The experience of dining out is something I've always wanted to include in my lifestyle. I remember telling my friends that one day I would meet a guy who would want to dine out at least once a week (but hopefully more.) This isn't because I don't enjoy cooking, but because I love the atmosphere and ambience of restaurants, I love enjoying the experience of sharing company of those I care about, and I love not having to run around preparing, making and cleaning up the meal (obviously.) It's definitely a privilege to be able to dine out and I'm so thankful that I am able to do so, while living in a fabulous city with so many great food options to choose from. Although I love to try out new places, it's not practical for me when I eat only certain foods, and I have high expectations for the quality of the food I eat. This is why I tend to stick to my favourite restaurants. Below I've included my top six restaurants in Toronto.
Soft chocolate chip cookies are my weakness!!
1. Impact Kitchen. This restaurant is a favourite of mine with a simple but nutrient packed menu. It's based on the need for pure whole foods and nutrients to feed your body. This place is friendly to both vegans and meat eaters. My favourite finds here include, the Zesty Mexican Power Bowl, the weekend brunch waffles, the green medicine smoothie and the Chocolate Cookie which is infused with chocolate goodness.
Impact Kitchen has so many delicious options!
2. Fresh. This is a fully vegan restaurant with an enormous menu with multiple options of salads, burritos, bowls, burgers, smoothies and juices. They also have some deep fried options such as their quinoa onion rings which are so delish, especially dipped in their famous hot sauce! My overall picks at Fresh include the corn bread, all star salad, squash tacos, bbq burger (which is topped with their onion rings) and the "all green" juice. Also, I was so impressed with their hot chocolate that it inspired me to create one similar (you can find the recipe here.) They also have various sweets from a delicious sweet company called Sweets From the Earth.
If you happen to like carrot cake, you must leave room for a slice at Fresh. It's incredible!
3. Planta. This fully vegan restaurant is classy, fun and has some incredible, unique flavours. With a bit of a higher price point, it's somewhere that I go to for special occasions. My favourite items so far include, the "crab" cakes, planta burger and eggplant lasagna which has a delicious smoky flavour. The truffle fries are a must and they often have featured meals and sweets that are always satisfying. If you stop by, be sure to bring your camera for their instagram worthy plates and atmosphere.
This is half the Planta smoky lasagna. I often share so I can try several dishes each visit.
4. Live. This is another fully vegan restaurant with raw and cooked food options. Although I adore their menu, due to the unique combinations I know my non vegan friends wouldn't enjoy it as much as some of the other picks. Live also offers food to buy in grocery stores or online which I'm a huge fan. My favourites include their sweet potato noodle salad, their green or chipotle wraps, curry pumpkin nori crunch snacks and cheesy flavoured cracker chips.
If you enjoy kimchi I'd suggest these mung bean pancakes.
5. Calii Love. I've only been to this Californian inspired healthy spot two or three times but it's clear all the items are made with real food. You can make your own salad bowl with your favourite toppings or you can enjoy one of their featured creations. I recommend the "Inspired" bowl. All the bowls are named with expressions of positive feelings so when you order your food the staff will yell "I'm feeling... Inspired" which is a very positive and fun way to communicate with the chefs.
6. Simple Kitchen. This is similar to Impact Kitchen but on a smaller scale. They have very simple meals that are rich in nutrient dense whole foods. They have a great menu with both brunch and dinner options. You can make your own plate with protein, veggies and carbs of your choice. I love the chia bowls which you can build your own creation with different fruits, nut butters and other healthy toppings.
So simple, clean, real and delish!!
Photo credit: Simple Kitchen Instagram
So these are my 6 main healthy food spots I like to enjoy. I'm feeling pretty hungry now as I think about all my favourite foods and restaurants, and I am already planning where I'll be going tomorrow. If you try out any of these options or if you have any healthy spots that you enjoy in the city, be sure to comment down below. I'd love to add a few more options to my list!