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THE BEST HEALTHY BRUNCH SPOTS IN MINNEAPOLIS AND ST. PAUL

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Lizzie Streit

APR 18, 2019

Brunch is like foodie heaven—an amazing combo of breakfast favorites and lunchtime classics. Plus, there’s coffee… and sometimes even an occasional mimosa.

And while your favorite brunch item (Nutella-stuffed French toast anyone?!) may be a good treat every once in a while, there are plenty of other options that are both delicious and healthy. Chances are you’ll feel much more energized to tackle your weekend if you start with an egg and veggie scramble instead of that gooey cinnamon bun.

So, here’s a look at the healthiest (and tastiest) brunch spots in the Twin Cities. Because who says healthy can’t also mean delicious?!

With four locations around the Twin Cities—from Highland Park to the MIA—Agra Culture is a go-to spot for healthy meals. Brunch at Agra features bowls filled with nutritious foods like eggs, veggies, and lean meats. Grab a side of chia seed pudding, and wash it all down with a Bulletproof coffee! Plus, with all-day breakfast served at three of the four cafes, brunch favorites can be enjoyed whenever the hankering hits.

With cafes in Uptown, in St. Paul, at the U of M, two spots at the airport, and seasonally at the Minnesota State Fair, French Meadow is an OG when it comes to healthy restaurants. As the USA’s first Certified Organic Bakery, French Meadow’s menu is filled with freshly-baked breads served alongside healthful vegetarian, gluten-free, local, and organic items. You can’t go wrong with any dish on the menu, although we usually try to opt for something that comes with guac. You won’t regret it! And be sure to grab some kombucha to wash it all down!

The Mill is one of Northeast’s best brunch spots, dishing up healthy meals made from scratch on the daily. In the mood for a sweeter dish? You can’t go wrong with the wild rice pancakes topped with fruit, house-made granola, and maple syrup — the real stuff. And if you’re looking for a savory bite, the Ecuadorian Baked Eggs—with spicy black beans, salsa verde, and roasted potatoes—is calling your name. Add a side of fresh fruit or greens, and you’ve got yourself a balanced, flavorful meal.

Looking for delicious coffee and vegan or vegetarian options? Look no further than Groundswell in the Hamline Midway neighborhood of St. Paul. Weekend brunch includes a flatbread packed with veggies, the Beets and Sweets salad, and homemade granola with fresh berries. And if you’re searching for something truly unique, order the plant-based biscuits and gravy.

Vegetables for breakfast, anyone? With menu items like the chickpea, farro, and roasted broccoli salads, fried cauliflower, and the Middle East-inspired Soft Egg Scramble, Alma Café knows how to do healthy brunch right. You can even get a glass of poultry bone broth for those cold Minnesotan mornings. Alma, near Dinkytown, is a great destination for students at the U to fuel those long weekend days... at the library, of course.

Despite its name, South Minneapolis’ Tiny Diner is doing big things. This restaurant is committed to sourcing as many local foods as possible and supporting sustainable agriculture. And it shines through in the menu. Enjoy omelets made with organic eggs, burgers made with grass-fed beef, and featured menu items inspired by a new diner town each month! Make plans to swing by during the summer months for the weekly farmers market so you get your meal planning done while you grab some good eats.

Birchwood’s brunch menu caters to the season. Ingredients are sourced from farms in MN, WI, and IA, and are combined to create unique meals that make the taste buds weep with joy. Savory waffles made with string beans and quinoa and avocado toast with “garden doodads” are just a few of the favorites. Nestled in the Seward neighborhood of MPLS, Birchwood is a longstanding name in the community and is the perfect destination for a healthy, nature-inspired weekend brunch.

Colossal Cafe

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Why limit yourself to weekend afternoons when you have the option to brunch every day of the week? Colossal Cafe’s Grand Ave. and Como Ave. shops make it a breeze to grab your brunch faves whenever the urge strikes, but—fair warning—that doesn’t make narrowing down the menu options any easier (especially since everything is made fresh with seasonal ingredients). You can choose breakfast noshes like Colossal’s signature Flappers (with local maple syrup!), pick from a menu full of lunchtime fare like soups and salads, or get the best of both worlds with their breakfast burger, which comes topped with a bacon jam and a sunny-side-up egg.

Perhaps best known as a brewery, Freehouse holds its own in the Twin Cities brunch scene. Not only does Freehouse have the trendy menu options that will appeal to even the pickiest friend in your brunch group (we see you, avocado toast!), but it also has a cocktail menu that will have everyone raising their glasses. Bonus, this North Loop fave is only two blocks away from Alchemy, making it the perfect place to refuel after a morning sweat sesh.

Peoples Organic

Restaurant

With five hubs in the Twin Cities metro, including ones in Uptown and the IDS Center, Peoples Organic is a local favorite, and we can see why. The executive chef and his wife have pretty impressive resumes: they once served as Prince’s personal chefs. Yep, you read that correctly. Breakfast is served all day (meaning you can have that 4pm brunch if you choose) and features steel-cut oatmeal, seasonal quiches, and pancakes made from Minnesota wild rice.

This farm-to-table spot in the Tangletown neighborhood serves nothing but the freshest ingredients — most of which are sourced from their very own garden and farm! Meals are incredibly tasty and nourishing and are fixed with crunchy vegetables and fresh meats. The CSA Hash, Kale Caesar Salad, and Back to Bed French Toast (half portion available) will keep you coming back for more… and more… and more!

Tao is an Uptown gem that has been dishing up healthy brunch since 1968. Menu items include combinations of local eggs, avocado, whole grains, and antioxidant-rich fruits. And if that’s not delicious enough, you can finish off your nourishing meal with a freshly-made green juice. If you can’t get enough of the place, they frequently offer community events so you can experience even more Tao greatness.

Spoonriver, in downtown Minneapolis near the Mississippi River, is all about the veggies. Take in the beauty of the Mill District as you munch on the squash omelet, or mix it up with the vegetarian Tempeh Udon Salad. Want to share? Split the charcuterie plate with friends and taste meat and cheese sourced from different areas around the state. And don’t forget to pair your food with a crisp kombucha or caffeinated drink!

A relative newbie in the TC vegan/vegetarian scene, this globally-inspired restaurant opened its doors in Uptown hotspot Calhoun Square at the beginning of 2018. Fig + Farro puts equal emphasis on creating delicious takes on comfort food (breakfast burritos or biscuits and gravy, anyone?!) and being environmentally-friendly by using locally-sourced ingredients. Some of our favorites on the weekend brunch menu include Heirloom Grits, Chilaquiles, and, of course, the bottomless mimosas, but anything you order is sure to hit the mark.

If you’re searching for a place to grab a bite and get your caffeine fix, Fairgrounds is your go-to locale. This North Loop spot has all of the ingredients for a laid-back weekend brunch with your pals: an extensive drinks menu, all-day breakfast, interior design so innovative you’ll want to move in… seriously, grab a seat (or swing!) and belly up to the brew/matcha/espresso bar for a cuppa and an acai bowl. Or breakfast tacos. Or Poached Pear and Ricotta Toast. You can thank us later.

**Updated by Gina Van Thomme, February 2019