Over the years Austin has been ranked as one of the healthiest cities in America (don’t worry San Jose readers – you still beat us). We still have our shortfalls but an abundance of healthy restaurants is not one of them. Austin is full of restaurants that cater to food allergies or preferences and offer a variety of flavorful and healthy meal options. And while I haven’t been to all of the healthy restaurants in Austin (because honestly, who can keep up?), I’ve done my fair share of “market research.” Today, I want to highlight a few so you can go check them out.
Soup Peddler makes the list because of it’s odd story, but also because of it’s delicious and healthful options. In 2002, Soup Peddler was literally a guy delivering soups in South Austin on his bike. The first brick and mortar opened in 2010 and there are now 5 locations throughout Austin. It’s the epitome of Austin keeping it weird and local. I’ve only just begun to explore the menu but recently tried the Mulligatawny soup (curried lentil and vegetable soup with cauliflower and green apple, thickened with coconut milk) and it was awesome. They have smoothies/juices, salads, soups and sandwiches. I personally love that they offer a variety of sizes, which means you can mix and match to put together your perfect meal.
Many Austinites frequent Whole Foods on the regular for a meal. Their prepared food section offers a variety of options including (some options vary by location) tacos, sandwiches, salads, ramen, barbecue, sushi and soups, to name a few. It’s great for a quick stop to grab a meal on the run but also for a group of people who all want different things. The downtown location has the added benefit of a rooftop seating area with a playscape, while the Domain location has fire-pits, which are lovely on a cool evening. Added bonus: it’s also a grocery store (shocker, right?). I have many clients plan to eat lunch there on Mondays so they can stock their office with a few meal and snack options for the week. I’m all about efficiency.
We are in Texas so I had to include a Mexican option. Serving up a fresh version of the classic Mexican Chicken Al Carbon, Fresas was an easy choice. While you could definitely find some calorie laden options on their menu or overdo it on chips, their wood grilled meals are a flavorful and moderate option. They serve the wood grilled meat with beans, rice, grilled onions, jalapeno, lime, salsa and homemade corn tortillas. They also have salad and “bol” options packed with veggies.
Asian restaurants can get a bad rep for their sugary sauces and excessive portions, but Koriente is a true exception. Started by a mom who hated to cook but struggled to find restaurants with healthy options at a reasonable price, Koriente has high food standards. They use simple ingredients, limit use of oil, sugar and salt and cater to a variety of food allergies and preferences. Did I mention they are downtown and have free parking?
For a great salad (and maybe a craft beer), check out Vinaigrette. This isn’t your average salad restaurant. It’s a sit down, full table service, cloth napkin kind of a place. And you won’t feel like you’re missing out by eating a salad, they are full of flavor. I shared the Black Bean & Kale Nachos and the Nutty Pear-Fessor with grilled flank steak with a friend. Both were fresh and delicious. Their impressively extensive salad menu will keep you interested should this become a part of your regular rotation.
So there you have it, a few Austin restaurants who make it easier to choose healthy options. What are a few of your favorites in your city?
If you want to learn more about healthy eating at restaurants or are interested in working with a nutrition expert, contact us for a complimentary 15-minute phone consultation, send us an email, or find us on Facebook or Instagram. This post was written by Haley Hall.
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