Vegetarian Restaurants Serve Much More Than Salad
Vegetarian restaurants have gotten a bad rap over the years. Meat marketers denigrate vegan dining establishments for serving only “rabbit food,” saying that patrons leave hungry. But nothing could be further from the truth. Here are ten tasty, filling meals you can only find on a vegetarian restaurant menu.
#1. Grilled Seitan Sandwich – Seitan, a wheat-based meat replacement that has a texture very similar to poultry, is a delicious sandwich-stuffer popular with vegetarians and vegans alike. Try a barbecue seitan sandwich for a rib sticking treat.
#2. Real-Deal Veggie Pizza – Veggie mozzarella cheese replaces dairy cheese on the pizza at a vegetarian restaurant. Virtually indistinguishable from the real thing, veggie mozzarella melts and stretches with the same gooey goodness. Add peppers, onions and sun-dried tomatoes to make it really great.
#3. Tofu Scramble – A common feature on vegan restaurant Sunday brunch menus, the tofu scramble is a loaded jumble of tofu and fresh veggies. It has all the taste of a breakfast scramble at other restaurants without the fat and cholesterol. You leave your table full every time.
#4. Veggie Burger – Thick and juicy, veggie burgers have come a long way since they were introduced over 20 years ago. With variations such as spicy black bean and italian herb, you’ll be sure to find a veggie burger to suit you.
#5. Portabello Burger – Vegetarian restaurants take a burger-sized portabello mushroom, marinate it in savory herbs and spices, then grills it up and serves it on a bun. Meaty and filling, it is especially satisfying.
#6. Hummus with Bread – Hummus, a spicy spread reminiscent of bean dip, is fantastic on fresh pita bread. Many vegan restaurants make their own custom blend of hummus and bake the pita bread fresh daily. You can order it for your appetizer or make an entire meal of this Mediterranean favorite.
#7. Veggie Wrap – Packed with vegetables, vegan cheese and sometimes nuts, the veggie wrap makes a great companion to a bowl of soup or a salad. The veggie wrap has become so popular at vegetarian restaurants that some traditional restaurants have stolen the recipes for themselves.
#8. Vegan waffles with soy sausage – Vegetarian restaurant chefs have mastered the art of fluffy, delicious waffles without eggs, making them a favorite on the veggie breakfast menu. Couple the waffles with a smoky soy sausage and you’ve got yourself a home-style favorite.
#9. Fake Egg Salad – Once the chef finishes blending tofu with vegan mayo and his or her secret egg salad ingredients, it is extremely similar to the egg salad you’d order somewhere else. The only thing missing is the fat, cholesterol and calories loaded into traditional egg salad. You don’t really miss those, do you?
#10. Grilled Cheeseless Sandwich – By simply replacing the dairy cheese with vegan cheese, this old trusty drops 197 calories, 12 g of fat, and 85 mg of cholesterol. Add a cup of vegetarian soup at your favorite vegetarian restaurant for a hot, healthy lunch.
Vegan restaurants cook up healthy, hearty meals to appeal to a variety of taste preferences. Order one of these filling meals next time you visit a vegetarian restaurant and you won’t leave hungry.
New York East Village Vegetarian Restaurants Are a Hub for Vegetarian Diners
The East Village, an east Manhattan neighborhood, has long been synonymous with art and culture. It has also become known as one of the most veg-friendly neighborhoods in New York. With over 27 vegetarian restaurants in a ten block radius, this unique neighborhood is a must-visit for diners searching for a true vegetarian experience.
East Village has a Unique Culture
The East Village began its legacy as an artists’ mecca in the 1950s. Located on the east side of Greenwich Village, students and artists were drawn to the area by the cheap rent and an existing bohemian population. By 1960, the neighborhood had become a hot spot for artists and musicians alike. Andy Warhol, Nan Goldin and Jeff Koons are just a few of the many artists who have frequented the area for both recreation and exhibition of their work.
Musicians also found favor. Musical performances over the past 50 years have included shows by The Grateful Dead, the Allman Brothers, The Who, Blondie and even Madonna. Rent, the 1996 Broadway musical set in the East Village, won four Tony Awards and a Pulitzer Prize for Drama. The characteristic art-and-music culture of the neighborhood continues to this day.
Over the years, the neighborhood has become a veritable melting pot of cultures, lending an exceptional diversity to vegetarian restaurant menus. Nearby New York University and Cooper Union School of Art each attract an influx of both business and art students to the area. German, Polish, and Ukrainian immigrants draw on eastern European influences; Hispanic and Japanese residents have also left their mark on the local scene. With so many choices, East Village diners can often find a delicious vegetarian version of their family favorites.
Vegetarian Dining in the East Village
Thanks to heavily vegetarian student and artist populations, the East Village has spawned a wealth of vegetarian dining options. With a steady flow of customers, a vegetarian restaurant is a good investment, leading many owners to tailor their menu specifically to their vegetarian and vegan clientele. Additionally, many of the restaurant owners are vegetarian themselves, making them uniquely aware of the dietary needs and tastes of their diners.
Menus at a typical East Village vegetarian restaurant wanders far from the standard baked-tofu-and-vegetable fare offered outside of the neighborhood. Seitan sandwiches, grilled veggie pizzas, and handmade veggie burgers satisfy many a hungry appetite. For many vegetarians, the choices are endless, drawing diners from throughout NYC and beyond.
The East Village boasts its own unique culture dating back over 50 years. The influence of artists, musicians, immigrants and students have given to rise to some of best vegetarian restaurants in the world. A vegetarian restaurant in this one-of-kind neighborhood is well worth the visit.
Vegetarian Restaurant Recipes Are Healthy and Easy
There are a number of ways to prepare a meal for those you care about. Though many people are committed carnivores, on the other end of the aisle are vegetarians. If you’ve tried many vegetarian dishes, certainly you have your favorites. The good news: there are plenty vegetarian restaurant recipes available online, waiting for you.
As you search for vegetarian restaurant recipes on the computer, you will soon discover that these recipes really cover the gamut. From lists of starters and appetizers on to the main course, you’re sure to find something you’ll want to try. You really ought to take advantage of different courses that you can find in the restaurants you enjoy.
Vegetarian recipes are fantastic to try because you get to play with the ingredients list a bit. Swap out one veggie for another, and get creative! However, if you are purposing to create a copy of a meal you saw, then you ought to stick to the original.
If you’re a vegetarian, then you already know what advantages the vegetarian diet has to offer you. Of course, you will lower your cholesterol intake, you’ll get necessary nutrients and vitamins many people need to supplement with, and at the same time make great recipes everyone can enjoy and not feel guilty eating.
If cooking is your thing, then surely you can stand to widen your repertoire with vegetarian dishes? If not, then you’ll simply be floored when you get to try some of these versatile vegetarian restaurant recipes you can find online and in other places. There are numberless varieties on every recipe, each with its own nuance.
Besides all of these neat benefits, you can be sure that you’ll find a global selection of recipes online. Some of these ingredients may be difficult to find in your region, but again, you can substitute as needed. Try a smoked eggplant Indian dish, or perhaps some California sushi rolls made instead with cabbage, for instance.
Sometimes, vegetarians find it hard making different meals throughout the week. Since the internet is full of vegetarian restaurant recipes that you’ll love and probably recognize, you won’t come up against this “chef’s block” anymore.
Simply being vegetarian doesn’t require a down-grade in your meals’ tastiness. You will discover that restaurants use only the best ingredients, taking all the care they need in order to present with the best meals. You can do the same, right from home.
The Best Vegetarian Restaurants in Austin
Although Texas might be famous for its cattle-ranches, insiders know that some of the best food in Austin is vegetarian. Vegetarians have their choice of restaurant types in Austin. Relax at a four star vegan bistro, or grab a quick bite in a vegetarian cafe. Your options are nearly limitless.
For a quick lunch, Austin residents love Leaf, a restaurant specializing in gourmet salads. Although some of Leaf’s offerings do contain meat, they offer plenty of vegetarian options such as the Margherita on the Works, which contains fresh greens, mozzarella, basil, cherry tomatoes, black olives, and pine nuts served with a honey-tangerine dressing. If you plan to dine at Leaf frequently, join the Loyal Leafers club. After you purchase five salads, you will receive a free special treat. Leaf is only open for lunch, but Austin has plenty of vegetarian restaurants that are open for dinner.
For breakfast, a snack, or just a cup of coffee, Bouldin Creek Coffeehouse & Café is a relaxed all-vegetarian restaurant. Most of the items on the menu are also vegan. Locals love the quirky, arty ambiance, and this restaurant is a favorite destination for those on a first date. This coffeehouse encourages lingering, and you will find a variety of books and board games to amuse yourself with while you dine. Although this is a coffee house, they have plenty of filling meal options available. The Soul Food Plate and Cosmic Sloppy Joes are perennial favorites.
If you are in the mood for an ethnic dining experience, check out Swad Indian Vegetarian Restaurant?. Diners rave about the taste and quality of the food. Additionally, Aster’s Ethiopian offers many vegan and vegetarian meals, and the Ethiopian cuisine can be a nice change of pace.
For vegans, Austin has restaurants that will cater to your dietary requirements. Vegan diners should check out Bodhi Eco Café, which offers mostly vegan entrees. The chef takes flavor very seriously, and uses mostly local ingredients in order to produce the most delicious meals possible. Bodhi Eco Café is also perfect for the budget conscious diner, as most of their offerings are under ten dollars. Casa de Luz is another vegan restaurant, with a focus on holistic macrobiotic dining. All of the food served in Casa de Luz is organic and locally grown. Individuals who only eat raw foods should stop into DaVine Foods, which offers a wide variety of raw dishes. They also offer many gluten-free entrees.
If you are staying close to the University of Texas, the closest vegetarian restaurant is Veggie Heaven, which serves Chinese food. They also offer brown rice, which is a rarity even in most vegetarian restaurants. Delivery and take out are available, making this the perfect vegetarian option when you feel like staying at home and being a couch potato.
Vegetarians in Austin have more than enough restaurant options. There is so much variety available that even the most refined palate will never get bored. Even if you are a die-hard meat lover, take a chance and try one of Austin’s exceptional vegetarian restaurants. Your taste buds will thank you.
Vegetarian London – A Guide To Some Of The Best Meat-Free Eateries In The City
It’s a frequent problem for many vegetarians. You want to go out for a nice meal with your friends, but find yourself limited to unimaginative nut roasts and tasteless ‘veggie burgers’ while they tuck in to a steak. Fortunately, in London, you will find a great selection of fantastic vegetarian and vegan restaurants spread across the city, each offering tasty, nutritious and creative dishes that are sure to delight even the most stubborn carnivores.
Whilst the places detailed below are by no means an exhaustive list, they are among the most notable and highly regarded veggie eateries you will come across on a tour of London’s culinary delights.
Soho – A Vegetarian’s Dream
Of all the areas of London, it is perhaps Soho that offers the highest concentration of vegetarian restaurants. It is an area renowned for embracing things that are a little different from the norm, and visitors will delight in the many marvellous vegetable-based options on display.
First up, Hummus Bros is without doubt one of the most unique restaurants in London. This is because their cuisine focuses on just one thing – hummus. Guests enjoy a portion of fresh, home-made hummus on tasty warm pitta bread, accompanied by a delicious topping. While these are not exclusively vegetarian, there are many meat-free options such as fava beans, chickpeas and mushrooms with sun-dried tomatoes, as well as a selection of salads.
Just off Regent Street and a short walk from Piccadilly Circus, Tibits offers another intriguing and different culinary experience. The latest in a long line of successful restaurants stemming from the Swiss-based Hiltl establishment, guests simply walk up to the ‘food boat’, choose from the selection of tempting Asian, Indian and Mediterranean inspired dishes and then pay for their meal by weight.
Another Soho favourite is Mildred’s, revered by many as a local institution following over two decades of producing high quality, inventive vegetarian fare. Their menu changes seasonally to ensure diners can enjoy the finest ingredients on offer, with dishes such as burritos, stir-fries and Japanese gyoza dumplings given a marvellous vegetarian twist.
West London’s Vegetarian Delights
Over in West London, vegetarian diners will find plenty more to whet their appetite in stylish, popular areas such as Kensington, Shepherd’s Bush and Hammersmith.
One of the best places to eat here is 222 Veggie Vegan Restaurant in West Kensington. Situated just a short distance away from the exclusive Queen’s Club Tennis venue, the restaurant serves tasty 100% vegan dishes such as pumpkin and pine nut risotto and oyster mushroom and spinach raclette. The menu is particularly inventive, with a wonderful selection of cakes and sweets on hand to finish off your meal.
Another popular veggie venue is Blah Blah Blah in Shepherd’s Bush, rumoured to be a favoured haunt of Sir Paul McCartney. Situated just yards away from Shepherd’s Bush Empire, Blah Blah Blah operates a bring-your-own alcohol policy, while they also provide diners with crayons so they can decorate their table while they eat.
For a treat, The Gate opposite Hammersmith Apollo is a truly worthwhile dining experience. Guests are welcomed into an artistic, well-lit dining room that is invariably packed to the rafters. The menu contains such delights as sweet potato and pomegranate salad and winter vegetable and chickpea tagine, while the sublime mezze platters are always a popular choice for sharing.
Elsewhere in London
To finish this vegetarian culinary tour of London, here are three more establishments that are certainly worth a visit.
Itadaki Zen in Kings Cross enjoys the distinction of being the very first organic, vegan Japanese restaurant in Europe, with guests able to enjoy dishes such as Harumaki spring rolls and vegetable tempura. The restaurant aims to serve healthy, fresh cuisine that banishes the myth that vegan food lacks the inspiration of their meaty counterparts.
Occupying a cosy basement restaurant on Covent Garden since 1974, Food For Thought is held in very high regard by its regulars, who enjoy the quirky, intimate atmosphere. With a constantly changing menu supplemented by creative specials, it is little wonder that Food For Thought has endured for all these years.
Finally, if you are searching for truly fine vegetarian dining, look no further than the magnificent Vanilla Black, the only London vegetarian restaurant recommended by the prestigious Michelin guide. Situated near the idyllic Lincoln’s Inn Fields, their food has attracted rave reviews from a host of food critics, and is very affordable given the quality, making it arguably the pinnacle of London vegetarian cuisine.
Vegetarian Dining in the Caribbean
For vegetarians, dining out presents many challenges; finding vegan choices can be even more frustrating. Add travel to the mix and you’ve got a potential recipe for disaster. While the Caribbean’s abundance of seafood will suit pescetarians, discovering true vegetarian meals requires a bit more work. Fortunately, a little research before you go will help find dining choices which are not only suitable but delicious.
If you’re planning to take a cruise, you’re in luck. A number of cruise lines offer vegetarian options, a complete vegetarian menu, or can make you special dishes on request. Celebrity Cruises has received rave reviews for their excellent gourmet vegetarian cuisine, which tailors meals to diners’ needs. NCL and Royal Caribbean also rank highly with vegetarian passengers. Carnival Cruise Lines, on the other hand, may be one to avoid. Although they offer one vegetarian item per menu and claim they can accommodate vegetarian requests, they don’t have a dietician on board, so their ability to make changes is limited. For vegans, this can be a big problem. One vegan reports that she was assured before the cruise that her diet would be no trouble; however, all she could actually eat was bread, lettuce, and an occasional baked potato. When booking a cruise with any company, tell them you’re vegetarian or vegan and ask any questions you may have about menu offerings.
Land-lubbers may find the easiest way to assure a variety of vegetarian choices is to stay at a resort with several restaurants. The Sandals chain, for example, includes up to eleven eateries at each location. Their menus typically include at least one vegetarian option in each category. While that may sound limiting, resort menus tend to change frequently, often nightly. Resorts also usually have a buffet, so you’ll be able to pick and choose. Sample menus are generally posted on a resort’s website, so logging online may be one way to do a bit of investigative work. Still, it’s a good idea to check with the resort before booking to find out how veg-friendly they are.
Higher-end resorts are often more conscious of serving healthy food, including vegetarian dishes. Some of them use locally grown and/or organic items in their cooking. Even if you can’t afford to stay there, you may be able to eat at their restaurants. For instance, the Sugar Mill Restaurant at the Sugar Mill Hotel (British Virgin Islands) is a local treat that’s worth the trip. Voted “The Best Restaurant in the Caribbean” by readers of Caribbean Travel & Life, this gourmet restaurant’s ever-changing menu always offers several vegetarian dishes and its atmosphere makes it a great place for a special night out.
Meat-free travelers interested in visiting the Dominican Republic should consider Sirenis Hotels, which have an all-vegetarian restaurant at their Punta Cana resort complex. Comprised of Sirenis Cocotal Beach Resort and Sirenis Tropical Suites, the vegetarian restaurant seems to be on the all-inclusive plan of Tropical Suites but not Cocotal Beach Resort. If you prefer to stay at Cocotal, check with them to find out if you’ll be able to eat at the vegetarian restaurant.
As far as specific countries go, Jamaica is veggie heaven. Because Rastafarians are vegetarian, options abound. The key word to remember is “Ital,” derived from “vital.” Ital cooking uses pure, organic ingredients, and is essentially vegan. However, some dishes may contain honey, so if you don’t eat honey be sure to ask about it. In fact, Ital is a good word to look out for anywhere, as Ital food can be found in other countries, too.
Puerto Rico also has a number of cafés and restaurants which are either all-vegetarian or veg-friendly. If you’re having a hard time finding a place, keep your eyes out for the fast food chain Pollo Tropical, which doesn’t put meat in its rice and beans.
Of course, ethnic restaurants are good stand-bys anywhere. An island’s ethnic population will partially determine what’s available. For instance, Trinidad has a number of Chinese and Indian restaurants because immigrants came over from those countries prior to the 20th century.
For casual or take-out meals, look for natural food supermarkets, which sometimes have delis with vegetarian items. Nature’s Way in the British Virgin Islands’ Road Town is one such place.
The brief list of dining options below will help you get started. Some aren’t exclusively vegetarian, but all include at least a few veggie choices on their menus. Vegan and vegan-friendly are indicated with a V.
Antigua: Kalabashe, St. John’s West. V
Barbados: Back to Eden, Speightstown. V
Cancun: 100% Natural. V
Cayman Islands: Veggie Delights, Georgetown. V
Dominican Republic: Lotos Restaurant, Santo Domingo. V
Nevis: Natural Livity, Newcastle Village. V
Puerto Rico: Asiquesi, Cabo Rojo. V
St. Martin: Top Carrot, Simpson Bay.
Trinidad: Mother Nature, Port of Spain.
Tobago: Kariwak Village Restaurant, Crown Point.
US Virgin Islands: Soul Vegetarian, Christiansted. V
When you’re on your trip, if you want to try a restaurant that’s out of the way, call first since listings can be outdated. With a little preparation, you’ll spend less time worrying about where you’re going to eat and more time enjoying your travels.