Vegan and Vegetarian Gems Hidden in Tacoma
We all know there's no shortage of restaurants and pubs in Tacoma, but for our vegan and vegetarian friends picking a spot to eat can be rough. While we are thankful that all-vegan spots like like Viva and Quickie Too call Tacoma home, it can still get tough when omnivores and herbivores want to hang. Well, we’ve found a few of Tacoma’s tastiest places that offer solid options for all. No more French fry only dinners for our vegan compadres.
I used to think everyone knew about the magic of 1111. This was until we invited some vegan friends and former clients out to dinner. They had been in Tacoma for over a year and had no idea The Peterson Brothers had concocted such a generous vegan salad and sandwich menu. As a lactose-intolerant individual, I enjoy this menu because I now have OPTIONS. Aside from the delicious seitan meat loaf and buffalo soy curl meat alternatives, being able to eat ranch and “cheese” again has been quite the experience. Every Tuesday is a special treat as you can often find most of Tacoma enjoying a "Taco Tuesday" meal. Vegans, fear not—the double decker tacos are especially for you.
6th Ave boasts a ton of restaurants and beer options, but none quite as iconic as The Red Hot. We frequent this place a little too much but the chill environment, rotating tap list and creatively delicious dogs are hard to beat. My go-to dog in the Good Fella, a Grilled Field Roast Italian Sausage with house made marinara sauce, onions, vegan mozzarella, and sliced sweet-hot peppers. Pair it with the vegan coleslaw and a pickle, and you’ve got yourself a meal! Among other options include the spicy Green Machine, a Grilled Field Roast chipotle sausage, and the Veganwurst, a Grilled Field Roast apple-sage bratwurst with sauerkraut and stone-ground mustard. Yum! There are seven vegan dog combos in total, but you can order any regular hot dog or brat and sub a vegan dog in its place. The menu is quite unique and includes anything from bacon to peanut butter on your hot dog. The Red Hot now offers a vegan cheese burger, too! Order this mouthwatering burger as a single, double, or a monstrous triple patty feast.
It took just one visit for me to fully recommend this place. Located in South Tacoma, Church Cantina recently opened with the intention of bringing a gothic-chic look and a delicious taco menu to the southern region of this fair city. With vegan taco, burrito and black bean bowl options on the menu, this is a safe bet for our hungry vegan friends. Also, pretty much every side dish is vegan as well! But what will bring you back? Oh, probably the signature drink menu and the Skeeball… yes…. Skeeball. My 11-year-old heart has found its love. We suggest sipping on a Wicked Cantina Sangria or a Church Bell while defending your honor on the Skee-lane.
Being a Bavarian themed restaurant, you will find the menu to be kielbasa, bratwurst, sausage and just generally meat- heavy, but as mentioned earlier, the point of this blog is to find the hidden gems in our otherwise meaty-places. While your friends dig into their Grillwurstr Schmankerl and Beef Goulash, you can dine on the Impossible Burger or Veggiewurst with fries and a side of curry ketchup. The signature giant pretzel is huge, vegetarian, and has even been used as a fun birthday cake replacement (bring your own candles 😉).
Let me list the things your stomach will appreciate about this spot: Veggie delight sandwich, Mediterranean Tofu Gyro, Buddha wrap (with peanut curry tofu), black bean Quinoa burger, chipotle field roast tacos, and a chipotle field roast quesadilla. There are of course a number of salads and small plates, but just LOOK at those options. Tacoma’s edgy side found a home here, rotating taps and a staff with a heck-of-a sense of humor are sure to keep you coming back. Not to mention, having quesadilla’s reintroduced into my diet has been a game changer.
There can never be too many taco opportunities! Again, it’s simply wonderful to find places with dairy-free options. El Borracho’s vegan queso dip and vegan nachos are a solid appetizer to get you going. Another great part about this menu is that you can select your meat or meat alternative and have it made into either a taco plate or a giantly satisfying burrito. Choose from an assortment of vegan tacos—including soyrizo, papas y poblano, and tacom de hongos. My personal go-to is the Ensalada de La Casa with vegan cheese and chipotle vinaigrette, it’s hard to pass up this option when you can choose your own “meat”. I personally get this with the barbacoa, but the soyrizo and ancho chile mushrooms are another worthy contender.