When I find a place that has Vegan options in Puerto Rico I feel need to share it with you so you can help me spread the word.
I shared on my personal blog part of the awesome experience I had a few days ago during a business lunch at SOGO Asian Bistro in San Juan.
The next day I took my family for lunch and here is a quick review of the delicious and well prepared meal we enjoyed.
Fast Service with a Smile
We got there during the lunch hour rush which seemed pretty packed. As the patrons left to get back to their duties, we sat and enjoyed the rest of our meal.
That said if you want a good meal at a great value and don’t have more than an hour for a lunch break, the food is served in a very timely manner.
Vegan Asian Appetizers
We started our meal when the owner Kahoo, (a good friend of mine) recommended ordering sautéed vegetables as a side and some spring rolls. They were both great options.
We also started off with some Jasmine tea to set a relaxing tone to our lunch.
Vegan Asian Entrees
When I visit a restaurant with Vegan options, I usually ask for as many vegan food items as I can fit in my stomach (I hope my personal trainer is not reading this).
I ordered a bento box which included the following:
- Salad with Ginger Dressing
- Fried Vegetable Rice
- Sautéed Vegetables
- Veggie Sushi Roll
For my daughter (and me) I ordered fried tofu with black mushrooms and Lucy ordered a few sushi vegetable rolls that where all delicious.
After our entrees, we had dessert which were Lychee Fruit in a cute martini glass.
Overall the meal was great and very tasty; something difficult for many regular restaurants when they prepare vegan options.
I am so thankful for Kahoo and how he went the extra mile to cater to our lifestyle, the attention to detail he paid to Daniela, so we could have one of the best meals in a long time.
If you are near San Juan and you’re seeking some vegan eats with an Asian, twist feel free to stop by SOGO Asian Bistro.
More About SOGO Asian BistroSOGO Asian Bistro Centro Comercial San Francisco
San Juan, Puerto Rico (787) 766-0111
As we drove to the west coast and received the news, via a “For Rent” sign, that our favorite restaurant in Joyudas which caters to vegans and vegetarians was closed, we decided to stop by our favorite placita in Cabo Rojo to get some coffee and snacks for Grandma.
Like many other local coffee places in Puerto Rico, they did not have any Soy or milk substitute. I usually ask for my coffee with coconut milk at this particular stand and they did not even have that available on this particular afternoon. As I watched the rest of my family have their toast & coffee, my uncle decided to walk around and search for a restaurant with vegan options. My uncle stopped at Casabe and asked Gabriela, who seem to be the waitress/hostess, if there where any vegetarian or vegan options. She answered yes and explained the options and went even further by offering a dish created by the chef if the options available did not coincide with our needs.
The Walk Toward the Restaurant
As I walked towards the restaurant, I was skeptical about the vegetarian and vegan options due to past disappointments. I was waiting for the moment I could prove this place was not fit for my Vegan lifestyle. After we were seated, I started asking Gabriela many questions where many others waiters would have given up on me, Gabriela very nicely explained the process of how they prepare the options I could order. As an appetizer she recommended a soup that was made of a few root vegetables I can’t recall including Yautia. They won me over when they where thoughtful enough to make a small batch without any beef or chicken stock. I have to say the soup was delicious even after the recipe modifications they made to fit my needs. We also requested some potatoes for my 18-month daughter. They made sure we got her food first confirming they are a family-oriented restaurant.
As a main course I requested the only vegan plate on the menu that made me feel like the food critic in one of my favorite Disney movies Ratatouille. I had the Ratatouille plate that was delicious. This helped Casabe seal the deal in making me a future patron.
After having a coffee and enjoying our meal I left with a big smile and wanting to return. Casabe will become my go-to restaurant in Cabo Rojo that caters to vegans like me.
Visit or Contact Casabe
Calle Barbosa #53 Esq. Baldiority Cabo Rojo, PR
Phone: (787)851-1888 | (787)851-1888
As the days get closer and you have probably mapped out where you will stay and what sessions of SXSW you will attend, one of the questions you might want to ask yourself if you are a Vegan or Vegetarian is where will you eat? We have listed some Food Carts that cater to Vegans and Vegetarians for when you are on-the-go.
Here are about six restaurants located Downtown in Austin that we found that serve and cater to vegans and vegetarians.
- Austin Java will serve you breakfast all day with products that are vegan and vegetarian friendly and non-GMO (They do not use products that are a Genetically Modified Organic.)
- Clay Pit if you want to do lunch and enjoy Indian Cuisine but check out their schedule before you reserve on the Open Tables system. Here is a list of their vegetarian options.
- Pita Pit offers you Lebanese style vegetarian options. They are also offering a vegan black bean patty.
- P.F. Changs If you would like to enjoy a sit down dinner and Asian cuisine.
- Serranos Tex Mex Restaurant will have vegetarian options for you . If you are a vegan just ask them to prepare your meals with out the cheese.
- Iron Cactus it has a great view of downtown Boston and Raúl’s experience during #SXSW was great both times Raúl choose to eat there.
- Casa de Luz – recommended by Nando Caban-Mendez and Thom Singer according to it’s website their nutritionally trained chefs handcraft plant based, 100% organic, vegan, vegetarian, alkalizing, nutrient-rich meals that will improve your health.
There are more restaurants in the downtown area that will serve you vegan or vegetarian options.
Thanks to VegAustin.com for providing great information. If you feel like venturing outside the downtown area, this site will provide you with other alternatives. I would check the list to make sure the restaurants are still operational as there were some that we found out of business.
We also posted a previous post on Vegetarian and Vegan Food Carts which also can give you a few other options.
Are there other restaurants in the Downtown area of Austin that serve Vegan or Vegetarian options?
Being that this is my second year that I will be assisting SXSW (South by Southwest) I am preparing a bit more before arriving into all the SXSW madness.
My first time as SXSW I was vegetarian so I was consuming dairy products. Most establishments offer multiple vegetarian options and even most SXSW parties have vegetarian friendly snack food or options where you can eat for free.
For the last few months I have made a few changes into my lifestyle and stopped consuming Dairy. So this year I have a different challenge and that is finding vegan options at #SXSW.
Austin Food Carts Site and Mobile/IOS App
Creating my SXSW Guide post for my blog I ran into the Austin Food site and found that they have a mobile app.
Looking into the App I was happy to find two categories with Vegan and Vegetarian friendly food trucks.
I will be definitely using the app during SXSW and try to make my way around the event.
At the moment there are 22 options listed as vegetarian and 14 options as Vegan.
Feel free to download the App and make it easy on yourself when you are in Austin.
Vegetarian (including list above)
Any other suggestions that are not listed here please feel free to share?
Dallas has a reputation: Southern drawls, women with bleached blond highly hair sprayed coiffures, JR Ewing, Urban Cowboy and the Dallas Cowgirls in high boots and almost-not-there skirts.
My first trip to Dallas was more than 25 years ago. It was a business trip, and I felt some culture shock when at a business dinner, one of the men ordered the food for all of us at the table. I felt like I was a woman living in the ‘40s. The worst part about it was he ordered an array of meats I wouldn’t touch. Back then, the word vegetarian was not heard much, and certainly the guys at my dinner table would have been clueless about a meat free diet. I can’t recall, but I’m guessing I ate a small side salad, as I was so used to doing at establishments that didn’t offer vegetarian options. Back in those days, I was even used to going without any food, as the choices often were dismal.
Now in 2011, I had another business trip to Dallas. I was determined to try to work in as many of the vegan spots. A vegan friend gave me some pointers, and I also consulted dallasvegan.com
The first place I stopped into made me want to return for more. Spiral Diner looks like a funky chrome-laden diner with plenty of your traditional comfort foods like hot dogs and frito pies and milk shakes and ice cream – all vegan of course. Since I gave up comfort foods more than 35 years ago, those menu items didn’t appeal to me. However, Spiral Diner has a vast selection of wraps, sandwiches, and hot plates to choose from. They also have agave-sweetened caffeine-free sodas.
While I would have enjoyed ordering an appetizer, main plate and dessert or soda, I kept it simple with a wrap. My selection was a whole wheat tortilla filled with sweet potato, avocado, hummus, greens, candied walnuts and tahini dressing. I’ve mixed black beans with sweet potatoes before, and beans and avocado are a natural combo, but this was very different, tasty, crunchy, healthy and filling.
Next stop on the vegan express, Bliss Raw Cafe. I know all the benefits of raw foods, but let’s face it, raw foods aren’t always as comforting as cooked dishes. Wrong. I ordered Vietnamese noodles. This raw version was made out of kelp with an almond paste dressing. I splurged on a dessert. Since I don’t consume any sweeteners except agave, I was in heaven with this agave-sweetened cacao brownie. The next day I returned and the owner suggested their coconut kale enchiladas, which are apparently a best seller. The tortilla was a reddish paper thin sheet made out of coconut. The enchiladas were stuffed with kale and other greens, and topped with white and orange creamy dairy-free sauces. Now I know why they call this restaurant Bliss.
The International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKON) opened Dallas’ first vegetarian restaurant 28 years ago. Over the years, it has won many awards for the best vegetarian place in town. What impressed me most, beyond the good food that I was expecting, was the atmosphere.
ISKON’s spiritual leader decided Dallas was the place to build a special temple. Set in a fairly poor working class neighborhood, the Krishna temple, ashram and Kalachandjis restaurant are housed in a palace.
The restaurant has a lovely patio and gift shop. Kalachandji’s offers lunch and dinner buffets for under ten dollars. I tried to avoid overdoing it and ate only barbecued tofu, spinach, and a cauliflower zucchini curry. No soup, no salad, no dessert, no drink, even though they were all included, and I left feeling stuffed. For the picky eater, you can see the daily buffet items online before you visit, at kalachandjis.com
I actually spent more on books than I spent on my meal. One of the books I bought as a gift, The Higher Taste, is chock full of rationale why people should adopt a karma-free diet. The first half of the book talks through scientific and spiritual reasons to be vegetarian and includes many quotes from notables such as Paul McCartney, “if anyone wants to save the planet, all they have to do is just stop eating meat.” The latter half of the book provides vegetarian (not all vegan) recipes in accordance with ayurvedic practices.
To round out the circle of plenty, I tried Cosmic Café, a funky place located not far from downtown. On the second floor, the café has a community space for yoga and meditation classes. The first floor looks a bit like a 60’s style yoga pad. Most the menu items have a taste of India. Even the hummus platter is served with Indian sides like flatbread and mango. This is an all vegetarian restaurant, and most the items can be ordered without cheese or other dairy ingredients.
There are also plenty of other vegan or vegan-friendly options outside Dallas in Fort Worth, Plano and Richardson, several of which specialize in Asian fare.
So while ranch-hands still may work in Texas there’s plenty of eats beyond Cowboy breakfasts here.