Header image courtesy of @noodfoodofficial (via Instagram)
Originally published by Sophie Pettit. Last updated by Beverly Ngai.
If you’re looking for a healthy lunch option, and like to be in control, then creating your own meal at one of the city’s colourful salad bars is a good way to go. Whether you grab a takeout salad box while you’re on the run, or have time to sit down and soak in your surroundings, custom-made salads are a great way to eat clean and wrap up the year on a healthy note.
With a daily-rotating menu of farm-fresh salad toppings to pick and choose from, it’s always a pleasant surprise at this friendly vegetarian eatery! Their stuffed-to-the-brim salad boxes come in two sizes—regular ($77), which includes three toppings, or large ($100), which has four.
A far cry from the monotony of bland, undressed greens, Fresca serves up a whole range of well-seasoned hot and cold salad toppers, such as Sichuan veggie mix with tofu, guava apple tomato salad with plum sauce, and Korean bean paste tofu! If you’re one to crave dessert after a meal, don’t hesitate to pick up one of their vegan and gluten-free baked goods before you leave!
Fresca, 54A Hollywood Road, Soho, Central | (+852) 2770 2282
Hidden in a narrow alleyway off busy Des Voeux Road, this unassuming hole-in-the-wall has long been hailed as a go-to spot among the health-conscious crowd. From wraps and rice bowls to soups and shakes, this kale-centric restaurant boasts a varied menu of healthy organic eats, but their bestsellers are undoubtedly the “mix your own” salads.
Simply pick a protein (the cajun chicken and seared tuna never disappoint), and pair it with either one or a mix of their sumptuous salads! The kale salad with pomegranate & avocado dressing and roasted vegetables are perennial favourites from their permanent salad selection, but also look out for their weekly special, which changes up based on what’s in season. If you are having trouble choosing, opt to try them all for the same price!
Kale, 26 Lee Yuen Street West, Central | (+852) 2511 1777
As much a fast-casual diner as it is an urban retreat in the heart of Central, Treehouse makes healthy plant-based dining easy with their wholesome wraps, burgers, and bowls. Like everything else on the menu, the salads here are generously portioned, and no slouches either when it comes to versatility, with over 30 toppings and an intriguing selection of housemade dressings to choose from.
Alongside flavourful veggies like charred cauliflower, roasted beets, and seasonal greens, there are also heartier fixings including spiced tofu, falafel, and sweet potato to fill you up and keep you satisfied for hours. Finish your bowl off with their decadent cashew or pesto sauce to bring all the ingredients to life!
Treehouse, Shop 1, H Code, 45 Pottinger Street, Central | (+852) 3791 2277
A firm favourite with the Localiiz team, this Sheung Wan-based French deli boasts an impressive salad bar, which is fit to rival most and is sure to keep you full until dinnertime. The salad station boasts a wide array of leafy greens, proteins, meat, and vegetables, as well as your choice of dressing and toppings. There’s the option to eat in at the dining room upstairs or take your greens to go. Monsieur Chatté also sells voucher packs to loyal patrons who expect to be back soon, so you can be a healthy and thrifty diner.
Monsieur Chatté, 121 Bonham Strand, Sheung Wan | (+852) 3105 8077
Vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, organic—you name it, Mana! has it. This environmentally-friendly food hub prepares bites that are packed full of wholesome ingredients, and their salad boxes give you the option to mix and match to your heart’s content. Staples usually include quinoa, roasted veggies, and leafy green combos.
From fresh shakes to fresh coconuts, the café also offers an exciting range of healthy drinks to tempt you. Their flagship shop, located around the trendy Starstreet Precinct area, boasts an expansive dine-in seating area and a large salad bar counter, which proves particularly popular with the office lunch crowd.
Salad has never looked or tasted so good. So much more than a few leaves, Nood Food is home to one of our favourite custom-made salad bars in the city. Jam-packed full of nutrients, vitamins, and flavour, all with clear nutritional information to prove it, these boxes allow you to create a balanced meal with no fuss. From protein-packed mixed beans to crunchy kale, Nood is always on hand to prepare you for a productive afternoon. If you want a pre-made salad, however, the roasted pumpkin quinoa & hummus salad is a winner.
As Hong Kong’s very first Belgian soup kitchen, Tallore offers a variety of hearty homemade soups, along with salads, baguettes, and wraps, which are all freshly made on a daily basis. All food here is produced without any artificial flavourings or MSG, so you know you’re only putting the good stuff in your system. If you’re really hungry, opt for the Souper set ($78) and enjoy a small soup and main dish of your choice. With the soups changing on a regular basis, there’s no excuse not to try them all.
Tallore, 7–17 Amoy Street, Wan Chai | (+852) 2327 8630
We all know that feeling when nothing on the menu is just right. Enter Knead—with a customisable menu, you can design your very own salad or sandwich just the way you like it by choosing from the wide selection of fresh ingredients. But if choosing what to go on your salad is too overwhelming (because there is so much good stuff on offer), then simply take your pick from the suggestions menu, and it will be made for you straight away.
Knead, 28 Jervois Street, Sheung Wan | (+852) 2851 7778
This Parisian-style café offers a mouth-watering choice of salads, sandwiches, and freshly-baked goods every day. Bursting with vibrant colours and strong flavours, the salad bar is hard to miss. There are 12 imaginative creations to choose from, including the winter Waldorf salad and beetroot with orange segments, and you get to select three or four—it’s a tough decision, trust us! The salad boxes, sandwiches, quiches, and other treats at Passion are available to take away, but if you have time to eat in and soak up the friendly European atmosphere with a freshly-brewed coffee in hand, we highly recommend doing so.
Nestled in City’super branches across the city, the Fusion Deli salad counter offers a mouth-watering selection of ready-made salads, as well as a build-your-own station. Here, you can create the basis of your salad from the leaves, vegetables, and meats on offer, before adding croutons, raisins, or whatever else catches your eye, as well as your own dressing. From peppery potato salads to vibrant beetroot and pumpkin creations, Fusion Deli isn’t afraid to throw a few carbs into the mix, either, so if you’re looking for some wholesome energy, give this a go.
Great Food Hall may be tucked away in the basement of Pacific Place, but this salad bar is not to be forgotten about, especially now that it’s gone through an extensive facelift. With over 40 different build-your-own salad options to choose from, there is a huge variety of raw and cooked vegetables, protein-rich meats, cheeses, and pulses to create your ideal healthy meal. If you fancy shaking up the savoury flavours, then throw some sweeter choices into the mix.
Great Food Hall, B/F, Two Pacific Place, Queensway, Admiralty | (+852) 2918 9986