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Vegan Simplified

The Vegan lifestyle is not boring, complicated, or expensive. This blog was designed in the hopes to simplify the process of healthy eating. I welcome everyone, not just vegans.

Category

Illinois

The Green Owl Cafe

rating-2_5 (3)

 

 

Overview: While in Chicago, my fiancé and I decided to drive up to the University of Wisconsin-Madison. I’ve never been to Wisconsin and my fiancé hasn’t gone back to visit since he graduated. So, we thought it would be a fun day trip! On our way there, we stopped at the Green Owl Cafe, which happens to be the only vegetarian and vegan restaurant in Madison. So, of course we had to pay a visit!

Menu: The Green Owl Cafe offers a variety of food options to choose from such as nachos, quesadillas, salads, sandwiches, and pasta dishes. We tried the Sesame-Peanut Noodles which consisted of peanut sauce with sautéed carrots, broccoli and red peppers, topped with chopped peanuts and scallions. We also tried the Campanelle Pasta with Alfredo that had a cashew-based cream sauce with sautéed broccoli, carrots and peas. I have to be honest. I was a little disappointed because both dishes had very little flavor. I wasn’t amazed by the food at all. Looking back, I wish I would’ve tried one of their desserts to determine whether those were any good.

Favorite Item(s): I really don’t have a favorite item for this place. Based on this one experience, I can’t say I like any of their dishes.

Rating: As much as I love to support all vegan restaurants, I do think they should definitely experiment with their menu items to give them more depth. Also, I couldn’t believe how small the portions were. I do have to say that their service was good. I wish I could give this place another try, but I was only visiting for one day. Anyway, I’d still give this place a thumbs up for spreading the vegan message :)

Times visited: 1

Address: 1970 Atwood Ave, Madison, WI, 53704

Hours: Mon Closed, Tues-Sat 11am-9pm, Sun 10am-3pm

IMG_1404
(Sesame-Peanut Noodles & Stir-fried Vegetables)
IMG_1405
(Campanelle Pasta with Alfredo Sauce)
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The Chicago Diner

rating-3_5 (3)

 

 

Overview: From what I’ve read, the Chicago Diner is a must go-to vegan restaurant in Chicago. They only have 2 locations, both which are located in the city of Chicago. Their menu consists of vegetarian foods with plenty of vegan options. We visited this place on a Sunday afternoon so it was very packed. There were 5 of us so we had to wait about 15-20 minutes before getting seated. I was very excited to visit this vegan version of an American-style diner. Being that there were 5 of us, we had the opportunity to taste a few different dishes.

Menu: Their menu consists of the typical diner foods such as burgers, sandwiches, fries, hot dogs, and shakes. The Radical Reuben Sandwich is their most talked about dish. It was pretty tasty, and the beef seitan had great flavor and texture. The Poutine, which consisted of waffle fries topped with melted vegan cheese, was very delicious. The Pierogi Quesadilla was okay. The first few bites were great but I quickly got tired of it. The Country Fried Steak is a battered seitan filet, topped with country gravy, and mashed potatoes. This was pretty good and I really enjoyed the gravy. For dessert, we had some delicious Cocoa Mousse Cake. It’s too bad I didn’t try their shakes but next time I will.

Favorite Item(s): The Poutine was very enjoyable. Can’t go wrong with fries covered in melted vegan cheese!

Rating: This place is great for those who enjoy diner-style comfort foods (obviously!). They were very hearty dishes but a bit too heavy for my taste. The food was good but I certainly prefer dishes with fresher ingredients. The great thing about this spot is that they offer so much versatility in their menu which is very hard to find. I would definitely come back here to try their vegan milkshakes!

Times visited: 1

Address: 3411 N Halsted St, Chicago, IL, 60657

Hours: Mon-Thur 11am-10pm, Fri 11am-11pm, Sat 10am-11pm, Sun 10am-10pm

IMG_1407
(Poutine)
(Pierogi Quesadilla)
(Pierogi Quesadilla AND The Radical Reuben Sandwich)
IMG_1406
(Country Fried Steak)

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