Eating Plant Based at Cherry Tree Inn Bed & Breakfast

facade of Cherry Tree Inn Bed and Breakfast in Woodstock Illinois

Thank you to Visit McHenry County for hosting me for a fun Girlfriends Getaway weekend!

I had the pleasure of enjoying a hosted blogger weekend in McHenry County, and the area embodies the definitely of small town charm. Our home base was the Cherry Tree Inn Bed and Breakfast, which is about as idyllic as bed and breakfasts come. If you’re a fan of Groundhog Day, then you’ll recognize it as the same place Bill Murrary’s character is staying in during the movie.

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Twin Cities Vegan Chef Challenge

The VCC is a fun community event that takes place in cities across the nation. The Vegan Chef Challenge started in Sacramento in 2011 by Bethany Davis. The goal for this event is to not only show the community how amazing vegan food is, but to bring the vegan and non-vegan communities together to share in something they both love—amazing food! It’s also a great way to show local restaurants the monetary benefits of offering delicious vegan food on their menus. The competition part is fun for the chefs because it encourages them to push their creativity when creating their menus.

See more FAQs here: theveganchefchallenge.com/faqs

You can visit participating Twin Cities restaurants through October 20 to enjoy specials, then go online to vote. Descriptions of each dish are posted on the Twin Cities Vegan Chef Challenge Facebook event page. The challenge is sponsored by Vegan Outreach, and Compassionate Action for Animals is running the Twin Cities challenge. Read on to learn about what I’ve tried so far.

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Sünabloom’s Parfait Away Launch Party

vegan yogurt parfait in a glass bowl

Formerly known as Nogurt Yogurt, sünabloom is making a splash in the Twin Cities with their sunflower seed based, allergen friendly, plant based yogurt. Together with Eat.Drink.Dish, sünabloom hosted a tasting and launch party, and I happily accepted an invitation to the pre-event influencer social.

They invited some of my favorite local vegan businesses to provide additional treats, there was a DJ, and amazingly styled sunflower drag queens. Upon arrival, I was shown the champagne bar and my first thought was, “These people know how to throw a party.”

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Vegan Pizza in the Twin Cities

Vegavore at Parkway Pizza

The Twin Cities offers a wide variety of vegan pizza options. This is a list of where I’ve been and what I’ve had. The restaurants range from sit-down table service to quick-serve casual. The brand of vegan cheese varies among the restaurants.

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Review: Seva Foods Space Ice Kream and Coconut Jerky

A tote bag that reads "may all being everywhere be happy and free" next to bags of freeze dried vegan ice cream and coconut jerky

Launched in 2017, Seva Foods touts itself as a producer of organic plant based snacks. They were kind enough to send me their Coconut Jerky and Space Ice Kream, and I had fun tasting them and sharing them with others. All of their products are organic, gluten-free, soy-free, dairy-free, vegan and contain no added sugar or oil. The Space Ice Kream contains cashews, which is the main potential allergen in their products.

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Minnesota State Fair Vegan Food Guide

You may be surprised to learn that vegans (and those with dairy and egg allergies) can find a variety of things to eat at the Minnesota State Fair. Check out my list below and let me know if there’s anything I should add, or if you think something might not be vegan anymore. 

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Restaurant Alma’s Prix Fixe Vegan Menu

plate of arugula topped with grilled plums
Grilled Plum Salad

Alma is a cafe-restaurant-hotel in northeast Minneapolis, and they have a vegan option for their prix fixe dinner menu. I’d heard good things from other vegan friends, and my birthday seemed like a good excuse to check it out.

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Innate Foods: Vegan & Gluten-Free Bakery

Innate Foods in a tiny house bakery

Laura Ford started Innate Foods in 2016 and has hosted various pop ups and other events since then. Now she has officially opened her own vegan and gluten-free bakery out of her tiny house in Saint Paul.

When you walk in, you’re literally walking into Laura’s kitchen, and she has display cases set up with scones, cookies, blondies, and more. Currently, hours are limited to Saturday 8am-4pm, Sunday 9am-4pm, and Monday 7am-2pm.

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Vegan Options at the Uptown Food Truck Festival

Reverie Mobile Kitchen’s Nachos Supreme

The Uptown Food Truck Festival takes place Sunday, June 23 from 11am-9pm. There are several awesome vegan food options, and I’ll list my top recommendations. If you can bring a friend or four, you can share food, allowing everyone to try more food than they would otherwise. From home, I bring a large reusable bottle of water, cloth napkins, and eating utensils. If the forecast calls for nice weather, I usually also apply sunscreen.

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Vegan Options at Gandhi Mahal

a plate of rice with aloo matar gobi which is potatoes, green peas, and cauliflower
Aloo Matar Gobi

I’ve long heard other vegans tout the wonderful food at Gandhi Mahal, but for some reason only recently visited for the first time. I’ve gone to Everest on Grand and Himalayan a few times each, so my visit to Gandhi Mahal was overdue.

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