Southern American

Caribbean style vegan cuisine. Menu features jerk un-chicken, curry vegetables, tofu cutlets, marinated kale salad, iris moss drinks, and more. Reggae music played in the background; has Wi-Fi. Black-owned. Reported open May 2020. Note that hours are reported to be unreliable, even when checked ahead. Open Mon-Thu 11:00am-8:00pm, Fri-Sat 12:00pm-8:00pm.

Venue map for Healthful Essence
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62 Reviews

First Review by HoneydewBliss


Points +24

28 Aug 2023

Get a Tent and Make Camp!

I'm a nomad. So I mostly rely on this app for hidden gems such as this. There are many selections and price point options for the budget conscious.

I highly recommend the yellow curry with rice. It is spicy, however They offer sample tastings so that you know exactly what you're getting yourself into. I will be back as often as possible!

Pros: Location, Price point, Food

Cons: No



Points +156

13 Aug 2023

Vegan Caribbean

Anytime I set foot in the Atlanta, nutritional plant based grub at Healthful Essence is my fist stop. Trust me, this is the most delicious Caribbean vegan food you will find in the area.


Points +42

29 Apr 2023

Not the worst, but not good

The food is extremely mushy. I had the Mac and cheese (wildly overcooked pasta, nothing even attempting to taste like cheese, just weird bland chartreuse sauce,) BBQ tofu (passable, but I got a cup of sauce with 8 pieces of tofu,) and the pumpkin (tasted okay, but again no texture.) Every meal comes with a few pieces of fried plantain. I hate bananas but the fried plantains were tolerable. The interior of the restaurant is dingy with flickering lights and signs that have been scribbled over with higher prices. I feel simultaneously bloated and also still hungry. If you have the option to eat anywhere else, I'd recommend doing so.

Pros: Free parking lot

Cons: Expensive for amount and quality of food, Textures are terrible, Interior is dingy


Points +115

06 Apr 2023

Literally fed my soul

So delicious and flavorful. I had the “meat” and two sides. I was delighted to see plantains came with it too. Portions were huge but I gobbled it all up happily.


Points +301

05 Dec 2022

A hidden “Hole in the wall”

This tasty restaurant was truly a gem. They’re setup like a “buffet-style” restaurant but it’s not all you can eat. You simply pick what you want & pay. You can also try anything out before you purchase. The curry chickpeas & Rasta pasta was on point. Aside from the taste, the meals are very inexpensive & customize your choice of sides.

If you need a quick meal, this is the place to go!


Points +1843

09 Jul 2022

Not good at all

I was so excited to try this place out. I came here with my best friend who is Jamaican. I got the curry un-goat, mac and cheese, and okra. They also had dessert, so I picked out the blueberry coconut cake at the recommendation of the staff and a customer behind me. The containers were made out of styrofoam, and all the savory food items were liquidy, so it was kinda messy. The food was okay. It wasn't very flavorful. My friend was also disappointed in her meal. The cake was straight- up awful. It tasted like wet sock. I'm surprised at my experience since this place has such good reviews. :(

Pros: All vegan, Friendly staff

Cons: Bad food


Points +201

21 Jun 2022

So Delicious

We enjoyed every bite of our food. There was a lot of variety and the prices are reasonable. The staff even brought out an umbrella to our outdoor table on a very hot day. Parking was available in a lot at the restaurant. I would definitely recommend.

Pros: All vegan menu and very fresh , Variety of spice levels , Great taste

Cons: None


Points +32

17 Oct 2021

Pleasantly Surprised

I visited this restaurant in August 2021. I ordered the curry vegetables over rice, unfish cakes and I can’t remember which meat substitute I ordered, but everything was delicious. I’d definitely visit again!

Pros: All vegan!


Points +141

19 May 2021

Hallelujah, Praise the Lord!

Was able to order on line instead of via delivery service. Daily changes in menu were observed: instead of brown rice and peas, I had millet with vegetables. Ordered one each of the smoothies, green lemonade because it was sugarless, ungoat, unduck, Jamaican unchicken patties, black-eyed peas, greens, sweet potato cornbread, wakame(seaweed). Although outdoor dining was advertised, there was no furniture on the mowed plot. Since I ordered pickup, we took the order home. My youngest grand loved the unchicken patties; my daughter the millet and vegetables. l liked the ungoat, millet, black-eyed peas, patties, greens and wakame; took last of black-eyed peas, wakame and greens to bus station and ate there or on way back to Chicago. The jerk unduck was very spicy; my mouth and throat were on fire.

Updated from previous review on 2021-05-19

Pros: cardboard tubs for food could easily be reheated, large variety of tasty Caribbean vegan options, organized, patient staff

Cons: no indoor dining, outdoor dining area lacked furniture, jerk unduck too spicy for me


Points +37

27 Mar 2021

Great food!

I’ve ordered ubereats as well as ordered take out. The food was delicious & the employees very helpful.


Points +365

19 Nov 2020

Not good.

We ordered a Jerk Un-cut with curry veggies and the Curried Un-goat with a side of collard greens and sweet potato cornbread.

The sweet potato cornbread was decent.
The Jerk Un-cut was horrible. It was collard greens with jerk seasoning instead of a vegan meat substitute. The jerk seasoning tasted like the store-bought kind. The seasoning was overwhelming. It was not edible; we threw it away, which is a first for me; I'm not too fond of food waste.

The Curried Un-goat meal was edible, but not very tasty. We are vegan, and my husband is lactose intolerant. After he ate the Curried Un-goat, he had a bad reaction. I guess that they are using dairy for a particular food that is for vegetarians. They should clarify this on their menu.

Maybe, we just picked the wrong items on the menu.

Cons: Jerk Un-Cut is not good, Styrofoam/plastic packaging


Points +636

10 Oct 2020

Essence-tial Eats

The food here is absolutely delicious. There is raw and cooked food, baked goods, meat substitutes, wonderful veggies, smoothies, and more! The portions are large. The food is cafeteria-style (they serve) so it is ready immediately. Highly recommend.

Pros: nice atmosphere , delicious food, so many options

Cons: a bit pricey (but worth it), weirdly located


Points +16

30 Jul 2020

Closed after calling to confirm they were open

I called Healthful Essence to ensure they were open, they told me they were open until 8 pm, I got to the establishment before 8 pm and they were already closed.

Cons: In accurate hours between staff and hours listed


Points +218

04 May 2020


Almost Forgot About This Gem. Very Pleased With The Variety!


Points +28

13 Mar 2020

Wow wow wow so good!

It is a good thing I do not live near to this restaurant. They would have all of my money. I went with a group of people and we tried as many of their dishes as we could. All were delicious. Definitely worth a visit.

Pros: Cheap, Delicious, Completely vegan


Points +358

31 Dec 2019

very good!

can’t remember much about it ): but it’s good! the servers were v friendly.


Points +16

27 Dec 2019

Great little treat

Love the music choices. Everything was amazingly tasty. Ginger Brew is really strong and it's very different.


Points +18

28 Oct 2019

Absolutely Horrendous

Y'all this tasted like cat food. I ordered via uber eats and what was delivered to me for over $20 i literally threw away. They had combined the tasteless mac and cheese with the days old poorly seasoned bbq tofu. The greens tasted straight out of the can! I had to request a full refund....idk what happened but i hoped for so much more.


Points +38

02 Oct 2019


The thing that struck me most was the nice vibe. The staff and the patrons were so very nice! The server offered a taste test of any food of interest.

Pros: Delicious vegan options

Cons: None


Points +528

13 Mar 2019


Super casual, love all of the options and everything is full of flavor!! This was our second time here from Philly, we had to come back and will visit every time we're in Atlanta!


Points +321

07 Feb 2019

Yummy Caribbean cuisine!

This place is fab! Lots of options and yummy sides 😊 the staff are super cool and the vibe is well laid back!

Pros: Great flavours and options , Lovely staff


Points +36

24 Jan 2019

Fantastic food!

I had the BBQ tofu, collards, and veggie lomein all of which were very tasty. They had an assortment of main dishes and sides. Mac & cheese is on Fri and Sat only.

Pros: All the food is vegan , Freshly cooked, Large portions


Points +69

19 Jan 2019


Food: Jerk mushrooms, mac and cheese, and lentils were so delicious. 😋 Beware the jerk mushrooms are very spicy (and I eat a lot of spicy food)!

Dessert: Chocolate cake was good, but could have been better. I was told the blueberry cake was the most popular, but I was craving chocolate, so I can’t speak to how the blueberry is, but would try next time.

Service: Service was excellent - able to sample as many dishes as I wanted - and super friendly. Will go back for sure.

Pros: Parking lot!


Points +30

03 Oct 2018


The food was great! Took my non-vegan sister-in-law and they were playing Cowspiracy. She is considering a vegan lifestyle now because she didn't know the food could be so delicious.


Points +26

12 Sep 2018

Enjoyed it

This place was a happy HappyCow find. The food was on point. The servings were gracious (except maybe the plantain) & the environment was wonderfully warm.

I was a bit disappointed that all of their meat subs were soy-based but the all veggie option more than made up 4 that. The most difficult part was choosing what I wanted from all the scrumptious looking options. I settled on old favorites of rice & peas, greens & a conch-like fritter made with kelp + plantain. I added the chickpea patties on the recommendation of another patron & loved it all.

This space is definitely on my return list when next I'm N Atlanta. Cheers 2 the owners & the chef.


Points +16

11 Sep 2018

The app won’t allow a 1 star.

I don’t usually write reviews unless it is a pretty good review. We travel a lot and we try out Vegan Restaurants all over the world. We never complain, however we ordered Black beans, rice and peas, barbecue tofu, curry un chicken, collards, unfish patties, blueberry cake, a moss drink and water. For Caribbean food it didn’t have a taste. I waited until everyone was seated and there wasn’t anyone in line before I told them about the food. We spent a lot of money and I couldn’t just let that go to waste. The food didn’t look touched by us, and my husband is a big eater. I write this review because a lady from the back that stated she was part owner was Very Loud and Boisterous about the ordeal. She stated that something has to be wrong with us. Then she went on to ask us do we eat meat..... “No ma’am “... she said something has to be wrong with us. I said “ma’am I’m not trying to cause a commotion about this that is the reason I am whispering to you. She then stated, “ I am part owner here and this is crazy and I am a strong woman and this is how I talk”. I said ma’am I also own a business and am a strong woman but I wouldn’t ever act like this. Her actions were quite disgusting just as the food was. She yelled from in the back for us not to come back. Mind you....I hadn’t planned on it. You can’t tell them if you dislike something, if it was one thing I would care but it was all of the food except for the unfish patties. A young man that worked there took a small tasting cup and tasted the curry and the black beans (I guess to see if he agree). I’ve never seen people in a restaurant act in this way. They don’t refund food, which is fine with me because I preferred to get a cleanse for my hubby and some shea butter for me and let them keep the rest of the money. I’m very appalled that this lady was yelling at me like this even with my calm demeanor. Blessings to them, I hope that they will take reviews and use them for the good. I understand her, I don’t like bad reviews either, but the way that we handle them is what counts. This review wouldn’t be here if she hadn’t acted out the way that she did......... we drove 30 minutes away to a different restaurant and loved it. I won’t mention their name out of respect of the company that I am reviewing.


Points +52

18 Jul 2018

Not very good

Please forgive me for this because I don’t like to slam vegan restaurants, but I cannot and would not ever recommend this place. Location is a dump, fine, I’ve been to vegan spots that are in terrible buildings. But on top the food is not good and super expensive. Also felt dirty. It’s a short cafeteria style line. I had ungoat (cold and old), rice, collards, unfish (cold and old) and water. The fish thing was more like a fried pancake thing. Flavor was actually good but I was afraid to eat it because I was worried about getting sick since I felt like it had probably been sitting out for hours in the danger zone temperatures. Same with the ungoat. It was $18. I had tap water. They get 2 stars for being vegan, but any other regular restaurant would get zero if possible.

Pros: vegan

Cons: bad food, dirty feeling

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