NYC Dining: Eating Healthy at Le Pain Quotidien

Le Pain Quotidien
124 Seventh Avenue
between 17th & 18th streets

Other Locations: (Various)

Web Site:

Two weeks ago I was in the city during the evening for the PEPCOM Holiday Spectacular press event, which was held at the Metropolitan Pavilion in Chelsea, on 17th Street between 6th and 7th Avenues.  I was hungry, and I knew that the show was going to be busy and serving lots of fried and carby appetizer-type crap I probably shouldn’t be eating. I also knew that I would be racing around like a lunatic taking photos and talking to PR people for two hours, so I should probably eat something before going in there.

Anyone who is familiar with the Chelsea neighborhood near the Metropolitan Pavilion will probably tell you its slim pickins in terms of good food choices. So I walked down to 7th avenue, looked around, and noticed this particular branch of Le Pain Quotidien. I’m not usually one to visit bakery type cafe restaurants these days — since I’m limiting my bread and carb intake, and there’s usually too much temptation to eat something I shouldn’t. But I was literally starving and it was better I ate there than eat what was likely awaiting me at the Pavilion, along with an open bar.

Le Pain Quotidien, NYC by you.

I had never been to a Le Pain Quotidien before, but I was hungry and intrigued, so I went in and had a look.

Click on the “Read the rest of this entry” link below for more.

Le Pain Quotidien, NYC by you.

The bread at this chain is surprisingly very good and of the healthier variety, and is dense and makes use of whole grains.

Le Pain Quotidien, NYC by you.

I really liked the atmosphere here, it was made to resemble a rustic French farmhouse. That it was 5PM on a Thursday and the place was gearing up for its dinner service and still quiet was all the better, because I was about to have my share of cacophony and lots of bustling about in about an hour.

Le Pain Quotidien, NYC by you.

The all wood and unfinished tables are a nice touch, along with the rustic flooring.

Le Pain Quotidien, NYC by you.

What’s this, healthy choices at a bakery restaurant? Maybe I wont have to eat anything too bad.

Le Pain Quotidien, NYC by you.

I plopped myself down at one of the big communal tables.

Le Pain Quotidien, NYC by you.

I know that in New York that tap is perfectly acceptable as a beverage choice, but I like the fizzy stuff.

Le Pain Quotidien, NYC by you.

Le Pain Quotidien, NYC by you.

My first course was a cold Gazpatcho soup, which I deemed to be excellent. I’ve been to various parts of Spain and I can tell you that it tasted pretty authentic — its defnitely made of fresh tomatoes, cucumber, bell peppers, and lots of garlic, with good olive oil in it and some bread crusts blended in, as a good Gazpatcho should be. This was served with Quotidien’s whole wheat Baguette Ancienne.

Le Pain Quotidien, NYC by you.

I also ordered a nice seaweed and cucumber salad, which came with a sesame/soya dressing.

Le Pain Quotidien, NYC by you.

I especially enjoyed this Roasted Red Quinoa salad with Enoki Mushrooms. This was a great hearty and fortifying dish with lots of protein in it.

Le Pain Quotidien, NYC by you.

Le Pain Quotidien has all the “bad” stuff too, if you’re incllined to go in that direction.

7 Responses to NYC Dining: Eating Healthy at Le Pain Quotidien

  1. deb says:

    I love LPQ, especially their arugula salad which is like the least original thing on earth but still done perfectly there. I always get a quarter-loaf of the miche to go, and ask them to slice it first. Runs us about $2.50! I keep it in the freezer and it makes the best weekend toast with eggs, ever.

  2. Aissa Galoso says:

    That Gazpatcho looks delicious!

  3. Joan says:

    Wow, that looks like a lunch I would have. Thanks!

    I’ve had to lose weight as well. I’ve been eating soups and salads and trying to fill up on lots of water. Actually, the glutton in me hates it, but I have to admit, I can think more clearly than usual.

  4. slpernie says:

    i’ve walked pass this place more than a dozen times and i’m always tempted to go in but you see i am a meat eating carnivore and it feels like this place has nothing to offer me.

    do they have any sandwiches or paninis?

  5. Mike says:

    I eat at the LPQ location on 1st Ave. and 68th St. The hot soups are good, and their Belgian-style hot chocolate is terrific on a cold day. If you buy a loaf of bread to go, check that it’s not burned on the bottom.
    Please keep up the blogging. I enjoy your posts, and think your photography is superb.

  6. missginsu says:

    Count me in among the LPQ lover. They’re not cheap, that’s also the upside, since they don’t use cheap ingredients. As far as I’m concerned, dining at a chain doesn’t get any better.

  7. Having read your post – I paid a visit to LPQ last week. Have to say “thank you” – the place was great and is now on my “must visit” list.

    Benard Lawrencia

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