Food

14 Veggie-Packed Dishes in Philadelphia That Are Anything But Boring

Eat your vegetables and enjoy them, too.


Unless the only vegetables you’ve eaten come from a microwavable freezer bag, you should know by now that vegetables can actually be pretty dang delicious — in addition to being good for you. This is especially true when Philadelphia chefs have had their way with them.

That said, not all veggie dishes are created equal. That’s why we reached out to Philly’s pro healthy eaters to share they very favorite veggie-centric dishes. Below you’ll find 14 veggie dishes from Philly restaurants that this panel of nutritionists, trainers, health coaches, and more can’t stop eating. Give them a try, and we have a feeling you won’t be able to stop eating them either.

Kung Pao Brussels Sprouts

Where: Urban Saloon; 2120 Fairmount Avenue, Fairmount
What: “Aside from packing a nutrient punch — Brussels sprouts are high in vitamin K, vitamin C, and folate — they have a very low glycemic index.  Hands down best tasting are the Kung Pao Brussels Sprouts at Urban Saloon. They are crispy and sweet, with a kick of spice and they’re served with scallions and peanuts for a dose of protein.” — Gina Mancuso, CoreFitness.

Arugula Salad

Where: SlICE Pizza; 431 East Girard Avenue, Fishtown
What: “This is an artfully simple dish and SliCE uses fresh, organic, and high quality ingredients, giving it the BEST flavor.  It’s just arugula, shaved parm, fresh garlic, and a simple homemade lemon and olive oil vinaigrette. I’m obsessed with this salad because of the peppery, bitter flavor of arugula — cut with citrus — and kicked up with my favorite immune booster: raw chopped garlic. Who knew a pizza shop could give me this delicious dose of food as medicine?” — Dr. Tara Nayak, a practicing naturopathic doctor.

Sweet Potato Hummus

Decisions, decisions…

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Where: Real Food Eatery, 207 S. 16th Street, Rittenhouse
What: “Every loves a good dip but finding one that’s nutritious is an extra win! This sweet potato hummus has a little bit of heat and some sweet for the perfect flavor combo. And I love the vitamin A and B6 benefits from eating sweet potatoes!” — Dana Auriemma, Freehouse Fitness

Garden Pad Thai

Where: P.S. & Co. 1706 Locust Street, Rittenhouse
What: “Sure, it’s gluten-free and vegan but what I really love about it is the balance of flavors. It’s sweet, it’s salty, it’s got a hint of acidity with the lime juice — overall, a killer taste, full of veggies, and filling. But not overly filling that you can’t enjoy one of their brownies after.” — Jess BaumgardnerHealth Coach Philly.

Braised Kale

Where: Cresheim Valley Grain Exchange; 7152 Germantown Avenue, Mt. Airy
What: “They have an entire vegetarian menu, but one of the best things is simply their Braised Kale. I rarely eat kale (shocking) despite being a holistic health practitioner but I do LOVE this kale as a side dish instead of always getting fries.” — Emily BentonHolistic Health Practitioner and Director at Simplex Health.

Fried Cauliflower

Where: Cheu Fishtown; 1416 Frankford Avenue, Fishtown
What: “I am a huge fan of any genre of tapas, that way I can order a couple veggie dishes, a couple protein-packed things too, and get all my macros covered. Cheu Fishtown has a rotating menu of contrasting flavor  combinations you didn’t know you needed in your life. Currently, their fried cauliflower with crispy lentils, curry aioli, and golden raisins — which is both crunchy and flavorful — is one of my favorites.” — Alana Messinapersonal trainer.

Bibimbap

Now watch me BAP-BAP-BAP #hungrygrls

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Where: Bap; 1224 South Street, Washington Square West
What: “I could probably eat this amazing Korean dish everyday. Served in a bowl of warm white rice, bibimbap includes a variety of sautéed veggies, seaweed, gochujang (red pepper paste), a fried egg, and choice of protein — I typically go with chicken or tofu. This mix is full of dense nutrients, packed with protein, and metabolism boosting properties from gochujang. My favorite place is Bap on 12th and South. It’s inexpensive and delicious —my favorite combination!” — Susannah GreenwoodFlywheel.

Sweet Pea Dip

Where: Fuel; Multiple locations
What: “The sweet pea dip from Fuel is delicious and packed full of protein and fiber. You can get it served with thin rice crackers or veggies. It’s a great shareable appetizer that doesn’t make you feel guilty.” — Juliet Burgh, Nutrition Director at Unite Fitness.

Zucchini Noodle Pad Thai

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Where: Le Pain Quotidien (multiple area locations)
What: “This veggie dish has a lot of flavor, great crunch, and is the perfect fuel for teaching our high-energy rebounding classes. It’s also a super convenient to-go dish because I’m always on the move and prefer cold dishes I can store in the fridge and eat throughout the day as needed.” — Dana Auriemma, Freehouse Fitness

Charred Brussels Sprouts

Where: City Tap House; 3925 Walnut Street, University City
What: “A close second to the Kung Pao Brussels are City Tap’s charred Brussels sprouts. They are made with white miso and pomegranate and are perfect for a light dinner. The pomegranate provides a sweet and tart burst of flavor and their crimson-red color makes the dish extra appealing. Bonus: pomegranates are high in antioxidants, sometimes I ask for extra on the side.”  — Gina MancusoCoreFitness.

Vegan Mushroom Pho

Soup please. 11:30 – 2:30 and 5:30 – 10

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Where: Stock Restaurant; 308 East Girard Avenue, Fishtown
What: “I’ve ordered this delivery to my office many a bitter cold winter’s day this year. I love the depth of flavor they’ve managed to develop in a broth that is meatless. Mushrooms are another super immune booster. I also love the fact that the dish comes with pungent, fresh herbs like cilantro, scallion, and basil which are full of antimicrobial and circulation-enhancing volatile oils. When my order arrives there’s always a small container of sprouted mungbeans that I dump right in as an added boost of protein, fiber, and nutrients.” — Dr. Tara Nayak, a practicing naturopathic doctor.

Hummus

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Where: Dizengoff; multiple locations
What: “I’ve never been disappointed by Dizengoff’s hummus. It’s full of protein, fiber, and uses tahini from Philadelphia’s own Soom Foods. Its rich consistency makes for a great lunch and as a bonus you always get a small salad with your hummus order. Pro tip: You can substitute the pita for cucumber!” — Susannah GreenwoodFlywheel.

Lima Bean and Mushroom Dish

Where: Zavino; Multiple locations
What: “Zavino has an incredible fava bean plate, also known as a lima bean and mushroom dish. It is sautéed in truffle oil and onions. It’s extremely flavorful and also really high in protein and fiber. It makes for an awesome side dish — or you can use that as the main course and get a salad with it.” — Juliet Burgh, Nutrition Director at Unite Fitness.

Veggie Burger

Where: Billy Murphy’s Irish Saloon; 3335 Conrad Street, East Falls
What: “One of my all time favorite veggie burgers is from Bill Murphy’s Irish Saloon in East Falls.  Murphy’s is a neighborhood staple — it’s very chill, a lot of locals, but the food and atmosphere is perfect. They have great burgers but their black bean and chickpea burger is incredible. You can see all the ingredients which is important to me — I like to know what I am eating!” — Emily BentonHolistic Health Practitioner and Director at Simplex Health.

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