Boathouse Restaurants Offer New Low-cal Westcoast Lifestyle Menu

The Beachhouse has a mouth-watering new menu that will keep you looking trim in your swimsuit.

Credit: Aaron Barr

The Boathouse is the ideal summer spot for delicious, healthy meals and a spectacular beachside view


With a choice spot right in the middle of the second-floor patio and couldn’t-be-more-perfect summer weather, our meal at the Kits Boathouse restaurant was already off to a good start, and the fact that we were there to try the new Westcoast Lifestyle healthy choices menu—sodium and fat-reduced items mostly under 500 calories—meant I could venture to the beach the next day with my head held high.


The Boathouse teamed with local chef Erin Holm, who co-authored LifeDiet: A Simple Guide to Healthy Eating, to create the new menu and the team will continue to add new items over the next few weeks. By the end of the month, brochures containing information on calories, fat, sodium, cholesterol, protein and common allergens on all menu items will be available by request.


Health Canada recommends a daily calorie intake of 2,000 for the average female and 2,500 for the average male, so 500 calories falls within the recommended range for a meal. Most people probably don’t think about calories when dining out, and I’d say that part of the joy of dining out is the ignorance-is-bliss aspect of it.


But I applaud The Boathouse for coming clean on the calories for every dish on their menu (including the mouth-watering 2,052-calorie prime rib) and for offering these new lower-calorie options that definitely don’t skimp on flavour.


The Boathouse loves quinoa (and you will too)

In addition to coming clean, praise is deserved for their use of nutrient-rich, low-calorie ingredients like fresh fruits and vegetables, no-fat yogurt and, most exciting to me: quinoa.


Quinoa is getting a lot of buzz these days, thanks in part to the runaway success of Quinoa 365: The Everyday Superfood, a new cookbook from two Canadian sisters (Patricia Green and Carolyn Hemming) that has already sold over 100,000 copies, according to a Globe and Mail article.


Quinoa is the grain-like seed of a plant related to dark leafy vegetables and is gluten-free, full of goodies like fibre, calcium and iron, and is also a complete protein. I’ve tried to make quinoa twice and both times were flops (two thumbs down from my husband) so I was hoping that The Boathouse could do for quinoa what I could not.


We both loved the Westcoast Lifestyle dishes that featured quinoa—the grilled chicken, coconut pacific cod and ponzu wild salmon—and I’ve got the go-ahead to attempt quinoa again at home. Lucky for me (and you) the chef is sharing a recipe from our dinner: the prawn salad (see below).


Boathouse Shrimp Salad | Granville Online
Fire-grilled prawn salad with mango, avocado and coconut lime vinaigrette (498 calories), $15.99 (Image: Aaron Barr)


The prawn salad, although quinoa-free, was my favourite dish of the evening. It was delightfully summery with its mix of fresh pea shoots, peppery arugula, slightly bitter endive, coconut lime vinaigrette, buttery avocado and sweet mango.


The Boathouse Bouillabaisse | Granville Online

West coast bouillabaisse with prawns, scallops, mussels, tomato and fennel (694 calories), $24.99 (Image: Aaron Barr)


The Bouillabaisse was my second favourite dish—it made a strong push for first—and at 694 calories is currently the only item on the Westcoast Lifestyle menu that exceeds 500 calories (and is worth every single one in my opinion). The base was a gorgeous stew of salmon, scallops and halibut surrounded by mussels in the shell with a tomato fennel sauce that was heated nicely. The stew was topped with a generous piece of cheesy olive bread and two big prawns.


The Boathouse Salmon-Chicken-Cod | Granville Online

Wild salmon with tamarind ponzu drizzle, Asian veggies and quinoa (354 calories), $21.99; Grilled chicken with veggies over orange tomato coulis quinoa (429 calorie), $16.99; Fresh fruit meringue with no-fat vanilla yogurt, fresh berries and lemon zest (325 calories), $7.99 Coconut lime pan-seared pacific cod with vegetables and quinoa (380 calories), $17.99; (Image: Aaron Barr)


The salmon was cooked to a perfect medium rare, so it flaked easily but was still nice and moist. The portion was topped by strips of fresh mint and a rainbow of vegetables including pea shoots, carrot, cucumber, red pepper, edamame and asparagus, all placed on a bed of deliciously seasoned quinoa and chickpeas.


The grilled chicken was seasoned with Togarashi, a Japanese spice mixture, and had a tasty mix of spinach, mushrooms, snap peas, edamame, avocado and bok choy over quinoa mixed in a lovely orange tomato coulis sauce.


The cod was pan-seared and then baked to a wonderful flakiness in a coconut lime sauce, and again had a nice rainbow of vegetables including snap peas, red pepper and pea shoots, and was set over quinoa and chickpeas.


The dessert was a nice, light cap to the meal. Even my husband, who isn’t a big dessert fan, gave it a gold star. The tartness of the yogurt was a great contrast to the sweetness of the meringue, and the mixed berries, lemon zest and strips of mint were very refreshing.

The Boathouse Beachview in Vancouver | Granville Online

Stop by the Boathouse after a day at the beach or get dressed up for a special occasion, but be sure to reserve a seat on the patio for the full experience. If you time it just right you can catch the spectacular sunset over Kits Beach. (Image: Aaron Barr)


Grilled prawn salad

Serves 2



  • 6 lrg prawns, 3 per skewer
  • 10 ml Tyee butter (butter seasoned with the Boathouse’s Tyee spice, available for purchase, or substitute with pinch of salt and pepper)
  • 60 g spring mix
  • 60 g spinach
  • 60 ml coconut vinaigrette (recipe below)
  • 1 med avocado, sliced
  • 120 g mango, diced
  • 2 pinches pea shoots
  • 2 sprigs fresh mint, chopped
  • 2 lime wedges



  1. Brush prawns with butter and grill until just pink. Do not over-grill.
  2. Toss the greens in 30 ml coconut vinaigrette
  3. Place the greens in the bowl, top with mango and avocado.
  4. Place the prawn skewer on top, garnish with lime and drizzle with extra coconut vinaigrette.
  5. Serve immediately.

Coconut Vinaigrette (makes 300 ml)



  • 120 ml coconut milk
  • 60 ml rice wine vinegar
  • 45 ml lime juice
  • 15 ml honey
  • 60 ml virgin olive oil or canola oil
  • 3 ml fresh ginger, minced
  • 2 ml fresh garlic, crushed
  • 15 ml fresh mint, chopped
  • 15 ml green onion, chopped
  • 3 ml chili sauce
  • pinch of salt and fresh ground pepper


  1. Combine all ingredients and blend together.