By Avery Nunn

It’s no secret that spending the summer in Ocean City can make it tough to stay on the health train. From classic boardwalk funnel cake in the evenings to fresh and warm sticky buns to start off the morning, there are endless choices of deliciously binge-worthy treats. But, along with everything in life, it is all about balance. Here are some OC essentials to keep your summer bites in line, but filled with just the right amount of treat and cheat. 

Clean Scene

Heart Beet Kitchen Creative vegan meals 

Heart Beet offers gluten free, dairy free, peanut free, plant based, organic, and locally sourced meal options. The menu covers a wide variety of classic American food, but with a creative twist. Eggplant meatballs, Buffalo or BBQ Cauliflower, and even a plant-based cheesesteak (mushrooms, cashew cheese, sautéed onions) are just a few options. 801 E. 8th Street.

Yoasis Beach Bowls Smoothies 

For a fruit-filled breakfast or healthy afternoon snack, Yoasis Beach Bowls has proved that it’s a hot spot. Often packed with customers, Yoasis has smoothies loaded with greens to bowls topped with granola and honey drizzle. 1244 Boardwalk.

Jon and Patty’s Salads & Petite Deserts 

Jon and Pattys is a wonderful halfway point for your food swings. Large salads, petite desserts, and a specialty coffee bar within the cozy restaurants’ atmosphere makes for a great meal. This is the perfect choice for a fresh and affordable neighborhood bistro. 637 Asbury.

Playa Bowls Poke Bowl 

While Playa Bowls is mostly known for offering their fruit-based acai bowls, there is also the option of ordering a Poke Bowl. For those of us who love sushi and choose fish as our protein intake, this is a great casual lunch or dinner on the boards choice. Essentially, a poke bowl is a “bowl” version of a sushi roll. Typically this consists of diced fish over rice, with toppings such as edamame and avocado. 744 Boardwalk.

The Farm Stand at 14th Tacos

“Harvesting Health & Happiness,” The Farm Stand at 14th creates vegan as well as non—vegan fresh and organic plates. The few dishes that consist of meat only come from grass-fed and free-range animals. From sweet potato tacos to beef burgers The Farm Stand offers a healthier option for every age and diet. 14th & Boardwalk.

Treat Street

Johnson’s Popcorn Snacks

Johnson’s popcorn is a great treat to get the whole family through the day between meals, or late at night when strolling the boardwalk or waiting in line for rides. Their tubs of caramel popcorn come hot and fresh, with the smell of their sweet caramel filling their shops and surrounding area on the boardwalk. 1360 Boardwalk.

Manco & Manco Pizza Crispy crust pizzas

What has become an Ocean City classic. Manco & Manco Pizza makes fresh pizza right on the boards. Long lines of excited customers fill the Boardwalk awaiting their slice. The pizza cooks throw the dough into the air, spinning it into an elongated thin and crispy crust. 9th & Boardwalk.

Browns Donuts Hot and fresh

Anyone who has spent a decent amount of time in Ocean City knows that you must wake up at the crack of dawn to get in line before the masses at Browns Donuts — and there’s a good reason for it. Their donuts are divine. Their sit-down breakfast is one thing, but the line of early risers who fill the north end of the Boardwalk to start their day with a dozen warm, sweet, fresh out of the fryer donuts speaks for itself. Everyone has their personal favorite, but the cinnamon sugar is to die for. St. Charles and Boardwalk.

Wards Pastry Cakes, donuts, cookies, pies

What would a summer birthday be without a cake from Wards?! Although Wards offers many pastries, deserts, sticky buns, pies… arguably the best of them all is their cakes. Upon walking in you are greeted with a wonderful smell of butter, flour, and sugar. 730 Asbury.

Kohr Brothers Custard

One of the most timeless Jersey Shore treats. Since 1927 Kohr Brothers has been brightening every little kid’s (and adults!) day and cooling off beachgoers. Their soft-serve custard is offered in both single and twist flavors.  Try the mint and chocolate twist. And in the fall, try the pumpkin cinnamon twist. 10th and Boardwalk.