Surprise! Or not a surprise? I’ve been vegan for 2 years and a lot of people know but also a lot of people don’t know! So, with that, I figured that I’d share WHY I went vegan (because SOO many people ask) and a lot of questions that I’m asked and other vegans are asked! Hopefully, this will answer all of your questions (and DON’T ask where I get my protein from…I’m fine). But, I also wanted to share some of the top vegan restaurants in St. Louis!
During my freshman year of college, I had to take a public speaking class and for one of our speeches, we had to do a persuasive speech. So, in typical Sydney fashion, I waited until the night before it was due to actually start it. Which at that point, I was at a complete loss and scrambled to search a topic on google that would be good. I stumbled on the topic on why you should be vegetarian, “simple” is what I thought. I knew there would be a ton of information to support my speech so I rolled with it. At the time though, I was still eating meat but only when I was home from school or at restaurants because I was living in the dorm and I wouldn’t dare touch the dining hall meat. After reading about why you should be vegetarian, I made the switch overnight. I was vegetarian the next morning I woke up and I kept reading more information and started reading about being vegan. After more and more research, I did it without thinking about it. At first, I never thought I could give up cheese and ice cream but it turns out, it’s not that hard! The hardest thing about going vegan is definitely learning what you can and can’t eat and you’d be surprised how many products unnecessary ingredients are in!
- What do you actually eat? Um….everything? Just no animal products. All of the fruits, vegetables, and grains you can think of, I eat. Plus, there are so many vegan supplements like cheese, milk, meat that you’re really not missing out on anything, I promise!
- Is your partner vegan? How do you feel about that if they aren’t? Here’s what I think…I’m not going to force somebody to go vegan. It’s their decision and they have every right to their own decision about what they eat. But, I’m not going to cook it so they’re on their own. As long as I’m not eating or cooking it, I really don’t care.
- How do you get enough protein? 1. Please stop asking. 2. Protein is in almost everything I eat! I eat a TON of nut butter which has protein. Also, my almond milk has protein, nuts and seeds have protein, oatmeal, tempeh, hemp seeds, tofu, nutritional yeast (the holy grail), blackberries, bananas, broccoli, potatoes..you get the point by now.
- What made you want to be vegan? Read my story above! Everybody has a different answer! For some people, they do it for the animals, for health reasons or for the environment.
- Isn’t it sooo hard? Nope! Sure, at first it’s difficult because you’re learning what you can eat and choose not to eat but you’re also learning how to cook without animal products and what types of food make you feel good and fill you up! For me, it was hard to give up cheese and dessert. But, I don’t miss it because there are so many good vegan options out there now! I’ve been vegan for two years and there are SOO many more options now than there were two years ago! (Aka vegan pizza rolls. Thank me later).
- Isn’t it expensive? Actually, for me, it’s not! While living on my own I stuck to a lot of whole foods such as rice, beans, fruits, and vegetables. Those are typically pretty cheap. A lot of people think that fruits and vegetables are super expensive but you can find cheaper options. I eat a ton of bananas when I’m living on my own because they’re so expensive but you can eat them in so many ways so you don’t get bored of them!
Now, my favorite part! The restaurants:
Lulus: ALL TIME FAVORITE. Their menu rotates for spring/summer and fall/winter so if their spring/summer menu doesn’t interest you, the fall/winter menu will! My favorites for the spring/summer is the buffalo cauliflower wrap, obviously the buffalo cauliflower bites and the BBQ jack!
Lona’s Lil Eats: Super good for Asian inspired wraps! The restaurant isn’t fully vegan but their menu is great at labeling what is!
Pizza Head: Vegan pepperoni pizza. Mmmhmm. This place is fully vegetarian so you don’t have to worry about real meat! The restaurant is super super cool and the pizza is good too!
Tree House: Such a good brunch option! Good for cocktails as well!
Sweet Art: SUCH GOOD CAKES/CUPCAKES! Ugh, I could cry just thinking about it. This is where my 21st birthday cake was from and to be honest, I hid it from my family so I didn’t have to share…it’s that good. They also have a different special for each day of the week that look super good!
Small Batch: Small Batch is a whiskey lounge so it’s definitely one of the nicer dining options!
Seedz: A really really good all vegan restaurant option! Um also, their cheesecake? Yes, please. Plus, they have baked vegan donuts! Does it get any better?
Pura Vegan: They have really good acai bowls for a decent price and raw vegan desserts.
Confluence Kombucha: Kombucha on tap? Yup, yes, please!! This place is vegetarian/vegan so your friends can find something to eat here too if they’re totally weirded out by vegan food.
Bombay Food Junkies: They have a restaurant and a food truck so you’re bound to find them somewhere! This restaurant is an Indian/fusion vegan restaurant. I’ve never been but everybody that goes loves it! A super plus is that the owners are so nice!
Of course, if you have any questions then my Instagram inbox is ALWAYS open!! I’m here to help you!