In Southern California, we have it good. Not only can we find a Starbucks on every possible corner, we can take free yoga classes at Runyon Canyon, relax on a cool beach, and eat a lot healthier thanks to a variety of vegan restaurants.
Whether you’re going vegan for health or protest reasons, there isn’t a reason why you should have to stick to ordering the salad and picking at different side foods when going out.
I’ll be listing vegan options by order of personal experience and what appealed to me when I did a search on restaurants in my area, which I often do when I’m heading out as someone looking to kick start a healthier lifestyle.
1. Veggie Grill
Veggie Grill offers the most delicious burger options for both vegan and non-vegans a like. As a meat eater looking to explore healthier food options, I was nervous about eating vegan food, but I found that the Buffalo Bomber was amazing. Another good thing about the Buffalo Bomber was that it came with a side. When you’re transitioning to healthier foods it’s good to keep some things the same. The Bomber sides included yuki fries, chili or coleslaw. You can get the Buffalo Bomber without bread and have it served Kale style.
2. 118 Degrees
118 Degrees made my list based on their gorgeous desserts and detox program. I first came across 118 Degrees recently when I was thinking of making a trip out to Disneyland with a couple of my friends for Saint Patrick Day. On the internet I went to search for health foods near the happiest place on earth and 118 Degrees is what I found.
I’m a huge dessert lover which is how I got myself in trouble in the past, now though with a healthier option for desserts I don’t have to deprive myself. Who could resist a chocolate cheesecake that’s a fraction of the fat of a regular cheesecake.
Another huge reason 118 Degrees made my list is because of their detox program. I’ll only give you a food sample of one of the 7 day detox.
Avacado Cacoa Creme with Fresh Strawberries
Omega Chia Cake Wrap with Spinach
3. Cowboys and Turbans
Cowboys and Turbans got #3 simply because it mixes two classic fast food into one. Indian and Mexican food. Everyone loves one or the either. I’ve yet to come across a person who doesn’t like either. Some might think Indian is too spicy. But every one has tried both foods at least once.
Another great thing about Cowboys and Turbans besides the name is that you can come here with non vegetarian and vegan friends. They offer a wide option of both menus. My recommendation is to try the Vegan Quesadilla and Masala Chili Cheese Fries.
4. Real Food Daily
Real Food Daily is the brain child of Ann Gentry this popular 100 percent plant based vegan restaurant here in Los Angeles is the first of it’s kind. They offer a variety of food from steak, burrito, to stir-fry. All plant based.
If you’re a ‘meat’ lover I recommend trying the Salisbury Steak.
5. Native Foods Cafe
I’m sure it’s been established that I adore Mexican food. I can’t help it I’m tri-culture and one of those cultures happen to be Spanish. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying Mexican and Spanish food is the same but they do have similarities. If you like me and love Mexican food then this cafe is for you. They have the best vegan nachos you’ll ever taste for a great price. I’d also recommend their chicken wings.
6. The Cultured Kitchen
If I lived in Sacramento I would live in this place. As I’ve mentioned I have a sweet tooth. This place has all kinds of goodies. Aside from their pies and chocolate which I love. They have salad dressings, hot sauces, and food bars.Their also an online store so you don’t have to live in our state capital to love this place
Crossroads for the more sophisticated palate among us. They offer Mediterranean themed food. I’m not into Mediterranean food but if you are then this is the place to go.