Veggie-friendly Fare

The best vegetarian dishes in Austin: So good you won't miss the meat

The best vegetarian dishes in Austin: So good you won't miss the meat

Austin is a haven for those with alternative diets: Vegan cupcakes sit next to "normal" cupcakes on grocery store shelves and vegetarians have more menu options at restaurants than ever before. But that doesn't mean these dishes are for vegetarians only.

We've rounded up the most delicious (and filling) veggie-friendly treats around town. And these are so good even meat-eaters will approve. Bonus: several of these eateries also offer gluten-free options.

For breakfast
A first glance at Biscuits and Groovy looks pretty meat heavy. Ask for the scrumptious buttermilk biscuits and white gravy combos made vegetarian, vegan or gluten-free for a true taste of this Hyde Park favorite. 

For brunch, head to The Buzz Mill's back patio and give Golden Spike Rail Cart a visit. This all-vegan food truck serves up a classic brunch on Saturdays and Sundays from 10 am to 3 pm, including Belgian waffles with blueberry compote and humongous breakfast burritos.

A veggie guide isn't complete without a shout out to Bouldin Creek Cafe. Breakfast is served all day: The Renedict, zucchini migas and the potato leek omelet are great options. And egg-based items can be made vegan by substituting the tofu scramble, which features some of the best tofu in town.

For lunch
Gourmands Neighborhood Pub offers a loaded veggie sandwich called the Cleopatra. The monstrosity comes with cheese, but you can ask for vegan mayo and hummus instead. The cheese-obsessed should try the broccoli beer cheese soup or the artichoke dip, served in a warm bread bowl. Gourmands' full bar makes it perfect for a quick midday brew.

In addition to a tasty lineup of beer and wine, Hopfields serves vegetarian ratatouille and a mushroom leek tarte as well as antipasti and salads for lighter lunches.

Hyde Park Bar & Grill is a top stop for veggie-friendly appetizers and bites. In addition to the classic avocado fries, beer battered green beans and sweet corn tamale starters, the Austin fave is one of the only restaurants in the United States serving kalettes, a non-GMO hybrid veggie of kale and Brussels sprouts.

For dinner
We suggest starting off with the ginger mushroom potstickers followed by artichoke manicotti or vegetable enchiladas at Eastside Cafe. The quaint Manor Road space is a cozy spot for a night out.  

Banger's Sausage House & Beer Garden is known for sausage (of course), but did you know that the Rainey Street pub has a couple of veggie-friendly links on the menu? Vegans can opt for the tempura eggplant and red pepper sausage served on a vegetable salad, and anyone can enjoy the veggie BLT-style hot dog.

For pizza fans, Via 313 serves up the Marinara, a savory vegan pizza with oregano, garlic and tons of sauce. The hot spot also offers dairy-free and gluten-free versions of the famous Detroit-style pies.

Daruma Ramen knows how to do noodles. The cozy downtown joint has two simple, delicious vegan options that are just as yummy as their meaty counterparts. The Veggie Ramen comes with avocado, carrots, tomatoes and more; the Veggie Miso Ramen includes fried tofu skin. 

For dessert
Skull and Cakebones' amazingly moist vegan cupcakes come in a wide range of flavors, from a Cuvee Coffee-based construction to a classic Little Debbie-like Ding Dong.

Beat the heat at Sweet Ritual, the ice cream joint housed in the Hyde Park Juiceland. Treat yourself to ice cream cones, sundaes and delectable milkshakes — all of which are vegan.

Wheatsville Co-op is a great post-dinner stop (or grab some dinner there — the deli is absolutely amazing). The Austin favorite serves baked goods from Red Rabbit Cooperative Bakery as well as house-made sweets. The gluten-free pumpkin chocolate whoopie pie is so good you'll never want gluten again.

Banger's_veggie BLT sausage_2015
This hot dog may look meaty, but it's the veggie BLT from Banger's. Courtesy of Banger's
Gourmands_Cleopatra_veggie sandwich_2015
The Cleopatra sandwich at Gourmands. Gourmands Neighborhood Pub/Facebook
Skull and Cakebones_Bing Bong_vegan_2014
All of Skull and Cakebones' delicious baked goods are vegan. Skull and Cakebones/Facebook
Banger's_veggie BLT sausage_2015
Gourmands_Cleopatra_veggie sandwich_2015
Skull and Cakebones_Bing Bong_vegan_2014