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BALTIMORE'S HEALTHIEST RESTAURANTS

15 PLACES

UPDATED JAN 12, 2020

Making nutritious meals at home is a great, but sooner or later, you’ll be ordering at a restaurant. Luckily, the clean food scene here is top-notch, so you don’t need to consider your entree as a “punishment dish” for whatever you ate at the O’s game.

author

CHARLOTTE NAGEY

FITT BALTIMORE CONTRIBUTOR

The smells that come out of this Canton restaurant‘s Venezuelan-inspired kitchen are sure to make your mouth water. Craving pizza? Try their flatbread made of arepa dough (think light and fluffy) that won’t leave you feeling like you have a brick in your belly. But what locals rave most about is the arepa bar. These corn-based, pancake-like rounds can be filled with your choice of seafood, poultry, or, if you’re vegetarian/vegan, black beans and plantains.

At Liquid Earth, their mission is to expand the palate and the mind. A brain-boosting stop in Fells Point, you can grab lunch or dinner to go, or sit and enjoy the artwork on the walls while you savor every bite of your meal. With nearly 50 different types of juices and smoothies, there are so many healthy options for you to choose from. But what you’re going to love most: the Powerhouse sammy on their homemade three-seed whole wheat bread.

A former factory turned rustic eatery, Woodberry Kitchen is a farm-to-table oasis. Committed to sourcing from local farms and focused on what is in season, you can actually taste the quality in Woodberry’s grub. The gluten-free dinner menu is a crowd pleaser, but Baltimore natives are really known to flock here for the Tilghman Island Crab Cake made with MD blue crab, baked and not fried. See? You can certainly indulge here without a weight on your conscience. Though, their desserts are too sweet to turn down, so maybe just a tiny bite…

Make a visit to R. House in Remington, an industrial-chic food hall where we're sure you'll find yourself drawn to Stall 11. Here, you can opt for a juice, smoothie bowl, salad bowl, or scratch-made quinoa burger loaded with local, fresh, and seasonal produce. Offering healthier alternatives to fried food entrees you may find yourself craving, we insist trying the Korean BBQ Cauliflower Bites — crisp cauliflower tossed in their homemade tangy BBQ sauce topped with cilantro, garlic, and sesame seeds.

Sounds fancy, doesn’t it? But don’t worry — L’Eau de Vie Organic Brasserie in the middle of Fells Point serves upscale but approachable vegan French fare that’s downright delicious. And despite the name, they’re kind of crunchy. They buy local, choose organic, compost food waste, and use recyclable packaging. And for all the gluten-free eaters out there, they have plenty of plant-based picks for you too, all served with a side of French flair (and organic wine).

Brunch: our favorite weekend meal to overindulge in bottomless mimosas and sweet eats. But never fear — Gertrude’s is here with healthy options that doesn't skimp on flavor. Spend your Saturday morning working up an appetite walking the halls of the Baltimore Museum of Art, then enjoy brunch out on the balcony overlooking the harbor. Our favorites? The Gertrude’s Crabmeat Omelette (ask for egg whites) with a side of fresh local fruit and the Veggie-Fu Scramble.

If you’re craving chicken salad, Atwater’s is the place to get your fix. With multiple locations throughout Baltimore, this local staple prides itself of fresh and local ingredients. If we can make a recommendation, we’ll tell you they work wonders with kale salads. You’ll be treated to raw kale topped with pickled red beets, pumpkin seeds, house-made granola, and a lemon-buttermilk dressing on the side. And you’d be foolish not to top it with their homemade chicken salad.

Golden West Cafe is a beloved culinary institution in Hampden serving up Southwest comfort grub guaranteed to make your mouth water. Perfect for eating clean and offering so many options to choose, from an apple and brie burger with a side of Brussels sprouts to zucchini pancakes for brunch. Plus, they have ample vegan and gluten-free dishes that don’t lack in the flavor department.

Beloved Baltimore eatery Zia’s has made a huge transition, combining their previous concept with another local favorite — Plantbar! Now one of four locations around Charm City, they’re bringing their eats along for the ride with a lineup of superfood smoothies and juices to fuel your day with the power of plants. And in addition to wellness-inspired sips, you’ll find plenty of options (like grab-and-go salads and chia pudding bowls!) to help you live your best life.

Need something quick, easy, and undeniably healthy? honeygrow is your place! With two locations in Baltimore (Harbor Point and Charles Village), you can bet you’ll be eating a nourishing and fresh meal. You can make your own stir fry and salad, or choose one of their suggested options on the menu. And you can even order some have dessert without feeling guilty. Their honeybar provides you with fresh local fruit, honey, and other toppings of your choice.

The “ultimate vegetarian experience” in Mt. Vernon, The Land of Kush aims to feed your soul with flavorful meals. You won’t even believe they’re 100% vegan. Sink your teeth into their Curry Chickun (curried tofu), which taste like the real deal! And add a side of carrots and broccoli or the yams—or really any of their sides—for a flavorful punch to your tastebuds (without the guilt trip!).

Plant- and wallet-friendly, One World Cafe is a quaint spot found in Charles Village. Here, you can’t not try the Vegan Baked Acorn Squash. It’s a seasonal dish (during the fall and winter) filled with a vegan sausage, wild rice, and apple stuffing — making it possible to enjoy a Thanksgiving-esque meal during the chillier months.

This DC-born brand has built a nationwide following, and it’s not hard to understand why. With a second-to-none selection of seasonal salads and bowls loaded with regionally-sourced, healthy goodies like spiced sunflower seeds, raw beets, and cucumber tahini yogurt dressing, after just one bite, you’ll swear you’re a greens-lover for life. Get in on the action in Harbor East and plan on making a stop here part of your regular lunchtime routine.

Clean food is cool again thanks to this east coast concept in Cross Street Market. The plant-based eatery is whipping up raw, gluten- and soy-free smoothies, salads, burgers, and desserts one organic fruit and veggie at a time. With plenty of diverse menu options, the innovative veg-based group is on a mission to deliver a healthy and budget-friendly dining experience to the entire community.

This Baltimore staple believes that healthy eating shouldn’t be hard. That’s why they’ve crafted a menu of protein shakes, cold-pressed juices, bowls, wraps, burgers, and breakfast bites made with sustainably-sourced proteins and veggies that will please any palate. Short on time? They also offer a meal prep program featuring perfectly-prepped packages that are completely customizable, allowing you to pick from a huge lineup of proteins, carbs, healthy fats, and house-made sauces.

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