Get your health on at these cool Vegan Restaurants and Juice Bars
By Patricia Kemp
Desert summers turn up the heat, making it the perfect season to cool down with some refreshing Vegan and vegetarian food. These health-conscious Palm Springs restaurants and Vegan chefs put a creative culinary spin on delicious dining options to refuel and rehydrate during a day of desert exploring. Vegan meals are plant-based and many dishes are prepared with raw fruits and vegetables with no meat, fish, or dairy such as milk, cheese, and eggs. Limited to just salad? Think again! There’s more than just lettuce on the menu to cool your palate.
Whether you’re craving a pressed juice to jumpstart your morning or a Ginseng energy shot for a midday boost, Raw Remedy Juice Bar (116 La Plaza ) has a variety of cool beverage blends. The menu is a colorful rainbow of goodness from the “Go Green Or Go Home” smoothie packed with kale, spinach, ripe avocado, banana, chia seeds, ginger, bee pollen, and raw honey to the “Purple Stinger” with purple cabbage, pear, green apple, bee pollen, and cayenne pepper. Lunch serves up veggie burgers, raw tacos, organic salads, and protein wraps.
Owner Josh Pena also invented “Bowl'd Up Smoothies” topped with fresh seasonal berries, bananas, organic granola, shredded coconut, chia and hemp seeds, cacao nibs and honey sweetener drizzle.
After making the rounds at local farmer’s markets, Pena opened the storefront in 2016 to provide more nutritious food to desert dwellers. The Indio native got his first juicer as a Christmas present years ago and started experiencing with raw recipes. He immediately noticed the health benefits from more energy to glowing skin. After graduating from college, the business major found his economic skills and love for juicing was the perfect blend to sprout a successful enterprise. “People are moving to more plant-based diets and want healthy options,” Pena said. “There’s something here for everyone to come in and enjoy.”
Fresh Juice Bar (425 S. Sunrise Way Ste #E-1) offer hand crafted fresh, raw, organic juices, green smoothies, bowls and innovative creations. Traditional Acai bowls and the next new best thing you can have, Pitaya (dragon fruit) packed with healthy fiber, antioxidants and omegas. Smoothies, green smoothies, bowls with organic granola or just plain old raw organic fresh juice.
The macrobiotic bowls at MidMod Café are a sure thing on a hot summer day. A glass from the extensive wine list with organic grapes from Italy, Spain and California is the perfect pairing for any dish from Veggie Pot Stickers to the Seaweed Salad with heirloom tomatoes, carrots, cucumber, yams, red cabbage and guacamole topped with Tahini dressing. If sweet is more your style, try any of the gluten free deserts including the Coconut Tiramisu.
Server Camille Montoya has been on staff since the restaurant opened in 2017 and loves the chill vibe there. “It’s organic, quality food that tastes really good,” she said. “I would say there isn’t one thing that stands out because every dish is delicious and special in its own unique way.”
Spouses and restaurateurs John Tsoutis and Maria Mertika gained such a large following at their Palm Desert location, Evzin Mediterranean Cuisine ( 411 E Palm Canyon Dr.) now has a second home inside the Caliente Tropics Hotel. They focus on a Greek format with modern Middle Eastern, Spanish, and Moroccan flare. They have created a rustic fare with a focus on fresh vegetables and clean ingredients. Vegan entrees are available such as the popular falafel platter, fresh and heartwarming.
For tranquil outdoor cuisine, Farm doesn’t disappoint with its fairytale garden patio and bountiful bouquets of floral landscaping. Owner Liz Ostoich fell in love in with the French countryside of Provence and designed a farm-like oasis in the desert. Crepes, of course, are a popular item, especially the Banane Fraises et Chocolat. All berry jams are homemade with careful attention to authentic old-world recipes. Another delicious Vegan option is the French Toast Aux Fruits with strawberry coulis.
Holistic and Healthy
Nature’s Health Food Café & Market is a one-stop-shop health run. Grab a nutritious bite to eat and load up on organic produce, vitamins and supplements, protein drinks, and homeopathy products at the market next door. Vegan breakfast is served all day from Avocado Toast to the Tofu Scramble packed full of protein including kale, broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini, squash, cabbage and carrots. It’s really a full holistic health community that hosts wellness events such as Vitamin B12 shots administered by naturopathic doctors that boost energy, memory and mood.
Palm Greens Café (611 S Palm Canyon Dr, Ste 6 ) serves a carefully sourced menu of health-conscious, global dishes and breakfast, including a brunch. They never use additives, preservatives, or high fructose corn syrup.
Starting as a manufacturing facility for tempeh and seitan, Chef Tanya’s Kitchen it expanded into a deli style quick service eatery where the Cubano and Chupacabra make sandwich history. This is where the CTK Tempeh Power Burger is born. Located off the beaten path at 706 S. Eugene Road, it’s well worth the trip.
Native Foods is a local favorite that's 100% plant based and 100% yummy. Located in the old section of Smoktree Village (1775 E Palm Canyon Drrive, Ste #420). With such dishes as Backyard BBQ, Bowl, The Real Nashville Hot, and Spicy Cauliflower Dippers, you will love this comfort food. Their food is homemade with ingredients that are often bought locally or brought in from sustainable suppliers, non-GMO, and organic whenever possible.