Every year when the new year comes along, I like to get a fresh start on my health. It is much needed after gorging on all of the goodies during the holidays! When Jan. 1 comes, I’m ready to focus on eating healthier, moving more, and managing my stress levels better.
The hard part about making a resolution to be healthier is staying focused on changing my habits, especially when enjoying time out with friends and family. As someone who loves to try restaurants around the city and document on my food Instagram (@olive.eatseverything), I decided that one way to make my resolutions stick was to create a list of healthy restaurants where I can go enjoy a meal out while still making good choices. And hey, why not share my list with all of you? I hope it helps you to stay focused, too!
For more restaurant recommendations around Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky, visit @olive.eatseverything on Instagram!
Seasons 52 is a Darden chain restaurant in Hyde Park that from the beginning has been committed to a healthier lifestyle. When they first opened, the entrees contained up to only 500 calories. As they realized that left very little wiggle room for culinary creativity, they changed the menu to include a wider range of options. However, they still have a specific part of the menu that caters towards those looking for a lighter fare.
Most of the dishes at Seasons 52 are filled with plenty of vegetables and a hearty portion of protein. If you are going with friends that are looking for more of an indulgent meal, they have options to appease those cravings as well. Their food is 100% fresh and never frozen, they use 50+ varieties of produce, and they source their protein with care. Seasons 52 creates their menus seasonally to provide enough change that it doesn’t get redundant.
Maplewood Kitchen and Bar
Maplewood Kitchen and Bar is a brunch spot located in Downtown Cincinnati. It is part of the well-known Thunderdome Restaurant Group and is a casual spot which offers West Coast-style cuisine and emphasizes healthier food using local and seasonal ingredients. They pride themselves on making your favorite breakfast/lunch classics with a lighter twist. My favorite is their hash bowl. I always come out of there feeling like I’ve just had a deliciously balanced meal. Make sure you add Maplewood to your list of healthy restaurants and you will definitely be successful with your resolutions!
Northstar Café is an Ohio restaurant chain in Liberty Township. They offer healthy meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner. I love going to NorthStar when I am in the mood for a delicious salad or grain bowl. They keep you so full and taste great. Their menu is a decent size, filled with plenty of options. Northstar is focused on providing their customers with the best ingredients. They choose locally grown, organic, and artisan-produced foods to ensure they provide the most wholesome foods.
Bakersfield is a chain restaurant located in Over the Rhine. Although Mexican food can seem heavier at times, Bakersfield offers the freshest ingredients. Their tacos all include corn tortillas, some sort of protein, and vegetables. My favorites to choose from at Bakersfield are their salads. My favorite salad is their Willie salad. If you add Bakersfield to your list of healthy restaurants, you will not feel like you are missing out on anything! Suggest it to your friends and you’ll have no worries about messing up your health goals.
Rooted Juicery is a plant based juicery and kitchen located in Mariemont and Oakley. I always love to go get their smoothie bowls. They are light and refreshing. If you follow a Vegan diet, this is the place for you. They are conscious about the ingredients they put in their food offerings. They have vegan desserts as well as premade food that you can take home with you. They offer a pre-planned juice cleanse for those looking for a serious jump start.
Sleepy Bee is a breakfast/lunch joint located in Oakley, Downtown Cincinnati, Blue Ash, and College Hill. Wherever you live in Cincinnati, a Sleepy Bee is not too far, so make sure you add it to your list of healthy restaurants! Sleepy Bee provides locally sourced foods that taste great and make you feel good. Their salads and bowls are a great balanced option for lunch. There are plenty breakfast options with eggs as a great source of protein and veggies.
E+O Kitchen is located in Hyde Park and at the Banks Downtown. They cultivate dishes that fit a fresh Asian cuisine. They choose from the highest quality local ingredients possible. Every dish that E+O offers is refreshing and balanced. They take traditional Asian cuisine and put their twist on it. They have a plethora of healthy options to choose from and feel good about while enjoying a day with friends.
Press on Monmouth
Press on Monmouth is one of my favorite healthy restaurants to go pick up a fresh salad. They are located in Newport, Kentucky. They have plenty of breakfast and lunch options that serve a healthy lifestyle. Most of their salads can be turned into bowls, with your choice of protein. My favorite is their Thai salad with Salmon on top.
The Baker’s Table
The Baker’s Table is a family-owned restaurant in Newport, Kentucky. They share locally grown and handcrafted food so their menu changes frequently. Their chef creates unique dishes that contribute to a fun experience and caters to a healthy lifestyle by including the freshest ingredients they can find.
Bouquet is a farm to table restaurant located in Covington, Kentucky. They have relations with over fifty local farmers that contribute to their ever-evolving menu. Bouquet always offers a fine-tuned seasonal menu to ensure their ingredients are the freshest. They offer a great deal of balanced meals with whole foods.
Tahona Kitchen + Bar
Tahona Kitchen + Bar is a taqueria located in Blue Ash and Loveland that takes inspiration from California cuisine and Mexian Street fare. They pride themselves on their fresh produce, quality slow roasted meats, and from scratch cooking to give you tasty healthy meals. My favorite option they serve is their taco salad. It’s a great place to go with friends to enjoy a meal.
Thai food is my favorite type of food. I love visiting Teak in Over the Rhine. They have a large menu and plenty of options that cater to a healthy lifestyle. Most of their dishes have a decent balance of protein, veggies, and whole grains. You’ll have no problem selecting a healthy dish from their menu. Make sure to add it to your list of healthy restaurants in 2023!
Want to explore more options for dining around the region? Check out all of our Food + Drink posts!