Eating out can be very intimidating for those on a vegan diet for beginners who are just getting used to a vegan diet. Eating out as a vegan can be one of the biggest challenges, especially when you are just a beginner.
Though there are more options now than there have ever been for vegans, it can still be hard to eat out on a vegan diet without finding the whole situation to be stressful. That is why it is best to go prepared with some tips to make eating out at restaurants as a vegan that much easier.
With these tips, you will be able to go out confidently and enjoy outings with loved ones and family. While still being able to eat delicious vegan food.
1. Research Restaurants
One of the most important things that you should do before going out to eat on a vegan diet is research restaurants. This can save you a lot of time and stress as well as frustration because nothing is more frustrating than getting to a restaurant only to find that there are no vegan options.
You can research your local restaurants online or even call them to ask about their food options to find out whether or not they offer meat-free or allergy-friendly meals. Try to avoid asking about vegan food options, as many people do not know what kinds of foods vegans avoid.
This is a great way to eliminate restaurants that don’t have any vegan options so that you will not have wasted your time by going there.
2. Look Up the Menu
Once you find a restaurant that has some vegan-friendly options, you should try to find the menu. This way, you can double-check that there are vegan options, just to be certain.
Finding the menu also allows you to find vegan options ahead of time to reduce stress when eating out. Usually, you will have to ask for substitutions to make certain dishes vegan. So, it is nice to be able to get a look at the menu ahead of time to do this.
Most restaurants will have their menu on their website, but you might also be able to find it in the restaurant reviews section. If you can’t find the menu online, you can pick up a paper menu from the restaurant.
3. Be Clear When Ordering
When you are ordering your food, it is important to be very clear about what you are asking. Most dishes will have to be altered in one way or another to make them vegan-friendly, so you will have to communicate these changes to the person taking your order.
For people on a vegan diet for beginners, this can seem like a very intimidating task, but the important thing is to be clear when ordering.
Avoid using words like vegan, plant-based, or vegetarian as not everyone knows what these terms mean. Try to avoid causing any confusion when ordering, and make sure that the person taking your order understands what you are asking for.
4. Ask for Changes to Meals
No matter where you eat out, you will most likely end up having to ask for changes to be made to certain dishes. This is to be expected, as it is rare to find a lot of vegan-friendly options in most restaurants.
Don’t be afraid to ask about substituting certain ingredients or altering the dish. Most restaurants are happy to help and will gladly customize their dishes to fit your diet if you ask politely.
You can easily transform all kinds of dishes into vegan by asking for certain ingredients to be removed. You can even ask if other ingredients can be added to a dish to make it more filling.
Even if you don’t think that a certain change can be made to a dish, it can’t hurt to ask. You might be surprised by what can be customized when you are ordering.
5. Look for Allergy Friendly Dishes
Another useful tip is to look for allergy-friendly dishes as some of these are dairy-free. These are great dishes to customize to make vegan. More and more restaurants are starting to offer allergy-friendly options.
These types of dishes make it easier to avoid dairy products like cheese, milk, sour cream, and butter, making it an easier process when asking for alterations to your food when ordering.
6. Look for Vegetarian Options
Another option is to look for vegetarian options when looking at a menu. Vegetarian dishes are great options for vegans because the meat has already been removed.
If you are ordering a vegetarian dish, all you have to do is make sure that it doesn’t contain any dairy ingredients, eggs, or honey. This can easily be discussed with the person taking your order.
Meat can be one of the hardest ingredients to replace in a dish, which is why vegetarian dishes are so useful for vegans.
7. Order Sides
If you can’t find any dishes that can be customized to be vegan-friendly, you can always take the last resort. This usually means resorting to ordering a few different sides.
Most restaurants will have several vegan-friendly sides such as veggies, fries, assorted fruit, and salad. You can order multiple sides to make a filling meal if you don’t have any better options.
When you are on a vegan diet for beginners, you might often find yourself having to order sides. This happens to all of us and the good thing is that there are usually some good sides to choose from!
8. Pick Certain Restaurants
When you are on a vegan diet for beginners and are looking at restaurants to eat out at, there are a few options that are better than others.
Some restaurants tend to be more vegan friendly, while others rarely offer vegan options. This is why it is sometimes best to avoid certain restaurants to choose other more vegan-friendly options.
Mexican and Italian restaurants are much harder to find vegan options, while other options, such as Thai, Chinese, Asian, Japanese, Greek, middle eastern, and Indian restaurants, cater more towards veganism. These are the best kinds of restaurants to go to find a good selection of vegan options.
Even though eating out can be one of the most intimidating parts of being vegan, it doesn’t always have to be that way.
There are plenty of vegan options and vegan-friendly restaurants if you know how to look for them and if you go prepared. The best way to still be able to enjoy eating out with friends or family is to be prepared ahead of time.
Use these helpful tips when you are looking for vegan-friendly places to eat out so that you can enjoy eating out even when you’re on a vegan diet for beginners!
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