Fresh Food Fast

Fresh Food Fast: When you need a healthy meal on the go, these 10 eateries satisfy
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Bean Vegan Cuisine, Asheville
“We wanted to make the comfort food we grew up with, but veganize it,” co-owner Charlie Foesch says of this fast-casual vegan eatery. Customer favorites like the Reuben, jalapeño-cheddar burger, and pimento cheese are full of the flavors you love, without the bitter tang of guilt. 2145-A Hendersonville Rd., (828) 483-6505,

Blue Ridge Bites & Brews, Blowing Rock
This eatery, with a seasonal, rustic menu that incorporates regionally sourced and organic ingredients whenever possible, has quickly become a favorite among locals seeking healthy meals.
1132 Main St., (828) 434-8415,

Elements, Asheville
It’s not easy being green, but it often goes hand in hand with a healthy lifestyle. Asheville’s Elements serves fresh-pressed organic juices in reusable glass bottles, 20,000 of which make it back to the restaurant for reuse annually. The plant-based menu features nutrient-dense bowls of acai, granola, or quinoa, ready in a jiffy. 233 S. Liberty St., (828) 713-7513,

F.A.R.M. Café, Boone
Folks of all strokes can find a healthy meal at F.A.R.M. Café, a nonprofit restaurant that aims to “Feed All Regardless of Means” with its offerings sold on a sliding scale. Here, paying a few extra dollars for your plate of healthy fare could help someone who’s struggling to eat, too. 617 W. King St., (828) 386-1000,

Green Sage Café, Asheville
At the forefront of Asheville’s speedy eateries you’ll find Green Sage. “The goal is to do the body good with food,” says co-owner Randy Talley. The restaurant’s three locations offer nutritious food fast, like the award-winning Green Beetle Burger with dulse, a savory seaweed full of iodine and B12. A refreshed line of juices was curated by local physician Angela Hind, so “superfood” isn’t just a buzzword here. 5 Broadway, (828) 252-4450; 1800 Hendersonville Rd., (828) 274-4450; 70 Westgate Pkwy., (828) 785-1780;

Kindly Kitchen, Boone
“We wanted to supply healthy food for the community but also support local small growers,” says Caleb Crowell of Boone’s Kindly Kitchen, which grew out of his co-op, New Appalachia Foods. Ask him about his favorite item on the menu, and he’ll say it changes daily (as does the menu), but is always inspired by seasonal Carolinian produce. 659 W. King St. Ste. 2, (828) 386-6005,

Nectar, Asheville
Dining doesn’t get much easier than grab ’n’ go—unless, of course, it’s delivery. North Asheville’s Nectar now offers its cold-pressed juices, superfood packaged products, and sweet, guilt-free desserts both ways, in addition to the health-conscious, organic comfort food served in their sunny café. 853 Merrimon Ave., (828) 412-3277,

The Red Radish, Black Mountain
What started as a corporate catering company now feeds hungry businessmen (and women) who find themselves with a growling tummy but no plans for dinner. Grab a healthy lunch to-go or snag dinner (protein, starch, and veggies) on the drive home. (A second location, at 1125 Sweeten Creek Road, Suite 40, in Asheville, is slated to open in January.) 107 Black Mountain Ave., (828) 669-5100,

The Patio, Waynesville
It may be named for its picturesque patio in the heart of Waynesville, but don’t hesitate to ask for tasty favorites to-go. This self-designated “healthy fast food alternative” offers a simple menu of sandwiches, wraps, quiche, and soups. 26 Church St., (828) 454-0070,

Mountain Perks, Bryson City
Coffee is a superfood; load up on the dark stuff at Bryson City’s Mountain Perks. They also offer counter service snacks and entrées like veggie-packed salads and wraps that are perfect to nosh on the go. 9 Depot St., (828) 488-9561,

Photographs by (nectar) Dan Boissy, (kindly kitchen) Erin Durham, (bean Vegan & Green Sage) Jonathan Moore, (elements) courtesy of elements