Spring! Time for renewal! For health! For shoving a ton of lettuce into our mouths!
If you're thinking "I could really eat more salad" or you just want to eat some greens, we have a list for that. Here are our favorite places to grab a bowl o' goodies.
Like a tropical hideaway, the magenta-hued Bohemeo's in Eastwood is the perfect place to get a little work done ... or to just unwind with a drink. Its Mean Green salad is a combination of all the good stuff: pumpkin seeds, avocado, mixed greens, bell peppers, carrots, cabbage, cucumber, and tomato. Or opt for a hummus plate with veggies, pita, and dressing. The $4 side salad is perfect for a quick, inexpensive bite.
The cute Montrose cafe does a lot of things well—a savory burger, fun pizzas, and, of course, specialty coffees—so it's not a stretch to figure the salads rock here. Its simple Caesar is packed with big flavor, thanks to pecorino and capers, while the kale and pepitas bowl marries Mexican ingredients, including a mole verde dressing, with that most trendy of leafy greens.
Common Bond Bistro & Bakery
Eyeing to take over the fast-casual category, Common Bond has expanded quite a bit over the last few years, thanks in part to its simple but healthy salads. Wonderful combinations like beet, orange, and goat cheese, plus steak and blue cheese, exist for those wanting a little heartiness with their greens. A lighter option also exists, and right now that includes arugula, spinach, lettuce, pomegranate, a little feta, and pecans. Some salads may change by season.
Benjy Levit's health-forward and locally sourced concept is attempting to take over Texas, and if local love for his salads is any indication, he has a good shot. Offerings can change, but favorites like herb-crusted salmon, with kale, spinach, sweet corn, asparagus, and potatoes, and Asian chicken, with cabbage, cured cucumber, broccoli, snow peas, cashews, bean sprouts, and garlic, stay around for a reason. Remember, Local Foods makes some big salads, so always remember you can take some home for later—right Ms. Benes?
With three locations in Houston, the California-based sandwich and salad chain crafts a number of interesting bowls perfect for casual lunch. Low-calorie choices include the 400-calorie avocado and quinoa superfood ensalada, with corn, black beans, jicama, and succotash, and the modern Caesar, with kale, avocado, and grape tomatoes. Want a meal? The sophisticated chicken and prosciutto salad has almonds, roasted carrots, and fresh mozzarella with salty ham.
Pick a poke place, any poke place, as long as they let you substitute the rice for green stuff. We'll go with this locally based favorite for romaine or spring mix, plus proteins like yellowtail, albacore tuna, and red snapper. Add veggies like sweet corn, edamame, and avocado, plus sauces and sides in whatever combination you like. For a soup-and-salad option, Okome Don also has miso by the cup.
There's something pretty darn special about that green goddess and sweet potato bowl, just packing in protein and starch while delivering the perfect combination of sweetness, tartness, and fat. Sweetgreen, originally from New York, makes a bunch of well-heeled salads and "warm bowls," like garlic chili shrimp or shroomami, combining portobellos with sesame tofu and wild rice. Traditional salads range from a relatively basic kale Caesar to a buffalo chicken bowl with za'atar breadcrumbs. There's a little something for everyone here.
We're at Stephanie Hoban's Heights hangout if only for the strawberry fields salad, combining fresh berries with sugar snap peas, bulgur wheat, mint, almond ricotta, and spinach, frisée, and fennel for a garden-fresh combination you never knew you needed. Verdine also has a version of a modern-day Caesar with quinoa and almonds.
This gorgeous Montrose restaurant has undergone some small changes since opening, but one thing that hasn't changed—there's still the greens-and-grain bowl packed with field greens, quinoa, fennel, broccolini, and macadamia-cashew cheese. A kale salad with Fuji apple and delicata squash is also worth the visit.