A huge perk of attending GVSU is the fast-paced city life just 20 minutes away in Grand Rapids. From a Griffins' game at Van Andel Arena to a cold one at Founder's Brewing Company, there's always something fun to do downtown. No matter how I'm spending my night out, I'm worried about one thing: food. 

Ever since I became a vegetarian, eating out with friends became almost like a chore for me. I felt bad turning down restaurant suggestions that the rest of the group liked, so I became the queen of looking up menus online and preparing my order ahead of time.

Upon moving to Grand Rapids, I was enlightened by the plethora of veg-friendly restaurants I could enjoy with my friends. I rarely have to rummage through Google before arriving at a restaurant to decide if I can have something more satisfying than a boring house salad.

Amongst all the great options, 3 eateries reign supreme at providing quality, satiating meals for veg-heads.

Stella's Lounge

Shyanne Symons

Anytime I'm downtown, I always find myself craving a meal from Stella's. Their menu is full of great options for all diets ranging from vegan to omnivore. My personal favorites include the oh-so yummy sweet potato and black bean burrito and the poor man's potato wings (my meat-eating boyfriend RAVES about these!).

For those guests 21 and over, their drink menu is extensive, making for a quality night out. If you're in search of awesome food and drinks complete with a fun and unique atmosphere, this Grand Rapids original is for you.


If you're a beer connoisseur, chances are you've heard of HopCat. Although they're known for their humongous menu of craft beers, their selection of food is AH-MAZING.

Thanks to the food gods and goddesses, their famous Crack Fries are vegetarian and seriously to die for. Whether you're munching on them as a side or an appetizer, no veg must go without these delicacies. As far as entrees go, The Kitchen Sink is the ultimate fulfilling meal a vegetarian could get. Trust me...try it.

If you're a burger-and-a-brew type of person and see one that isn't specifically made veg, you can easily swap the meat for a delicious black-bean patty for FREE (a college student's favorite word). No matter what your meal of choice is, HopCat is sure to satisfy. Not from the GR area? They have TONS of other locations around Michigan and the Midwest! Purrr-fect!

The Electric Cheetah

Looking for the perfect lunch spot? This restaurant is just that. The Electric Cheetah has tons of options ideal for filling lunches and light dinners. This café-like joint is the prime spot for sandwiches, salads, and even mac 'n' cheese to satisfy every type of vegetarian craving.

Starting off with the Southern Raw Fries is a great idea because they are ADDICTIVE. A perfect cross between a salt and vinegar potato chip and a fresh french fry, this appetizer is great to share before exploring their other scrumptious offerings.

The Green Cuisine section of the menu is the spot for vegetarians to go. The Ole' Mexican Quinoa Kurt is a favorite entree of mine, fulfilling my hangry temper while keeping my macros in check with its extreme nutritional value. The best part of these items? Any protein can be switched out for grilled tofu.

Leaving room for dessert is your best bet here. Their cookies are baked to order, ensuring that they're warm and ready for you to chow down. Although you may not want to, sharing is definitely caring: These suckers are HUGE. 

beer, coffee, wine, tea
Alex Frank

Eating out isn't the chore it used to be for vegetarians, so feel free to say YES! to your bestie's invite out to any of these restaurants without hesitation! Embrace your vegetarianism, cheers!