Trying to eat healthier throughout the day with limited time to cook? We’ve compiled a list of nine restaurants that serve up delicious, fast and healthy food in Austin so you can get back to work in a hurry or go home after a long day without worrying about the dishes…or the calories.
If you work at one of the many tech companies in North Austin, we envy you. Not just because of the great perks you surely have working at Dell or HP, but because you can go to Inka Chicken for lunch whenever the craving arises.
Inka Chicken definitely takes pride in their mouth-watering, well-seasoned, super-moist rotisserie chicken and their role as a healthier fast food option in Austin. At Inka, you can go through the drive-through, order over the phone and pick up your food or eat in. Either way, they’re fast enough for lunch.
For side options, choose from vegetarian black beans, white rice, fried yucca, potatoes, corn, sweet plantains, fresh grilled veggies, salad and the not-so-healthy mac and cheese. Their chicken comes with a delicious green spicy salsa and corn tortillas. With all the options, you can make your meal as low-cal as you wish, but rest assured that your food will be fresh and flavorful!
1707 Wells Branch Parkway – Website
For those working downtown, Koriente is a great option for a healthy, fast and delicious lunch. Order a rice or noodle bowl with sashimi-grade tuna, tofu, beef, chicken or shrimp and top it off with a fried egg. There are several flavorful vegan and vegetarian options.
They also have sweet potato noodles and rice medallions. Rice medallions are a new spin on a rice bowl. They’re chewy and delicious balls of rice that have a texture similar to that of gnocchi.
If you go for lunch, you’ll get free miso soup and salad. To drink you’ll find a variety of teas — hot and cold. They also serve wine and beer. To save time, call your order in and pick up.
621 E 7th St – Website
Tarka Indian Kitchen
If you love Indian food, you’ll be thrilled to have Tarka Indian Kitchen as a fast lunch option. Tarka is the faster (but still fresh and delicious) version of the Clay Pit – a popular and more upscale Indian restaurant located near the UT campus. Tarka has two locations: one in North Austin on Anderson Lane and one in South Austin on Brodie.
To speed things up, call in your order or place it online. Choose from a variety of curries served with basmati rice or ask for an order of garlic naan. For delicious vegetarian options, try the channa masala (garbanzo beans), malai kofta (vegetable dumplings) or of course daal (lentils). You won’t miss the meat.
5207 Brodie Ln #120/2525 W Anderson Ln #300 – Website
GreenGos makes a variety of salads and dressings to satisfy any palate with ingredients like beets, kale, seasonal berries, cinnamon pecans, jicama, roasted Brussel sprouts and more. GreenGos uses ingredients that are organic and/or local.
You have the option to wrap any salad in a wheat or spinach-herb tortilla. They also serve soup and other snacks. There is currently just one location on the UT campus. Call in your order or order online for a quick lunch.
404 W 26th St – Website
Leaf is similar to GreenGos with many combinations of salads to choose from, such as Strawberry Fields (strawberries, goat cheese, candied pecans, bacon, spinach, red onion and sunflower seed – yum!), Asiago Lemon Shrimp, Nicoise and the Capital City Cobb.
Plus you have the option to build your own salad with six ingredients, or you can add on even more.
419 W 2nd St – Website
If you’re having one of those days when you’re so busy you forget to eat, walk over to the nearest JuiceLand and grab a salad or a liquid lunch.
They have a variety of satiating smoothies that contain brown rice protein, whey protein, hemp protein, egg white protein, peanut butter or almonds. So even if you missed lunch, at least you’ll get the nutrition you need.
For salads – try the Feast in the Middle East that comes with hummus, olives and tabouleh salad or the soba noodle bowl. They also take orders online, so there’s no need to wait in line for a smoothie or juice.
JuiceLand is also good for a midday pick-me-up. As an alternative to coffee, try the yerba mate shot. JuiceLand has been a hit in Austin and now has 12 locations around the city.
The Soup Peddler
The Soup Peddler Real Food & Juice Bar has three locations in Austin. It’s a “Fueling Station For People,” serving handmade soups, salads, sandwiches, fresh juices and whole food smoothies. You can place delivery orders via Favor, or you can have your pickup orders ready even more quickly by placing them on their website.
Fresa’s Chicken is a must for a quick, delicious meal. Their chicken is marinated and grilled in a style similar to Mexican pollo asado. It’s flavorful and seasoned with spices like achiote and chili guajillo.
In addition to grilled chicken with sides like rice and black beans, they have quinoa, kale or chopped salads and tortas. For extra flavor or as a snack, try one of their guacamole varieties.
Fresa’s is also good for a fast breakfast, serving Stumptown coffee and breakfast tacos with a large selection of fillings.
915 N Lamar Blvd – Website
A local alternative to Subway, Thundercloud Subs first opened in Austin in 1975. They now have over 20 locations around Austin and locations in nearby cities. Thundercloud Subs uses freshly baked breads that are delivered by a local bakery each morning, and their spreads are made from scratch daily. They also make soups and salads. Soups can be ordered as an alternate side instead of the usual chips.
Thundercloud Subs uses local ingredients whenever possible.
@theAustinot wants to know:
What local joints do you frequent for fast and healthy food in Austin? Let us know what we’ve missed!
From the mountains of Jalisco to the snowdrifts of Milwaukee, Natalie Novosad is once again an Austinite and loving how the view changes with new eyes. She’s first and foremost a writer, then a translator and lastly a chef by domestic standards. What makes her happy? Variety, debate, discovery, yoga, spices, travel, music, and sharing life with her Tapatío husband and their beagle-child.
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