Hallo, escapaders! It’s SCHNITZEL territory! Mozart’s birthplace of Austria is all about the wienerschnitzel; whether you’re in Salzburg or Vienna, you must try one just to try. But the wienerschnitzel is far from healthy – it is a pan fried breaded piece of meat (traditionally pork) that is similar to the American country fried steak. Beyond schnitzels in the beautiful fairytale Austria, there are sausages, meat, meat, and more meat. Let’s see how we can juggle a healthy meal balance while experiencing the schnitzel culture in lovely The Sound of Music country:
BREAKFAST: LET’S POWER UP!
Skip the meat! Eat a meatless breakfast with grains, protein, fruit, and vegetables before heading out for the day.
ROAM: LET’S MARK!
Set a daily goal for physical activity (e.g. 8 miles of walking the town, 1 hour of cardio exercise, etc.). In between meals, walk, walk, and WALK!
HYDRATE: LET’S REFUEL!
Remember to hydrate throughout the day so you can keep marking your territory and flush out those schnitzels.
LUNCH: LET’S GRUB!
Let’s save the heaviest meal for lunch. Here are some lunch options that will give you a good taste of Austrian food:
- The ORIGINAL Wienerschnitzel (anywhere!) – Crunchy, heavy, greasy, and juicy pan-fried breaded pork cutlet sprinkled with lemon juice; this is one guilty pleasure that a visitor must indulge. Be sure to add a dark green salad and parsley potatoes to your order for a balance.
- Sausage variation with sauerkraut (anywhere!) – Don’t care for the schnitzel, but want to devour some meat? Well, being next to Germany, Austria is sausage heaven! A combination of savory meats served with lightly acidic sauerkraut for that perfect balance.
- Chicken schnitzel (at Figlmüller in Vienna) – Still not approved by your cardiologist, but a slightly better alternative to the pork cutlet in the original wienerschnitzel. Again, add yummy parsley potatoes and a mixed salad of your choice.
- Bring your own food (at Augustiner Bräu Kloster Mülln in Salzburg) – When in Salzburg, you should head over to Augustiner Bräu Kloster Mülln, which is the BEST beer garden in Salzburg for both locals and tourists! Lively ambience and an authentic Austrian experience. You can pack your own food and utensils, but definitely NOT your own beer. You even wash your own cup and grab your own beers. Don’t want to pack a lunch? Food options for purchase are plentiful and hearty, ranging from ambrosial sausages with sauerkraut to salted pretzels to fatty pork belly with creamy potato salads.
AFTERNOON TREATS: LET’S EARN IT!
1 treat only if you’ve earned it; did you pass your midpoint physical activity daily goal?
- 1 scoop of ice cream at Icezeit (Salzburg): try the Salzburg, Mozart, or nockerl flavor
- 1 applestrudel with ice cream (anywhere!)
- 1 salted pretzel (anywhere!)
- 1 sweet pancake (anywhere!)
DINNER: LET’S DINE OUT AND ABOUT
Let’s skip the meat and get something a bit lighter, but appetizing at the same time! Here are some fantastic dinner options:
- Scrumptious homemade noodles with mushroom ragout and fresh parmesan (at Zwettler’s in Salzburg)
- Flavorful vegetarian gulasch (potato & green bean) served with a small green salad (at Alter Fuchs in Salzburg)
- Fresh hummus (+ olive oil) with pita and a large colorful salad with feta cheese, mushrooms, potatoes, and tomatoes (at Hollerei in Vienna)
- Choose from a wide range of dining options (AND enjoy a movie outside under the stars during the summer) at the food stands over at Rathausplatz (in Vienna)
- And, remember that making your own meal is always a healthy option as you can control the ingredients. Of course, we all travel to experience the food culture, BUT sometimes making your own simple meal is a healthy breather from excessive eating out. Plus, you can check out the local produce and goods at the grocery markets, which is a fun experience in itself.
EVENING DINNER TREATS: LET’S HAVE HEALTHY TREATS BEFORE BEDTIME!
Time to reflect – Did you reach your daily physical activity goal? If yes, WOOF HOO! If no, set a rigid plan to reach it tomorrow, whether it is determining your walking/running route or sticking with your gym/workout schedule. Add some extra time or miles to compensate for the day. Whether you reached your goal or not, it’s a good idea to lay off those schnitzels (or anything heavy or deep fried) and resort to something lighter the next day.
- Fruit, fruit, and more FRUIT
REST: LET’S SLEEP…zZzz
After a long day of eating, exploring, and walking, it is finally time for your body to rest up for the next day of adventure.
Yes, you can do it – you can successfully balance your schnitzels in Austria! Going to neighboring Germany next? Check out my 10 favorite foods at beer gardens/halls in Munich and 5 cheap vegetarian eats in Berlin!
Markin’ it up,
Roger Wellington a.k.a. The Doob