Indian restaurants offer many vegetable based dishes, along with lentil dishes and delicious lentil soups. Step outside your comfort zone, and experience new flavors and spices found in Indian foods! Be careful to avoid ghee, cream, yogurt sauces and other animal products sometimes found on the menu. if you ask them which of their selections are dairy and meat free, they will always tell you!
Another great ethnic choice to try out! You might not be able to avoid all oils here, but they will have many options. Hummus, tabbouleh, lentil dishes, Mediterranean salads, and veggie sandwiches are good options. Be careful to avoid the feta cheese, as it is a huge fat bomb waiting to fool your palate. Tell them you need to avoid cheese and animal products.
Usually very accommodating. Ask for whole grain pasta if they have it. If not, just ask that they put your marinara sauce on top of fresh steamed veggies instead. Remind them NO CHEESE. If they won't accommodate, don't go back!
Most have vegetarian dishes served with rice, or rice noodles. Be sure to specify brown rice when ordering, or they will bring you white rice. Ask for steamed veggies, no oil, and that the sauce be put on the side, Be careful of high fat curries made with coconut milk. Avoid fish sauces and animal products. Remember Pad Thai usually has eggs and oil in it, and you might see if they can omit that in your order.
Veggie fajitas are a good choice. Ask them if they can eliminate the oil and dry grill the veggies. Request to substitute the cheese and sour cream for a side of beans and extra salsa. Ask for corn tortillas instead of flour. And if you have guacamole, eat it on corn tortillas, or raw carrots, not the fat filled chips! Remember that avocados are very high in fat, and you'll need to watch your consumption here! Fill up on the delicious veggies, using the guacamole as a condiment, not an appetizer.
Call ahead to see if they offer whole grain or gluten free pizza crust. If not, no worry, you'll know for next time. Tell them you'd love it if they would add that to their menu. You can create a delicious veggie pizza using red sauce, and lots of veggies, with NO CHEESE. Several times during the order, REMIND them you cannot have cheese. if you say it only once, I can guarantee you'll get your pizza WITH cheese. This has happened to us on more than one occasion. So after you order, remind them a third time, no cheese please. Be careful of places that charge by the ingredient. Ask if you can substitute the cheese for another ingredient.
Check their menu online before you go for a baked potato and the sides they offer. A good BBQ joint will have beans, maybe broccoli, corn, onions, even mushrooms to top your baked potato! Ask to substitute the butter and cheese for onions and beans.
Ask for the Veggie Sandwich on a Whole Wheat Bun, or even as a large salad. Toasting the bread adds flavor, then ask them to spread Spicy Mustard on the bun before they add all the veggies. Load it up with spinach, onions, peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers, pickles, jalapenos and what ever else they might have. Ask if they have hummus yet. You will never know that the meat is missing, as the flavor of the veggies is wonderful!
Start your bowl with brown rice, and ask for both beans (black and pinto). Add corn salsa, pico, lettuce, cilantro and a TAD of guacamole. Their veggies do have oil, sorry. There are enough choices there to add without getting the pepper/onion blend soaked in oil. You can ask if it is possible to get some pepper/onion blend without the oil that you are allergic to!
WHEN YOU TRAVEL
Use happycow.net to locate vegan, plant based, vegetarian friendly restaurants near you. Or post on your favorite plant based Facebook group (Plant Based Dallas!) the question, "Where can I eat plant based in _____?"
A great taco joint appearing in several cities. We order the Rajas Tacos (no oil please), with no cheese, and substitute red cabbage. We also order a side of black beans (no cheese please), and a side of potatoes (grilled with no oil). Add an order of guacamole to use as a condiment on our tacos, NOT as an appetizer. We ask for 4-6 corn tortillas with our guacamole, instead of the chips. If you are at the Inwood location in Dallas, they know what the Plant Based Special is!