International pizza chain revamping menu with healthier alternatives

In addition to expanding overseas, a California-style restaurant chain said it plans to revamp its menu with healthier options in time for swimsuit season.

California Pizza Kitchen, which serves pizzas, salads and sandwiches, told industry website Nation's Restaurant News (NRN) that it plans to overhaul its menu with a bigger emphasis on health and wellness.

The revamp puts 21 items on the chopping block, to be replaced by nine new items which will roll out June 29 and highlight natural chicken, turkey, pork and sausage products. Gluten-free pizza crusts will be an added option and the menu will also introduce new salads that clock in at about 600 calories.

Sodium and calorie levels have also been reduced across the board, NRN reports.

The new menu however, comes with a 0.7 price hike.

CPK's shift towards health and wellness is in line with a growing trend towards calorie-conscious menu options as predicted by NRN in a report released last year. A survey of more than 1,500 professional chefs predicted that hyper-local, healthy, gluten-free foods would become restaurant food trends this year.

McDonald's also started rolling out oatmeal in January as a healthy alternative to their sausage biscuits and McMuffins. The 253g (9oz) cup comes in at 290 calories.

CPK also announced plans to add 10 international locations. The chain recently opened outlets in Mexico, India and will open a second unit in Shanghai. They currently have locations in China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea and the United Arab Emirates.