Plant-based living is having a heyday! It feels good to make lifestyle choices that are protective of the planet and all of her inhabitants.
Portland is a vegan mecca on the cutting edge of this way of life.
Prepare for a Rose City highlights tour of ethical eating over the next several months as we share an array of options we love.
We’re kicking it off with NorthEast Portland!
The best fried not-chicken in the world and scrumptious munchies on the menu.
What do they offer? “Sinful” southern comfort food… YUM! Owner Alkebulan Moroski whips up his own seitan to mimic traditional southern meat-based dishes from his hometown in Jackson, Mississippi.
What do they value?
Having spent most of his life vegetarian, Moroski was always intrigued by the concept of “veganizing” his southern roots. He told PDX Eater
in 2021 “Okay, what can I do to make some form of incremental [environmental] change? Well, I can persuade people to curb their meat consumption by making vegan food that people would want to eat.”
Pucker up for a pisco sour!
What do they offer? Owners Pepe and Nicolle take traditionally meat-centric South American dishes and make them 100% vegan. Dishes are bright, healthy, and balanced dishes utilizing local, organic ingredients when possible, and focus on accents of fresh herbs and vegetable powders.
What do they value? Bringing vegan values and ingredients to Chilean, Peruvian, and Andes flavors. When you visit, take a look around – the interior is decorated completely with reclaimed materials, including:
- The bar top is made from skateboard remnants
- The two-top tables are made from reclaimed gym bleachers
- The four-top tables were brought from their restaurant in Chile
- The banquette seating are repurposed church pews
- The antique front door was bought in Peru by Nicolle’s parents when they lived there in the 1970s
- The large mural is entitled “Ivanna and the Cosmic Llama.”
Don’t forget to add Mama Lil’s and snag a side of ranch (or 3) for your favorite Detroit style pizza.
What do they offer? Vegan Detroit-style pizza, plus an option for gluten-free crust. Boxcar’s chicken, steak, bacon, and pepperoni are all made from vital wheat gluten, and their sausage is made from textured vegetable protein. Their mozzarella, ricotta, and bleu cheese alternatives are all nut-free, and the mozzarella is also soy-free. A great soy-free friendly place to dine!
What do they value? Rooted in a love for animals, Boxcar’s logo features Homer, the owner’s Blue Heeler puppy! Boxcar is a place for everyone to eat, enjoy, and feel safe.
Start with the edamame and end with a slice of cake.
What do they offer? Home style vegan brunch, comforting dinner dishes, and snacks to share. Plus, handcrafted, curated mocktails!
What do they value? Keeping the comfort of home style cooking, without any animal products. Simple. To the point. Delicious! Following the pandemic, they expanded their outdoor seating with a lovely bamboo patio. Perfect for a little extra distance from other tables, or enjoying the fresh air in a covered space.
Old School bar food, meets punk rock music venue.
What do they offer?
NE Portland’s “music-venue-meets-vegan-bar
” with pub favorites, like chili “cheese” fries, patty melts, French dips… the list goes on!
What do they value? 100% vegan and equally punk rock. The restaurant is back to hosting multiple live music shows a week, dance events, crafts night, trivia, and more. A top tier place to hang out with friends!
Colorful tasty food and intriguing family friendly beverages.
What do they offer? Fresh, vibrant, plant-based Indian cuisine. Oregon Live said, “There’s no meat or dairy to be found, but neither does any seem to be missing!”
What do they value?
Sanjay Chandrasekaran has been a star of the vegan scene in Portland for over a decade. Sudra brings a unique spin to traditional Indian food by intertwining Southwestern-US flavors, inspired by
his upbringing in New Mexico, while returning to the traditional value of respect for all living things.
Bubbelehs, nosh your hearts out at Ben and Esther’s vegan Jewish Deli.
What do they offer? Traditional Jewish foods from matzo, schmears, bagels galore, and plant-based meats sold by the pound.
What do they value? After a year in business, Justin King shifted his entire business model and menu to serve only vegan ingredients. King brings Portland locals meat alternatives that can’t necessarily be found in your everyday grocery store, including whitefish, lox, tuna salad, egg salad, corned beef, and brisket (to name a few), so everyone can enjoy traditional Jewish eats!
Plus – Markets and Grocery Stores!
Ditch one-time-use plastics and discover new favorite snackies!
What do they offer? A specialty grocery store providing a more sustainable way of shopping through the option to buy as much or as little of all products as needed. This mode of shopping produces less food waste and eliminates unnecessary packaging. Love to see it!
What do they value? “THERE’S NO SPACE FOR WASTE!” is the mantra of The Realm Refillery. Beyond their quest for zero-waste, the Refillery supports local BIPOC farmers and actively presents shoppers with the most ethical grocery options.
Something for the whole family, even the furry members!
What do they offer? A vegan convenience store with every snack and treat your heart desires!
What do they value? Straight from the source, Food Fight Grocery owners share:
“We are and always will be vegan for ethical reasons, meaning we are vegan as a boycott of the animal industrial complex. We strive to see the elimination of the abuse and murder of animals AND the oppression of the human workers within the animal agriculture industry. We keep trying to understand the evils of capitalism and our place within it.”
Even More Vegan Favorites!
- Doe Donuts — Everything is made from scratch, daily with unique flavor combinations. Freshest donuts on the block.
- Blossoming Lotus — From local farms… to your plate
- Tiny Moreso — Cozy atmosphere and dishes to nourish your body.
- Secret Pizza Society — Branch out from the basics with Secret Pizza’s unique and delish toppings!
- Nectar Cafe — Old-school diner vibes, convenient for a meal one-the-go, plus tons of parking space. A PDX dream!
- Mis Tacones — Chicano, queer-owned, vegan taqueria. What’s not to love?
At 8 years old, I had a revelation that animals meant too much to me to eat….then down way, I lost my vegetarian way. Years later, as I learned more about the planet and her inhabitants, I realized that, just as I avoid fossil fuels, I needed to wean myself off of animal products. While not everyone is ready to go vegan, in a city with such amazing options, perhaps it’s time for Meatless Mondays, or prepping for Veganuary.
Mangia and enjoy!