Nottingham’s food scene is pretty awesome. There’s tons of eateries to treat yourself to something naughty, but where do you go if you fancy something on the lighter side of life? Well, look no further, Notts. We’ve rounded up three of the best healthy fast food joints the city has to offer...
This brand new eaterie is the latest venture from the guys behind Suede Bar. Making their first appearance on the foodie scene up at the Nottingham Street Food Club in Victoria Centre, they’ve now moved to a gaff in Derby Road.
Clean Cut Kitchen had been recommended to me by a few friends, so I decided it was high time to check it out. We popped along to their pop-up at Street Food Club, ahead of their relocation. Their menu is impressive and certainly healthy; they’re averse to using refined sugar or frying any of their food. And, if you’re tracking calories, Clean Cut labels its menu with estimates of carbs, calories and grams of protein, so you need guess no more.
There are three main options on the menu: wraps, protein boxes and sweet potato waffle burgers. And if you’re hankering after something a bit sweeter, there’s the Crispy Clean baked donut (£1.80) to see you right. A pal and I decided to go for a protein box (£7.50 each), which are made up in three steps. We were able to pick from either chicken, halloumi or beetroot and chickpea falafel, then a base salad of couscous, giant couscous, brown rice or green pea pasta. To top ‘em off, we could choose as much veg as we liked and a sauce of our choice.
I had the beetroot and chickpea falafel with brown rice and a salad of spinach and mangetout, while my friend had chicken on giant couscous with broccoli. We were in awe when a group of girls joined our bench with their sweet potato waffle burgers (£6.50). They looked incredible.
Clean Cut Kitchen stands out from the crowd, and we can’t wait to visit them in their new home.
Clean Cut Kitchen, 21-23 Derby Road, NG1 5AA
Clean Cut Kitchen on Facebook
My second healthy eating choice took me to Beeston, to the wonderful Food Bar, on High Road. This place has got heaps of character; the walls are bright green, and if you can tear your eyes away from the menu, the decor is a right treat. There isn’t a great deal of seating but, if you can, stick around for the chat cos the staff are lovely and get everyone talking. Most importantly, if you want guilt-free munch, this is where it’s at.
The first thing that caught my eye were the salad boxes (£3.50): jerk chicken and mint yogurt, grilled halloumi and mango, smoked salmon and wasabi mayonnaise, feta and homemade piccalilli, tuscan bean and tortilla, teriyaki steak or teriyaki tofu. For a base of the salad box, you can choose from quinoa, couscous or giant couscous. I chose my adored and most-beloved squeaky cheese (halloumi) with couscous and vegetables. Tucking in to this made my Friday. You can have all these options in a less healthy baguette, too. Food Bar also make jaw-dropping homemade burgers. Their Cajun chicken burger (£4.50) with homemade ketchup looks like something to die for, but there’s also a vegetarian halloumi burger, and a field mushroom option for vegans. Everyone’s covered.
If you’re an early bird, you can pay ‘em a visit for a breakfast box (£5) that can include three-filling omelettes; lean, grilled full Englishes; yoghurt and granola; or you can help yourself to porridge and honey with mixed fruit (£3). They’ve also got a cracking smoothie range (£3.50) that you can top with matcha or protein powders for an extra quid if you’re bulking up.
Food Bar, 98 High Road, Beeston, NG9 2LF
The Food Bar website
Sweet toothed and health conscious? Look no further. For Goodness Bake in Sherwood have got you covered. The somewhat-secret venue can be found tucked away at the back of the gift shop and gallery, A Room Full of Butterflies, which is also well worth the trip up Mansfield Road. If you mosey on through the shop, you’ll arrive at the holy grail of healthy cakes.
For Goodness Bake launched in June, and has been a massive success already. The cafe uses natural sugars like agave and coconut sugar, which are well-known healthy alternatives to the processed, refined sugars that make up your typical sweet treats. A little sign in the bakery told me that the sugars in these cakes have low GI, and this lessens the spike in blood sugar levels. Good to know. The cakes are also dairy free, and use almond and soya milk as alternatives.
If cake isn’t your thing, you need not fret, cos the cafe serves brunch and lunch, too. My companion, who is not so much a cake fanatic as I am, happily tucked into a sourdough sandwich of smashed avocado and hummus with a beetroot salad (£4.50). Very nice indeed. I, however, emerged victorious in the battle of food choices with an amazing piece of millionaire’s shortbread. I’m still dreaming about it. My treat was accompanied by a cappuccino, which I tried for the first time with almond milk. I was instantly converted.
We were bowled over by the choices on offer: from Victoria sponge to orange and almond cake, chocolate cake to Bakewell tart, banana flapjack and a tea loaf.
What charmed me most about For Goodness Bake is not the location, or the art on the walls, but the folk that dine there. It’s a family-friendly place for sure, and a great community space with some exciting upcoming events.
For Goodness Bake, 632 Mansfield Road, NG5 2GA
For Goodness Bake on Facebook