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Dietary Restriction-Friendly Dining for Families in Philly

by Angelique Platas

Feb 22, 2019

Phanuwatn | Dreamstime.com


Tourists traveling into the city of Brotherly Love often head straight for Center City. There’s great shopping, dining, theaters and historic attractions at every corner, so it makes sense, but with such a walkable city spreading far and wide, we have a list of healthy dining options worth seeking out. Whether your family is primarily vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free, soy-free or just looking for lighter options while in the city, this list is for you.


South Philly

While better known for its cheesesteaks, soft pretzels and Italian Market, South Philly is a hidden gem in the vegan community. Exhibit A: The Tasty. Located across Columbus Square, the kids will love the retro-chic diner esthetic with a long lineup of meals you would forget had a healthy twist, like flavorful tofu scrambles and blueberry pancakes. The Tasty made its name on breakfast alone, but the lunches are nothing to scoff at. Try buffalo “chik’n” sandwiches, or stick with an inventive salad.


If you just want a quick coffee and a sweet snack, Grindcore House is a go-to in the Pennsport neighborhood. The vegan coffeehouse boasts plant-based drinks for sensitive stomachs, healthy sandwiches, baked goods and a variety of rotating treats. Sure, not all sweets are healthy, but you can feel good about stepping out here and there with vegan options.


For the fast food feel without the hefty ingredients, try Vegan Tree. Known for its fast and healthy menu, kids can grab a wrap and take it on the go, or even try vegan noodle dishes and sushi. If you just need a vitamin-enriched jolt, the juices and smoothies should hit the spot.


Northern Liberties and Fishtown

One of the trendier neighborhoods in Philadelphia right now, Northern Liberties and Fishtown are just a stone’s throw from each other and both boast streets lined with funky shops, Philly-centric attractions, murals and, of course, food. For a gluten-free meal, head to Paesano’s. Created by Chef Peter McAndrews, the Northern Liberties shop offers a hearty beef brisket with fried egg; Sicilian chickpea pancake sandwich and other filling, flavorful bites — all can be served on gluten-free bread.


South Street

Located in the South Street Italian Market, on South 9th Street, Taffets Bakery is a gluten-free diner’s dream. Picture all the baguettes, pretzels, sourdough loafs, muffins, cookies, cakes, brownies and cupcakes you can think of — many gluten-free and kosher-certified.


For those traveling with allergies, finding a square meal can be tricky, but Sweet Freedom is here to help. Guests can find allergen-free baked goods made with natural sweeteners and a completely corn-free, soy-free and peanut-free menu. Try any of the donuts, cakes, bars and cupcakes — all gluten-free and kosher certified — at the South Street shop.


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