I can say from experience that eating out as a vegan can be hard. However, with so many cities becoming more aware of the vegan/vegetarian population, it is easier to travel or live somewhere without having to stress about the food options that will be available. Oh, the places you’ll go (and be able to eat vegan)!
1. Charleston, SC
Okay, I may be a little biased here, but Charleston is amazing for vegans. With places like Huriyali, Gnome Café, and Black Bean Co., there are plenty of options to enjoy all the plant-based goods. Try the cheesecake from Huriyali, the tempeh reuben from Gnome Café, and pancakes from Black Bean Co.
The best part? These aren’t even the only vegan eats in Charleston. Most of the restaurants in the city are very vegetarian/vegan friendly and almost all are willing to accommodate.
2. New York City, NY
With New York being the melting pot it is, there is naturally something for everyone. Places like by CHLOE, Beyond Sushi, and Blossom all offer some of the most unique and delicious food. You could probably take anyone to these places and they would NEVER know it’s vegan.
You can spend quality time with whomever you please, vegan or not, and still get a kickass meal while saving innocent animal lives. Is there anything better? Okay, maybe free Hamilton tickets, but the amazing food can take place of that.
3. San Diego, CA
What’s better than enjoying the amazing weather and views of San Diego? Oh wait, I know. FOOD. Some of the most veg-tastic eats can be found in San Diego. Need proof? There’s Café Gratitude, SOL CAL, and Native Foods, just to name a few.
From juices to eggplant parmesan paninis, funky vegan options can be found all around the city. Whether you choose to dine in at Café Gratitude and enjoy some pad-thai kelp noodles or grab a pitaya bowl to bring to the beach from SOL CAL, being vegan is no biggie here.
4. Austin, TX
There’s no doubt that there’s some awesome good ole BBQ down in Texas, but what may come as a shock is the variety of cruelty-free cooking. There’s the Daily Juice Café if you’re looking for some wholesome grab-n-go meals, juices, or açai bowls (to Instagram of course), and if you’re in the mood for classic diner food, then Counter Culture may be the place for you.
5. Washington, DC
It’s no surprise that such a happening place like DC has a plethora of restaurants that offer a lack of meat as well as meat substitutions on their menus. Craving the comfort of a nice hearty soup? Soupergirl has just the right stuff for you, and then some. Or if you’re looking to take your tastebuds on a journey, give DC Dosa a try for some Indian style food.
I can say from experience that these things, pictured above, are no joke. Prepare for a committed relationship with your food on that one.
There’s also places like Woodlands Vegan Bistro offering just a little bit of everything, whether you’re a junk food vegan, raw vegan, or just straight up vegan. Beefsteak Vegetables, one of the newer restaurants popping up in DC, is a build-your-own veggie palace where the only complaint is that there are too many vegetables to choose from.
6. Portland, OR
Oregon is a place of free thinking and beautiful scenery. Buuuuut, there are also some amazing cuisine options to choose from. For example, there is Blossoming Lotus, which offers a lovely Green Curry and Coconut Tofu.
7. Chicago, IL
Whether we like to admit it or not, Chicago is a pretty cool place that definitely deserves a visit. If the awesome city isn’t enough to win you over, how about some fried mac from Upton’s Naturals? There’s also Amitabul if you’re in the mood for a savory pancake, and Arya Bhavan to get your Indian fusion cuisine fix.
So pack your bags and get your appetites ready. With so many cities and places to choose from, you may need to save a little bit of money as well. At the same time, though, who doesn’t love a good road trip? With snacks included, of course.