Located just off campus in nearby downtown Urbana, The Dancing Dog Eatery & Juicery is home to 100% vegan cuisine. It opened back in 2014 and serves as one of two vegan restaurants in Urbana—The Red Herring being the other. While The Dancing Dog is never packed, its relaxing vibes and amazing food keeps customers coming back.
The menu has a decent amount of options, from starters to soups, sandwiches, salads, desserts and even pizza. All dishes can be made wheat free upon request. They also have a Sunday Brunch menu that's definitely on my brunch bucket list.
The drink menu includes a variety of freshly pressed juices, smoothies, tea, coffee, craft beer, wine and mimosas. I was overwhelmed and wanted to try everything on the menu.
Price-wise, everything seemed pretty reasonable, considering the menu is entirely vegan-friendly. The portions were very generous as well, which is always appreciated. The lunch menu ranges from about $6 to $10, while the entrees are priced from $9 to $11. The breakfast menu was also pretty inexpensive with prices ranging from $6 to $10.
I felt obliged to order one of their juices since "Juicery" is part of the name of the restaurant. I tried the "Tingler," which is a mix of beet, carrot, apple, orange, cucumber, lemon, lime, ginger, kale, spinach and parsley. It was undeniably refreshing and had me feeling extra healthy.
While I haven't had much vegan food in my life, I fell in love with this place the very first time I ate here. I've been a picky eater my whole life, and only recently have I been willing to branch out and try new things—like vegan food. I've actually been interested in eating vegan lately, so this place was on the top of my must try list.
I was torn on what to order since everything was new to me, so my server recommended the veggie burger. It was hands down the best veggie burger I've ever had. The burger was packed with flavor and did not disappoint. I devoured it in what felt like seconds.
The second time I ate here, I tried the "Pesto Grilled Cheeze." I wasn't sure how fake cheese would taste since I'm so obsessed with real cheese, but I was pleasantly surprised and would definitely recommend this dish no matter how loyal you are to real grilled cheese.
What really sold me on The Dancing Dog was their desserts, which are all made daily. Apparently, they're famous for their "Death By Chocolate Cake," which I've heard is rich, creamy, moist and, of course, full of chocolate flavor.
Although I was tempted to try the cake, I was really dying to taste the double chocolate cupcake. I was pleased with my decision since it was probably the best cupcake I've ever had. I am still in shock that there was absolutely no dairy products in it.
Students might think that there's not much to do in downtown Urbana, but The Dancing Dog Eatery & Juicery is certainly worth checking out whether you're vegan or not. Pick up an order to-go, dine in or order online using GrubHub. Either way, you're not going to want to miss out on all the tastiness The Dancing Dog has to offer.
For more amazing local eats, check out Champaign Urbana's Most Underrated Restaurants.