When you walk by the Peace
Tree Café you will hear the whine of blenders, note
the cool, flower covered arbor, and be tempted to stop.
You will be glad you did. This café is very popular
with bike riders, tourists, and locals because of its interesting
menu of smoothies and healthy foods.
Karen and Doug Whipple, long time residents of Monticello, started
the Peace Tree seven years ago, in June of 1998. Karen was nearly finished
raising five children, and wanted to find a new outlet for her energy.
She named the café after an old Indian legend she had read to
her kids. The Native Americans in the east, talked of a Peace Tree
where there was tranquility and health.
Though she’d had no restaurant training, Karen knew about good,
healthy foods. She wanted the Peace Tree to provide a variety of offerings.
At first they had a few standard smoothies and three or four sandwiches.
But in seven years the menu has evolved into a spectacular array of
menu of smoothies catches your eye as soon as you walk into the small
café. Fourteen selections, plus the specials, are available.
A few of the many possibilities are Tango Mango, Watermelon Burst,
Snappy Peach, and even Soy Joy and Chai Tea smoothies. For the experimental,
the Desert Nectar Smoothie may appeal. It is made with apple, ginger,
soy milk, honey, strawberries, banana, cinnamon and Pure Synergy,
a “superfood” made right here in Moab. This year’s
new smoothie is Berry Nirvana, named during a contest. It is made
with loganberry juice, non-fat frozen yogurt, blackberries, raspberries,
For the more organically inclined, fresh juices from beets, celery,
and carrots (the Peace Tree uses over 250 pounds of raw carrots a week!)
are available. Fresh organic wheatgrass makes a healthy juice for those
in the know.
Peace Tree Café opens at 8:00 am. You can get some interesting
breakfast wraps such as the Roma Egg Wrap made of seasoned scrambled
eggs, feta cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, and spinach in a sun-dried
tomato tortilla. The Peace Tree also serves espresso and regular
coffee using Craven’s Organic and Fairtrade Coffee. Other breakfast
possibilities from vegetarian to traditional bagels are available.
The lunch menu offers another potpourri of possibilities. Again, wraps
head the menu. Some contain Karen’s special (and secret) hummus
recipe and her barbequed tofu. One of the most popular is the Thai
Wrap. (See sidebar). A tempting Croissant Sandwich is made with smoked
salmon, caper and red pepper, cream cheese, tomato, red onion and lettuce.
Fresh salads are also popular, one of which is made with quinoa (pronounced
keen-wah) which is a hardy grain that contains the highest amount of
protein. The Peace Tree closes at 6:30 pm, but you can order anything
as a take out for an evening picnic.
is quick to give her employees credit for inventing many of the unusual
smoothies and wraps. They also help name the creations. She hires
12 to 15 people to cover her shifts, and many, such as Margie Moreau,
have been with Karen as long as five years.
The success of the Peace Tree has been very gratifying to Karen, who
has watched it grow. In June of 2004, she opened another Peace Tree
Café in Monticello, where she is pleased to see many Moab customers
who stop by when traveling south. The Monticello Peace Tree Café offers
the same healthy menu as the Moab Peace Tree.
is available at www.peacetreecafe.com
OF THE MONTH
Peace Tree Café
Whole Wheat tortilla
1 grilled chicken breast – cut into thin strips
chow mein noodles
Heat the tortilla, place the chicken strips on tortilla with
a handful of noodles, 3 slices of tomato, 3 slices of cucumber,
1 T. peanuts, and 1 T. chow mein noodles. Pour dressing on
top, place lettuce on top. Roll tortilla lilke a burrito.
Slice in half. Serve with chips.