Let me guess, you have a New Year’s resolution to eat healthier and exercise? Welcome to the club. Eating clean doesn’t have to stop at spinach and oatmeal, though—there’s an enjoyable way to have your (gluten-free) cake and eat it too. Our friends at Yelp found four indulgent, yet healthy, options that’ll keep you on the straight and narrow without wreaking havoc on your diet.
Think you’ll have to swear off toothsome treats to stay committed to your health regimen? Experience a cheat day without sacrificing your Weight Watchers points at Snowdays. Taiwanese shaved ice is on the rise throughout the borough, and can be a healthy alternative to ice cream if done right. You can fall off the wagon with ingredients like condensed milk, Captain Crunch, and Pocky Sticks as toppings, but this pillowy frozen dessert can be enjoyed using nutritionist-approved toppings as well. Douse your shaved ice with coconut milk (vegan, healthy fats) and top with walnuts (more healthy fats), almonds (have we mentioned healthy fats yet?), and fresh, seasonal fruits (antioxidants, vitamins, etc…) for a satisfying tidbit to keep you sane. 241 E. 10th St., 212-982-8881
We’re calling it: poké will be New York’s hottest food trend in 2016. Revisit this post 365 days from now, and if we’re wrong, we’ll treat you to tacos and beer bongs at Señor Frogs. Pokéworks specializes in bowls of Hawaiian yellowfin tuna, served raw, alongside complementary tropical ingredients like mango and macadamia nuts. There are several curated options to choose from (the Hawaiian Bowl being an early crowd favorite), but you can take the bespoke route as well. For the healthiest version, opt out of brown or white rice in favor of a quinoa base. 63 W. 37th St., 212-575-8881
Considering a “Dry January?” It’s still possible to get a head rush sans hooch at Kavasutra. Kava (not to be confused with the sparkling wine, cava) is a root-based concoction that’s been consumed throughout Polynesia for generations. It’s a sedative and is primarily used as a way to relax without disrupting mental clarity. If you didn’t know any better, you’d think you were in a hip East Village wine bar upon entering, but Kavasutra patrons know the secret to life is getting weird without the ill effects of a next-day hangover. In fact, kava is widely known for its therapeutic effects, even believed to stop the threat of colon cancer among native tribes in the Pacific. Bottoms up! 261 E. 10th St., 646-649-4214
2015 was the year of healthy eating in Manhattan, and few other restaurants made as big a splash as by CHLOE. Quite possibly the hottest vegan restaurant to ever open on the island, Chloe Coscarelli (of Food Network’s Cupcake Wars fame) and business partner Samantha Wasser have not only created a meatless fast-casual concept with a high ceiling for scalability, but they’ve invented a photogenic bill of fare to boot. Have you ever seen a flattering picture of a Boca burger? Not even Annie Leibovitz can pull that off. 185 Bleecker St., 212-290-8000
Ruggy Joesten is the Sr. Community Director for Yelp in Manhattan. Helping businesses get the most out of the site is his passion. He also curates local events intended to spread positive word of mouth for the many local businesses that dot the Manhattan culinary landscape. Follow @YelpNYC on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. And use the hashtag #YelpEatsNYC when posting your food p0rn around the web.