When we think of vegan food in Texas, our minds naturally wander to the many options available in Austin. But the growing number of vegan eateries in Dallas are starting to prove that the Lonestar State is big enough for two vegan meccas. From diner food to traditional Mexican dishes, fancy coffee shops to hearty (meatless) brisket, here are five places that are putting Dallas on the vegan map.
Spiral Diner and Bakery
Sometimes (read: always) we’re in the mood to scarf down a well-prepared tofu scramble loaded with vegan “bacun” and surrounded by 1950s kitsch that makes us feel all retro inside. Lucky for us, Spiral Diner and Bakery—with a flagship shop in Fort Worth—opened a second Dallas location this year. Bring on the vegan Patty Melts, weekend pancakes, and Sketti & Meatballs, but give us some room while we oogle the pastry case filled with wonders such as red velvet cupcakes, oatmeal cranberry cookies, and an array of cakes and pies.
V-Eats Modern Vegan
V-Eats turned some Texan heads with their creative plant-based offerings when they opened at Trinity Groves a few months ago. The Twitter-sphere exploded over a photo of the restaurant’s vegan version of brisket, which gained traction before receiving local media coverage in the Dallas Observer. Thanks to the handy work of chef Troy Garner, the raved-about brisket graces V-Eats menu in several iterations—as sliders, tacos, and sandwiches. The best part? We can enjoy this cruelty-free take on an iconic Texas dish in an expansive, sun-drenched patio offering prime views of Dallas landmarks.
El Palote Panadaría
Owned by vegan couple Aurelio and Lily Arias, El Palote always offered an array of vegan options and had gone all-vegan on Thursdays. But two months ago the couple removed the last bits of meat, dairy, and eggs from El Palote’s menu. Now, customers can order tamales, tortas, and tacos, in addition to an array of pastries made from scratch by Lily herself, with zero worry of cross-contamination. The Arias’ decided to go fully plant-based in order to educate their community about the health benefits of vegan food. They report that customers travel far and wide to get a taste of their new offerings, and we can understand why!
For a quick bite, this to-go only shop opened in 2015 and is lined wall-to-wall with fridges full of plant-based fare. Daily options include Buffalo Chickpea Salad Wraps, Smoky Potato Soup, and Tex Mex Scramble Tacos, in addition to a wide selection of baked goods. The cafe also comes with a unique service: customers can order a weekly meal plan complete with breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks that Nature’s Plate prepares fresh and delivers via Postmates. They even make kids meals—complete with youngster-friendly foods such as eggless salad, veggie mac, and cheese-free spinach quesadillas! (We’re still kids, right?)
Brewed + Pressed
Opened last summer, this uber fancy (nearly vegan except for honey) coffee, shake, juice, and food shop is like a wellness retreat in the bustling Uptown area of Dallas. Brewed + Pressed goes so far as to “activate” their nutty concoctions—including pumpkin seed and almond milk-based drinks and cashew cheesecake—which means the nuts used are soaked to draw out beneficial phytochemicals. The atmosphere is chic, the coffee is strong (from Stumptown Roasters), the cold-pressed juices are nourishing, and the small, sweet and savory bites—probiotics-rich cultured vegetables, cashew cheese, overnight oats, berry coconut yogurt, and more—are sure to make plant-based foods a new Texas tradition.
Photo courtesy of Spiral Diner and Bakery