NYC Wellness Guide: My Go-To Healthy Restaurants
I’ve been a bit MIA over the past few months since I’ve been traveling and working on some really exciting projects with my clients. I spent some time in NYC and then flew to the West Coast for some time in LA. Now that I’m back and reminiscing on all of the cool places I visited in each city, I decided to share some of the highlights with you. So first up I’m starting with a NYC guide to one of my favorite things about New York: healthy food spots. Seriously NYC is like a healthy-foodie’s heaven since there are SO many amazing options to fit nearly any style of eating that you follow. Even after living in New York for a little over a year, I sometimes felt overwhelmed by all of the options of places to go and new restaurants to try. As much as I like trying new places, I’m kind of a creature of habit, and so once I find something I like, I’m loyal and will keep going back. Below you’ll find a few of my tried and true faves (and a few newer places thrown in like the VIllage Den).
P.s. my original plan was to do an entire wellness guide for NYC in one one post, but then we would be here all day so let’s start with healthy eats! :) Next up is a guide to my favorite fitness studios…
One of my favorite things about New York is that it’s so easy to find food that is fresh, local, organic, convenient and health conscious. Even though this list is just the tip of the iceberg, here’s a guide to my personal favorite healthy restaurants that are my go-to’s in the city.
Paleo-friendly, clean ingredients, best bone broth in NYC
Good for: Breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks (has coffee + matcha, but not a full espresso machine)
Location: Greenwich Village, (a block away from Washington Square Park), 90 W 3rd St., (opening a second location in the Financial District)
When I first moved to the city I was lucky enough to live literally a few steps away from Springbone, a cafe known for serving up delicious bone-broth and paleo-friendly dishes in Greenwich Village. The cafe quickly became my go-to place since they offer so many options that fit my personal food-preferences (gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free, veggie-heavy) they also source high-quality meat from local farms. And this is where my bone broth obsession was born…let me just say these people are serious about bone broth and theirs is my favorite in the city. They even have add-in options (like zoodles or ginger) so if I was ever feeling sick, my go-to was always some sort of broth with ginger and turmeric.
Fave Options: Liquid Gold Bone Broth (chicken broth with coconut milk + turmeric), Grandma’s Chicken and Rice (with cauli rice and Brussels sprouts), Sicilian Salmon Bowl. Even though they are famous for their bone broth, they do have a lot of options for vegans (even a vegan veggie broth)!
Paleo friendly, commitment to clean ingredients
Good for: breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks/take-out, coffee bar and juice/smoothie bar
Organic wine and kombucha on tap :)
Good place to spot your fave fitness instructors from one of the 5,000 gyms in the neighborhood :)
Location: Union Square/Flatiron, 78 5th Ave (at 14th Street)
Hu Kitchen was one of my go-to spots when I lived in NYC. It was just a few blocks away from my office and so I often stopped there for a quick lunch, or I would grab take out for dinner on the way home. Their overall philosophy is grain-free, gluten-free, dairy-free, and paleo. They’re also super committed to using high-quality ingredients and don’t use weird additives, cheap oils, or sugar in any of their food which I love. It’s rare to be able to go to a restaurant and feel like there’s 100% transparency in the food and ingredients quality, so any place that has that commitment basically has my heart. Also, their lineup of paleo baked goods is seriously impressive—from muffins to scones, “fauxcacia” bread sticks, and desserts–they have nailed the art of paleo baking.
Fave menu options: Kale caesar salad with grain-free croutons, Paleo everything bagel with ghee, chicken tenders, Hu bowl with cauliflower mash, Hu Dark Chocolate Bars, Chocolate chip cookies, and the almond butter cookie dough truffles are crack (Don’t say I didn’t warn you).
Location and vibes—tucked away on a quiet + picturesque part of WV, love the window bar, great place to work when not busy,
Good for: breakfast, coffee/matcha break, casual
Meetings or catching up with friends
Location: West Village, 128 Charles Street
The Elk is hands-down my favorite coffee shop in NYC. I stumbled across it when I first moved to the West Village and fell in love with the laid-back vibe and amazing coffee. It became my go-to place to grab a coffee or matcha on weekend mornings or to write and work (if I could manage to get a seat at the window i.e. the only place where laptops are allowed.) While it’s not exactly the best place to grab food with friends since the seating is limited, the food they do serve is amazing and worth taking out if you can’t eat in. They have healthy breakfast options, sandwiches, salads, and snacks.
Fave options: coffee with almond milk, almond latte, matcha latte, turmeric latte, energy balls, breakfast scramble
Founded by Antoni Porowski (chef from Queer Eye), lots of options for vegans, Paleo, keto and everyone in between
Good for: breakfast, coffee/matcha break, lunch, dinner (fast + casual)
Location: West Village, 225 W 12th St.
I should preface this review by saying I’m a bit biased because (as you may know) I’m obsessed with Queer Eye and initially went because it’s the Queer Eye chef/foodie, Antoni Porowski’s restaurant. This place has an option for basically everyone since their food philosophy is “at the corner of vegan and paleo” (which they have on a cute sign outside the cafe, BTW). Even though I’ve only eaten here once (I had the Citrus Poached Salmon Bowl), I’ll definitely be back! Some other dishes I’d love to try next time: Matcha Avocado Smoothie, Cake + Bake Keto Smoothie (SO hard to find a clean smoothie that is actually low carb + low sugar these days), the Garden Goddess Salad, and the breakfast bowl.
P.s: the menu isn’t on the website but you can see pics of it over on Well+Good
Another fun fact…the second time I visited the Village Den (on a total whim) I ran into Antoni there. He was seriously the nicest human and was just hanging out eating a salad (casual), and even kept running behind the counter to help the staff…so cute, right?!
Highlights: The only thing they sell is broth and it’s SO good
Good for: Grab-and-go bone broth, veggie broth
Location: West Village, (Hudson Street + Christopher), Upper West Side, pop-up “windows” in SOHO, Astor Place and East Village
Bone Broth is such a buzzy food that I’ve been into for a few years now. I’m seeing it on the shelves at grocery stores lately, but let me just tell you nothing compares to the broth you can get that’s slow-simmered, homemade and fresh—like the Broth from Brodo and Springbone. It’s so good for gut health, immunity, and so many things since it’s full of collagen and vitamins and minerals. I love all of Brodo’s amazing broths and creative flavor options. My favorite is the Spicy Nonna. I love to grab a bone broth to go from Brodo after a workout as opposed to a sugary smoothie, and Brodo is one of my go-to’s.
Highlights: Vegetarian + vegan menu, good vibes, great people watching when you can get a spot outside in the West Village location when the weather is nice :)
Good For: Lunch, brunch, dinner
Locations: West Village, Nolita, Williamsburg
The Butcher’s Daughter is one of my favorite brunch spots in NYC. It’s a super popular place and can be hard to get into on the weekends, but when you can, it’s totally worth it. I’m (obviously) not vegetarian or vegan, but I love to eat at vegetarian restaurants like this since they are usually heavy on the veggie options and offer some protein options like eggs or tempeh (the only soy I occasionally eat since it’s fermented soy beans). The coffee, matcha, and golden latte’s are the best! My go-to is their vegan Spicy Kale Caesar Salad—it has vegan almond parm and avocado and is SO good.
Fave options: Matcha latte, Golden Turmeric Latte, Smashed Avocado Toast, Coconut Yogurt Parfait, Spinach Egg Bowl
Highlights: Amazing brunch spot, all-day breakfast menu, great coffee, matcha, and selection of wellness lattes
Good For: Breakfast, lunch, brunch
Citizens of Chelsea is another one of my favorite brunch spots. It’s pretty far west in Chelsea, but not too far from West Village. I love their salmon eggs (smoked salmon with poached eggs on avocado toast with a side salad) is what I get pretty much every single time I go. They also make amazing coffee and matcha lattes. Their menu is Australian-inspired with tons of options for healthy, gluten-free options or even splurge-worthy dishes like their waffles and banana split bowls if you’re feeling something sweeter.
Fave options: Salmon Eggs, Smashing Avocado Toast, Matcha latte, Reg. latte + coffee
Jack’s Wife Frieda, SweetGreen, Bluestone Lane, Matcha Bar, Banter