With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, romance is in the air. If you’re single, your desired list of qualities in a partner might go something like this: intelligent, attractive, health-conscious, reliable, and driven—and a wicked sense of humor couldn’t hurt either. A romantic prospect who possesses all of these qualities doesn’t walk through the door every day. Add “vegan” to the list of criteria and it can feel like you’re on the hunt for a unicorn. Rest assured, you’re not the only vegan single feeling frustrated at the seemingly sparse vegan dating pool. The good news is that other vegan singles want to meet you just as much as you want to meet them. Whether or not you’re open to dating a meat-eater, there is huge appeal, both ethically and logistically, to meeting someone special who shares your same values, lifestyle, and diet. With a record 400,000 pledging to go vegan last January alone, the vegan dating pool and the market for helping connect those vegans is growing. If you’re looking for a Valentine, or just want to get out there and meet other vegan singles, here are four ways to get started.
Vegan-Friendly Online Dating Sites
A benefit of online dating is that it allows you to be upfront about your specific preferences and connect with other singles who check off your must-haves and don’t meet your red flags. For vegans, this can be a game-changer because it allows you to filter out anyone whose lifestyle might not jive well with yours. Stating your vegan preference in your bio on any dating platform is a great way to save time and connect only with singles who will be supportive of your lifestyle. Using dating sites specifically geared towards herbivores is even better. Luckily, dating sites like Green Singles, Veggie Date, and Veggie Connection provide an avenue for vegans and vegetarians to connect with each other, so you can rest assured that your next hot date is open to sharing a meal of meatless curry with a side of avocado.
Vegan-Specific Dating Apps
For the smartphone-driven singles of a younger demographic, a dating app might be more appealing than a website. Apps offer the same benefit of pre-filtering preferences upfront in addition to the convenience of easy access on your phone. A few options for app-based vegan dating include Grazer and Veg, and it’s as easy as swiping right to like someone and swiping left if you do not. If you swipe right and they do so back, it’s a match. These free apps also include fun features like photo sharing and recipe swapping. With millennials leading the global charge towards plant-based living, it’s only a matter of time before more veg dating apps enter the scene.
Vegan Speed Dating Events
Online dating not your thing? Companies like FindVegLove offer an in-person alternative that brings some fun to the vegan dating scene. FindVegLove puts on speed-dating events all over the United States and Canada that facilitate five-minute introductions with a selection of vegan and vegetarian singles. Luckily, there’s no need to worry about the potential awkwardness of in-person rejection either. At an event, you’ll choose who you want to match with as either a romantic interest or a friend after the event is over, via a unique software the founders developed.
Special Interest Groups and Activities
For singles opting for an even more natural form of in-person meeting, the best way to connect with people who share your interests and values is to take part in activities that reflect those interests and values. Whether it’s joining a vegan Meetup group, a book club, or even volunteering at your local animal shelter, you’re sure to build a network of like-minded people. Birds of a feather flock together, as the saying goes. Even if you don’t meet a love interest, you never know who might have a charming cousin who cooks a mean teriyaki tempeh.
Go forth, have fun, and remember that claiming agency in your dating life means putting yourself out there, being upfront about your preferences, and enjoying the experience of meeting different people. Love is just around the corner.
Cora Boyd is a vegetarian dating and social fluency coach based in Seattle, WA.