Healthier Food Options Don’t Have to be a Cliche, and Dallas Proves It

There's a winter shirataki soup menu coming to Asian Mint soon.
There's a winter shirataki soup menu coming to Asian Mint soon. courtesy of Asian Mint
Sure, it’s predictable when a publication publishes a list of healthier foods in January. But the truth is, at least occasionally we like to focus on eating healthy throughout the year.

“Healthy” is subjective — some people go super-low-carb and high-fat with keto, some eat a bunch of rice, some don’t eat meat. Here are 10 of our favorite meals that lean healthy in some way or another.

Tom Kha

Asian Mint

Asian Mint has a winter shirataki soup menu Jan. 19 through March 30, where the tom yum, tom khan and noodle soups with zero-carb shirataki noodles offer a healthier and warm meal.

These noodles are made from the fiber of the root of a konjac plant native to East and Southeast Asia. They add lovely sustenance to the already-great tom kha, a wonderful standard coconut Thai soup.

Multiple locations


Cultivar Coffee Roasting Co.

It’s good to vary where you get your local coffee, but it seems whenever a roast from Cultivar gets into the home grinder again, that smell offers a reminder of why this is such a favorite (OK, we feel the same way about Noble Coyote). Right now there’s a roast owner Jonathan Meadows says is an all-time favorite: Tres Bourbon Seasonal Blend, with notes of peach, dark chocolate and toasted nuts. As long as you don’t harm the integrity of coffee with sugar-cream nonsense, a cup of coffee is healthy enough, if not mandatory, to accomplish work for the day.

313 W. Jefferson Blvd. (North Oak Cliff) and 1155 Peavy Road (East Dallas)

Lamb Loin


This cut of meat comes with roasted sweet potato mash, sautéed kale and garlic butter for a complete meal with all the needed components. Also, if you're doing keto, don't skip the cheese board here.

614 W. Davis St. (Bishop Arts District)

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The gluten-free banana-chocolate chip cookie.
Tida Pichakron

Paleo Banana-Chocolate Chip Cookie

Haute Sweets Patisserie

Chef Tida Pichakron says this is really more of a deep-dish cookie, and we can get behind that, especially when it’s dairy-free with no refined sugars. The banana should offer plenty of sweetness while providing a moist texture to the gluten-free dough.

10230 E. Northwest Highway (Northeast Dallas)



Anytime there’s a visit to Homewood, it’s worthwhile to see what chef Matt McCallister’s team is doing with fresh fish. A recent peek at the menu mentions a bluefin tuna with coconut aguachile, togarashi aioli and coriander.

4002 Oak Lawn Ave.

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Invasion provides meals that make the palate happy and make you feel well physically.
Taylor Adams

Iron Fist Bowl


On the website for this restaurant, you’re welcomed with a few words, one of them “healthy.” There are incredible fried chicken sandwiches here, but if you really need vegetables, go to the “bowls” category of the menu, then get the Iron Fist. Cabbage, carrots, broccoli, bell peppers and green onions top fried rice, all of which gets this spicy “bomb sauce.” It’s a delicious way to get those vitamins.

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The wasabi-ponzu salmon bowl from Malibu Poke has orange, daikon, wasabi topiko, edamame, scallion, micro radish, arare and wasabi aioli.
Taylor Adams

Wasabi Ponzu Salmon Poke Bowl

Malibu Poke

Malibu Poke has proven to be a go-to during the pandemic for its nutrient-rich, flavor-packed poke bowls. Make them lighter by getting massaged kale instead of rice (though, admittedly, we like to do half rice, half kale because we don’t need to go overboard). The wasabi ponzu salmon has spice, acid and full cuts of salmon we love.

3888 Oak Lawn Ave., No. 102 (Oak Lawn)

Brussel Sprout Bowl

Origin Kitchen + Bar

Since the writer of this list was eating ice cream while compiling healthy-ish meals, crowd-sourcing happened. Observer writer Philip Kingston mentioned Origin Kitchen + Bar, and it looked good enough to put that strawberry ice cream down for something better. Grab a bowl of nutrients with a double order of Brussels sprouts topped with two eggs your way, for instance.

4438 McKinney Ave., No. 150 (Knox-Henderson)

Green Gobbler Wrap

Southpaws Grill

Get a whole meal in a wrap with turkey, Swiss cheese, baby spinach, avocado, tomatoes and hummus from Southpaws. You could get this on bread, too, if you care less about carb intake and are focused on getting your veggies.

Three locations in North Dallas, Uptown and downtown


Cibo Divino

“New research has revealed that the plant compound resveratrol, which is found in red wine, displays anti-stress effects by blocking the expression of an enzyme related to the control of stress in the brain, according to a University of Buffalo-led study,” says We could all surely use some of that these days. Support your local wine shop, whichever that place may be. Veritas Wine Room on North Henderson Avenue is great, and a recent visit to Cibo Divino allowed us to peruse a lovely wine selection with prices ranging from approachable to impress-someone-worthy.

1868 Sylvan Ave., No. D100 (West Dallas)
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Taylor Adams has written about the restaurant industry for the Dallas Observer since 2016. She attended Southern Methodist University before covering local news at The Dallas Morning News.