While Melbourne didn’t take out the number one spot for most liveable city this year, if we can definitely claim the best of anything in the world, it’s cafés. Whether you’re on a health kick, live a plant-based lifestyle, or you’re trying to have a few more meat-free Mondays, you are well and truly spoilt for options because Melbourne has absolutely taken the health food scene to the next level. Here are 12 of Melbourne’s healthiest cafes.
There are so many things to love about Street Talk, especially their courtyard and obviously their menu. You can opt for building your own four-step nourish bowl, or selecting a meal from their all-day breakfast menu. What do we recommend? Their Donald Trumpkin dish is as satisfying as it is punny. You can expect a hectic stack of smashed pumpkin sitting atop a roasted field mushroom. It’s as much a feast for your eyes as it is for your tummy.
Many restaurants, bars and cafes are no stranger to a line-up at all hours of the day. But a café with a line-up every weekend after years since opening—these guys are obviously nailing it. Fourth Chapter is equal parts healthy and trendy and if one thing’s for sure, the line-up is worth it every damn time. Their fluffy, thick (and obviously Insta-worthy) vegan raspberry and coconut pancakes are a must-try. If you’re in the mood for something savoury, check out their daily rotation of duo salads. And one last thing, their acai bowl is faultless.
At Trei Café they’ve got clean brunches for days. Think superfood salads and vegan bowls loaded with all of the wholefood favourites like cauliflower rice and edamame. If you’re in the mood for a smoothie, their cherry ripe creation will hit the spot, made with coconut milk, cherries, protein, maca, coconut chunks and cacao syrup.
Let’s just say the interior isn’t the only clean thing about Moby 3143. What should you go for? Try their breakfast salad with raw seasonal greens and herbs, roasted pepitas, almonds, avocado, chilli, buckwheat, crispy halloumi, a poached egg, topped with a honey dressing. It’s next level. And if you can grab a spot on their rooftop, jackpot.
If you’re looking for a place that’ll make you and your tummy simultaneously happy, look no further than Serotonin Eatery. Their menu boasts fresh, organic, local, fair-trade ingredients and plant-based meals. Their positive pancakes made with house-made organic banana flour pancakes served with blueberry and raspberry coulis, coconut yoghurt, toasted almonds, topped with house-made all-natural banana nice-cream, tick all of the boxes.
Combi can absolutely claim having pioneered home-style, raw treats in Melbourne, keeping it simple by using only maple syrup and coconut nectar as sweeteners. If you’re swinging by for a raw treat, you have to try their raw doughnut. It’s created with a dehydrated almond meal and date base and you can choose from their four different toppings which include choc pistachio, zesty lemon or strawberry and gojis… unless you decide to get one of each that is. On the savoury side of things there’s also avocado on toast, veggie burgers and raw organic zucchini spaghetti. And that’s only just the beginning.
The Beatt is the definition of good for the mind, body, soul—and taste buds. It’s part yoga and meditation studio, part retail space and part café. And while you sign up to one of their yoga classes or wellness workshops, you’ll definitely want to check out what’s going on with their menu too. Their basil and spinach infused organic egg omelette with fresh baby spinach with Meredith Goats Cheese on gluten-free toast. Or their baked golden eggs with kimchi, cauliflower, spinach and turmeric yoghurt on charcoal bread.
Girls and Boys
Brought to us from the owners of Vegie Bar and Transformer Fitzroy, Girls and Boys is specialising in vegan gelato, as well as smoothies, bowls and cold-pressed juices. They’re firm believers in the treat yo’self mentality, while at the same time remembering to give our bodies and the environment a break too. That’s why everything at Girls and Boys is 100% plant-based and refined white sugar-free. And because they know their vegan gelato is so good, they’ve made it available to take home by the tub.
What do they do at Vegie Bar besides make your mouth water? Serve up the goods, think burgers, pasta, noodles, the list goes on, completely meat-free. For example, their spaghetti with meatballs cooked with a tomato and red wine spaghetti Bolognese is topped with smoked tempeh and mushroom meatballs. If this isn’t a meat-free haven, we don’t know what is.
Heal.Thy Self Co.
The team at Heal.Thy Self Co. is on a mission to serve up feel-good food. They’ve got a bunch of tasty and wholesome bowls, and fully loaded smoothies. Our top pick is their panda bowl with teriyaki eggplant, wasabi slaw, chilli and lime cucumber, brown basmati rice, black sesame mayo, almond furikake and pickled ginger. Pair it off with organic lemonade or their zesty immunity shot that’s packed with vitamin C goodness.
The Vegan Shack
Mother and son duo Jansen Andre & Deb Jayne opened The Vegan Shack in March 2018 and it’s been buzzing with breakfast and lunchtime crowds ever since. With plenty of breakfast, lunch, snack and dessert options, The Vegan Shack is your number one guilt-free food destination in Richmond. Plus its interior is a colourful sight for sore eyes: no Scandi-inspired minimalist decor here. Just a lot of fun colours and decorations that are sure to put you in a good mood.
Terror Twilight’s main event is DIY health bowls: a flavour-packed base of steamed broccoli, brown rice or quinoa, with custom toppings like turmeric cauliflower, grilled halloumi, grilled Tazzie salmon or Sichuan-marinated tofu. There’s the broth option too: a choice between hearty chicken, thyme and star anise, or the cold-busting shiitake and kombu. Both are sultry, warm and bloody good for you. The sort of food your Mum would approve of.
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Image credit: Michelle Jarni