Muscle Maker Grill, a chain of casual eateries that serves freshly prepared meals with your health in mind, announces it is expanding its reach to the West by securing a multi-unit franchise deal to develop five Muscle Maker Grill restaurants in the East Bay area of California. This new agreement marks the chain’s first franchise deal in the Golden State and is a significant step towards the company’s national expansion plans. The first Muscle Maker Grill location in California is expected to open in Antioch in February 2011.

“We are excited to bring Muscle Maker Grill to California and are pleased to welcome our new franchise owners to our committed team,” says Rod Silva, founder of Muscle Maker Grill. “We are always looking to attract potential franchise partners with relevant experience who believe in our brand.”

Recently ranked as the fastest-growing restaurant concept in the United States by Restaurant Chain magazine, Muscle Maker Grill has 30 restaurants open in New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, and Florida. New franchise owners Tony Shoman and Sam Shaer of Brentwood and Zee Dames of Oakland decided to expand Muscle Maker Grill into their home state because they recognized the void of healthy restaurant franchise concepts in the area.

“California is a very active market and its residents are health-conscious, but it’s difficult to find fast dining options that fit into this lifestyle,” says Shoman, who is a restaurant industry veteran. “I ate at Muscle Maker Grill when I visited New Jersey and instantly knew its concept would be well-received in California.”

At Muscle Maker Grill, everything is prepared on premises with a menu that features lean, protein-based dishes, including chicken, seafood, pasta, burgers, wraps, and entrée salads. It also offers a wide selection of protein shakes and supplements in an assortment of flavors such as Tropical Paradise and Snappy Apple.

The atmosphere at Muscle Maker Grill is friendly, relaxed, and casual. Each restaurant features an abundance of seating as well as TVs that provide a variety of entertainment programs. Muscle Maker Grill also offers take-out and delivery services.

Muscle Maker Grill was founded in 1995 by Silva with the goal of offering people a nutritious alternative to fast-food restaurants. A fitness enthusiast since he was 18, Silva recognized a void in the marketplace for tasty, healthy meal options. Silva’s vision has helped make Muscle Maker Grill one of the fastest-growing restaurant franchises in the country.