It’s no secret the lovely Dubai, a country of vast expat population boasts an array of dishes from around the world. According to a KPMG UAE & Food Beverage Report, brunch is a popular pastime and 60% of residents eat lunch and dinner out over five times each month.
The most popular cuisines are Italian, Emirati, Indian and Lebanese. Eating out isn't necessarily a bad thing if you do it mindfully and in moderation, but if you just order what your heart says and do so many days out of the week, you’ll load your system with excess cream, unhealthy oils, sugar and fried items native to these cuisines.
What we’ve done is set out to explore Dubai via plates - and have come back with eight dishes for you that are healthy and don’t compromise on taste. So whether you live in Dubai or are just visiting, here are eight ways to stay on track that your body will thank you for.
1. We loved the sardines at Ibn Albahr
We promise it’s delicious. And very good for you - with all the healthy heart, omega-3 fatty acids that’s great for cholesterol and also has a high source of vitamin B12. Ibn Albahr cooks only freshly caught fish, and cooks them with lemon on the side. Simple, healthy & delicious.
2. Quinoa vegetable biryani at Biryani Pot
Biryanis are a staple that’s been around for hundreds of years. The people of Dubai love this dish - it’s tasty, wholesome and affordable. Biryani Pot has a healthy rendition we suggest you try; using the traditional South Asian staple, they take out the carb loaded rice and replace it with light refreshing organic quinoa. Served in a traditional clay pot, the feel is the same, so is the hearty taste. What’s difference is the calorie count and that this version is plant-based.
3. Wakamole at Waka
To be honest, the name of the dish caught our attention too. The guacamole originates from the Aztec times, over 100 years ago when avocados were mashed together to form an addictive dip. Today at Wakamole, you’ll find this attractive plate prepared with fresh avocados, tomatoes, onions, some stellar lemon and a bunch of delicate edible flowers. It looks great and it tastes even better.
4. Tacos at Wild & The Moon
Wild & The Moon tacos are delicious and they’re vegan. Servings are small though so you’ll want to load up. The “cheese” is made from cashew so make sure you don’t have any nut allergies. If tacos are not your thing (we’d be surprised) there’s a ton of other options on the menu we love - almond latte, cold-pressed juices, soba noodles, açai bowls & more - all vegan of course. Also, the cafe itself is extremely chic and very instagrammable.
5. Burgers at Bareburger
Unfortunately we won’t be able to direct you to one burger, because that wouldn’t be doing this menu justice. This international chain of healthy burger renditions takes the world by storm, one burger at a time and for the right reasons. Buzz words like organic, all natural, local, gluten, grass-fed are all applicable here. You’ll be able to choose between regular and plant-based variety, as well as from gluten-free or normal bread buns. Don’t forget to get a plate of sweet potato fries!
6. Roasted Vegetable Pizza at Super Natural Kitchen
Pizza but make it healthy. Yes, it’s possible. A vegan’s dream, everything here is plant based and vegan and the pizza is no exception. Topped with a ton of fresh scrumptious toppings, you may eat without feeling guilty.
7. Avocado Toast at Skye & Walker
We’re (not) sorry but here’s another avocado-based recommendation. The dish comes with a 7-grain bread, smashed avocado with curry spice, sea salt, chilli flakes and a ton of extra virgin olive oil. Add some smoked salmon, poached egg or feta if you wish. Delicious either way.
8. Acai Bowl from Leens
Seriously beat the heat with this bowl. A healthy berry loaded breakfast bowl or snack by the beach. We like the Acai Chia Pudding that can be consumed with a hot cup of coffee. There are also a ton of other breakfast varieties. What a way to start your day!