In a land of princesses and parks, Orlando has tourism down to a science. Visitors from all over the globe flock to the city to experience one-of-a-kind entertainment. But it’s the locals who reap the benefits of all the healthy eating Orlando has to offer without buying a plane ticket. Turn the corner in any direction and you’ll see one of the hundreds of healthy restaurants Orlando boasts. Here’s the not-for-tourists guide to the best healthy restaurants in Orlando.
1. Healthy Restaurants Orlando: The Sanctum
The Sanctum takes their role as a community-based farm-to-table restaurant seriously. Named for a sacred place in a shrine or church, The Sanctum serves plant-based entrees farmed using sustainable practices. With plenty of vegan options on their vegetarian menu, this boho chic eatery on Fern Creek Avenue also serves organic juices and organic coffee to round out any meal. If you’re in the mood for a bowl of comfort, get their caulifredo – rice pasta with eggplant, crimini mushrooms, peas, and broccoli covered in a cauliflower cashew “alfredo” sauce.
The Sanctum, 715 N Fern Creek Ave, Orlando, FL – thesanctumcafe.com
2. Healthy Restaurants Orlando: Market on South
Market on South is the ultimate two-for-one restaurant experience. In Orlando’s milk district, the market is home to two eateries, Valhalla Bakery where you can satisfy your sweet tooth and Dixie Dharma specializing in southern vegetarian dishes. Shaun Noonan, founder of Dixie Dharma, got his start in high-end kitchens around the world but his culinary education took a turn as he trucked across the American South, discovering the nuances of its regional cuisine. He started The Vegan Hot Dog Cart and from there Dixie Dharma came to life in a trailer at farmers markets around the area and finally at Market on South.
But this isn’t your ordinary southern restaurant. Noonan takes old southern classics like barbecue and biscuits and gravy and gives them a plant-based twist, without sacrificing the flavor. Don’t believe us? Try the Florida Bird, Dixie Dharma’s famous take on a sloppy joe. Made from barbecued Florida oranges, this guiltless sloppy joe sits atop a potato roll spread with roasted garlic and is topped with creamy cole slaw.
Market on South, 2603 E South St, Orlando, FL – marketonsouth.com
3. Healthy Restaurants Orlando: Greens and Grille
The Orlando Weekly’s pick for Best Salads in Orlando, Greens and Grille is a choose your own adventure salad and sandwich shop offering fresh, organic ingredients that are locally sourced when possible. Choose your greens, your mix-ins, your dressings and add in a protein of your choice for a custom explosion of flavor. Or, choose from one of Greens and Grille’s signature salads or sandwiches. If you are having decision paralysis, we suggest giving their Grazing Cow salad a try. Crisp, fresh romaine is topped with grilled onions, tomatoes, chopped bacon, and aged white cheddar and is tossed with their creamy avocado, chipotle, lime dressing.
Greens and Grille, 4104 Millenia Blvd. Suite: 114, Orlando, FL – greensandgrille.com
4. Healthy Restaurants Orlando: The Drunken Monkey
When it comes to eclectic healthy restaurants Orlando does not disappoint with The Drunken Monkey. One part hipster coffee house, one part healthy gourmet cafe, you’ll love to sink into the mismatched couches and feast on one of their salads or soups while sipping one of their in-house roasted coffee blends or organic smoothies. With plenty of vegetarian and vegan options as well as meaty meals there is truly something for everyone at The Drunken Monkey. Be sure to try the Florentine sandwich – fluffy eggs, fresh tomatoes and housemade pesto sandwiched in a flaky croissant. And save room for one of their famous oatmeal and coconut Anzac cookies.
The Drunken Monkey Coffee Bar, 444 N. Bumby Ave., Orlando, FL. – drunkenmonkeycoffee.com
5. Healthy Restaurants Orlando: Greenbeat
Who says salads have to be boring? Greenbeat was founded on the idea that local farmers and artisans were best equipped to bring delicious seasonal ingredients to the masses. Greenbeat was merely the courier. The menu in both Greenbeat locations in Orlando is broken down into “Build Your Own Bowl” and “Signature Bowls” giving you the ability to choose your own flavor combination or select a tried-and-true healthy meal. We can’t get enough of their Mojito Shrimp bowl. Shrimp ceviche (shrimp marinated in citrus juices and chilies) sits atop a bed of watercress, arugula and tarragon leaves. Cucumbers, onions, radishes, and ripe avocado join the shrimp before being drizzled with mojito vinaigrette. It’s like eating Florida in a bowl.
Greenbeat, Multiple Locations, Orlando, FL – green-beat.com
6. Healthy Restaurants Orlando: Bikes Beans and Bordeaux
Native Floridians Jen and Darrell Cunningham looked around their neighborhood and realized there was not a place where members of their community could gather over good food, good coffee and good wine. So they decided to create their own in the Audubon Park Garden District of Orlando. 3B (as the locals call it) is exactly the type of gathering place Jen and Darrell hoped for with a twist. As avid cyclists, they decided to center the menu and drink offerings around the cycling season and feature vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free and low-fat options. Be sure to try the Chicken Chevre sandwich – grilled chicken with herbed goat cheese, tomato, spinach, and red onion pressed in a ciabatta roll from a local bakery. Add a cup of their house black bean soup and you’ll be riding high all day long.
Bikes Beans and Bordeaux, 3022 Corrine Drive, Orlando, FL- bikesbeansandbordeaux.com
7. Healthy Restaurants Orlando: JJ’s Fusion Grille
We can’t talk about the healthy restaurants Orlando has to offer without mentioning JJ’s Fusion. Fusion cuisine seemed to explode in the early 2000’s resulting in strange culinary bedfellows on menus across the country. (Barbecue tandoori sushi anyone?) However, JJ’s Fusion took the best of both Mexican cuisine and Mediterranean cooking and married them perfectly in this casual dining experience in Winter Park. First, you pick your base from spicy Mexican rice to Mediterranean lentil rice to a traditional burrito or pita sandwich. Top it with beans or lentils, meat or veggies, and your choice of eight salsas, sauces and toppings. Just in case you need a little inspiration, we love the spicy Mexican rice topped with lentils, steak and tabbouleh.
JJ’s Fusion Grille, Multiple Locations, Orlando, FL – jjsfusiongrille.com
8. Healthy Restaurants Orlando: Dandelion Communitea Cafe
Plant-based diets are practically mainstream today, but Dandelion Communitea Cafe was ahead of the curve when they introduced their vegetarian and vegan eats back in 2006. Located in a classic 1920’s bungalow house, Dandelion’s cozy vibe lends itself well to it’s claim as “Orlando’s organic, vegetarian, and celiac-friendly gathering place.” Try the crowd favorite The Giddyup: vegan chili served on a salad or wrap topped with homemade green goddess dressing and your choice of organic cheddar or vegan queso. And if it wasn’t evident from the name, this “Communitea” Cafe also serves up a staggering selection of organic tea to pair perfectly with their hearty and healthy veggie fare.
Dandelion Communitea Cafe, 618 N Thornton Ave Orlando, FL – dandelioncommunitea.com
When it comes to healthy restaurants Orlando does not disappoint. Whether you are looking for a salad or a plate of good old-fashioned healthy food, Orlando maintains its food reputation as one of the happiest places on earth. With healthy meal options, year round sunshine, and some of the best personal trainers in Central Florida, Orlando is certainly a destination for fitness and wellness enthusiasts!