So, you’ve recently transitioned to the Paleo diet. Congratulations! Eating Paleo has many benefits for your mind and body, as proven by science. From lower blood pressure and better weight management to lower levels of inflammation in the brain, following a Paleo diet is a great way to boost your overall health.
However, one potential downside to Paleo living is that it can make it more difficult to eat out. With the popularity of processed, farmed foods across the United States, you really need to know where to look for Paleo-friendly restaurants.
Luckily for you, we have our ears to the ground when it comes to the best spots for Paleo dining. Today, we’ll be recommending 15 incredible Paleo-friendly restaurants in Chicago so that you can dine out without compromising your diet!
The Top 15 Paleo Restaurants in Chicago
Carnivale is definitely one of the top choices in Chicago for Paleo-friendly food and a beautiful, vibrant atmosphere. It’s located at 702 West Fulton Street, so if you’re in the area, we absolutely recommend checking it out!
This restaurant is very much Latin-fusion-themed, with a focus on seasonal, local produce, and sustainability. Plus, the venue is known for its live entertainment, so Carnivale is a great choice of restaurant if you’re looking for a fun evening out.
At Carnivale, you can sit down and enjoy a selection of gluten-free, vegetarian, and vegan dishes as well as juicy steaks, chicken, and seafood. Many of these dishes are Paleo-friendly.
At Burrito Beach (233 Michigan Avenue), you can construct your own Paleo-friendly salad bowl.
Burrito Beach is a great option if you want to honor your healthy, Paleo diet while soaking up a relaxed, fun-filled atmosphere.
Featuring grass-fed meat, grilled vegetables, and delicious homemade guacamole and salsa, the Burrito Beach menu is perfect for health-conscious Paleo dieters. There’s also a vegan menu to cater to additional dietary requirements.
True Food Kitchen
True Food Kitchen has many thriving venues open in the United States, including the Chicago venue at 1 W. Erie Street.
This restaurant is dedicated to serving healthy food that’s as good for the planet as it is for its customers.
In fact, True Food Kitchen has an entire menu section for Paleo recommendations, with substitution suggestions as required. Dishes on this menu include the grass-fed burger, the grilled salmon, the kale salad, and many more mouth-watering options.
Dishes like the grilled chicken and mozzarella panini can be made paleo-friendly by substituting the pita for a lettuce wrap and replacing the cheese with vegan almond-based ricotta. It’s clear from this menu that True Food Kitchen knows what’s up when it comes to Paleo dining.
Au Cheval (800 W Randolph Street) is another example of a Paleo-friendly Chicago restaurant that will leave you feeling satisfied and impressed.
The menu at Au Cheval is very meat-centric, so it’s not the best option for vegans or vegetarians. However, if you’re a lover of Paleo-friendly, grass-fed burgers and fries, Au Cheval should definitely be on your list of venues to visit.
Many reviewers have described the burgers they’ve tried at Au Cheval as the best they’ve ever had, so what are you waiting for?
Green Street Smoked Meats
Similar to Au Cheval, Green Street Smoked Meats delivers a meat-heavy menu. It also has plenty of gluten-free options that are compatible with the Paleo diet.
For a lighter meal, you can also choose from a variety of Paleo-friendly salads.
There is seating both inside and outside the venue, so you have a lot of flexibility in terms of the atmosphere of your dining experience. However, Green Street Smoked Meats doesn’t take reservations, so make sure you get there nice and early!
DMK Burger Bar
You can find DMK Burger Bar at 2954 North Sheffield Avenue.
As you might expect, this restaurant specializes in burgers. There are 14 burgers on the DMK menu, all of which (with the exception of the veggie burger) can be made Paleo-friendly through some small adjustments.
The range of burgers at DMK is extensive, from beef to turkey, so no matter what form you like your protein to take, this restaurant will cater to your needs.
One of the best things about DMK Burger Bar, however, is the atmosphere. The building has a stylish loft ambiance that feels cozy and vibrant at the same time – perfect for catching up with friends.
Flat Top Grill
Flat Top Grill is undoubtedly one of Chicago’s top Paleo-friendly restaurants.
At Flat Top Grill (3200 North Southport Avenue), you can create your own stir-fry dish according to your tastes and dietary requirements. That includes Paleo!
Flat Top Grill is an Asian-fusion restaurant with a ‘Fresh Food Line’ that you can walk down with your bowl or plate as many times as you like! The range of ingredients, from chicken breast to beef, seafood, and grilled vegetables (all well-seasoned, of course!) can be combined any way you want for a personalized, Paleo-friendly meal.
If you’re in Chicago and on the hunt for raw, Paleo-friendly food, we highly recommend Chicago Raw!
Chicago Raw has both a dine-in and takeaway menu, both of which include salads, smoothie bowls, collard burritos, and much more! Most of the food items are gluten-free, which makes avoiding grains during your meal that much easier.
For any vegans and vegetarians also following a Paleo diet, the good news is that, as a raw restaurant, all menu items are plant-based.
Frontera Grill is located at 445 North Clark Street, Chicago. If you’re ever passing by the area, it’s an incredible venue at which to enjoy some Paleo-friendly Mexican food.
This Mexican-inspired restaurant prioritizes fresh and organic produce, so it’s totally in keeping with the health-conscious nature of the Paleo diet.
There are separate lunch and dinner menus as well as a raw bar menu. No matter what your tastes are, you can find a dish from Frontera Grill that works with your palate – from wood-grilled portobello mushroom to Alaskan Halibut. Several of the dishes include non-Paleo ingredients, but these can often easily be left out or substituted without any fuss.
Gather, 4539 North Lincoln Avenue, is one of the best Paleo-friendly restaurants in Chicago, despite few of the listed dishes on the menu being 100% Paleo.
The reason Gather is so highly recommended for Paleo diners is the flexibility of the chefs in terms of altering dishes as needed for various dietary requirements, including Paleo.
For example, you can order the delectable Wagyu beef tartare without the brioche bun, or the house burger without the brioche and cheese.
Gather provides an incredible and entertaining dining experience, especially if you sit at the counter, where you can actually watch the talented chefs prepare your meal!
Avec has received rave reviews from Paleo diners in Chicago, and for good reason!
Many of the dishes on Avec’s extensive, Mediterranean-inspired menu are Paleo-friendly without the need for alterations or substitutions. For example, the slow-roasted pork shoulder and the stuffed Medjool dates are Plato-friendly favorites.
This is an ideal venue for family dinners and celebrations, but it’s relatively small and doesn’t take reservations in advance, so it’s first-come-first-served.
Roti is a Mediterranean-style grill restaurant with a wealth of healthy food options.
Not only does Roti cater to vegans and vegetarians, but it’s also gluten-free and has many Paleo-friendly options on the menu. This is one of the best restaurants to go to if you want to build your own bowl or salad.
You can even customize and order your bowl online if you’re in the area!
Chicago Health Foods
Chicago Health Foods is a cafe that does exactly what it says on the tin – not that tinned food features anywhere on the menu!
This cafe provides a range of healthy foods, including juices and shakes, to help you feel your best. The dessert menu offers a wide selection of salads, which can easily be made Paleo-friendly by removing dressings, and you can even indulge in Paleo cookies for dessert!
Hugo’s Frog Bar and Fish House
As you might have guessed, Hugo’s Frog Bar and Fish House specialize in seafood, but it also has a range of meat and plant-based dishes to suit Paleo customers.
From steak to wild-caught shrimp, there’s plenty a Paleo diner can enjoy at this restaurant! Just remember to ask your server to remove any grain or dairy ingredients. The seared tuna steak is our personal favorite.
Hash’s menu is completely gluten-free and the vast majority of the food items are suitable for vegans. In addition to this, Hash is highly Paleo-friendly.
In recent years, Hash has adapted to evolving dietary requirements among their Chicago clientele, meaning that you can now select any item from the menu and request a Paleo alternative. Combined with the relaxed atmosphere and outdoor patio seating, this will allow Paleo customers to enjoy their meal with complete peace of mind.
The thing to remember about Hash is that it has a small seating area, so getting there early is crucial.