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Today’s families are busy. With kids running in multiple directions for practices and playdates, it can be difficult to sit down and have dinner together. It is even more difficult sometimes to find time to cook a healthy meal!

Fortunately, local grocery stores and restaurants have taken some of the work out of meal planning and preparation.

Spartanburg’s Hub City Coop offers a huge selection of Grab and Go sandwiches and wraps and a huge salad bar. The salad bar is loaded with vegetables, seeds, nuts, grains and house-made salad dressings. Their hot and cold bar offers breakfast, lunch and dinner options that you can take to go. Each day the hot bar has a different theme. You might find tacos, Indian, Asian fusion or even southern favorites on the hot bar. There are always gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan options available for take-out, too.

Though you don’t always think of a grocery store when looking at take-out options, The Fresh Market offers healthy choices for a hungry family. Dinners-to-go include baked chicken, assorted salads, sushi and baked goods. While not exactly take-out, the store’s Little Big Meals do the prep work and planning for you, putting together all of the ingredients you need to make your own meal at home, all for $20.

In Greenville, Caviar and Bananas is a fresh and flavorful option. Come in to select from their prepared food case or call ahead for quick pickup. The rotating menu in the prepared food case offers a wide variety of entrees and sides. Some of their most popular dinner items include seared salmon, kale salads, and pasta dishes, but there are usually around 30 different dishes from which to choose. There is a wide variety of vegetarian and gluten-free options so that even those with dietary restrictions can have a great meal.

Who doesn't love pizza? Kitchen Sync on Laurens Road in Greenville offers a unique and healthy take on your traditional pie. The Salad Pizza, a garlic pie topped with arugula, feta, and pine nuts tossed in italian ranch vinaigrette and the Super Green, a white pie with spinach, arugula, garlic, parmesan and mozzarella, are two nutritious pizza options. A favorite non-pizza option is the southern tomato pie. To order carryout, call after 4 p.m. to place your order. They will have it waiting for you at the bar within about 15 minutes.

Need another easy carryout option? Two Chefs Market at Stone and Main offers a wide variety of healthy salads, soups and sandwiches in their downtown market. With at least 20 different salads to choose from, there is sure to be one your whole family will enjoy. Salads are sold by the pound, so you can pick up only the amount you need. Soups are sold by the bowl or quart. According to owner Judy Balsizer, the most popular salad is the Asian chicken salad and the most popular panini is the veggie panini. In addition to the soups, salads and sandwiches, Two Chefs Market has ready-to-heat packages of the daily special from the downtown cafe next door.

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