat anything fried, I don’t drink any soda and barely any juice, if any – it’s mainly water,” he says. “My diet is typically higher in protein and simple carbs such as sweet potato, which is one of the things they added to my menu.

“I’ll have pasta every now and then, and white rice if I know I’m going to use that energy. It all depends on when I eat, what I eat and how I utilize the food.”

On the menu are Kiawe Grilled Tofu Burger made with olive and garlic aioli on ciabatta bread and served with cauliflower mash and baked Okinawan sweet potatoes; Cajun Salmon with garlic and spinach angel hair pasta served with cauliflower mash and Okinawan sweet potatoes; Kiawe-Grilled N.Y. Steak with baked sweet potato stuffed with cauliflower mash and served with a side salad of fresh spinach and kale; CO2 Surf & Turf consisting of kiawe-grilled salmon topped with sauteed spinach and kiawe-grilled chicken breast, and served with a baked sweet potato stuffed with cauliflower mash and a side salad of kale, spinach and acai berries; Mighty Mouse Wrap, featuring fresh kale, red leaf lettuce, spinach, quinoa and cauliflower puree in a spinach wrap; and CO2 Acai Bowl, featuring acai and banana puree topped with granola, sliced bananas, sliced strawberries and drizzled with clover honey.

“I didn’t eat like this growing up,” says Owens, 31, and a father of three. “But now my kids get to grow up seeing what eating healthy is.”