How to Eat Light in Las Vegas
One of the best things about Vegas is the food, but the options go beyond the famously endless buffets. On and off the Strip, Las Vegas restaurants have smart choices that won’t leave you feeling over-stuffed.
For When You Need to Get Away from the Casinos
When You’re Near: Downtown
Where to Go: Eat
Why: This breakfast-and-lunch joint is all about fresh, sustainable ingredients, quick service, and supporting local artists, farmers, and charities.
What to Get: You really can’t go wrong with the breakfast options. Simple granola and steel-cut oats with fruit, cinnamon biscuits or golden-brown pancakes, and savory dishes such as the chilaquiles with jalapeno-mango sausage and scrambled eggs.
For When You’re On the Strip, But So Over the Casino Restaurants
When You’re Near: Mandalay Bay and McCarran International Airport
Where to Go: SkinnyFats
Why: SkinnyFats serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner with menu options split into “Healthy” and “Happy.” The restaurant was voted 2014 Best New Restaurant and Best American New by the Las Vegas Review Journal.
What to Get: For breakfast, fill up with 3 Healthy Chicks: three egg whites, two mini Cranburkey patties, fruit, and nine-grain toast. For lunch or dinner, opt for the Naked Chix—seared chicken breast with mango-basil sauce, brown rice, and cilantro yogurt—or the vegetarian CauliFire, a cauliflower dish in buffalo sauce with garlic, veggies, and ranch.
For When the Desert’s Making You Crave Seafood
When You’re Near: North Las Vegas
Where to Go: Mariscos Aguachiles Culichi
Why: This seafood restaurant focuses on dishes from Culiacán, the capital of the Mexican coastal state Sinaloa.
What to Get: For the most unique experience, try one of the restaurant’s signature dishes, such as the namesake aguachiles. It’s a spicy ceviche, which is a kind of raw seafood dish cured with citrus juices. Otherwise, opt for one of the shrimp or octopus dishes, which are also specialties of the Culiacán region.
For When You’re Trying to Please Both Vegans and Meat-Lovers
When You’re Near: Stratosphere
Where to Go: Daddy’s Delights
Why: Eat in or get delivery from this restaurant with a specialty niche—vegetarian, vegan, and organic food selections abound. The menu is full of healthy staples like portabellas, tofu, and soy cheese, but there’s also plenty for meat-eaters. And there’s even pizza, burgers, pasta, and gyros for members of your party less dedicated to eating light.
What to Get: The platters come with a main dish—falafel, chicken, mahi-mahi, and more—plus avocado, fresh veggies, and your choice of side: brown rice, quinoa, a baked sweet potato, or whole-wheat pasta.
For When You Want to Eat Smart… But You Really Want All-You-Can-Eat
When You’re Near: The Cosmopolitan and Bellagio
Where to Go: Umiya Sushi
Why: Some have called Umiya the best sushi in Las Vegas. The restaurant has both an all-you-can-eat menu and a regular menu, as well as a spacious dining room that can accommodate big parties.
What to Get: Reviewers rave about the seared-tuna sashimi appetizer with its creamy, tangy specialty AJ sauce. Other favorites include the sweet-shrimp nigiri, the Salsa Dancing roll with spicy tuna and mango topped with salmon and salsa, and the mochi ice-cream desserts.
For When You Want the Kids to Eat Healthy, Too
When You’re Near: West Side
Where to Go: Sweet Tomatoes
Why: The family-friendly soup-and-salad buffet has a rotating selection of fresh-made dishes, including tons of options for vegetarians and those on a gluten-free diet.
What to Get: The joy of Sweet Tomatoes is that you can build exactly the salad you want. Load up with veggies—one healthy-eating tip is to try to have every color of the rainbow represented in your ingredients. There are also seasonal premade options, like the Strawberry Fields with Caramelized Walnuts tossed salad and the Superfood Crunch deli salad. And the soup options can add hearty proteins to your meal, which will keep you full for longer.
Teresa frequently plans elaborate vacations she will never take. In real life, she writes fantasy novels and visits any restaurant that caters to people who are allergic to everything.