Students of Colorado culinary schools may be fans of the Denver Broncos NFL team. As cooking school students you understand the importance of a nutritious diet in every day life. It’s no surprise, then, that the Broncos have a nutritionist at hand preparing their meals and assisting in diet planning. The teams state-of-the-art kitchen and the professionals who run it are there to provide the team and support staff with the most beneficial and nutritious meals possible.
The diners and their diets
According to the team, the Bronco headquarters kitchen feeds 90 players and 50-60 support staff with 2-3 meals and two snacks a day, 11 months out of the year.
The athletes eat not just to fill up and fuel their bodies for practices and games, they eat to gain muscle, recover from workouts and injuries and to keep their immune systems in good shape. The teams’s nutritionist Bryan Snyder works with the kitchen staff to plan menus that focus on lean protein, carbohydrates and antioxidants. The meals have to cover a wide range of dietary needs for the players and staff, some of whom have 5,000-calorie-a-day diets and others with just 1,500-calorie-a-day diets. The players come from many places and have a wide variety of tastes, so the food must reflect dietary needs while offering diverse flavors. The staff also has to take into account any allergies or dietary intolerances among their diners. Snyder holds one-on-one consultations with the players to discuss their diets and supplements and give them guidance on how food can make them feel and perform their best.
According to the Denver Post, the regular menu at the dining facility is akin to what you’d find at a fancy restaurant. Choices include sweet potato gnocchi with sage-infused brown butter and walnuts, Skuna Bay salmon with a lemon-caper reduction, grilled asparagus with heirloom tomatoes, and bison bolognese over bucatini pasta.
Snyder makes sure that each player has a recovery shake immediately following workouts and lifting. The shakes are made out of fruits and vegetables and dietary supplements. According to the Broncos, Snyder puts major importance on helping each player to recover within 30 minutes of their lift or workout. Some players drink high carb shakes with 600-700 calories and others go for the low carb options with 250-300 calories. Each shake is made individually for the player and is catered to their personal tastes and diet plan.
Unfortunately, you can’t stop by the Dove Valley headquarters and brush elbows with Peyton Manning over a plate of sauteed greens and salmon. The dining area is for players and staff only.