So, you’ve made a few substantial changes to your diet, but that doesn’t mean that you have to also sacrifice the joy of a night of no cooking. There are plenty of healthy restaurants all over South Africa that cater for all sorts of dietary requirements and food allergies, and they are just as delicious as the ones you used to frequent.
No longer do you just have to select the most boring item on the menu without and extras, toppings, sauces or sides, but you get amazing meals created especially for you. Most places actually cater for a huge variety of food needs, so when in doubt, just ask. Here are our top picks of healthy restaurants where you’ll find sugar, dairy and gluten-free options…
Healthy restaurants in Joburg
If a kid-friendly, healthy restaurant that caters for all sorts of dietary requirements sounds too good to be true, we’re here to tell you that it isn’t. Elemental is a vegetarian and restaurant with a whole lot of vegan options on the menu, and a play area for the kids. Expect all the classics, loads of healthy options, plus some delectable Asian-inspired food. Their pizza is delicious — and there are vegan and gluten-free pizzas, so no one needs to feel left out.
(Corner First Avenue and Standard Drive, Linden, Johannesburg, 082 687 9053)
Matthew Ballenden, proprietor and manager of Fresh Earth, is all about natural, organic ingredients, and believes that the best way to enjoy food is to eat it in its purest form. This means that everything you eat is created from scratch, without any artificial additives, sweeteners, flavourants and preservatives, and using organic ingredients. Fresh Earth caters for a wide range of diets — from hypoglycaemia to gluten intolerance — and offers a delicious buffet, regular menu and even a takeaway menu.
(103 Komatie Road, Emmarentia, Johannesburg, 011 646 4404)
Healthy restaurants in Cape Town
Chef Pamela Shippel believes that one of the main reasons people keep on coming back to Kirstenbosch Tea Room is because she makes extra effort to cater for people with all kinds of intolerances and dietary needs. Whether you’re looking for wheat, dairy or egg-free options, or are diabetic, there’s something for you. Be sure to try out the wheat-free chocolate mousse cake.
(Gate 2, Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens,
Rhodes Drive, Newlands, 021 797 4883)
This little healthy restaurant gem is known for having set the benchmark when it comes to ethical dining. Dear Me prides themselves on catering for all the “free froms”, and make food that is free from nuts, eggs, lactose, wheat, dairy, gluten, starch and animal products, so make this place your new hot spot if you’re lactose or gluten intolerant, diabetic, vegan or suffer from celiac disease.
(165 Long Market Street, Cape Town, 021 422 4920)
Healthy restaurants in Durban
Carb free, gluten free, vegan, raw… you want it, they’ve got it — and it’s all kinds of scrummy! Try Earthmother‘s vegan cheeses, delicious vegan pizza, moreish wheat-free brownies, wheat-free pasta or their fab raw cocoa tart; it’s gluten, dairy and sugar free! Who said free from was boring?
(482 Lilian Ngoyi road, Morningside, Durban, 031 202 1527)
Chilliplum focuses on plant-based, organic foods which cater to a huge variety of tastes and dietary requirements in order to serve healthy, flavourful cuisine. Because the food is plant based, the menu is constantly changing to use seasonal, organic products… yummy!
(Shop 9, The Village Richdens Shopping Centre. 57 St Margarets road, Hillcrest, 031 765 2590)
Healthy restaurants all over South Africa
No need to dread going to a pizza and pasta restaurant if you’ve got specific dietary needs. Col’cacchio offers wheat, yeast, sugar, dairy and gluten-free pizza bases, as well as wheat and gluten-free pasta. They also have a bunch of banting-friendly options, as well as a range of scrummy vegetarian meals. Go on, tuck in!
(Colcacchio.co.za, 087 803 4000)
These guys are famous for their uber healthy and ‘clean’ menu, so you know they’ll have your special diet covered. With Kauai‘s huge range of nutritious smoothies and salads, you’ll find there are actually plenty of gluten-free and even dairy-free options, as well as loads to satisfy vegetarian and banting needs.
(Kauai.co.za, 0861 152 824)
If you want to go gluten, sugar or dairy free, but aren’t sure where to start, sign up to our #7Days #FreeFrom gluten, sugar and dairy newsletters. For one week, we’ll send you all the recipes, tips and inspiration you need. Sign up for free here.
DISCLAIMER: Before starting any diet, you should speak to your doctor. You must not rely on the information on this website/newsletter as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or other professional healthcare provider.