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Local Food Matters

By Mary Rosewood

With Thanksgiving almost here, why not treat yourself to a feast of side dishes from Whole and Nourished, headquartered in Bozeman. It really couldn’t be easier to have healthy meals made with fresh, local ingredients delivered to your door.

For the first time, this meal delivery service will be offering festive sides like brussels sprouts with pomegranate, olive oil mashed potatoes, ginger cranberry fig chutney, and classic squash soup, as well as pumpkin cake for dessert.

Heather McDonnell Babineau-Z stands by a Whole & Nourished delivery van.

In recent months, a lot of changes have improved the customer experience. A new chef, Brian Schmidt, has come on board to add his touch to the menu. Along with everyone in Livingston, Bozeman, and Belgrade, folks in Big Sky can now enjoy deliveries. Also, orders can be made through Sunday for Wednesday delivery.

It’s not easy to keep meals affordable, but owner Heather McDonnell Babineau-Z works hard to see that her customers get the best she and her team can offer. In a recent newsletter, she emphasized: “Our goal is to be able to serve wholesome, delicious meals to our community for years to come.”

“We’re trying to add more and more value to what we’re already doing, “ Heather told me. “We know that people in our community are busy, and they want to eat well, they want to support local, they want to reduce waste, and they just don’t have the time to do it. So that is where we come in. We can offer the weekly delivery of fresh, locally grown meals and sustainable packaging, and our customers still have time to do what they want to do.”

Supporting the community also encompasses helping groups like Farm to School and Open & Local. ”We mostly support local organizations that hold the same values that we do, supportive of the environment and local food,” Heather said.

As for meals, each one is unique, built around what is abundant that week, with favorites rotated in. The team often makes extra meals to freeze so customers can buy them later. Among the many frozen options are five varieties of gluten-free cookie dough you pull out of the freezer for a spontaneous treat.

I’ve been eating Whole and Nourished food for years and appreciate the reusable containers. But recently I checked out the new non-returnable option. Instead of a returnable canvas cooler, my order came in a cardboard box. Inside was an insulated bag that wrapped around an ice pack and the recyclable and compostable containers filled with my delicious food.

This option is available for people passing through town and for anyone who is trying the meal delivery program for the first time and just wants to see how it works without making a commitment to return glass jars.

My order included the new Mac & Cheese Bake with Hidden Squash – with kabocha squash from Amaltheia Organic Dairy near Bozeman. Roasted Carrots with Turmeric-Honey and Lime were a delightful taste-combination. I also tried the Frozen Smoothie Mix – Strawberry, Banana, Date, & Cardamom. Because the smoothie is “blend at home,” the ingredients come frozen in a recyclable cup filled with sliced strawberries and banana, chopped dates, and cardamom so you can fix it to your liking with milk or yogurt and perhaps some protein powder.

These interesting flavor combinations are part of the tasty adventure Heather’s food takes you on.

Heather told me she wants to help busy people who use her delivery service to create meals unique to their tastes, so a new addition to the website is a “Serving Suggestions” tab beside each item. For example, recommendations to enhance my macaroni and cheese include “top with a large scoop of hot beef and bean chili,” “add sriracha or another favorite hot sauce,” or “serve alongside roasted veggies.”

Navigation has also improved on the website, with filters added so you can easily find, for example, all the dishes with fish, ones that are ready to eat, or vegan, soy-free, and dairy-free options. For kids and folks with sensitive palates, the “spice-free” filter is useful.

Gift cards are available. With the new referral program, each person who orders with your referral number gets $15 off their first order, while you get $10 off your next one. Click the button at the bottom of any website page to “Get $10.00 Off.”

For more information and to order Whole and Nourished meals, go to:


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