The Best Places to Grab a Healthy Lunch in Ottawa

Trying to ditch those mid-day bad eating habits? Read on for where you can get the best healthy lunch in Canada’s capital city, courtesy of our Localist correspondent

If you want to use lunch to focus on healthy eating goals, but you don’t have time to make a fridge full of mason jar salads every Sunday night, we feel you. Luckily, more and more restaurants are hip to our busy, wannabe-healthy ways and are offering nutritious and totally yummy lunch options for girls on the go. Here, our Localist correspondent Chloe Gordon rounds up her go-tos for the best healthy lunch in Ottawa.

The Best Healthy Lunch Spots in Ottawa
(Photo: Bridgehead)

The Green Door Restaurant

Where: 198 Main St., The menu: Vegetarian, with some vegan, dairy-free, and gluten-free options. It’s buffet-style, so there’s always something new to try!
My go-to: Tofu and broccoli stir-fry with spicy chickpea salad, but I love grabbing a taste of everything.
The atmosphere: A bright, open-concept space with lots of communal tables, but located close to the Rideau Canal if you prefer to dine al fresco.
Average wait time: 5 to 10 minutes, depending on how quickly the buffet line moves!
Average cost for lunch (meal + beverage): $15

Bridgehead Coffee

Where: 19 locations in Ottawa, The menu: Chicken and bean burritos, quinoa salads, avocado toast, sandwiches… Oh, and amazing coffee, of course!
My go-to: A black coffee and bean burrito keep me going for the rest of the day!
The atmosphere: Cozy coffeehouse vibe with comfy chairs, big windows and free WiFi.
Average wait time: 5 minutes
Average cost for lunch (meal + beverage): $12

Pure Kitchen

Where: 340 Elgin St. and 357 Richmond Rd., The menu: Grain bowls, veggie burgers, tacos, fresh juices… most menu items are completely vegan, and all of them vegetarian.
My go-to: The Belle Poutine with fries, mushroom gravy and cashew “cheese” curds is to die for. I usually get the sharing size, and share it with… myself.
The atmosphere: Bustling and bright, with lots of seating. The servers wear fun T-shirts with veggie puns on them (“Give peas a chance!”), so you can have a good giggle while waiting for your food. There’s also a majorly Instagram-worthy mural wall!
Average wait time: Anywhere from 5 to 45 minutes depending on how busy they are, but they’ll text you when your table is ready.
Average cost for lunch (meal + beverage): $25

Red Apron

Where: 564 Gladstone Ave., The menu: An organic, locally-sourced take on typical lunch fare like sandwiches and soup
My go-to: The Midday Comfort Bowl with rice, chickpeas, spinach, sweet potato, curry sauce and beet chutney. I feel warm and cozy just thinking about it!
The atmosphere: Warm, welcoming and a people-watcher’s dream! The kitchen is open-concept too, so the whole place smells absolutely delicious, all the time.
Average wait time: 15 minutes, but you can also buy fresh and frozen dishes to take home for later.
Average cost for lunch (meal + beverage): $15

Green Rebel

Where: Four locations downtown, The menu: Salad boxes, grain boxes, wraps and smoothies
My go-to: The Bliss Rebel Box packs a punch with quinoa, sweet potato, spinach, goat cheese and a delicious honey-mustard sauce.
The atmosphere: Always full of people during the day, since it’s a super popular lunch spot in the business sector of the city
Average wait time: 10 minutes
Average cost for lunch (meal + beverage): $12

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