It seems like I can’t scroll through a social media platform right now without seeing a few posts about Imperfect Produce. This California-based company is slowly expanding across the US, offering delivery of “imperfect” fruits and vegetables sourced by farms who are unable to sell them for one reason or another. The produce may not meet an industry standard by being too small or by not being shaped the “right way,” or sometimes they take a surplus if a farm grows too much for them to sell.
Pizza Karma is in Eden Prairie not far from Eden Prairie Center. They offer Indian inspired, tandoor-fired pizza with several marked vegan and gluten-free options. Vegan items are marked with a green V+ and gluten-free items are marked with a brown GF. The menu includes starters, salads, and signature pizzas.
The Tilted Tiki is a tropical-themed restaurant and bar in downtown Stillwater, MN, and at the start of 2018 they added a vegan section to their menu, featuring Beyond Meat products and tofu. The owners have offered special discounts on their vegan dishes several times, making the trek well worth it, though it’s not that bad of a drive from St. Paul to begin with.
Prior to attending an event in September 2018, I visited Red Cow in downtown Minneapolis with friends. I had messaged Red Cow on Facebook to inquire the Impossible Burger entree and found out I’d have to swap out the bun, as well as leave off the mayo and cheese in order to make it plant based. They also said my server could “guide you towards some awesome vegan friendly modifications.”
Modern Table offers three flavors of vegan macaroni and cheese: Classic Cheddar Style, White Cheddar Style, and Southwest. I purchased them at Whole Foods and wanted to compare them all and see which one I like best.
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.