I have longed for the day when my love of food and quest to be lean would ultimately align. I desire healthy, “green” food that tasted as good as chicken & waffles smothered in a warm, maple syrup gravy. They don’t want me to be lean.

Unicorns don’t exist, or at least I thought they didn’t until I tried out the Unleavened Fresh Kitchen. I can eat my fried chicken and wear a crop top.

Unleavened Outdoor


Unleavened was already on my radar after it made the D Magazine list for Best Breakfast in Dallas. Apparently, their acai bowl was pretty tasty and deserved our attention. I respect the opinions of my friends at D, but I had to try it for myself too. Indeed it’s a fast, casual restaurant that serves a completely fresh take on some of your favorite lunch and dinner items, and also a bright perspective on the morning’s dishes too.

The best part about Unleavened’s entire menu is that all of their entrees (including) breakfast can be wrapped up in a tortilla or served in a hash or on a bed of greens. THEY do want you to be lean. Oh, and it gets better. In addition to these low-carb options, almost all of their offerings are gluten-free or can be made to be gluten free. And the wraps are available in white, wheat, spinach or a gluten-free options.

When you do eat clean, however, let’s the be real, sometimes the food can taste like grass wrapped in cardboard. That isn’t the case at Unleavened. And I know this for sure because I think I tried almost EVER-Y-THING!


The owners, Scott Piland and Tom Dynan, brought us a feast of wraps, salads, dips and sides (they call them complements) to sample. Where does one start with a spread like this? Well, with the fried chicken of course.

One of the most popular items on the menu – no surprise here – is the Weekender. It obviously doesn’t have to be Friday, Saturday or Sunday for you to order this, but one bite will transport you to a peaceful 75-degree Dallas spring day. Buttermilk fried chicken, pepper bacon, leaf lettuce, tomato, shaved carrots, green onion, Boursin spread and ranch are stars of this show, and the fried chicken deserves an award for Best Actor in a Lead Entrée. I don’t know what gluten provides in this case, besides a stomach ache, but I didn’t miss it. I had all the crunchy bits from the fried crusts, which is probably where the gluten usually lives, and that moist chicken just slayed the dish.

Weekender 2


But this was a recurring theme throughout our entire sampling. From the spicy avocado dip to the clubhouse salad to the quinoa & farro salad compliment, everything was full of unique textures, elements and fresh ingredients. And to me, that’s what makes a great healthy dish, texture. I love crunch, color and positive energy that fresh food provides.


Quinoa & Farro Salad
Quinoa & Farro Salad


Housemade Hummus
Housemade Hummus


I have no doubt that this East Dallas eatery will become a staple for just about everyone – from the busy working person to a family in need of a good weekday meal. Oh, and heads up, there’s a Kids Happy Hour after 4 p.m. so those cute little kiddos can eat for free while you sip on a little happiness yourself from the beer and wine menu.

I’ll be back for the breakfast, just to see if the D Magazine hype was true, but if it’s anything like the lunch and dinner, I’m sure it will be just as satisfying. Your tastebuds jump for joy, and burpees during bootcamp will become a breeze.


(Disclaimer: My meal was complimentary, but all opinions are my own.)