Healthy eating has long been a way of life for Kaitlin and Ricky Weiers, and now it’s their local business venture.
The spouses will hold a grand opening from 4 to 5:30 p.m. Thursday at the new storefront location of R. Klean Meals, 1307 Ligonier St., in Latrobe.
The Derry Township couple started the business near the end of 2020 by taking online orders for customized healthy meals. A little over a month ago, they added the storefront, supported by a new commercial kitchen, where customers can pick up packaged grab-and-go versions of some of their more popular menu items.
One of the top sellers is a Cheeseburger Bowl.
“It’s all lean ground beef over rice, and it has diced tomatoes, diced onions and light cheddar cheese,” Kaitlin Weiers explained. “We have a light sauce with pickles.
“There are so many different ways to slim down recipes. We like to take a normal recipe and make a skinny version of it.
”We use fresh ingredients and we season everything, but we don’t use heavy oils and butters. Everything is typically gluten-free.”
Other popular items on the menu include chicken meatballs, protein shakes in various flavors and protein pancakes for breakfast.
The pancakes, she said, feature “oats, egg whites and low-fat cottage cheese — all naturally high-protein items — with vanilla and cinnamon. We serve them with turkey sausage.”
Weiers and her husband, who work out regularly, adopted healthy diets to complement their regimen. She is a runner who additionally works part time as a finance manager.
He works as a railroad conductor when he’s not busy in the R. Klean Meals kitchen. A weightlifter and heavyweight bodybuilder, he was the overall winner in the 2019 National Physique Committee Pittsburgh bodybuilding competition.
Ricky Weiers has taken a break from bodybuilding to spend time on building the couple’s healthy meal business. His diet requirements for the sport helped to fuel the venture.
“We had the idea for years, and we finally had the right opportunity,” he said. “I’ve had friends for years wanting me to do their meals for them, cook for them.”
As they do for themselves, he and his wife calculate the calories and protein, fat and carbohydrate content for each of the dishes they prepare.
“I learned a lot through my coach and weighing out every meal, every day, for a year straight,” he said. “We’ve done it so much that it’s become natural.”
Since R. Klean Meals has never involved a dine-in option, Kaitlin and Ricky Weiers avoided one of the major handicaps traditional restaurants have faced: dealing with social distancing requirements during the covid-19 pandemic.
For people looking for take-out meals, Kaitlin Weiers said, “We help to provide them with healthy options, so they don’t have to resort to fast food.”
Patrons who want to order customized meals from the business need to plan in advance.
Orders for any meals a customer desires during a given week must be placed through the R. Klean Meals website by 5 p.m. the previous Friday. The staff prepare and package the meals on Saturday for pickup on Sunday.
Expanding its geographic reach, the business schedules meet-up times to deliver orders to customers for pickup at locations in Hempfield, Ligonier, North Huntingdon, Murrysville and Pittsburgh’s South Side, as well as the Latrobe site.
Grab-and-go meal items can be found at the Latrobe storefront on Mondays from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., Fridays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
In the wake of New Year’s resolutions, Kaitlin Weiers said, “People are thinking about their health this time of year, which is good for us.”