Staying vegan while eating out

Eating out can be a challenge for vegans, as not all restaurants have clear vegan choices on their menus.  While many restaurants are providing more meatless options, these options are designed primarily for lacto- or ovo-lacto vegetarians, not vegans.  If I know in advance where I will be dining, I check the online menu, if it’s available, to see what it contains that I can have veganized.  I like to phone ahead, too, to see what can be done to accommodate me. It’s important to have these conversations with the servers or the chefs, since there are still some common misconceptions in restaurants that vegans would be happy with a green salad as the entire meal, or that an overly simple pasta primavera will do the trick.  I am not averse to pasta primavera, I might add, but it’s not exactly a very inspired choice, particularly if it doesn’t come with a good variety of fresh vegetables.  In some cases, you can order the vegetarian option on the menu with the removal of any dairy.

This article provides some good advice for maintaining a vegan diet in restaurants. With regard to choosing the type of cuisine, my preference is for Italian (my favourite), as Italian food tends use a lot of vegetables and many dishes can easily be veganized. Pizza is always high on my list at any time, but especially because it can be a simple matter of asking them to not put the cheese on the pizza.



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