So fresh and so clean

6 San Antonio restaurants to find healthy, hassle-free meals

6 San Antonio restaurants to find healthy, hassle-free meals

The Good Kind SA meals
Fresh veggies and lean proteins — like these meals from The Good Kind — are the perfect antidote to holiday stress. The Good Kind/Facebook Courtesy of The Good Kind/ Facebook

For most of us, self care means loading the grocery cart with enough Bagel Bites, Ding Dongs, and XL Go-Gurts to survive a nuclear winter — and a binge-watch session featuring all seven seasons of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. The only trouble is that all that eating (and watching) leads to one heck of a hangover.

The next time you feel like stress-eating, especially in all the holiday hubbub, treat yourself to food that will nourish your body as well as your soul. Lucky for us, these six San Antonio restaurants make it easy.

La Botánica
Granted, not everything at this vegan staple is healthy in the Cooking Light sense, but if you are going to indulge your deep-fried cravings, you could do worse by your body than La Botánica’s crispy black bean empanada. There are plenty of lighter menu items, too, like oyster mushroom and hearts of palm ceviche; and molletes with avocado, citrusy slaw, and escabeche. Plus, La Botánica offers cocktails that aren’t laden with added sugar. The restaurant also actively supports a variety of organizations that drive social justice, showing they care about the health of the community in more ways than one.

Botika
Executive chef Geronimo Lopez doesn’t exactly advertise his Peruvian-Asian menu as being health food, but the culinary traditions of the two regions he effortlessly fuses just happen to use plenty of the stuff nutritionists recommend. Start with the seared tuna tiradito dressed with green onion, plantain, and just a few wonton crisps for crunch before moving on to the grilled chicken (you can ignore the accompanying potatoes if you are trying to watch your starches). Then pat yourself on the back for eating like a champ.

The Good Kind
Part of the fun of taking an exercise class is holding on to that superior feeling for the rest of the day — don’t want to kill the good post-workout vibes with a double cheeseburger. Instead, head to The Good Kind for a market bowl brimming with grilled, roasted, and raw vegetables; greens; and legumes tossed with dressings like green aioli, spicy carrot ginger, or tahini date. Add chicken, beef meatballs, or boiled eggs if your legs are still wobbling from the treadmill.

Green Vegetarian Cuisine
To convince curious carnivores that plant-based meals can be just as hearty as their meaty counterparts, vegetarian restaurants sometimes smother everything in cheese. So while we happily nosh on Green’s decadent nachos on cheat days, we gravitate to the lighter side of the menu offering bowls overflowing with spinach, kale, and healthy grains like quinoa and faro. Either way, we leave feeling perfectly satisfied.

Pharm Table
Sure, clean eating sounds good in theory, but eating bowl after bowl of lumpy gray chia pudding make us feel like a Charles Dickens character. Step into the 21st century with a trip to Pharm Table. The menu here is locally sourced and organic, but — more importantly — nothing remotely resembles gruel. We like the Tunisian salad, an expert composition of lentils, collard greens, kale, shredded carrots, dates, and roasted okra — all dressed with a lemon dressing spiced with sumac and za’atar.

Señor Veggie
On the list of the world’s healthiest dishes, mac ’n’ cheese usually ranks somewhere between a Crunchwrap Supreme and a scoop of salted lard, but not at Señor Veggie. The Southtown restaurant skips the artery-clogging stuff in favor of cashew sauce, almond Parmesan, and steamed broccoli to create a dish that will please even the pickiest eaters in your crew. Cheese or cheeze, comfort food is universal.