UPDATED FEB 1, 2020
Do you even brunch? We sure do. But if you don’t want to completely erase the last five days you spent sweating in the gym, we have just the guide you need to navigate all things healthy brunch in Denver.
These Denver-based breakfast specialists have several locations around town – from Pearl Street in Boulder to Union Station in Denver, and even in the ’burbs. Snooze’s menu is filled with innovative choices and they even encourage you to customize your order. And while substituting your way through the regular part of the menu is definitely possible and encouraged, the “Light As A Feather” selections have the fit-friendly grub. Added bonus: there’s no need to wait for the weekend; you can snag brunch from 6:30am–2:30pm seven days a week.
The Hornet has been serving up healthy food way before it was cool, focusing on GMO-free, organic foods for the past 20 plus years. They pride themselves on being flexible with special requests too, so don’t be shy if you are sensitive to any ingredients. The Greek God of Parfait won’t leave you feeling overstuffed for your walk or bike ride home, but we always spring for the breakfast tacos or Hornet Omelette. And good news: you can start your weekend early because these folks offer Friday brunch as well.
Yes. We said bacon. This paleo-friendly spot in the Highlands centers its brunch and dinner menus around everyone’s favorite breakfast meat. But they aren’t serving greasy diner grub. Bacon Social House cares about what they put on your plate, sourcing the best local and organic ingredients they can find while giving you plenty of ways to taste the bacon. Try the bacon flight, with six different types of bacon — from applewood to habanero. Or stick to the classics, like eggs or a burger, jazzed up with some serious bacon flavor, of course. And if you feel like a little indulgence, give the bacon tots a try. You’re welcome.
The Corner Beet sits at the corner of 14th and N. Ogden in Cap Hill, and if you think they are juice-only, think again! This quaint spot has a menu full of tasty toasts, super-healthy salads, breakfast burritos, açaí bowls, and smoothies. They use 100% organic produce and source locally when possible. With plenty of fresh, real foods, they’re always willing to cater to dietary preferences (yes, they have gluten-free bread!). You can’t make a bad choice on the menu, but no matter what you pick, wash it all down with one of their specialty drinks—like the matcha chai tea or the golden milk latte—and you’ll definitely leave feeling nourished and happy.
Featuring two on-site gardens, it doesn’t get fresher than Root Down. Their menu offers gluten-free-friendly, organic, and vegan options, which rotate seasonally. Meat-eaters can fix their plates with healthier substitutes like egg whites and avocados. For herbivores, the tofu scramble is something else. And lucky you, if you are awaiting a flight at Denver International Airport, they even have a second location in concourse C that serves brunch daily. Because it’s always the weekend when you’re traveling, right?
This rustic lower Highlands joint offers a spectacular farm-fresh, sustainably sourced menu. It's pretty much the definition of small batch; the food options are limited and these guys are dedicated to keeping it small in order to craft everything in-house. As a healthy foodie, you like to know what’s really in your food, and they’ll tell you! They’re specialists in quality ingredient control, making sure you get all of the good and none of the bad. Plus, almost any dietary need can be created here with g-free bread and vegetarian options.
If you haven’t ventured out to the food scene in RiNo, Stowaway is a great place to start with brunch, especially if you are a coffee fanatic. Walk into a full espresso bar with house-made cashew milk, savor the homemade muesli on the “smalls” portion of the menu, or dig into the Colorful Colorado—the ultimate breakfast platter—from the “bigs” section. Bottom line: bring some friends, split some dishes, and try everything. In a rush? Order online and grab brunch eats to go during the week.
Fooducopia is all things small, local, and organic. The eggs are so fresh, they are collected daily within five miles of the restaurant. It’s perfect because this menu is filled with hashes, omelettes, scrambles, and Benedicts. And being just a short walk from Wash Park, this spot will pair perfectly with your sun-filled day of strolling or playing volleyball. FYI: there is a seriously huge selection of veggies in almost all of the dishes, and the jam is made in-house if you are up for a little splurge. Check out the breakfast or lunch menu 8am–3pm, Wednesday through Sunday.
This is the ultimate spot when it comes to healthy eats. The entire menu at Just BE is free of gluten, grains, and refined sugar (read: paleo). Think creatively cleaned-up comfort classics, like biscuits and mushroom or sausage gravy and a breakfast burrito with an almond flour tortilla and sweet potato hash. And if a bullet coffee is on your brunch standby, you’re in luck there, too. The cozy and calming vibe of the space reflects the mission: “To provide mindful mouthfuls from a conscious kitchen with kindness on a plate.” No need to identify as paleo or gluten-free to eat here — you just need to like really good food.
Head on over to the Baker Historic Art District for Colorado-grown, seasonally-rotated dishes at Beatrice & Woodsley. The food here is creative, with all sorts of fun flavors and some great vegetarian options. We recommend topping off your weekend brunch with some freshly-squeezed mimosas or a glass of house-made kombucha. Seriously, though — you will leave happy no matter what you pick.
Head to Cap Hill for breakfast every day from 7am–2pm. City, O’ City uses local produce when possible, and they even have their own urban micro farm, which provides much of its produce in the summer. They also support other Colorado companies to bring you all the best local stuff, from coffee to booze. Vegetarians and meat-eaters will both appreciate the veg-heavy menu, too — try the waffle with chicken-fried cauliflower, a simple bowl of steel cut oats with peanut butter and acai berries, or the tempeh bacon hash with kale.
True Food is real food. Just walk by the open kitchen at the Cherry Creek restaurant and you’ll see why. With mounds of chopped veggies waiting to be tossed into your meal, True Food’s kitchen looks like you wish yours did: bright colors, prepped produce, and clean counters. Tons of vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free items are clearly marked on the menu, even for their Saturday and Sunday brunch. The menu is based on Dr. Andrew Weil’s anti-inflammatory diet. That means super-clean food that is full of flavor.
From the folks who brought us Root Down and Linger, Vital Root brings veggie-focused, healthy eats to Berkeley. Try something fun and different like the Banh Mi breakfast tacos or keep it simple with the overnight oats (they amp ’em up with cashew, candied ginger, cocoa nibs, almond butter, and blueberry coconut cream). And if a boozy brunch is your thing, try the freshly-squeezed blood orange mimosa or Real Dill Bloody Mary. But being that you can’t always laze around for a two-hour meal, know that it’s a fast(er) casual experience with a really good vibe.
This Five Points joint focuses on local, organic ingredients with plenty of vegetarian and gluten-free options. Think organic eggs, whole-grain hotcakes, and gluten-free muffins. Check out their specialties, like the tofu scramble with quinoa and Huevos Rancheros with a grilled bison burger. There’s always something happening at “The Merc” too — from poetry readings to swing dance lessons to live music.
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