Clean Eats & Best Healthy Restaurants in Nashville
Nashville is a mecca for farm-to-table restaurants and a Clean Foodie’s dream!
The most striking thing about many of the chefs and restaurateurs in Nashville is how they share a sincere commitment to the principle of clean eating. Many place the quality, health, and freshness of ingredients as their number one priority. Pair that with creativity, vision, and skill, and you have yourself a national culinary destination and a fantastic spot to observe the delicious power of the clean food movement in full swing.
Here, we feature 5 of our favorite clean eating restaurants in Nashville garnering the Clean Foodie approval.
ROLF & DAUGHTERS
Rolf and Daughters likes to casually refer to itself with its acronym RAD. This ingredient centric, Germantown, Nashville staple is most certainly RAD to the Clean Foodie bone!
It opened back in 2012 at the beginning of Nashville’s restaurant renaissance and has continued to captivate locals and visitors alike. People have a hard time pinning down how to describe Rolf & Daughters’ cuisine. Is it Italian? Farm to table? Fusion? It may be best to look at where they place their priorities: On seasonal, high-quality local ingredients that are grown and raised ethically and organically.
In essence, their approach is inherently Italian. Every dish is completely dependent on the freshness and quality of the ingredient itself. Now imagine a modern Italian who has traveled the globe and fallen in love with flavors from every culture they’ve experienced. Couple that with ninja-level cooking skills and you have Rolf & Daughters. Creative, quality-driven, clean food that speaks many languages but always has a heart for home. Chef Krajeck may not be from Italy, but his approach speaks to the heart of Italian food culture. Translation: Localvore Perfected.
When Clean Foodie visited, the Smoked Sausage with Cipollini and Squash was satisfying, delicious, and perfectly cooked. And the kale salad and sourdough both achieved being earthy and unique when they could have easily landed as being overly familiar.
These are unique times, and currently you can only order takeout or delivery from RAD. However, their patio is open, so you can request to-go utensils and sit on the patio to enjoy your meal in an upscale picnic format. But when they are able to open up their dining room again, you’ll be able to enjoy the recent renovation they did to improve the flow and acoustics of their space! It will still feature the rustic industrial romance vibe as before, just dialed up to full RAD level.
Not only do they select their ingredients with the utmost care with quality and purity in mind, but their food is also incredibly divine. Over the years we’ve observed how fresh, organic, thoughtfully raised ingredients simply tend to taste better, like a more realized version of themselves. When you pair creative recipe combinations and superior ingredients at the peak of their freshness with advanced cooking skills, this is when you officially enter the realm of Clean Foodie Heaven. Aka Henrietta Red.
Chef Julia Sullivan grew up in Nashville and honed her skills at the prestigious Culinary Institute of America and the demanding kitchen of Per Se in New York. But she knew she wanted to come back to Nashville and explore her interpretation of a convivial, farm-to-table oyster bar.
Chef Sullivan celebrates regional flavors and ingredients in a way that feels fun and relaxed, while also being sophisticated and elevated. It is no wonder she is a 2020 James Beard Award Finalist for Best Chef in the Southeast.
The Henrietta Red Team is also incredibly savvy. They skillfully transitioned their in-house dining business model into a versatile take-out and catering business. They’ve rebranded the space as Henrietta’s Fish Camp and Party Market, with a playful seafood shack vibe that elicits the kind of joy and lightheartedness that we all really need right now.
We certainly look forward to when they can open for in-house dining again, because the space is absolutely lovely and pairs with the superb food and service perfectly. In the meantime, utilize Henrietta’s Fish Camp to cater a seafood boil with your quarantine pod at home, and have an escape of spirit with the help of Chef Sullivan’s fantastic flavors.
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Have you ever fantasized about eating half a head of cabbage?
NO!?? Well then you didn’t experience Miel’s braised Cabbage entree that this Clean Foodie enjoyed while sitting on their delightful garden patio!
It truly takes a special kind of genius to turn a bland head of cabbage into a luscious, savory satisfying dish. And that is exactly what Chef Andrew Coins did! We will never look at cabbage the same way again.
Miel specializes in seasonally inspired dishes that make vegetables the star of the show, as well as showcasing meat from pasture-raised animals to delicious effect. They source their ingredients locally and organically and have a strict, non-GMO policy. Ingredients drive the plate at Miel, and you’ll want to sit back and enjoy the ride.
They have transitioned to take-out at the current moment, but are still coming up with creative cocktails featuring fruits and herbs from their own garden that can be purchased in servings of two. Venture onto the patio and enjoy live music playing in the adjacent “barn” dining space.
Seriously, never doubt the power of a skilled and creative chef to get you to look at familiar ingredients in a whole new light. Don’t be surprised if you metamorphose into a “look of love” emoji 😍 and leave Miel with cute hearts for eyes.
Where Rolf and Daughters unpacks new interpretations of pasta and other plated dishes, Folk celebrates Neopalitan-style pizza.
Philip Krajeck, the owner and chef of Rolf and Daughters, expanded his clean culinary portfolio in 2018 by opening FOLK, an even more relaxed variation of his local ingredient-driven cooking with an Italian sensibility. Both use thoughtfully grown organic ingredients.
At Folk, everything is scratch-made. They even source their organic grains from a regional farm and grind the flour they use themselves. That kind of attention to quality and freshness clearly shines in the flavor of their food.
Folk’s kitchen also serves as the bakery for all the bread that Rolf and Daughters serves. Clean Foodie can attest, it is delicious! What we also really appreciate about Folk is that they celebrate fresh vibrant produce. They make it the star of their pies and build salads and other plated dishes around it as well.
This makes it so much easier to build a balanced, nutritional, and less calorie intensive meal. You can indulge in crave-worthy pizza while also supplementing with less carbohydrate-heavy dishes, which of course then allows you to justify partaking in one of their delicious homemade desserts. See what I did there? Strategy at its finest 😉
You can’t go wrong with Folk. It is undoubtedly delicious. But what truly sets it apart is the integrity that Chef Krajek operates with. When asked by the Tennesean why he chooses to go the harder route of abstaining from GMO’s and only using organic ingredients he answered,
“First and foremost we think it’s more delicious. Secondly, it’s more conscious and ethical, and the third reason is it makes you feel better. Naturally fermented is more nutritious for you. That’s the equivalent of what we do with pasta at Rolf and Daughters.”
He literally summed up the reason behind Clean Foodies’ mission to promote this type of cooking across America! More Delicious. More Nutritious. More Conscious and Ethical. And it makes you Feel Better!
When a Juice place fully commits to using only organic ingredients it makes our Clean Foodie hearts sing.
And Fix Juice Co., located in the Belle Meade area of Nashville has our hearts ready to perform at the Grand Ole’ Opry!
Their menu is divided into Juices, Smoothies, Health Shots, and Food. Everything is thoughtfully prepared in full view of customers in their pristine “juicing room”. All of their juices are cold-pressed and they never dilute their juices or smoothies with water or ice.
Fix Juice Co also features cleanse programs you can partake in. Thankfully, their juices and smoothies are so delicious, participating in a cleanse with them would not be the usual ‘test of will’ it can be with many other juice cleanses.
When Clean Foodie visited, the #1 Smoothie with kale, spinach, mango, banana, lemon, and apple was refreshing and smooth and checked all the boxes! The Iroquois juice had just 2 ingredients; pink grapefruit and mint and what a revelation it was that this simple combo could result in such a deliciously complex flavor! Tart and bright, while still being smooth. Amazing!
Sometimes they rotate in a few special treats you should keep an eye out for, like smoothie bowls and even Popsicles made from their star juice combos and nut mylks! Fix Juice Co does not compromise on the safety and quality of their ingredients, nor do they when it comes to finding ways to conserve, recycle and remain sustainable.
Fix Juice Co is well named because if all establishments approached their ingredient selection and sustainability the way they do, it would surely fix a lot of things for the better.
We hope you enjoyed this curated list of our top clean, healthy restaurants in Nashville, TN! And if you can’t afford taking health risks by eating out and/or need very personalized home-delivery meals for super fresh and clean eating, we highly recommend checking out SUN BASKET. Not only is their food and service amazing, you’ll get FREE SHIPPING when you sign up here.