Pepo Melo’s acai bowl is filled with a blend of fruit, nuts, granola and almond butter. (JOANNE GUINTU | THE POLY POST)

Hidden gems: acai bowl spots near CPP

College students are busy bodies. There is no denying that it can be a struggle trying to find a balance with school, work, club events, family and social lives. 

College students find themselves falling into a routine of late-night snacking, getting little to no sleep, and a lack of exercise. Trading in some late-night snacks for healthier food choices could save you from falling into an unhealthy college lifestyle. 

Instead of waking up and craving a doughnut or French toast, try changing it up with something that is also sweet, like an acai bowl. 

Acai bowls have now become the new buzzword in the health world for their colorful and aesthetic look, delicious taste and their boost in health benefits. They have now become a popular breakfast choice and quick snack.

These bowls are praised for their high density, being high in antioxidants and fiber, brain protection and cholesterol-improving qualities. 

Acai berries, which make up the base of acai bowls, originate from the South American rainforests. They are then topped with different fruits, granola, honey, hemp milk, chia seeds, nuts and many more toppings.

Pepo Melo’s acai bowl is filled with a blend of fruit, nuts, granola and almond butter.
(Joanne Guintu | The Poly Post)

Here are some hidden gems around Cal Poly Pomona that offer acai bowls: 

Pepo Melo

Snuggled in between boutiques and cafes in the Claremont Village is a healthy fast food place called Pepo Melo. Inside Pepo Melo, the place is designed in a minimalistic style. It has an outdoor area on the side of the shop to catch up with friends while enjoying your acai bowls.

Pepo Melo is unique because it allows its customers to customize their own acai bowl. They offer a range of over 15 fruits to top on customer’s bowls, whereas most acai places have the basic options of strawberries, blueberries, mangos and bananas. 

“I love coming here because of the macadamia chia seeds, and the acai bowls always fill me up. I love coming here after a good workout or yoga session in the morning,” said Hailee Jung, a Claremont resident. 

The owner, Keith Strenger, designed the fast-food place to contain plant-based recipes to combat the perception of acai bowls being high in sugar. He wanted Pepo Melo to be an authentic place where customers are not limited to what is in their bowls.

Phillips Ranch Health Bar 

Less than five minutes away, off the Temple Avenue exit of the 57 freeway is the Phillips Ranch Health Bar. The Phillips Ranch Health Bar is a pharmacy and healthy food shop.

The acai bowls at Phillips Ranch Health Bar are $7.95 and come in a huge bowl. There are five different bowl options to choose from, but you can always substitute or remove toppings. The most popular bowls at these locations are the original acai and sunshine bowl. 

The health bar gives customers the unique option of ordering their acai bowl in a smoothie form. Not only do they serve acai bowls, but they also serve smoothies, wraps, sandwiches and paninis. 

“I actually come here to study because there are so many tables, and it’s always nice and peaceful here,” said Juliane Santos, a Mount San Antonio College student.

The Bowl La Verne 

The Bowl La Verne is a smoothie and acai bowl shop. This shop puts a unique twist on acai bowls. Instead of the typical fruit toppings, The Bowl La Verne offers unique flavors. They give you the option of adding whipped cream, chocolate, matcha, peanut butter and espresso into your bowls. 

The prices range from $8.95-$11.95 depending on the size choice. Customers love coming to this acai shop because of the satisfying and filling taste. 

When trying to change up your breakfast meals for something more affordable and nearby, Pepo Melo, The Bowl La Verne and Phillips Ranch Health Bar are your new go-to spots. 

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