Saturday, June 14, 2008

Vegan Visitor Guide to Seattle, WA

Seattle is the most vegan-friendly city in the world. That's my opinion at least. Anyway, I've lived here in Seattle for almost two years and have yet to write a visitor guide for vegans.

This is in no way a comprehensive guide to the vegan haven that is Seattle. This is merely a guide I would like to give vegans visiting the city with recommendations on what I consider to be the best.

RESTAURANTS



Teapot Vegetarian House



This is hands-down my favorite veg restaurant in Seattle. If you can go to only restaurant, definitely go to Teapot.

The lowdown:


Recommendations:
  • Mongolian Vegetarian

  • Mandarin Crispy Tofu

  • Spring Rolls

  • Hot & Sour Soup

  • Basil Nuggets

  • Sweet and Sour Nuggets

  • Teapot Curry Loaf

  • Bounty of the Sea

  • Gula Malacca (dessert)

  • Tofu cheesecake (dessert)


Eating great at Teapot is all about ordering right. Some dishes are so-so but some are amazing. If you stick with my recommendations, you won't be disappointed.

Araya's



Where else can you find an all vegan Thai restaurant? Nowhere! The staff members are really nice and the food is great. I highly suggest Araya's. It's in the University District (U-District) right in the middle of everything.

The lowdown:
  • Vegan, Thai

  • 1121 NE 45th St

  • (206) 524-4332

  • Mon-Thur 11:30am-9pm, Fri-Sat 11:30am-10pm, Sun closed

  • No website, can you believe it?!


Recommendations:
  • Pad Thai

  • Veggie Beef with Peanut Sauce

  • Spring rolls


Araya's also has a weekday buffet from 11:30am-3pm. All you can eat for $7. Fill up on spring rolls!

Bamboo Garden



Another all vegan restaurant (except for the fortune cookies). Be sure to ask for no fortune cookies...they are not vegan. This is a good Chinese place. The food comes out pretty quickly and virtually all seats are booths. The downside is that this isn't the healthiest food. Most of it is deep fried gluten. When you want protein or want to be filled up, head here.

The lowdown:


Recommendations:
  • Corn chowder soup (everyone loves this)

  • General Tso's Chicken

  • Mandarin Chicken

  • Sweet and Sour Chicken

  • Vegetarian Sausage and Chicken in Black Bean Sauce


Bamboo Garden is good and I definitely get into moods for it, but it's not super healthy. The only real thing that bothers me is that this is a vegan restaurant serving non-vegan fortune cookies. It baffles me.

Cafe Flora



Amazing food...for brunch. Don't bother going for anything but brunch. Their lunch and dinner is awful and most all items cannot be made vegan. In fact, I'm only going to list their brunch hours below. They really cater to vegetarians. You know, those people who just refuse to part ways with pus-filled dairy.

The lowdown:


Recommendations:
  • Sticky Buns (amazing!)

  • Family Platter

  • Grilled Asparagus Scramble

  • Hoppin' John Fritters


Brunch is really good. If you go, get there as early as you can. They're super busy for brunch.

Chaco Canyon Cafe



A nice all vegan, modern, half raw cafe in Seattle's University District. I really like this place. They're very environmentally and socially conscious. They recycle and compost nearly everything and all virtually all organic.

The lowdown:


Recommendations:
  • The Elvis smoothie

  • Raw Tropique smoothie

  • Artichoke Melt (my favorite)

  • Tunaless Melt (my wife's favorite)

  • Cilantro Pesto Melt


Chaco Canyon is also somewhere you can go to just sit and hangout. They have free wifi. Big plus.

Cyber Dogs



An all vegetarian hot dog restaurant in downtown Seattle! I love this place. It's really tiny but awesome.

The lowdown:


Recommendations:
  • El Bandito

  • Spudnik


Everything except the corn dog can be made vegan. I highly suggest the El Bandito. It's sooo good! In addition to eating good food, you can play Pac Man or surf the net at one of their computer stations.

Mighty O



An all vegan donut shop in Seattle, near Green Lake! All of the donuts are vegan and mostly organic. However, they do offer dairy as an option for coffee drinks, which is extremely lame. Many "vegan" places in Seattle do this. It's stupid. Anyway, order their donuts, let them know it sucks they serve dairy, and take a nice walk around Green Lake with your amazing vegan donuts.

The lowdown:
  • Vegan, Donuts

  • 2110 N 55th St

  • (206) 547-0335

  • Mon 6am-1pm, Tues-Fri 6am-5pm, Sat-Sun 7am-5pm

  • www.mightyo.com


Everyone loves Mighty O. You must go to Mighty O while visiting in Seattle. No trip is complete without doing so.

Carmelita



Looking for a vegetarian restaurant with a nicer atmosphere? Try the upscale Carmelita in Phinney Ridge (my neighborhood). They do accept reservations and I highly suggest you make one.

The lowdown:
  • Vegetarian, Modern, Upscale

  • 7314 Greenwood Ave N

  • (206) 706-7703

  • Sun, Tues-Thur 5pm-9pm, Fri-Sat 5pm-10pm, Mon closed

  • www.carmelita.net


Only a few items can be made vegan, but this place is worth the visit. It's a great place to eat on special occasions or for a nice night out.

Kitaro



A veg-friendly sushi restaurant with a separate vegan menu.

The lowdown:
  • Veg-friendly, Sushi

  • 1624 N 45th St

  • (206) 547-7998

  • Hours

  • No website


Kitaro is not all vegetarian but they have a separate vegan menu! Vegan sushi! The owner is quiet but extremely nice. I really like giving him my business. I highly recommend Kitaro, located in the Wallingford neighborhood.


GROCERY STORES



While you're in Seattle, screw Whole Foods. Check out and support the co-ops!

Sidecar for Pigs Peace



Sidecar is Washington State's only all-vegan grocery store. It's more of a convenience store. I'm super spoiled in Seattle. Have I mentioned that yet?

Sidecar is located in the University District and sells vegan dog and cat food, frozen convenience foods, vitamins, candy, toiletries, kitchen items, shirts, and more.

Also, the manager is really nice. Say hi to Doh when you go.

www.sidecarforpigspeace.com

PCC Natural Markets



A local chain of co-ops in the Seattle area. PCC is one of the best places to shop in Seattle. I love PCC. They're my neighborhood market. I go here most all of the time.

www.pccnaturalmarkets.com

Madison Market



A local co-op in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of Seattle. I love this co-op. I stop here whenever I'm in the neighborhood.

www.madisonmarket.com


CAFES



You'll find that free wifi is available at all coffee shops here in Seattle. If you walk into a cafe and they're asking you to pay for or don't have wifi, leave. You found the one place that doesn't have free wifi. (I still haven't found it.)

Anyway, avoid Starbucks and Tully's like the plague. Check out and support the little guys. The coffee is much better anyway.

Caffe Ladro



A local chain of awesome cafes here in Seattle. All coffee served at Caffe Ladro is organic, fair trade, and shade grown. Plus, free wifi. Beat that!

www.caffeladro.com

Wayward Coffeehouse



This is my favorite cafe to hangout in here in Seattle. Hands-down. I'm sitting in Wayward right now actually, writing this blog post.

Like Caffe Ladro, Wayward serves only organic, fair trade, and shade grown coffee. And, of course there's free wifi.

I'd have to say the best tasting coffee in Seattle is Caffe Ladro, but the best place to sit in a cafe is Wayward. Plus, their coffee is almost as good as Ladro's. The interior is very spacious and they're only really busy late at night. You'll most likely have your very own table. I can't say enough good things about Wayward Coffeehouse. Oh, they offer a few vegan sandwiches as well!

www.waywardcoffee.com

Trabant Coffe & Chai



Vegan specialty chai drinks in the University District! Think coffee drinks like lattes, only with chai instead!

Be sure to ask for your drink to be made vegan with soy milk. Trabant has two chai mixes (one is vegan and one isn't). They offer soy and rice milk.

Trabant tends to be quite crowded due to its proximity to the University of Washington (UW). You aren't always guaranteed a seat; however, the chai drinks are amazing. Don't know what to order? I suggest the Hazelnut, made vegan with soy of course.

www.trabantcoffee.com


Wow, that was a lot of typing. That list isn't even close to comprehensive. I'm sure my fellow Seattleites reading this post are thinking, "You forgot ..." There's just too much to cover.

You can view a pretty comprehensive list of vegan, vegetarian, and veg-friendly restaurants in the Seattle area at Veg Seattle.

Or, you can certainly contact me anytime with your questions, via the "Email me" link on the right side of my blog or by leaving a comment on any post.

17 comments:

VeggieGirl said...

Thanks for the guide!! If I ever make it out to Seattle (which I definitely plan to do, sometime in the near future), I now know more about dining options and such :0)

Katy said...

Thank you! I'm originally from Seattle, but didn't become a vegetarian (and then vegan) until I moved to Virginia. I'm moving back next year, and this will really help!

vegan addict said...

Hooray for Mighty-O Donuts! When I was last in Seattle, I did just as you suggested: ate donuts and walked around Green Lake. That's the best way to burn off the donuts you can't stop eating!

I have to disagree with you though, Portland is the most vegan-friendly city in the world! I mean, we had a vegan prom last night! I didn't go, but still...!

I have heard great reviews of Teapot Vegetarian House, so I will have to make a visit there when I am up in Seattle next time.

Billy said...

Hey Vegan Addict,

Yea, Mighty O is amazing. I love walking around Green Lake while or after eating donuts for that reason. :)

Everyone is entitled to their own opinion about the most vegan-friendly city. I expect a lot of Portlanders to get on here and leave similar comments. :) Either way, there are two amazing vegan-friendly cities very close to each other. And, San Francisco is on the same coast.

Definitely check out Teapot when you come to Seattle next. It's really good!

Matt said...

Nice guide, but I think you need to give Cafe Flora another chance! It has the best vegan food in Seattle, in my opinion. My mouth is watering thinking about the portabella french dip sandwich and the coconut tofu appetizer... I guess the main problem is that they have a fairly short menu to begin with, so even though 3/4 of it is vegan or available vegan, that leaves only 5 entrees. And their vegan version of pizza is admittedly disappointing.

Lori- the Pleasantly Plump Vegan said...

so nice of you!

Vegan_Noodle said...

Awesome!! I will definitely print this out and take it with me the next time I go to Seattle to visit my sis!

I remember seeing the jugs of milk at Mighty O ... very lame indeed.

Have you been to Pizza Pi, Squid &Ink, and Hillside Quickies? I went to all of them on my last visit... Hillside was VERY disappointing but the other two I liked.

Saar and Niko said...

hey!

It just so happens we'll be in Seattle in a month!
Thank you for the tips!

Valerie H. said...

One thing that really really really really has to be on this list is Sidecar for Pigs Peace! I was very surprised not to see it on the grocery store list. It is an all-vegan grocery store (they sell clothes, accessories, and books too) in the U-District. They are a non-profit store, all volunteer-run, and all proceeds go to the Pigs Peace Animal Sanctuary. Any vegan in Seattle should buy whatever they need here first, then go and hit up all the other lovely co-ops for the rest (like produce, etc.). It is a store that really needs everyone's support.

It is on 55th and University Way, and it is right across the street from Pizza Pi, the amazing all-vegan pizzeria. Their pizza is awesome and the new owners are super friendly.

Valerie H. said...

Oh, and I also highly recommend the Oasis Cafe just off of 50th and University Way. It is my favorite place to hang out. They have a vegan soup almost every day, amazing vegan sandwich options, tons of coffee and tea, and house-made vegan chocolate chip cookies. Yum.

Anonymous said...

"They really cater to vegetarians. You know, those people who just refuse to part ways with pus-filled dairy."

:rolleyes:

Billy said...

Valerie: you're absolutely right. How could I leave off Sidecar? I've added Sidecar to the top of the grocers list.

I've never been to Oasis Cafe. I'll have to check it out. Thanks!

F. Sofield said...

oh lovely. Thank you! I'm going to attend school in Olympia, and am making the switch from veg. to vegan. I've heard of some of these places, but the recommendations looks super fab. mmmm I can't wait!

april said...

hi! thank you so much for this post! i'm taking an amtrak trek across the northwest in a couple of weeks, and will spend a couple of days in seattle. this list is definitely coming with me!

Happy Herbivore! said...

I LOVE TEAPOT! so good!

Kelley said...

THANK YOU! I live in Seattle and didn't know about 3 of these places!

For anyone else visiting, Naked City Taphouse has Vegan wine and had a Field Roast "meatloaf" on the specials board last night and lots of Veg dishes easily made Vegan by omitting the cheese!

Anonymous said...

What a great find! I love this site. Seattle is a great place to be for vegans,everyone loves mighty-o, even non-veggies and vegans. I did want to make a comment about the wonderful sidecar vegan store; please please, nobody feed your cat vegan cat food. Cats are obligate carnivores and cannot properly process non-animal proteins. If cats do not get at least 80% of their protein from meat, they will become very ill and may die. If they do not die, they will certainly go blind or develop serious long-term heart disease. As a vegan, I understand it makes some people uncomfortable to have meat products in their home, but if that is the case, maybe you should consider a herbivorous pet like a guinea pig or rabbit.
that being said, I do love sidecar and I think everyone should go spend money there.
Thank you for an awesome vegan resource.