UPDATED FEB 5, 2020
It's a fact that New Yorkers make a verb out of brunch harder than any other city. But some might say we brunch healthier too, and we can prove it. Leave behind the donuts and five-deep flapjack stack, and instead, get in on the eggs and artisan toast action at these healthy brunch spots in NYC.
When it comes to brunch, can you really go wrong at a place named for the king (or queen) of brunch items — the egg? The answer will come as an obvious ‘no’ the second you bite into their Avo & Eggs, The Egg White Reformer Sandwich (served on whole grain toast), or Pepper Boy Egg Sandwich (served in a pepper). You get the point, and you seriously can’t go wrong with this egg-cellent (had to) NoLIta haven. And if you’re not in the mood for eggs, try out their almost-healthy Chia French Toast. Brooklynites: be sure to check out the Williamsburg location, too!
All aboard the gluten-free buckwheat pancake and activated charcoal train, ’cause breakfast and lunch just got an upgrade. The Wild Son brings out the health-conscious Meatpacking District residents to their kitchen for healthy proteins, vegetables, greens, and grains. With friendly service, a bohemian vibe, and creative cocktails (kale margaritas, anyone?), The Wild Son is an all-day restaurant that allows for an anytime brunch.
This plant-filled eatery is a go-to first date spot for the city’s resident hipsters. While the cool-kid vibe can mean a longer wait, the concoctions made in their ‘vegetable slaughterhouse’ are totally worth it. Whether it’s avocado toast or a grain bowl topped with a sunny-side-up egg, The Butcher's Daughter brunch menu is always seasonal and totally ’grammable. And with three locations—NoLIta, West Village, and Williamsburg—there’s a spot your whole brunch crew can agree on. Not feelin’ solid food? No worries — this joint offers a killer juice bar (their best-seller is the Hangover Killer).
This West Village healthy brunch spot has outdoor seating and some great boozy deals for those who are more interested in wine in the morning than gossip. Start off with the Agave Guacamole appetizer (with red onion, jalapeño, lime, and cilantro) before enjoying their Energy Breakfast, Egg White Frittata, Herb Speckled Egg Scramble, or Quinoa Salad. Plus, for exactly $32.99 on the weekends, you can choose one entree plus two hours of unlimited wine, mimosas, or frozen margaritas (we think you’ll get your money’s worth).
In a sunlit space, Two Hands pairs simple, nutritious food with exceptional coffee. Hit up this Tribeca hot spot (and second outpost in NoLIta) for all your toast and bowl favorites. The avocado toast is beautiful, but for a slightly sweeter jam, there’s nothing like a ricotta hotcake with cashew ricotta, honeyed pecans, and fresh berries. Craving something a bit fruitier? Their mouth-watering acai bowl will bring you back to life after a tough workout.
Alright, Brooklynites, it’s time to head on over to Bed-Stuy for a classic brunch that takes you out of the city craze. With a whole section of the menu dedicated to salads, like the Black Kale Salad with roasted peanut dressing and Beet Salad with Greek Yogurt Labneh, they keep it light. Plus, they’ve got a separate section for everyone’s favorite breakfast protein: eggs. Naturally, Peaches should be your go-to for an Egg White Scramble or Farmer’s Omelette. And come here with your pals who favor brunch with a little Southern flair because their kitchen slings delicious Smoked Chicken and Sausage Gumbo and Crab Cakes.
The epitome of Sunday brunch, Friedman’s Lunch is the ultimate weekend place to eat good food with good people. With a mostly gluten-free menu, this “mindful eating” joint, with six locations around the city, offers an Egg White Omelette, Avocado Mash, Housemade Granola, and whatever classic brunch meals your breakfast-loving healthy heart desires. Hit Friedman’s up with a big squad or settle in for a morning date. And don’t forget to check out their impressive booze menu if it’s one of those brunches.
This Australian-style cafe is a must for a booze-free brunch (though they have wine, beer, and cocktails, too). There’s a big cold-pressed juice menu and several trendy caffeinated drinks like matcha, beet, and golden lattes to sip on with your breakfast bowl. Plus, the servers are super friendly, so you never feel rushed out of any of their five NYC-area cafes (or countless coffee shops). That may be partly why weekend brunch lines get a little crazy. Fitt tip: order the avocado toast to share. It’s massive.
Order up! We’ll have 10 orders of the Bowl of Beets and another 10 of the Vegetable Frittata (not an exaggeration because these dishes are the best). Known as the most welcoming restaurant on the Upper West Side, Community is all about nurturing the neighborhood feel, which makes it a family-favorite. Plus, there are a few less healthy options—like Pancakes and Brioche French Toast—that’ll ensure your gluten-tolerant relatives will be as pleased with their meal as you are with yours. Oh, and did we mention there’s outdoor seating on nice days?
The menu at this popular NYC Israeli establishment is stacked with so many mouth-watering egg dishes, it’s hard to go wrong. From Green Shakshuka to the Mediterranean breakfast, you’re spoiled for choice, and the tabbouleh that comes on the side will fill you right up if the eggs don’t first. And for the more adventurous, the non-alcoholic mint lemonade or cantaloupe mimosa are a pretty awesome way of waking up your taste buds. Post up at any of their three locations in SoHo, the West Village, or Chelsea.
Raising their own chickens and farming their own produce in the nearby Hudson Valley, this Chelsea spot takes local sourcing to the next level. Here, healthy is far from boring: watch your Egg White Omelette get prepared in the open kitchen, indulge in Whole Wheat Waffles with berry marmalade, or keep it all-vegan with the Vegan Avocado Tartine. And it's just blocks away from the High Line, making some post-meal exercise as easy as it is rewarding.
This West Village haunt is one of the few places in the city that clearly notes which dishes are Whole30-, paleo-, or keto-approved. Needless to say, it’s the place to go when you’re trying to accommodate everyone’s eating plan. And with a menu full of smoothies, breakfast bowls, salads, and “TV Dinner”-style healthy comfort foods, it’s definitely a spot to hit up more than once. Bonus: If you’re a Queer Eye fan, you’ll recognize the new owner!
This hip corner spot in Brooklyn has a menu that features vegetables from local farmers, sustainably-caught fish, and all-natural meat. Enjoy the rooftop seating in the warmer months, and order their refreshing House Blend juice and Smoked Salmon Tartine on whole wheat sourdough while you’re at it. In the fall and winter, definitely dine near one of their wood-burning ovens and cozy up with the Beans and Greens, Warm Brown Rice Bowl, or indulge in their signature Hazelnut Maple Praline Sunday Pancakes. Extra plus: Sunday in Brooklyn serves brunch every weekday 10am–4pm and weekends 9:30am–4pm.
Little Park on W. Broadway serves a weekend brunch that changes with the season, using all-organic, sustainable ingredients. Not to mention, its menu goes beyond typical “health food” by serving all the comfort you’re looking for and more. Start with one of their house-pressed juices, share some crispy fingerling potatoes, and finish with the Garbanzo Griddle Cake (with charred scallion, endive, and citrus tahini), Malted Spelt Pancakes, or the Roasted Beet Sandwich with smoked egg and avocado. Don’t forget to check out their cocktails and sweets — because it’s all about balance, right?
This chic, minimalistic eatery has a brunch menu (available all week long) with globally-inspired, nutritious plates that will leave you feeling satisfied in oh-so-many ways. If you’re looking for something on the sweeter side, try the Fonio Porridge with sweet potato purée, compote, banana, and pistachio. Have a taste for something savory? Go with the Patty Plate (carrot latkes, sausage, a sunny-up egg, kale-pumpkin seed pesto, and pickled beets), or try the Huevo Kathmandu (spiced chickpeas, fried egg, date relish, spinach green chutney on a corn tortilla). And if it’s a boozy kind of brunch, definitely cheers with their special wheatgrass margaritas.
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