A common argument made against being vegan is that you miss out on many social experiences with family and friends that revolve around food. This, however, is a misconception and what better way to prove that than showing you that a vegan can even eat at one of the most vegan-unfriendly restaurants: a steakhouse. Because if you can survive as a vegan at a steakhouse, you can go vegan anywhere. 

1. Sides are your mains.

If you have ever been to a steakhouse, you know that the options consist of meat, chicken, fish, and more meat. You're most likely not going to find any vegan main course options here but that doesn't mean there isn't something for you to eat. My advice to you is to load up on the sides. Order two or maybe three of any vegan friendly sides you can find on the menu.

Although steakhouses are notorious for their creamed veggies, most have some sort of steamed or sautéed options like broccoli, corn, spinach, and mushrooms. You're meal is going to look so colorful and healthy that your meat eating friend might even be jealous. 

2. Don't get saucy. 

Steakhouses are known for drowning everything from simple salads to steak in sauce. Make sure to let your waiter know that you are vegan while ordering, so that they can be wary of any buttery, mayo-based sauces that the chef might try to sneak into your meal.

Some good tricks are to ask for any sauces on the side and ask them to cook everything you order in olive oil rather than butter. Although it might seem like you're being annoying, it's definitely better that sending food back once it gets to the table. And don't forget your please and thank you's. 

3. Hack the salads.

Steakhouses will almost always have a few salad options to choose from. Not all are vegan, but they can be with a few changes.

First, look for anything called or resembling a "garden salad." This is going to be your best bet for an entirely vegan salad without any changes necessary.

However, if there's nothing like that on on the menu, just hack the vegetarian salads. Ask for no cheese or egg on any salad and make it vegan. And for any salad it's always a good idea to specify what type of dressing you want or if you want none at all.

A big bonus hack is if you can ask them to add some nuts, seeds, or maybe AVOCADO to your salad for some plant fats. 

4. Carb up!

The only was you are going to be full at the end of your meal is if you CARB UP. A small salad and some veggies are probably not going to fill you up but bread, potatoes, and rice will.

Usually a steakhouse will bring bread for the table, so ask if it's vegan and dig in. Just be on the look out for any bread toped or stuffed with cheese. The dips or spreads that the server brings to the table will probably not be vegan, so ask for some olive oil and balsamic. 

We all know that where there's steak, there's potatoes. You know what that means... FRIES. Piles and piles of so many different types. I've seen classic cut, steak fries, curly, and shoestring (my personal favorite). They almost, always come out hot and perfectly greasy. Although they're not the healthiest option, they're still good for the soul. Make sure to avoid any cheesy or saucy fries. If you would prefer a less greasy option, many steakhouses have amazing, giant baked potatoes that will keep you satisfied. Just specify that you want the toppings on the side or taken off entirely.

Finally, most steakhouses will have some sort of grain option on the menu like rice. It's normally plain and simple, and when paired with veggies, you can't go wrong. 

5. Ask.

tea, coffee
Jocelyn Hsu

My final word of advice is to not be afraid to ask. You're server is there to provide you with what you want. As long as you are very polite, understanding, and decisive, asking about what is in a dish and if modifications can be made should not be a problem. Just be kind and friendly about it. And leaving a solid tip at the end wouldn't hurt either.  

Being vegan is not a hindrance if you know how to deal with it. If you are always be prepared and flexible, you can tackle any night out.