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Crystal writes, “My husband and I will be celebrating our 1 year anniversary in Chicago and would LOVE to hear from you on what to do and where to eat. We’re looking for a less typical tourist experience. We are some serious foodies – but are also vegetarians. Hope to hear from you soon!”
Happy anniversary, Crystal! Let’s start with your food options. We’ll tackle date night ideas and things to do in a separate post.
While it’s true that the Chi is more of a meat and potatoes (and craft beer) sort of town, the vegetarian selection is just as magnificent here as the carnivorous. Don’t get it twisted! For a romantic date night sans beef, here are my suggestions.
Top Vegetarian Restaurants in Chicago
These places serve a classy atmosphere with a side of protein. No meat. All delicious.
Mana Food Bar, 1742 W. Division St (Wicker Park)
The ambiance is trendy and the food is vegan at this Wicker Park fav. Try the sliders, baked goat cheese, and polenta. Warning: it can get pretty packed on weekends. Arrive early.
Karyn’s Cooked, 738 N. Wells St (River North)
Karyn Calabrese, the restaurateur behind the city’s vegan eateries bearing her name, is a pro at serving meatless and delicious. Remember when Beyoncé went on that 22 day vegan challenge? This is where she chose to eat during the Chicago stop of her tour. The atmosphere here is casual. Try the “ribs”, jerk tofu wrap, and mac ‘n cheese.
Native Foods, (multiple locations)
I just discovered this place last month and I’m already addicted! The Californian restaurant chain offers a vast variety of vegan quick-dining options. Try the “chicken” wings, portabella burger, and gyro. The gyro is probably my favorite out of the three but they’re all tasty!
Meateries with Veggie Options
Don’t feel restricted to vegetarian-only restaurants during your stay. It’s customary for many restaurants to offer vegetarian and vegan options even if they also serve meat dishes. Consider the following:
Sunda, 110 W. Illinois
Food type: New Asian. From their vegan menu, I recommend the crispy brussels sprout salad, shiitake edamame dumpling dip sum, and a sweet potato caterpillar roll.
India House, 59 W. Grand Ave
Indian is, by nature, a flavorful option for veggies. Chicago has some amazing restaurants but considering your hotel’s location (disclosed in her email) I would highly recommend India House. Try the samosas, and bhindi masala.
Do you guys have any suggestions for Crystal? Leave a comment below!