Food Scene

Healthy Restaurants in Tempe

I love to go out to eat – it’s relaxing, convenient and fun! But, I also like to eat relatively healthy, if possible. For those of you that try and keep it healthy when dining out, here’s a list of my favorite healthy restaurant options in Tempe that won’t let you down when it comes to fresh ingredients and flavor.

CoreLife Eatery – 1840 E. Warner Rd. Ste. 108, Tempe, AZ 85284

Just opened in Tempe! CoreLife Eatery specializes in healthy dishes from salads and rice bowls to tacos and broths. They only use ingredients that are free of GMO’s, trans fats, artificial colors, sweeteners and other artificial additives. Their chicken and steak are sustainably raised without antibiotics or hormones. CoreLife uses local ingredients when and where possible. One of their popular dish is the BBQ Ranch Chicken bowl which comes with purple rice. If you like a little spice try their tasty Spicy Thai Chicken and Rice Noodle! Make sure to also try one of their drinks and teas which are handcrafted daily with amazing superfoods and fruits.

CoreLife Eatery Tempe
BBQ Ranch Chicken bowl and Spicy Thai Chicken and Rice Noodle in CoreLife Eatery Tempe

GuacStar Kitchen and Cantina  – 920 E. University Dr. #204, Tempe, AZ 85281

GuacStar Kitchen and Cantina is another one of Tempe’s new restaurant addition in 2020. The eatery offers mouth-watering plant-based versions of Mexican food, margaritas and new takes on cocktails made popular in the ‘80s and ‘90s. Standout menu items include the Baja Pescado Street Tacos, made with beer battered royal trumpet mushrooms, and the Enchiladas Calabacitas, made with roasted squash and zucchini, house-made roja and verde sauce and cashew crema. No need to sacrifice taste for a great healthy meal!

GuacStar Kitchen and Cantina Tempe

Green New American Vegetarian – 2240 N. Scottsdale Rd., Tempe, AZ 85281

Green is a 100% vegan restaurant serving delicious comfort foods with an international twist. This walk-up and order restaurant has a casual, trendy vibe with affordable prices. Po-boys, crisp salads and noodle bowls are made with fresh, vegan ingredients, including 100% vegan cheeses and mock meats. My favorites include the balsamic picnic salad and the coconut curry bowl – but everything I’ve ever tried here is good. There are also several sweet treats to choose from (bonus!).

MAD Greens – 2000 E. Rio Salado Pkwy. #1215, Tempe, AZ 85281

MAD Greens works with farms to make sure all the produce used to make their salads is as fresh as possible. But they’re not just about salads. Try one of their wraps, paninis, soups or fresh juices. I love the Siam I Am, a protein power salad that’s made with quinoa, chicken, kale, green onions, spinach and a ginger dressing.

Original Chop Shop – 222 E. University Dr., Tempe, AZ 85281

“Just feel good food” is what you will find at the Chop Shop. Whether you’re in the mood for a quick protein shake or fresh juice, or you want a yummy sandwich or salad, the Chop Shop has what you need to fuel up and keep it fresh. Also featured on the menu are acai bowls and protein bowls – delish.

Nekter Juice Bar – 2000 E. Rio Salado Pkwy. #1213, Tempe, AZ 85281

Nekter Juice Bar’s all natural juices and smoothies contain fresh produce and greens – only the best. They also serve delicious acai bowls, which just so happen to be one of my favorite things ever. Those looking to detox might want to take advantage of their juice cleanses, which range from 1 to 5 days.

Pita Jungle – 4 E. University Dr., Tempe, AZ 85281

Pita Jungle is a delicious Mediterranean-style eatery offering a large assortment of healthy options. Vegan items to choose from include a few appetizers, salads, sides, the falafel pita, veggie wrap and macro plate. This trendy, casual sit-down restaurant also serves meat dishes, so it’s great if you’re trying to find a place to accommodate different tastes. The seasonal daily specials always catch my eye, especially the soup and salad options, and the pitas are a sure bet for a delicious meal too.

Salmon entree at Pita Jungle in Tempe

Picazzo’s Organic Italian Kitchen – 440 W. Warner Rd., Tempe, AZ 85284

Picazzo’s focuses on serving up fresh vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free and meat dishes – lots of options to fit any diet. There are over 40 vegan and vegetarian options. Additionally, they use organic ingredients whenever they can and the entire restaurant is 100% gluten free. This is the kind of place where I feel like I can really indulge, and know that it’s also healthy for me.

Udupi Cafe – 1636 N. Scottsdale Rd., Tempe, AZ 85281

This vegetarian Indian restaurant specializes in South Indian food and offers an extensive menu and a daily lunch buffet. All of the dishes are flavorful and filling with the perfect balance of spices in every bite. Since there are so many options to choose from when ordering, there’s always something new to try each time you visit. The vegetable samosas and the vegetable curry dishes are my favorites here.

Panera Bread – 1825 E. Guadalupe Rd., Tempe, AZ 85283

Panera Bread is a relaxing cafe that promises all of its food will be “clean, raised responsibly, nutrient rich, savored & enjoyed, personalized, and transparent”.  They serve everything from soups and salads, to soba noodle bowls.  Although, my favorite menu item to eat here is the Roasted Turkey & Avocado BLT.

Desert Roots Kitchen – 414 S. Mill Ave. #111, Tempe, AZ 85281

Desert Roots Kitchen is located in Downtown Tempe, tucked inside in a courtyard off of Mill Ave., between 4th and 5th St. This vegetarian cafe features a daily changing menu of globally inspired cuisine made from local ingredients.

24 Carrots – 1701 E. Guadalupe Rd., Tempe, AZ 85283

24 Carrots is a delicious vegan eatery that features smoothies, juices, salads, sandwiches and other specialties. Their menu is crafted from scratch daily with the freshest, most wholesome ingredients they can find. They also make everything on site, except for their bread that is from a bakery in Tucson. This means that they make their own sauces, veggie burgers, vegan cheese and more.

Cafe Lalibela – 849 W. University Dr., Tempe, AZ 85281

The smells of the delicious food served at Cafe Lalibela greets you with a warm welcome. A favorite among locals and the ASU community, everything that comes of out this kitchen is not only delicious, but also gluten free, sugar free, nut free and preservative free. But, you would never know how healthy this food really is. Every bite is rich with intense flavor and spices. It warms your belly and your soul. 

Cafe Lalibela_Vegan food

The Bodhi – 521 S. College Ave. #112 Tempe, AZ 85281

The Bodhi is a healthy and nutritious fast-casual food establishment, aimed to deliver the nourishment that your body needs, in the most honest and wholesome way. Try one of their delicious bowls or salads and your body will thank you later.

Perfect Pear Bistro
603 W. University Dr.Tempe, AZ 85281
9845 S. Priest Dr, Tempe, AZ 85284

Perfect Pear Bistro is known for their inviting atmosphere and their modern take on American comfort food, including delicious panini sandwiches, fresh salads, flatbreads and pasta dishes. Their selection of salads is robust, and will make you feel healthy and the perfect amount of full.


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Written Amy Griglak

Originally from California, Amy loves to travel, go for runs, read all kinds of books, enjoy all things Disney, drink caramel macchiatos and explore new places and old favorites with her husband and two kiddos.