We’ve never been to New York, so when my office needed someone to work a couple days in the Big Apple, you better believe I quickly volunteered as tribute. Cas and I flew out a night early and maxed out all the sightseeing we could squeeze in around the 10ish hours I had to work. So I used all my own healthy hacks from How to Plan a Trip, plotted it allll out in Google Maps, and reared up for a packed weekend.
In the 4 days we were there, we ate a lot. (All for y’all, just so I could share the spots here with you. It was quite a sacrifice, you’re welcome…) Sharing pretty photos + yummy eats at all our favorite hot spots below. And as I shared in my last travel post, Google Maps is my planning bff, so I’m sharing my NYC map with you for your planning convenience.
Bluestone Lane | Bluestone Lane is an Aussie dream with a few different locations in the city – small coffee shops with grab-and-go snacks and sit-down brunch spots. So, naturally, we went to both. One of the coffee shops was right by our hotel so we got an oat milk latte for our walk through Manhattan. And we also spent one of our mornings fueling up over a massive brekkie plate, loaded with veggies and eggs and bacon and goods.
Browns Bagels | You can’t go to the Big Apple and not have a bagel, right? So naturally I researched the best gluten free bagels in the city and found Brown’s. And they totally lived up to the hype! We tried the everything bagel, but I also had to go with a classic plain with plain cream cheese for some nostalgia of Saturday mornings spent at the bagel shop with my family growing up.
La Pecora Bianca | For sure one of my favorite spots we stopped at! La Pecora Bianca was on my “must” list after drooling over the decor photos I saw online. But the menu prices matched the luxury, so we stopped in to share a frittata so it didn’t break the bank. And gosh it was just such a perfect spot to start the day. Bright and airy and sweet and charming. And the omelette was so insanely yumm. I’m sure this would be a great spot for a splurge of a dinner or even just a drink before a fun night.
Banter | Banter is another Aussie spot that I just had to hit up. Cas got the nutella french toast + I got the golden folded eggs with an extra side of greens. Lots of veggie-packed Aussie brekkies, but their night time menu looked pretty drool-worthy, too. A tiny little gem in the NYU ‘hood.
By Chloe | I somehow snuck Casmir in to By Chloe and had him perusing the menu before he realized it was vegan. After he got over feeling like I betrayed him, he admitted the kale caesar salad was delicious. And the air-baked sweet potato fries did indeed live up to the hype! Had we had more time, I would’ve definitely hit up the sweets spot.
Dig Inn | We rented bikes in Central Park (because duh) and we made an Upper East Side pitstop at Dig Inn to grab a salad to-go for a picnic in the park. And it was glorious. My own Blair Waldorf moment. Although totally not because she’d never been on a bike or in yoga pants and Adidas kicks. But regardless, Dig Inn was such a gorgeous little spot. Like a superfood, super glam Chipotle. Love the bowl options and loveee their Dig-isms.
Union Square Farmers Market | We didn’t actually eat anything, but you better believe we spent a solid Saturday-morning hour scouring the scores at the Union Square Greenmarket. So many sweet local artisans and just such a fun way to take in the spirit of the city.
Chelsea Market | Everything it’s hyped up to be, Chelsea Market is an artisan dream. There are a million places to eat and shop and you could honestly spend hoursss in the haven, but we actually just pursued our way through before walking the High Line (one of our favorite things we did!). You can’t visit Manhattan without at least stopping in.
Hu Kitchen | Oh my, Hu Kitchen is a paleo queen’s dream come true. The whole place is quite overwhelming, but in the best kind of way. Coffee, smoothies, hot food, to-go fridges, snacks. And of course chocolate. Their amazing worth-the-cash chocolate. We were there in the morning and I just couldn’t say no to a taste of the pumpkin paleo french toast with pear + pumpkin cashew cream sauce. Holy smokes, it was as good as it sounds. And some chocolate for the road of course.
Eataly | I admittedly didn’t want to hit up Eataly. I just assumed it’d be a tourist trap, but it was honestly a total foodie haven and I’m so glad we made it. Another spot you could spend hours in. We weren’t planning to eat here but we found ourselves there at a time when we were beyond the hanger point, and you know how that goes. And the pizza just smelt too darn good to pass up. So we ordered our favorite pizza order – parmesan, prosciutto + arugula. And holy freakin smokes it was to die for. It didn’t quite reach the level of perfection we got at Il Fornillo in Positano, but it came pretty darn close. Fluffy and doughy but still perfectly crispy. And the parmesan and prosciutto were so perfectly flavorful and fresh. Wow.
Ribalta | I completely forgot to take a picture at Ribalta because we were so darn hungry we scarfed our whole pizza down in a matter of minutes. lol. But it was a great spot! We both agreed Eataly’s was better, but Ribalta was fun for the authentic Italian feel. And the gluten free crust was top-notch amazing.
Cha Cha Matcha | I had a few matcha stops on my list, but Cha Cha on Broadway was the one that made the agenda (mostly because I just couldn’t stay away from the Broadway ‘hood). I ordered a coconut matcha latte and loved every sip of it. Such a fun New York-esque locale.
Springbone | Springbone was absolutely one of my favorite NYC gems. Where the menu was everything my paleo-based nutritionist needed + even the sweet cozy decor and branding was just such a vision come to life. I wish I could’ve eaten a whole meal here, but we stopped by after Ribalta so I just grabbed a grass-fed butter broth to enjoy in Washington Square Park. Springbone needs to be a must on your list!
Juice Generation | No matter how many healthy meals I eat while on vacation, it’s still never the same as cooking at home. And for that reason I always search for juice + smoothie spots to load up on some extra greens anywhere we are. There are of course tons of juice spots to try in the city, but Juice Generation made our cut. I honestly don’t remember what we ordered, but it was something with tons of greens, mango and coconut milk. And it was delish.
Do | I’m not sure how much this belongs on a healthy eats travel guide, but it was absolutely worth the splurge. Do serves egg-free cookie dough as if it were ice cream. I haven’t had many gluten free cookie doughs to compare it to, but it sure tasted like the dough I used to cook up with my dad off the Nestle tollhouse recipe as a kid. We couldn’t be in New York and not indulge in one of the quirky treat spots.
Mike + Dave’s | Like Pressed Juicery freeze, but possibly even better. Mike & Dave’s is non-dairy soft serve made mostly of fruit. They let us sample a few different flavors and they were all amazing. I’m normally a chocolate girl, but the strawberry flavor was so so good. I love that they rotate their flavors through the seasons.
Erin Mckenna’s Bakery | When I read about Erin McKenna’s entirely gluten-free bakery, I knew we had to make a stop. And the donut was everything the interwebs said it would be. I’ve only had one other gluten free donut in the last 5 years, so I can’t say I have much to compare it to, but it didn’t disappoint. So not dry and perfectly sweet. The cupcakes looked pretty bomb too.
Cocoa v Chocolat | Ya girl’s lovessss chocolate, so I’m always a fan of trying to find some amazing stuff when we visit new spots. Everything at Cocoa V is vegan (meaning dairy-free) and almost all of it is gluten free. We tried a couple little truffles and they were pretty darn delicious. So smooth and creamy.
And in case this list isn’t long enough for ya, there are quite a few spots I had on my list that we didn’t get to try, so I kept them on the Google Map for you to check out.
Thanks, New York, for the love. For the good eats and the gorgeous decor and the culture and the parks and the architecture. Just a few days in your bustling streets set our hearts on fire to chase our dreams and make life ours. We’ll see you again someday. xx, molls