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Finding vegan fare in dining establishments is getting easier

Dressed Green salad with a portobello mushroom and avocado on whole grain bread sandwich.
Dressed Green salad with a portobello mushroom and avocado on whole grain bread sandwich.
Photo taken by author: Lisa Altmann

Finding dining establishments that offer vegetarian and vegan fare can be difficult in a country that caters to carnivores. Even so, it is possible to hunt down restaurants and stores that offer plant-based foods. It just may take a bit more effort than others looking to find meat and meat products as the latter is an everyday diet normality for diners.

In the search for vegan fare when on the road or on the town Friday night there is one place to keep in mind. Soup Plantation & Sweet Tomatoes is a chain restaurant where an abundance of plant-based foodstuffs can be found. This chain offers salad bar style dining and soups that are labeled either vegan or vegetarian if they fit the definition.

Surprisingly, Jason’s Deli is vegan friendly. They not only serve up mile high meat sandwiches, but offer not only a vegetarian menu, but quite an array of vegan foods as well. Jason’s website has a specific listing of all their vegan offerings so that dining out with non-vegan friend’s and family can be done easily.

It can be quite easy when looking for vegan foods to enjoy as a diner in many restaurants. When in doubt, ask the server whether a menu item contains meats or meat products. This includes inquiring of a food being cooked with animal products even if it is not served as such.

Italian eateries offer plenty of vegan dishes, but simply ask questions before ordering to be confident of their true to veggie state. For example, some red sauces are cooked with a beef bone then strained while marinara sauces are traditionally all vegetables and contain no animal products. Some pasta’s are made from egg so be sure to ask about these as well.

Grocery shopping and dining at home is the easiest way to know exactly what is being eaten. But when time is limited it’s good to know that many places offer extensive salad bars and other suggestions to their regular menu items. As the plant-based way of eating gains momentum among diners, more establishments will accommodate this requirement of its guests.

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