Pieology is a fast casual pizza chain found in many states around the country. Think of it as a Chipotle for pizza. They have specialty pizzas, or you can build your own, and Daiyahas been a vegan cheese option there for awhile. The company announced that they now offer three plant protein options. I live in St. Paul, so I headed over to the St. Paul location to check it out. It’s the only one in the Twin Cities; the next closest is Mankato, MN then Des Moines, IA.
I lived in Uptown for a couple years and became a member of The Wedge Co-op. Now that I’m a St. Paul resident, I’m a Mississippi Market member as well. Supporting local business is important to me, but I sometimes feel a little lost at co-ops. Considering how much shopping I do at Mike’s Discount Foods and ALDI, co-op shopping can give me sticker shock now and again.
The Mall of America has much to offer when it comes to plant-based eating. While I could offer up a really long list, I’m going to stick to my favorites, including some honorable mentions. Please note that businesses sometimes come and go quickly at MOA, and ingredients can change so be sure to double check things for yourself. I will do my best to keep this post current. Happy eating!
Alamo Drafthouse franchises can be found around the country, and the Twin Cities has a location in Woodbury. In poking around their website, it appears that nearly all have a separate vegan menu, or at least vegan options on their regular menu. They use a fun, B-movie themed decor, and they have comfortable reclining seats. There’s a table for every two seats, and each person gets their own menu. You write down your order, display it in the rail at the edge of your table, and the servers will come around to take your order.
January’s “I Can’t Believe It’s Vegan Night” at Bar Luchador had the theme “Far Out, Far East.” I was skeptical since the last thing I want is someone bastardizing and/or appropriating food that is quite personal to me. Even using the word Asian is such a catch-all, as there is a huge difference among the cuisines of Asia. The menu did seem to run the gamut, from egg rolls to a banh mi to their take on drunken noodles, and even Thai Fried Bananas for dessert.
Living on the north side of St. Paul, I don’t make it to the western part of the Twin Cities often, but Naviya’s makes it worth it now and again (as well as Linden Hills Farmers Market). Many dishes are either marked “vegan” or “vegan upon request,” along with a fair amount of gluten-free offerings.
On New Year’s Eve, I went to Tongue in Cheek for the 5-course vegan tasting menu. I have to say, I don’t know why I don’t go there more often because the entire meal was incredible. The online menu lists it at $55, but it’s $65, and you can choose to get it paired with “libations” for an additional $35. I’m not sure how often the menu changes, but they do change it regularly so you don’t quite know what you’re going to get.
The Howe is in south Minneapolis and offers several plant based options, including dessert. Its sister restaurants are Stanley’s Northeast Bar Room in northeast Minneapolis and Pub 819 in Hopkins, and you’ll find some similar dishes across their menus. They all also offer a dog-friendly “paw-tio” along with a dog-friendly menu.
Dulce of Dulceria Bakery invited me to join her at Hamburguesas El Gordo which is across the street from the bakery, and I’ve been back one additional time since then. Their menu board lists vegan tacos either in a flour or corn tortilla shell. They also sometimes have vegan burgers; Dulce asked at our visit and they didn’t have them, but when I asked at my second visit we were able to order them.
My friend Casey sent me a Buzzfeed article last month about vegan bacon chips made from mushrooms, and I was too intrigued to not try them. I only had to wait about a month as they figured out production and shipping for their first round of orders, and they stayed on top of communicating about the status, which is always appreciated.