There's more and more evidence that eliminating meat from your diet, even just a few days a week, is not only good for you but also good for the planet.
Best Plant-Based Restaurants in Boston
Coming up with vegetarian meals can be difficult for the average omnivore, but these incredible restaurants in Boston have got you covered.
In 2006, the founders of Veggie Grill discovered that not only did they feel better on a plant-based diet, they also felt more empowered to help others change the way they consume food. Now, Veggie Grill is one of the largest vegan and vegetarian restaurant companies in the country. The Harvard Square location is open for limited dine-in, takeout, and delivery. The menu showcases how pub favorites can easily be converted to the plant-based format. The "Double BBQ Mac Burger" uses two Beyond Burger patties, creamy ranch, mac and cheese tossed in the house VG cheese sauce all served on a brioche bun. The Veggie Grill take on a reuben uses "corned beef," special sauce, whiskey-dill sauerkraut, and provolone on griddled rye bread. There's even a kid's menu for the youngest vegetarians in the family.
In Allston, Grasshopper Restaurant is the go-to spot for vegan Chinese food. Currently only open for takeout, Grasshopper specializes in modern takes on classic Chinese dishes. One of the house specialties is the braised spicy tofu hot pot with seitan, pineapple, and lemongrass. The "Grasshopper Supreme" uses skinless, steamed eggplant, asparagus, spinach, and mushrooms all slathered in a savory chili-basil sauce. Each fried rice or lo mein dish comes with a choice of tofu or other veggie-protein like chicken, shrimp, squid, or beef. For dessert, there's vegan blueberry or strawberry cheesecake.
For more than 10 years, True Bistro has been the best place in town to enjoy plant-based fine dining. Chef/Co-Owner Stuart Reiter has lived in Austria, Japan, Hungary, and Ghana and his experience abroad influences each dish at True Bistro (currently open for takeout only). Start with a hearty bowl of mushroom gumbo with okra, traditional vegetables, and shimeiji mushrooms. For the main course try either the crispy, seared polenta squares topped with seitan chorizo, cashew sour cream, and red mole or the BBQ tofu and grits with smoky collard greens. Save room for dessert because there are two kinds of cheesecake (strawberry and peach) and a bourbon chocolate pecan pie.
My Thai Vegan Cafe
My Thai Vegan Cafe showcases the indigenous flavors of Thailand through a plant-based lens. The cafe uses only the freshest, cleanest ingredients in its dishes and the professional service combined with affordable prices keeps locals coming back time and again. Start with classic appetizers like spring rolls stuffed with veggie-chicken and tofu or tow-hoo tod (crispy tofu cigars). There are 11 different soups to try including the house specialty vegetable noodle soup with veggie-veal, veggie-chicken, tofu and a mix of Asian vegetables in a clear broth. The most Instagram-worthy main course is the "Bird's Nest." Taro root is fried and formed into a nest shape and then filled with veggie-chicken, veggie-beef, bell pepper, pineapple, zucchini, broccoli, walnuts, and a spicy green curry sauce. There's also a wide selection of "lighter fare" for those who are watching their waistlines.
When you think of ramen you probably think of meaty broths but Red White in Boston is changing the game. The Red White recipe is based on the vegan dining style of Buddhist monks (Shojin dishes) that has been around for 1300 years. The "Sapporo Buddha" ramen has a rich, miso broth with vegan meat, tofu, mushrooms, corn, and spinach. The "Dragon's Breath" brings the heat and umami in its spicy broth. If soup isn't what you want as the weather gets warmer, try the "Mix Well" which is soupless ramen, all of the accoutrements and none of the broth. Alternatively, the "Buddha Rice" has miso-roasted avocado, white and black rice, quinoa, several veggies, vegan meat, tofu, pickled gingered, and sunflower seeds.
Cocobeet is Boston's original organic juice bar. The cold-pressed juices, superfood smoothies, and grab-and-go vegan menu can help you feel your healthiest while also helping the planet. Drink your greens with the "Green Genes" juice with kale, spinach, cucumber, apple, and ginger. The "Peruvian Sun" is a refreshing blast of orange, carrot, apple, citrus, and maca. For hungrier health nuts on the go, try an umami bowl. The wild rice, raw greens, sweet potato hummus, mushrooms, and pickled pineapple will keep you fueled all day. The vanilla berry chia pudding is a sweet treat (and you deserve it). To jump start your vegan cuisine journey, try a cleanse! Cocobeet has several different cleanses in a variety of lengths. Go for an all-liquid cleanse or do a combo of liquid and raw foods.