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We LOVE to dine out in Toronto. Sure, we’ll go for our poutine and Tim’s donuts when the craving hits, but for the most part, it pays to be healthy. We need food that complements our busy lifestyles and won’t hold us back. Thankfully, when it comes to food, you’re guaranteed to find something you like here. No need to stress about being vegan, gluten-free, or paleo, either. We’ve got that and more.
The only downside to having so many options is that it can get pretty overwhelming to make a choice, so having a little guidance can help. We’ve rounded up the healthy places we trust won’t disappoint or leave you hungry. The best news for indecisive eaters: there’s no wrong choice here.
We’re always on the run and hopscotch on Queen St. West, in Scotia Plaza, and in Fort York knows it. That’s why they bring you healthy food—fast—without skimping on the good stuff. There’s something for the vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free, dairy-free, and even the meat-eaters. Their seasonal dishes are always a winning choice (some standouts: Thai Sun and Ramble On), but if you miss out on those, you can never go wrong with one of their signature bowls. We recommend The Sweet Potato Zen or Kimchi Kick and rounding out your meal with a Green Boost smoothie.
Kupfert & Kim has super-fresh and tasty vegan dishes. And they’re totally transparent about everything they do, so you’re sure to find something up your alley, whether you’re into eating sustainably, gluten-free, or plant-based. Bring in your own container for take-out and you can even get a small discount. They also serve up some bomb breakfast dishes (the K&K waffle might have made them famous for that). Most of their eight locations are in the heart of the Financial District, so it definitely gets busy during business lunch hours. Though, for a more casual lunch spot, your best bet is their Spadina digs.
For a vegan restaurant, Grasshopper is always surprising non-vegans with their fusion foods and filling portions. Some have said it’s the best vegan food they’ve ever had, and we’d have to believe them. Nothing fancy or pretentious, the people behind your food care more about the flavours than anything else, and it truly shows. Visit them in The Junction if you’re looking for a more casual dine-in night, their Queen parlour for a beachy lunch, or their College location for on-the-go eats.
If you couldn’t get enough of Kupfert & Kim, then check out its little sister Hello123 on Queen West (one of our best streets for food and vintage shopping). You’ll spot some similarities when it comes to the main dishes, but the vibe at Hello123 is taken down a notch — the dine-in atmosphere is serene and totally welcoming (to the bar, that is). This place serves beer on tap and a few classics with healthy twists like kombucha cocktails, cold-pressed ciders, and more. Pair them with avocado toast or their Fancy Fancy Garden salad on their brunch menu and you’ve got the day made.
Impact Kitchen has left their mark on us and it’s easy to see how. They’re a gluten-free kitchen offering paleo and vegan options for breakfast, lunch, and weekend brunch. And their power bowls are stuffed with real, wholesome ingredients guaranteed to make you feel satisfied. They’re known for their bone broth, but also a solid selection of smoothies, juices, and coffee. Don’t miss out on a wellness latte (your choice of turmeric, beet, chaga chai, and charcoal) that pairs perfectly with one of their healthy, freshly-baked desserts. Catch them on King St., Adelaide, in Summerhill... or opt for a delivery.
The Toronto-born Planta empire is in full bloom. A creation of chef David Lee, the entirely plant-based collection of restaurants is known for innovative takes on global cuisine. From their original, upscale spot in Yorkville to the all-vegan burger cafe in the Downtown Core to their latest—and, arguably, most beautiful—spot on Queen West, Planta's Cauliflower Tots, Crab Cakes made with hearts of palm, and The Cubano crafted with crispy jackfruit always satisfy.
We’ve definitely caught the poké bug here in Toronto. In fact, there’s a place for it in almost every major district… but we’re into Calii Love for a few reasons. Their poké bowls are absolutely delicious and they actually serve up a decent portion size (major key). All of their Toronto shops resemble a beach inside, with ocean-like colours, so the vibe here is always positive and laid-back. What’s really unique about their King shop, though, is the upstairs studio called MYndful Me, where you’ll find yoga and various fitness classes. So, if you’re taking a class at Calii Love, you couldn’t be in a more perfect place for your post-workout meal.
The Chase Hospitality Group has done it again by bringing another favourite healthy eatery to the Toronto food scene. Following Planta and Planta Burger comes Palm Lane. This fast-casual eatery in Yorkville Village serves up salads and bowls inspired by international flavours. You can construct your own bowl (with a choice of over 80 different ingredients) or take from one of their tasty pre-made offerings. Go Californian with the Malibu, Asian with the Thai Crunch, or Greek with the Greek Goddess. For the drinks, you’ve got options for smoothies, or wine and beer, which is quite unique from most salad places. Dine in or take it to go, but you can also always order in for when you don’t want to make the trek!
If you stop by any one of Flock’s five Toronto locations, it’d make sense to go for their rotisserie. But more and more people have been raving about their greens. Yes, most healthy places fare pretty well in terms of filling salad bowls, but the ones at Flock just seem to balance different tastes, textures, and flavours above all others. And FYI: they don’t skimp on the avocado. Their meats are organic, too, so even if you’re not eating a salad, you’re still getting something to feel good about.
If you’re in The Junction, this the place to go if you want both your vegetarian and meat-eating friends to both be at peace. Although it’s a well-known healthy restaurant, you can be assured that it’s not all Buddha bowls and green smoothies. The food is simple for a reason—egg sandwiches, avocado toasts, grilled cheese—and everyone enjoys it. If you want more, go for the Steak on a Bun sandwich or gluten-free Mac & Cheese Bowl. And when the sun comes out, make sure to take advantage of their patio.
The Goods’ philosophy is simple— eat good food and you’ll be ready to take on anything! It’s all about healthy, fresh food that will nourish the mind, body, and soul. And you’ll definitely feel rejuvenated after having any of their salad bowls. The Nori Bowl and Chuck are two of the most popular, and while they’re filled to the brim with fresh veggies and good-for-you grains, it’s their special dressings that tie it all together. Each bowl comes with a unique sauce and they even sell them by the bottle! FYI: it’s good to know that it’s mainly a take-out spot with minimal seating, so better reach this Dundas West gem when you’re on the go!
When we’re in need of some feel-good Mexican fare, Rosalinda’s always at the top of our list. The first of its kind, Rosalinda puts vegetables at the forefront of every plate. Everything you’ll get is vibrant, full of colour and taste, and always with the touch of spice we look for in a Mexican dish. Platters are made for sharing with friends, but no shame in going with a party of one. We recommend their Potato & Mushroom Flautas or Roasted Cauliflower Tostadas. And when it comes to the drinks, their Placebo Cocktails step it up a notch. Think kombucha, cold-pressed juice with citrus flavours, and tonic syrups — so delicious that you’ll forget there’s no alcohol in there. Already craving it? Look out for their standout logo next time you’re near Richmond and University.
Found in the heart of downtown Toronto, District Eatery prides on offering a wide variety of healthy vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options for everyone. So yes, you can take your meat-eating friends here and definitely surprise them with offerings like Pull-Apart Smothered Cauliflower or Tuna Mango Ceviche. They’re just as conscious when it comes to your drinks too — Rhubarb and Fennel Gin Fizz, Turmeric Punch, Beet Glory, and Matcha Peachu. But you’ll also find power teas, their own draft sodas, kombucha, beer, and wine, so you can be sure there’s something for any type of person in your crew.
If fresh, local, and sustainable food comes to mind when thinking of Farm’r, you’re totally right. This farm-to-table concept brings on a rustic-chic, contemporary vibe, and being near St. Lawrence Market, it couldn’t be more fitting. They have a no-fuss menu with a focus on the simple, local food — roasted potatoes, smoked brisket, or Farm’r Salad Greens are just a few of their offerings. If you’re at the market bright and early, what better way to finish off a morning than with a locally-sourced, in-season brunch? And yes, they even offer classic brunch drinks!
Hailing from Ottawa, Mad Radish cut its teeth on chef-driven, scratch-made meals served fast. The seasonal menu is filled with bowls bursting with colour, like the Sesame Salmon with carrot-ginger dressing or the Butter Cauliflower Curry with a lighter take on the classic Indian chicken dish. Whatever you do, don't leave this Yonge & Eglinton counter-serve without an espresso smoothie or kinda healthy Chewy Coconut Macaroon.
This superfood-based cafe might have the best specialty lattes in the city. And that’s because they make their own special blend of nut milk. From Supermatcha, Turmeric, or Fresh Chai latte, there’s no denying the nutbar has got their superfood game on point. Their toasts are pretty killer too and are known to be a perfect pairing with one of their specialty drinks. The Avocado and Sweet Toasts are some favourites, but any main will be filling and delicious. For the fitness fanatics and health-conscious foodies on the go, the nutbar is always a prime choice. Find them at Summerhill or Assembly Chef’s Hall!
**Updated by Diana Ghidanac, October 2018