Guru’s TOP 5: Halal & Healthy Eats in Orlando

While Orlando is well known for their Halal cheesesteaks and gyros, it’s not all about fast-food and the heartburn that follows. There is a growing trend towards healthier meal options. True, this niche is still evolving in Orlando but many Halal restaurant owners are responding to the market demands. In this list, we review the TOP 5 Halal restaurants that are providing their patrons with healthy, fresh options with ingredients and cooking techniques that cut down on those unwanted calories.

If you’re on a cheat day, not to worry, we got lots of TOP 5 Lists to help you find the best cheat day foods in Orlando. Looking for Cheesesteaks, Burgers, Chicken Wings, Cart Food and Pizza check out our respective TOP 5 Orlando Lists.

1. Melt’d Subs and Grill

Opened in early 2017, this Halal restaurant has employed the Subway model to build their brand. They provide fresh, made to order meals for customers to enjoy. They offer sandwiches, rice bowls and salads which you can customize to your heart’s desire. They also offer deli meats which isn’t very common in the Orlando area. They are located near SeaWorld and cater mostly to the lunch crowd as there are many office buildings around them. Their hours are geared more to the office crowd so be sure to check before you journey over for a fresh delicious sub. They also made our list of TOP 5 spots around Universal Studios in Orlando.

Melt'd Food Station
Fresh Ingredients from Melt’d in Orlando. A Halal Version of Subway

2. Cozee Cafe

Located in a large entertainment complex with many restaurants, dessert shops and a movie theater, Cozee Café has been an anchor to the Lake Mary Muslim community for quality halal eats. They offer trendy meals with excellent attention to detail and customer service. With healthier foods being more trendy, they have adopted their menu and meal offerings. Avocado, asiago, chickpeas and grilled chicken, yep they got it. They have a large outdoor seating area which is great to take advantage of the warm Florida sun.

Cozee Cafe outdoor seating
Plenty of outdoor seating at Cozee Café to soak up the Florida Sun

3. Paramount

Located right beside Cozee Café, Paramount Fine Foods, a Halal franchise well known to Canadians, offering Mediterranean cuisine. Given the nature of the ingredients and grilling technique for meats, the Mediterranean diet is considered a healthier option. They offer sandwiches, rice platters and salads to suit your needs. The location has a small dine in area. Their main franchise near the Orlando Eye was rebranded to Sofra: Mediterranean Grill. They also made our TOP 5 List of Halal Mediterranean Spots in Orlando.

Paramount Fine Foods Lake Mary
Interior of Paramount Fine Foods in Lake Mary. Nice décor and themes.

4. B and B Express

This Halal fast-food joint is an unlike candidate on this list, but it’s the way they prepare their burgers and fries which have earned them a spot on the list. They don’t grill and fry their burger and fries in the typical manner. Rather, they air fry it which uses less oils and captures less fat. Hence, while you are still eating a burger and fries, it’s slightly healthier. They are located in front of a mosque near Disney and are open late, making it a convenient spot for a quick bite to eat.

5. Jerusalem

This Middle-Eastern restaurant with a primarily grilled menu is sure to satisfy the health conscious consumer and delight the taste buds. Located near the entrance of Disney, this family owned Halal restaurant is open late on most nights so families can enjoy the day at the theme park and then have a nice formal dining experience to cap off the night. The family also owns Flame Kabob, located on SandLake Road near Universal Studios and International Drive. The internal décor takes you away to the sands of the Sahara with their North-African theme. The value for the experience and food portions balance out the higher price point given the tourist location.

Jerusalem Mixed Grill Platter
Mixed Grill Platter with Salad and Rice from Jerusalem

While I’m definitely not a calorie counter, I see the shift towards healthier options and meal choices. Even on vacation, many families are opting to pick healthier and more wholesome choices for their families. The Halal restaurants in Orlando are taking note of this trend and are adapting.

Know of any other Halal spots in Orlando that didn’t make the list, let me know in the comment section below. Feel free to share this post with anyone that may benefit. As always follow us on Twitter and Instagram as we chart out the Halal food scene in Florida and beyond.

Guru’s Travel Log: Al’s Pizzeria and Grill, Richmond Hill, Toronto, Canada

Located in Richmond Hill, a northern suburb of Toronto, Al’s Pizzeria and Grill has opened recently offering an array of specialty Pizzas and fast food options. They have made a big impact on the local Muslims by offering quality pizza at an affordable price. Furthermore, they stress the importance of using quality ingredients and Halal meats in their dishes. The best part of the restaurant is their big bold cartoon Beaver in a Canadian T-Shirt. You know this place is good if a Canadian Beaver is endorsing it.

Continue reading Guru’s Travel Log: Al’s Pizzeria and Grill, Richmond Hill, Toronto, Canada

Guru’s Travel Log: Burgernator, Toronto, Canada

Nestled in the heart of Kensington Market in downtown Toronto, Burgernator has been serving up specialty Halal burgers for almost a decade. Kensington Market is a highly walkable area in downtown with many specialty and artisan food shops, markets and restaurants. The mission of Burgernator is to rid “the city (Toronto) of half-hearted and overcooked burgers, processed cheese, and questionable toppings”. To say the least, they are winning this battle.

Continue reading Guru’s Travel Log: Burgernator, Toronto, Canada

Guru’s Travel Log: Muchachos Grill, Richmond Hill, Toronto

The newest halal hot spot for East African barbeque to hit the streets of Richmond Hill, north of Toronto, opened recently. While on a trip to Toronto, we were invited to stop in for a bite. The promise of barbequed meats made fresh to order, hot off the grill was hard to pass up. A vendor in Dar es Salam in East Africa by the same name is quite popular and famous for their grilled delights, so we had high hopes for this North American spot and were not disappointed.

Continue reading Guru’s Travel Log: Muchachos Grill, Richmond Hill, Toronto

Guru’s Travel Log: Shawarma On the Go (New Orleans, LA)

New Orleans is known as a culinary cuisine hot spot. However, for Muslims it can be a food desert. Many restaurants have full open bar and incorporate alcohol into many of their dishes and sauces. Furthermore, many of the signature seafood dishes involve catfish, oysters, lobster and other crustaceans which may be considered unlawful to eat. Coming across Shawarma to Go was a pleasant surprise. It opened over a year ago by an Iraqi family bringing quality, authentic Halal Middle-Eastern food to the Big Easy.

Continue reading Guru’s Travel Log: Shawarma On the Go (New Orleans, LA)