10 Restaurants a Vegetarian Can Love

Meatless options aren't an afterthought at these local eateries.

It wasn’t so long ago that dining out as a vegetarian or vegan was a joyless experience. Those who chose not to eat meat were condemned to eating countless bowls of pasta primavera, generic garden salads and the fries off of someone else’s plate. But now the year is 2017 and restaurants are getting more innovative with their meatless offerings, from recreating classic sandwiches to experimenting with soy based “seafood.” Here are some local stand-outs.

Busboys and Poets in Shirlington. Photo by Lia Tabackman

1. Busboys and Poets

4251 Campbell Ave. , Arlington (Shirlington Village)

Busboys and Poets is a hybrid restaurant, performance-art venue and coffee shop. Its café in Shirlington Village is also a veritable art exhibit, filled with colorful chalkboard menus, paintings and quotes from icons like Martin Luther King Jr, Gandhi and the Dalai Llama. A large mural in the dining room features the Langston Hughes poem “Dream.” The menu, which is overwhelmingly vegetarian and vegan, is a separate work of art in itself, with options ranging from Egyptian foole dip made with fava beans, tomatoes, and jalapeños, to a grilled brie panini with spinach and caramelized onions. The vegan chicken stir fry comes with soy “chicken” marinated and sautéed with snow peas, baby carrots, shiitake mushrooms, garlic and brown rice, and doused in an addictive ginger-sesame sauce. For dessert, go for the vegan cheesecake (the flavor rotates every week), mango and raspberry sorbet, or a vegan parfait with creamy soy yogurt and seasonal fresh fruit.

Other dishes to try:

  • Vegan “beef” sliders
  • Vegan quesadilla
  • Tabbouleh
Categories: Food & Drink