Get Juicy, Aggies!

By Monika Ax, Nutrition Peer Counselor, UC Davis Fitness and Wellness

Whether you spent the weekend eating junk food, had a little too many drinks the night before, or simply need to get in a vegetable fix, pressed juice is a healthy, and refreshing way to satisfy your cravings. Finding the right place can be difficult, especially as a college student who can’t afford to throw down $10 or more for a light snack- and lets be honest, juices do not fill you up like a meal. I chose three popular spots in Davis to sample: The Nugget, Jamba Juice, and Sun and Soil. Specifically, I chose only green juices, so that I could select the most similar juices at each place. Through careful tasting and evaluating, I was able to find a favorite supplier that fit my college budget and taste preferences.

So here goes my honest opinion…

Nugget Market

  • Time to make: 3 ½ minutes
  • Price: $5.00
  • Verdict: The “Purifier” was recommended. It contains kale, ginger, lemon, pineapple, and cucumber. Surprisingly, I was the only customer at the time, and the juice only took a few minutes to come out. Granted, every other time I have come to Nugget to get a juice or acai bowl, it’s been busy and taken at least 10 minutes to get what I ordered. I received a 12oz plastic cup, with another 4oz cup full of the leftovers. So I got about 16oz total for only $5. The taste was overall refreshing and cleansing. It was pretty tart from the lemon, but I enjoy tart flavors and it did not bother me. There was a subtle sweetness from the pineapple, and you couldn’t taste the kale at all. After finishing the whole drink, I had that “Ah I feel so refreshed” feeling. Another plus is that all of their produce is locally sourced.  It was definitely a good juice given the price and amount.

nugget juice

Jamba Juice

  • Time to make: 4 minutes
  • Price: $5.99
  • Verdict: The juice I ordered was called “Tropical Greens” and it had apple, pineapple, super greens, and chia. It also came in a 12 oz plastic cup, but this time with no extras. I’m not sure what the “super greens” were, but they definitely gave the juice a more chalky consistency. It was blended with ice, which made it thicker than a normal juice. The apple and pineapple were more overpowering in this juice and made it a lot sweeter. It definitely did not feel very refreshing, and the sweetness and thickness made it heavier than what I was expecting from a green juice. At this point, I was wishing I had my nugget juice back.

jamba juice

Sun and Soil

  • Time to make: none, because they are already prepared
  • Price: $11.50 (but you get $2 back if you return the bottle, so technically $9.50)
  • Verdict: Now, I know that the price is almost double that of Nugget’s and Jamba Juice’s, but the juice is organic and comes in a recyclable glass bottle. I ordered the “Sweet Greens” which has apple, cucumber, spinach, filtered water, lime and ginger. The juice was very flavorful and the perfect consistency: not too watery and not too thick. It was also not as tart as the juice from the Nugget. I give this place creds for their eco-friendly reusable bottles and use of organic fruits and veggies.

So which juice would I recommend to my fellow broke college student craving a healthy fix?

I would rule Jamba Juice out of the equation. Although it was relatively cheap, I couldn’t get over the chalkiness and thickness. It was more like a melted smoothie than a juice.

Sun and soil definitely had high quality ingredients and great tasting juice, but it cost me $9.50 for 16oz, whereas at the Nugget it was only $5.  Now, if $9.50 per bottle is in your budget, I would definitely recommend Sun and Soil. But personally, the Nugget is within my price range, and perfectly satisfied my green tooth.

What is your favorite juice place?



One thought on “Get Juicy, Aggies!

  1. It’s crazy to think how the price varies so much! I haven’t tried any of Nugget’s juices (just because that’s not my first choice of market) but next time I do go, I’ll definitely try them out. I love juices more on the tart side so that drink might be right up my alley. 🙂

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