Eat This

Our Favorite Dallas Vegetarian and Vegan Restaurants of 2018

Recipe Oak Cliff's taco salad is not your typical taco salad.
Recipe Oak Cliff's taco salad is not your typical taco salad. Paige Weaver
Dallas may have a reputation as a steakhouse city, but in 2018, we saw more new vegan and vegetarian options than ever. Hell, even some of the aforementioned steakhouses are offering vegan menus now. We've explored a bevy of vegan and vegetarian Dallas restaurants this year — here are our favorites:

Recipe Oak Cliff
1831 S. Ewing Ave. (Oak Cliff)
Recipe Oak Cliff is a plant-based eatery serving fresh and affordable vegan food. Owner Tish Crear recreates recipes she grew up with, things like a barbecue jackfruit sandwich with slaw; walnut “meat” tacos with avocado and cashew nut “cheese;” and pumpkin seed and walnut “chicken” salad. While there, try one of Recipe’s fresh-squeezed juices or smoothies. The By the Nile smoothie with hemp milk, dates, banana and coconut milk is Crear’s favorite.

Da Munchies specializes in vegan comfort food. - PAIGE WEAVER
Da Munchies specializes in vegan comfort food.
Paige Weaver
Da Munchies
4121 N. Westmoreland Road (West Dallas)
This is a newcomer to the Dallas vegan food scene. They specialize in vegan comfort food with menu items like their Mac & Cheese Buffalo Chick’em Sandwich, a vegan take on a fried chicken sandwich, topped with mac and “cheese,” vegan mayo and pico de gallo. Look for changes coming in the new year when Da Munchies launches an off-shoot eatery, Lé Munchie Vegan Food Company.

click to enlarge Spiral Diner's brunch quesadilla will soak up everything you did wrong last night. - BETH RANKIN
Spiral Diner's brunch quesadilla will soak up everything you did wrong last night.
Beth Rankin
Spiral Diner
1101 N. Beckley Ave. (Oak Cliff), 1314 West Magnolia Ave., Fort Worth and 608 E. Hickory St., Denton
Spiral is probably Dallas’s best-known vegan restaurant and it serves up vegan twists on everything from a patty melt to quesadillas. It’s a great option for vegans looking for plant-based cheese and meat substitutes. Try the Nachos Supreme topped with cashew “cheese,” the Philly “cheese” steak, or the baked potato grilled cheese stuffed with “cheese” and home fries, bacun bits, sour cream and green onion.

Nature's Plate's no-oil barbecue baked tofu plate. - PAIGE WEAVER
Nature's Plate's no-oil barbecue baked tofu plate.
Paige Weaver
Nature’s Plate
10233 E. Northwest Highway (East Dallas)
Nature's Plate is an excellent choice if you’re looking for a convenient vegan option. They offer individual meals to go or you can sign up for one of their weekly plant-based meal plans. From breakfast items like gluten-free blueberry almond oatmeal and picadillo potato breakfast tacos to lunch and dinner choices like meatloaf, Mediterranean loaded sweet potato and chickpea noodle soup, Nature’s Plate makes it easy to eat vegan on-the-go. They also have a variety of baked goods, things like oil-free fudge brownies, chocolate pudding and banana raspberry bread.

click to enlarge Cosmic Cafe has good vibes. - BETH RANKIN
Cosmic Cafe has good vibes.
Beth Rankin
Cosmic Cafe
2912 Oak Lawn Ave. (Oak Lawn)
Cosmic Cafe has long been a mainstay for Dallas vegetarians, and for good reason. Their menu covers a wide assortment of cuisines, with dishes like yellow squash bisque, samosas, paneer pakora, spinach enchiladas, tofu stir-fry, curried vegetables, black bean burger and pizza. Many of their items can be made vegan upon request. Cosmic Café is also an affordable choice; there is nothing on the menu over $12.

click to enlarge True Food Kitchen's TLT is a vegan take on the BLT. - OBSERVER FILE PHOTO
True Food Kitchen's TLT is a vegan take on the BLT.
Observer file photo
True Food Kitchen
8383 Preston Center and 7601 Windrose Ave., Plano
True Food Kitchen isn’t a strictly vegetarian or vegan restaurant, but it has plenty of interesting choices for vegetarians and vegans alike. Try the T.L.T., their vegan take on the B.L.T., with smoked tempeh and vegan mayonnaise. Vegans can also try the butternut squash or tomato and arugula pizzas or the Korean noodles with sweet potato glass noodles, bok choy, kale, cucumber kimchi, pineapple, bean sprouts and almond-lime vinaigrette. The spaghetti squash casserole is a hearty vegetarian (and gluten-free) offering, with crushed DiNapoli tomatoes, caramelized onion, zucchini and fresh mozzarella.

Flower Child offers vegan and vegetarian bowls and also a place to park your yoga mat. - BETH RANKIN
Flower Child offers vegan and vegetarian bowls and also a place to park your yoga mat.
Beth Rankin
Flower Child
5450 W. Lovers Lane (Inwood Village)
Flower Child is another restaurant that isn’t purely vegetarian or vegan but has plentiful plant-based options. In fact, nearly every menu item is vegetarian, if not vegan. You have the option to add protein to these vegetarian and vegan bases, if you so choose. Standouts include the vegan poke bowl with marinated beet, avocado, pickled mushroom, cucumber, radish, wasabi pea, smoked dulse, brown rice and spicy ponzu. Or try the vegetarian Brussels and squash salad, with arugula, roasted Brussels sprouts, butternut squash, organic apple, ancient grains, cranberry, goat cheese, sprouted almond and chia seed vinaigrette.
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Beth Rankin is an Ohio native and Cicerone-certified beer server who specializes in social media, food and drink, travel and news reporting. Her belief system revolves around the significance of Topo Chico, the refusal to eat crawfish out of season and the importance of local and regional foodways.
Contact: Beth Rankin