(1) I LOVE to cook
(2) It can be expensive and
(3) at the end of the work day, and on my days off I prefer being home (20 years as a professional pilot before switching careers, I'm pretty much burned out on any travel) and
(3) I usually get more food (and sodium) than I need, and it's tempting to eat it.
(4) at home I know exactly where my food came from, the garden familiar and the cow raised on a local small 4H farm.
We get Thai every couple of months, and we occasionally walk over to the local Irish pub when the weather is nice where they have a really good menu with homemade soups and salads as well as traditional pub fare (mmmm curry fries with peas). At work we have a contractor staffed deli on site that has 2 homemade soups every day (one vegetarian) and a salad bar (in addition to tasty, less healthy choices) so most work days I get a soup and/or salad or pack a cheese/veggie sandwich on Dave's Killer bread with some carrots and an apple and biscuit (cookie).
But there was one restaurant in Indianapolis where I'd go with my best gal friends each month when I lived there and we'd eat and we loved it. I didn't realize it was a chain - and was SO happy to find they are located in Chicagoland, including one only about 10 miles away.
bd's Mongolian Grill for the all you can conquer buffet. The picture here is a mural at the Indiana restaurant which honors a nearby historical train station. It always made us smile.
There is a big buffet of meats and seafood, pasta and vegetables (plus a salad bar). You can get all you can eat or just one bowl (which for me was plenty). You load your selection in the bowl (the egg is optional as a binder for the stir fry) and then there are a TON of different sauces and spices to add. I went for the Mongolian Ginger sauce with some extra cayenne pepper with goes in a separeate little bowl for the chef to add at the end.
I had tofu, corn, bean sprouts, onion, pineapple and broccoli. As my side I had brown rice which comes in a little bowl so you can share. In addition to the rice on the menu, they have little tortillas if you want to make a no yeast wrap. This was ultra delicious and filling with not a lot of calories! I can't wait to go back again, now that there is one near by.