Good Food, Good Neighbors

Wholesome plant-based dishes are on the menu at Ahwatukee favorite Pomegranate Cafe

Tucked away in a bustling strip mall, Pomegranate Cafe has been an Ahwatukee staple since mother and daughter Marlene and Cassie Tolman opened the healthy-eating restaurant in 2010. Its downhome vibe, with reclaimed wood tables, beverages served in mason jars, colorful images of plants on the walls and glass cases chock-full of delectable vegan and gluten-free pastries, is cozy and welcoming. But what draws diners from around the Valley to this tiny establishment is the Tolmans’ creative menu of fresh, flavorful vegan and vegetarian dishes.  

“Our menu is centered around organic plant-based ingredients that are sourced locally and seasonally,” Cassie explains. “Revitalizing food and pure flavors are at the heart of what we do. Everything is made from scratch with love, from mouthwatering lattes steamed with handcrafted syrups and house-made nut milks to wholesome breads, flavorful bowls, vibrant salads, fresh juices and decadent cakes.”

Recently, the cafe introduced an eco-market that sells a variety of ethically made sustainable products for the home, body and pantry, and for those who wish to create their own plant-based meals at home, the POM Box CSA program offers fresh local seasonal organic fruits and veggies on a weekly basis.

“Not everyone who eats at POM is vegan or vegetarian,” Cassie notes, “but they do appreciate real food, and they can feel the love that goes into each and every dish at our neighborhood cafe.”

For location, hours and menu, visit


This homemade chile sauce is guaranteed to become a staple in your kitchen. Sweet, savory and spicy, it can be used as a dip or marinade, or it can be used to enhance a variety of dishes, from dumplings and egg rolls to fresh fish, stir fries and vegetables.


1 cup maple syrup

2 cups tamari (natural soy sauce)

¼ cup lime juice

¼ cup orange juice

3 tablespoons garlic, chopped

3 tablespoons ginger, chopped

1 teaspoon crushed red chile pepper


Whisk all ingredients together. Store in a mason jar in your refrigerator.


This versatile take on the classic Thai peanut sauce is rich and creamy with a hint of sweetness. Put it on veggies, salads, wraps, noodles and so much more. It can even be used as a dip.   


1 cup roasted almonds

1 tablespoon fresh garlic, chopped

1 tablespoon fresh ginger, chopped

1 tablespoon turmeric, ground

¼ cup olive oil

1½ teaspoons chickpea miso

2 tablespoon lime juice

1 cup orange juice

2 tablespoons purified water

¼ cup tamari (natural soy sauce)

2 tablespoon maple syrup

1 tablespoon organic Sriracha sauce


Mix all ingredients in a high-speed blender until smooth. Store in a mason jar in your refrigerator.

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