There are few things as upsetting as spending $11 on a movie ticket only to realize 15 minutes into said movie that you would rather be color-coordinating your closet — or doing anything else, really — than watching the garbage that’s playing out on screen (cough, The Beguiled, cough). In the category of experiences that are equally as misery-inducing: Spending $11 on a lunch salad only to feel your stomach growl 45 minutes after scarfing it down. We have all been there.
That said, salads are a super-convenient way to cram a boatload of nutrition into your face on busy days — and they can be really delicious and satisfying. No, really! Below, seven drool-worthy lunch salads around Philly — one for every day of the week — that we can guarantee won’t leave you hangry and disappointed. Read up, then eat up!
Psst: Have lunch salads in Philly you love? Shout ’em out in the comments!
Where: Wiz Kid, 124 South 19th Street, Rittenhouse
Order: King Cobb Salad, $10
Our trusty Foobooz editor Alex Tewfik described this salad from Rich Landau and Kate Jacoby’s new vegan outpost on 19th Street to me as the kind of salad actual salad shops should aspire to make. High praise from someone who eats for a living. It’s loaded with garbanzo beans and harissa tofu (hey, filling protein!), avocado (hey, healthy fats!), pickled cauliflower, olive salad, and a lemon-sumac dressing. Mmmmmm.
Where: Parc, 227 South 18th Street, Rittenhouse
Order: Warm Shrimp Salad, $20.50
This salad, served with warm shrimp and avocado, has been getting shoutouts from Philly trainers on Be Well Philly for years. A pro tip from Lauren Boggi, of the now-shuttered Lithe Method and LB Active): Order the beurre blanc (that’s a fancy way of saying butter sauce) on the side.
Where: Sweetgreen, multiple locations
Order: Spicy Sabzi, $9.45
There are a few things I can confidently say I am an expert in: The Real Housewives franchise (I know I should be ashamed, but I’m not), celebrity gossip (again, shamefully unashamed), and Sweetgreen orders. After spending the equivalent of one home down payment at the salad establishment, I can say this salad is pretty darn perfect. It’s loaded with filling items like spicy broccoli, spicy quinoa, sesame tofu, shredded kale, raw beets and more and tossed with carrot chili vinaigrette, though I’m a proponent of always subbing in the spicy cashew dressing, no matter your order. Just trust me. (I’m an expert.)
Where: Honeygrow, multiple locations
Order: Walnut St. Noodle Salad, $8.79
This salad is beefed up with hearty add-ins like whole-wheat noodles, roasted walnuts and parmesan crisps. And the nice thing about Honeygrow is that you can further customize your add-ins (without feeling like that annoying customer, thanks to their touchscreen ordering system) to ensure you get what you need from your bowl to avoid 2 p.m. snack cravings.
Where: HipCityVeg, multiple locations
Order: Curry Tofu Wrap as a salad, $9
The day I discovered that you can order just about anything at this veganized fast-food spot — from sandwiches, wraps, etc. — as a salad marks a turning-point in my (and my bank account’s) life. The curried tofu and cilantro-white bean purée served over greens makes for a super satisfying, flavorful and filling midday meal that will tide you over well past 5 p.m. The Udon Noodle Salad is also a good pick, if you’re into faux meat.
Where: High Street on Market, 308 Market Street, Old City
Order: Chef Salad, $14
This one’s for the lunch-sandwich devotees. Because let’s call it like it is: A chef salad is basically a meaty sandwich sans bread. And this one — tossed at the place that earned a spot on Bon Appétit’s list of the top healthyish eateries in the country — is sprinkled with stuff you wouldn’t find on your usual deli sandwich. Think: sprouted chickpeas and green goddess dressing. (We won’t judge you if you request some of their famous bread to pair with it. You gotta soak up that extra dressing somehow, right?)
Where: &pizza, 1430 Walnut Street, Center City
Order: Salad Pizza, $9.73
We’ll call this the training wheels salad: This creation is made up of pizza dough (gluten-free dough is available) topped with a salad of ranch-dressed romaine, cucumber, tomato, feta croutons, pickled red onions and ranch dressing. Hey, we all have to start somewhere, right?
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