The Healthy Eater’s Guide to Reading Terminal Market
Reading Terminal Market is every foodie’s dream. But what about us healthy foodies? Navigating past Beiler’s donuts, candy shops, Amish bakeries and Bassett’s ice cream is a serious willpower challenge. But we made the trek and did the research to find the stands that won’t test your willpower or hurt your healthy habits.
Psst: Have favorite healthy spots in Reading Terminal Market that didn’t make the list? Shout ’em out in the comments!
For healthy pantry staples
Walking into Herbiary is like leaving Philadelphia for a calming forest oasis. Their stand is made of mismatched wood and their shelves are filled to the brim with hundreds of supplements, teas, essential oils, beauty products and trendy health items. They have natural elixirs for everything from sound sleep to optic health. And if you’re looking to add adaptogens to your healthy regimen, Herbiary can be your supplier.
The Head Nut
Don’t let the name fool you — this shop sells more than just nuts. Here you’ll find dry goods in bulk containers and the staff will weigh out however much you need. They also sell flours, grains, seeds, dried fruit, herbs and spices galore. (There’s also candy — because, you know, sometimes you just need gummy bears.)
Jonathan Best Gourmet Grocer
Alas, every Pinterest recipe junkie’s mecca: They have every grain and legume you could ever imagine. The teetering metal shelves of Jonathan Best are lavished with millet, ground flax, rolled oats and even Paleo baking flour. But that’s not even close to all they have. The grocer carries a variety of kombucha and plenty of fridge staples like Greek yogurt and prepackaged fruit, for when you have to cut your lunch break short.
Bee Natural has every kind of bee product imaginable, produced by bees right in Smyrna, Delaware. The stand sells everything from raw honey to candles to bee pollen (hello, instantly Instagrammable smoothie bowl).
For meal-prep staples
Fair Food Farmstand
Since 2003, the Fair Food Farmstand has been the organic eater’s paradise. They sell local and organic produce, and pasture-raised dairy and meats. While they don’t sell as much produce as some of the other stands, you can count on all of it being organic (which means less thinking while shopping). In addition to their fruits and veggies, they sell cheeses, raw milk, eggs, yogurt, a selection of meats, honey and other condiments.
For the biggest bang for your buck, head to Iovine’s Produce. They always have fruits and veggies on sale, and they offer a student discount on Wednesdays and Sundays. Their fall produce selection is wide – they carry an array of squashes, apples, leafy greens and pears – and a portion of it comes from local growers.
La Divisa Meats
Helmed by Nick Macri, La Divisa is your one-stop shop for sustainable meats. All of the meat comes from local farms and it’s all organic, pasture-raised, antibiotic- and chemical-free and naturally fed. You can buy fresh pork, beef, veal and chicken or you can opt for pre-prepped food like pork carnitas for tacos.
For a quick bite
Feeling Parisian? Profi’s Creperie has a certain je ne sais quoi about it that will keep you coming back. The charming stand offers healthy savory and fruity crepes that won’t kill your diet. Our favorite is a creation with egg, spinach, tomato and mozzarella. For dessert, we love stuffing our crepe with strawberries and bananas with a touch of honey and whipped cream. The chefs make the crepes right in front of you, making it easy to call out “Go a little heavier on the spinach, please!” Magnifique!
This one goes out to all of our readers with dietary restrictions – we found a place for you! Nanee’s Kitchen is the perfect place to go for all your vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free and halal needs. The Indian and Pakistani food is packed with flavor. The staff behind the counter is more than willing to give you samples of everything they offer, just in case you’re a “try before you buy” kind of person, and they have options that span from vegan to gluten-free. Try their vegetable and potato samosas – they’re some of the most popular on the menu – and their naan is heavenly (sorry gluten-free friends, but the rest of us need bread).
12th Street Cantina
If you’re in the mood for Mexican, 12th Street Cantina is your place. Their award-winning guacamole is nothing less than heavenly. For those of you who put avocado on everything (like us), you can even buy it by the pound. Avocado toast made easy. They also offer build-your-own salads, with toppings like black beans, chicken, fish and pico de gallo. Plus, many of their ingredients are locally sourced. Goodbye, Chipotle.
For your juice fix
In addition to their produce selection, Iovine’s also sells fresh, ready-to-drink fruit and vegetable juices. Their lemonade and limeade is perfect for the little ones, and their green juice is packed with spinach, kale, and cucumber. They even sell chlorophyll water. (Very on trend.)
Four Seasons Juice Bar
If you’re one to take wheatgrass or ginger shots to make yourself feel alive after a night out, then Four Seasons should be your go-to juice bar. In addition to the usual wheatgrass and ginger shots, they also sell green shots, which include a large portion of your daily veggies in one painless dose. Their multiple dry-erase boards have dozens of smoothie and juice combinations, in case you don’t know what you’re in the mood for. Plus, their produce is stacked next to their Vitamix blenders, so you know that everything going in your drink is completely real.
Tea aficionados, rejoice. The Tea Leaf is your one-stop shop for everything tea-related. The beautiful shelves are lined with canisters of basic and exotic flavored teas. Along with loose-leaf, they also sell freshly brewed hot or iced tea. Even better, the owner of the stand knows seemingly everything about tea, which is helpful for newbies.
Kamal’s Juice Bar
Kamal’s Juice Bar, while similar to Four Seasons, is the place to go if you always choose the “Create Your Own” option at every restaurant. They have a looooong list of add-ins, including peanut butter, chia seeds, wheatgrass, whey protein, hemp protein, coffee, dates and multivitamins. As a bonus: Their prices are unbeatable if you’re used to paying $10 for a green juice.
There ya have it, folks: Your healthy-eating guide to Reading Terminal Market. But remember: Life is about balance. Meaning: Sometimes you just have to spring for that Meltkraft grilled cheese.
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