Paleo Approved Foods In Popular Restaurants When You Don't Know What To Order

The Paleo diet mimics what our ancient ancestors ate, and we’re pretty sure they didn’t have paleo restaurants back then. But let’s be honest, eating out is just something we do not just for a special occasion nowadays. Whether you’re on a trip, stuck working in the office, or just need a quick meal for the family, it’s almost unavoidable. The tricky part is that most restaurant menus don’t have paleo approved foods.

Here at Paleo Menu, we’re not big fans of strict diets, but we get it—everyone picks their foods for different reasons. So, we’re here to help make healthy eating easy for you. Let’s check out this list of cool places that are paleo-friendly.

Top 10 Paleo-Friendly Restaurants For Sit-Down and Fast-Casual

Eating paleo approved foods at restaurants doesn’t have to be complicated. With a few simple requests, you can enjoy your favorite dishes at both sit-down and fast-casual spots. Let’s explore ten restaurants offering delicious options.

1. Bonefish Grill 

Bonefish Grill  

Bonefish Grill offers a protein-heavy menu, with selections like Wood-Fired Atlantic Salmon and the Florida Cobb Salad with Shrimp. Make sure your choices align with paleo principles by checking preparation methods and skipping non-compliant sauces and cheese.

2. Red Robin 

Red Robin

Red Robin caters to paleo preferences with menus like the Guacamole Bacon Burger (lettuce-wrapped, no cheese or mayo) or the Avo-Cobb-O Salad (minus bleu cheese and croutons). Request lettuce wraps for burgers, avocado slices, or steamed broccoli instead of fries.

3. Outback Steakhouse 


At Outback Steakhouse, meat takes center stage, making it a great choice for paleo eaters. Try the Outback Center Cut Sirloin with mixed veggies or the Grilled Chicken on the Barbie without the BBQ sauce. Just ask for minimal seasoning on your protein and a double side of veggies instead of fries.

4. BJ’s 


Explore BJ’s menu for paleo approved foods, such as the Enlightened Seared Ahi Tuna Salad or the Bacon-Guacamole Deluxe Burger (bunless, cheeseless, and without chipotle mayo). Skip pizza and desserts and focus on burgers and salads for a satisfying meal.

5. Red Lobster 

Red Lobster

Red Lobster can be paleo-friendly if you avoid the Cheddar Bay Biscuits. Opt for Live Maine Lobster with a house salad or Rainbow Trout with sides of broccoli. Confirm that your selections are cooked without butter, and skip tartar and cocktail sauces.

6. Panera 

Panera Bread

Despite its name, Panera is paleo-friendly, with salads that can be modified. Enjoy the Green Goddess Cobb Salad or the Greek Salad with chicken (minus feta) and olive oil instead of dressing. Skip the bakery section and head straight to paleo-friendly salads.

7. Applebee’s 


Applebee’s offers paleo-compliant choices like Grilled Chicken Breast with double veggies or 8-ounce Top Sirloin with double veggies. Skip the deep-fried appetizers and keep it simple by ordering a protein and a side of vegetables.

8. Denny’s 


Denny’s offers paleo choices from breakfast to dinner. Try the Loaded Veggie Omelet without cheese or the Sirloin Steak with caramelized onions and mushrooms. Customize your order by skipping bread and choosing fruit instead of potatoes.

9. Cheesecake Factory

The Cheesecake Factory

At Cheesecake Factory, look past specialties and pasta for paleo alternatives like Chargrilled New York Steak or Fresh Grilled Salmon. Stick to simple proteins and veggies, verifying they’re not cooked in butter. Avoid the extensive menu and keep it simple.

10. Sweetgreen 


Sweetgreen allows you to create a custom paleo bowl by choosing lettuce as the base and adding veggies and protein. Try the Guacamole Greens Salad or the Garden Cobb Salad with modifications like skipping tortilla chips and cheese.

Dining out while sticking to your paleo lifestyle is easier than you think. These ten restaurants have a range of options, ensuring you can enjoy delicious meals. Just remember to make a few simple requests, and you’ll have a satisfying and paleo-friendly dining experience.

6 Easy Paleo Fast Food Picks for On-the-Go Eaters

Eating paleo on the go can be challenging. But fear not. We’ve rounded up six hassle-free paleo fast foods to keep you fueled and satisfied. Let’s dive into the best paleo-friendly picks from your favorite fast-food spots.

1. El Pollo Loco

El Pollo Loco

Dive into wholesome goodness at El Pollo Loco with the Double Chicken Avocado Salad (hold the dressing, corn, and cheese) or a 3-piece Chicken Meal with broccoli and a side salad (minus the cheese, chips, and dressing). Their Mexican-style grilled chicken is a paleo-friendly delight, especially when skipping the rice and beans.

2. Chipotle 


Chipotle joins our list with its customizable paleo-friendly bowls. Opt for a salad base, pick your protein (chicken, steak, or barbacoa), skip the rice and beans, and load up on tasty guacamole. If decision-making isn’t your thing, try the Paleo Lifestyle Bowl, featuring romaine lettuce, chicken, fajita veggies, tomatillo salsa, and guac.

3. Wendy’s


Wendy’s caters to paleo eaters with the Avocado Chicken Salad (minus cheese and dressing), or try the Avocado Chicken Club, swapping fried chicken for grilled, sans bun, and mayo. Their bunless burgers, made with 100% beef, and various salads offer tasty healthy choices.

4. Chick-fil-A 


Chick-fil-A offers a savory paleo option with 12-count grilled nuggets and a side salad. For some spice, go for the Spicy Southwest Salad without cheese or dressing. While the original sandwich doesn’t cut, their grilled chicken opens up a world of possibilities.

5. Taco Bell 

Taco Bell

Surprisingly, Taco Bell has paleo-friendly selections. Try the Power Bowl with chicken (hold the rice, cheese, sour cream, and sauce) or the beef version following the same rules. Skip the usual suspects like rice and tortillas and enjoy a paleo bite from Taco Bell’s Power Menu.

6. Shake Shack

Shake Shack

At Shake Shack, indulge in the Avocado Bacon Burger without the bun, cheese, or ShackSauce, wrapped in lettuce for a paleo twist. Try the SmokeShack burger without the bun, cheese, and ShackSauce. With 100% beef patties free from antibiotics and hormones, Shake Shack’s burgers are a win.

Eating paleo doesn’t mean giving up the convenience of fast food. With these six fast foods, you can stay true to your paleo lifestyle while enjoying delicious meals on the go. Make smart choices, customize your orders, and enjoy the flavors.

Practical Tips For Dining Out On Paleo

Starting a paleo lifestyle doesn’t mean you can’t dine out. With some strategy and know-how, you can enjoy restaurant meals while following paleo. Here are practical tips to guide you in dining out on paleo.

  • Plan Ahead: Look at the menu online before heading to a restaurant. Many restaurants now provide menus on their websites, allowing you to scout for paleo approved foods. Planning helps you make informed choices and avoids the temptation of ordering non-paleo meals.
  • Ask for What You Want: Don’t hesitate to make special requests. Let them know you follow a paleo lifestyle. Most restaurants are willing to accommodate dietary requests. Ask about ingredient details and cooking methods, and if possible, request minimal or no added sugars, oils, or sauces.
  • Try Simple Swaps: Be open to making simple swaps to paleo-fy your meal. Replace grains or bread with extra vegetables, go for a side salad instead of fries, or request your protein to be grilled instead of fried. Many restaurants can customize dishes. Don’t be afraid to get creative with substitutions.
  • Focus on Whole Foods: When in doubt, focus on whole, unprocessed foods. Choose dishes with lean meats, fish, poultry, vegetables, and healthy fats. Avoid heavily processed and packaged items, as they may contain hidden sugars, additives, or non-paleo ingredients. A plate filled with colorful, nutrient-dense whole foods is the way to a successful paleo dining experience.
  • Stay Mindful of Portions: While enjoying your meal, consider portion sizes. Some restaurant servings can be larger than what you might prepare at home. Consider sharing a dish with a companion or try half portions if available. 

Eating out on a Paleo diet can be a delightful experience with planning and communication. Following these practical tips, you can enjoy delicious restaurant meals while sticking to the Paleo lifestyle. 

The Best Restaurant Is Your Kitchen

When it comes to embracing the paleo lifestyle, your kitchen is your best friend. Eating out can sometimes be a puzzle. The solution? The comfort and certainty of preparing your paleo-friendly meals right at home.

In your kitchen, you control every ingredient that goes into your dishes. It allows you to handpick the freshest produce, lean proteins, and wholesome fats to make sure that your meals are 100% paleo-compliant. Here’s the paleo diet food list!

If you’re looking for new and exciting recipes, the possibilities are endless. Discover the joy of creating delicious paleo meals with our simple and tasty recipes. From hearty veggie frittata to seafood jambalaya, we got it for you. See it here.  

Your kitchen can become a hub of paleo creativity. The best part? You decide what goes into each recipe, tailoring it to your taste and preferences. 

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Paleo Approved Foods In Popular Restaurants When You Don’t Know What To Order

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