Mochi waffles dripping with syrup. A hearty French dip with a super savory au jus. Creamy shepherd’s pie with a golden crust. Crisply-fried schnitzel sandwiches. Sliders smothered in tangy barbecue sauce. Flautas stuffed with umami-packed bulgogi. And for dessert: a rich, luscious slice of chocolate mud pie and an irresistible serving of mini donuts.
These dishes can be yours at vegan restaurant weeks across the country, when diners can find vegan menus at restaurants across the city. Trip across the city sampling from diverse menus, from farm-to-table Cuban entrees to Zimbabwean appetizers, pan-Asian street food to Mexican fusion dishes. Hosted by local organizations seeking to showcase the very best of each city’s vegan cuisine, these dining events offer the ideal time to visit a city and sample its eats—often for great prices.
Vegan restaurant weeks allow everyone, regardless of diet, to explore the delicious possibilities of plant-based eating, while boosting local small business economies and attracting new, loyal fans. Indulge in these vegan restaurant weeks taking place across the country throughout the year. We’re betting you’ll order so much food, you’ll need a doggie bag.
V72X2, Richmond, Virginia — January 26 to 31, 2021
Ring in the new year with a fun collect-them-all, game-style vegan fest that’s super fun. Diners who rack up five or more stamps on their digital food passport at Richmond V72X2 win a decadent dessert.
This vegan week turns the city of Richmond into a vegan food paradise for 144 hours (get it: 72 x 2) as participating restaurants showcase new, mouthwatering vegan dishes. In previous years, the event was hosted solely by Vegan Action, but this year the non-profit teamed up with Richmond VegFest to co-sponsor the restaurant week (it’s also why the event ran six days instead of the normal three). Don’t be sad if you missed this one though–V72 is an annual event so you’ll have all year to plan your attack strategy.
Seriously though, you might want a game plan. Literally dozens of restaurants participated this past year, which means attendees can have a veritable vegan feast. Avoid the winter blues with some spicy vegan chili, and then at night, keep things cozy with some mushroom alfredo fettuccine. The next day, you could have yourself some tandoori cauliflower and then head into the city for some mint chocolate puddin’ pie before a stroll around downtown. Are you drooling yet?
Southwest Florida Vegan Restaurant Week, Cape Coral and Fort Myers, Florida — February 12 to 26, 2021
2021 marked the first-ever Southwest Florida Vegan Restaurant Week, and it was such a huge success that it’s going to become an annual event. Keep it on your radar for February again, which also happens to be the area’s high season. The event was (and will be) hosted by Lifestyle Solutions Healthy Planet, Inc. (LSHP), a non-profit focused on educating people about the health benefits of a whole-food, plant-based lifestyle.
At SWFL Vegan Restaurant Week, diners could hop back and forth across the Caloosahatchee River to grab some vegan bites at participating restaurants in Cape Coral and Fort Myers. Sure, the great food options were reason enough to go, like refreshing summer rolls, energizing acai bowls, and hearty Moroccan peanut stew. But there was even more incentive: All the restaurants were local, family-owned establishments, and it always feels good to support the community (especially given the past year or two we’ve had … ). Plus, customers had the chance to win prizes at each restaurant. Who doesn’t love prizes? Fingers crossed there are plenty of giveaways next year too.
Maryland Vegan Restaurant Week, Baltimore City and surrounding areas, Maryland — February 2021, August 2021
Maryland Vegan Restaurant Week is so fun it happens not once, but twice a year, offering even more opportunities to check out the growing vegan scene in the so-called Old Line State. The summer round of the event happens in August, and the winter edition kicks off in February.
In the past, customers who voted for their best dining experience during the event had the chance to win a gift certificate from their favorite participant restaurant. It may be hard to pick just one favorite though, with so many diverse options available, from plant-based comfort food to Mexican street food to Filipino-inspired cuisine.
Just imagine: You could start your morning with some vegan mango vanilla oatmeal, dig into a vegan version of a Mexican Sonoran hot dog for lunch, and then end the day with some pineapple fried rice. Okay, well maybe not end the day just yet: You have to finish off with a classic, vegan ice cream sundae topped with housemade chocolate syrup and a cherry on top, right?
Phoenix Restaurant Week, Phoenix, Arizona — September 12 to 18, 2021
Phoenix Restaurant Week broke ground as the first event of its kind in Arizona. Presented by Jozh Watson of PHX Vegan and Executive Chef Jason Wyrick of The Vegan Taste and Casa Terra, the event, which celebrates vegan cuisine in the Phoenix metro area, is on track to be held annually in September. If you’re elsewhere in Arizona though, you might catch their various one-off events in other cities like Sedona, Flagstaff, and Tucson.
Just a bit hungry? You can order the special representative dish at one of the participating restaurants, food trucks, or other food vendors. We’re talking things like vegan banh mi torta made from local bread, braised mushroom, veggies, and basil aioli, and lentil dal curry served with mango chutney and a side of shishito peppers. Totally famished? Opt for one of the establishments offering a prix-fixe menu. They range from two to five courses, and with heart of palm ceviche for your appetizer, vegan chile relleno as your entree, plantain empanadas for dessert, all washed down with an agua fresca—what’s not to love?
The cool thing is these unique menu specials may not have been on the restaurant’s menu before, so it makes eating out an adventure even for locals.
Lancaster Vegan Restaurant Week, Lancaster, Pennsylvania — September 18 to 24, 2021
There’s been a growing desire out of Lancaster City for more vegan options, and wishes have been granted thanks to Lancaster Vegan Restaurant Week. This annual event launches alongside the Lancaster VegFest, a weekend-long celebration of the plant-based lifestyle. The restaurant week event is normally held during the beginning of June but was moved to September this year due to COVID, so keep an eye on the schedule for the future.
You’ll be glad you have a whole week to enjoy the festivities given the variety of cuisines to try. We’re talking vegan chimichanga, fried risotto, shepherd’s pie, spicy tomato soup … the list goes on and on. Walking around Lancaster City Historic District alone will bring you to plenty of participating places to try.
In this case, eating good means doing good since a portion of proceeds is donated to Lancaster Farm Sanctuary, a non-profit animal sanctuary. Win-win!
Bellingham Vegan Restaurant Week, Bellingham, Washington — September 20 to 26, 2021
Running for two years now, Bellingham Vegan Restaurant Week is hosted by Bellingham Veg Fest, a volunteer-powered, non-profit organization—and the only all-vegan festival in the city. The event fittingly coincides with Bellingham’s “ALL IN for Climate Action” campaign, which is geared toward reducing climate emissions. Originally, the restaurant week started as a replacement for the in-person Veg Fest that never was thanks to the pandemic, but in the end, it was so popular that they’ll be back again next year. More delicious vegan food for everyone!
You may notice that vegan and non-vegan restaurants participate in this restaurant week, with the latter offering at least one vegan option. Regardless of where you go, expect something memorable like portobello mushroom fajitas, a seitan French dip sandwich, vegan mochi waffles, and more. And why not carpool or bike to the event with family and friends?
Philly Vegan Restaurant Week, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania — September 24 to October 1, 2021
Philly Vegan Restaurant Week started in September of 2018. In the past, this volunteer-run event has been held twice (once in spring and once in fall), and pending the pandemic, that bi-annual schedule is what they have in mind for the future. More days of restaurant week means more days of amazing vegan food. Whether you’re in the mood for a single special menu item or you’re ready to go all out with a prix-fixe vegan menu, get ready for some incredible creations like mushroom bulgogi flautas with vegan mozzarella and kimchi, an oyster mushroom schnitzel sandwich with lemon caper aioli, a giant calzone made with lemon cashew ricotta, and more.
It’s hard not to love an event that pairs good food with a good cause. Philly Vegan Restaurant Week has also raised money for local nonprofits and animal sanctuaries, such as Peace Advocacy Network and Misfit Manor. Due to the effect of the pandemic on the restaurant industry, establishments participating this fall 2021 will keep 100% of their profits.
Providence Vegan Restaurant Week, Providence, Rhode Island — October 29 to November 7, 2021
Providence Vegan Restaurant Week is an annual event, running for three years now, and it’s scheduled to align with World Vegan Day on November 1. Due to its popularity, it’ll be taking place for a little longer than a week this year in order to cover two full weekends. Time to tell all your friends that your weekend plans are set, because there is some amazing vegan food to be had.
By the way, Rhode Island may be small, but it has had a big impact on the vegan scene. Providence’s Like No Udder boasts itself as starting the world’s first all-vegan soft serve ice cream truck, and these days they’re just one of many eateries offering up mouthwatering vegan food. Depending on where you go (and there are many ranging from New American to Mexican to Greek), you can choose from either two to three plant-based specials, or order a three-course prix fixe menu.
Don’t be shy to let the local restaurants know if you’re in love with their specials, because past participants have gone on to add these dishes to their permanent menu. Ah, there’s nothing like the taste of making a difference.
Colorado Springs Vegan Restaurant Week, Colorado Springs, Colorado — November 1 to 7, 2021
Colorado Springs Vegan Restaurant Week is an annual event that launches on November 1 (hello World Vegan Day!), and this year marks its fifth year in operation. Some participating restaurants create new vegan dishes specifically for the event, some offer specials on existing vegan items, and others create prix fixe menus. The point is, you won’t be starving for options, especially if you’re hanging out downtown where there is a good cluster of restaurants to hit up, one after another.
If the menus of Colorado Springs’ past restaurant weeks are any indication, there’s something to suit every kind of diner. Enjoy some barbecue tofu sliders with apple slaw, savory tamales served with fresh salsa, buffalo cauliflower tacos, and cinnamon French toast. And don’t forget dessert, including mini vegan donuts (served in a cute martini glass!).
Triangle Vegan Restaurant Week, Triangle Area, North Carolina — November 1 to 7, 2021
Triangle Vegan Restaurant Week is launching its inaugural event right in time with World Vegan Day. It’s not just restaurants that join in on the fun; there are also food trucks, bakeries, and breweries all getting creative when it comes to vegan cuisine. Better still, the participating establishments are scattered across Apex, Carrboro, Cary, Chapel Hill, Durham, Pittsboro, Raleigh, and Wake Forest, so wherever you are in the Triangle, it should be easy to get some grub.
Speaking of grub: Establishments will offer either at least two special vegan dishes or a special three-course, fixed-price vegan menu. Only have time for a quick lunch while running errands downtown? There’s something for you. In the mood for a romantic dinner in a stylish hotel restaurant where the food is as good as the company? No problem. Attendees can expect offerings from an array of cuisines, including farm-to-table Cuban food, Zimbabwean, soul food, pan-Asian street food, and more.
Fort Wayne Vegan Restaurant Week, Fort Wayne, Indiana — November 2 to 8, 2021
There’s no better time to explore vegan cuisine than November, World Vegan Month, and if you’re in Fort Wayne, the easiest way to do just that is to attend Fort Wayne Vegan Restaurant Week, which is held during the first week of November. The year 2021 marks its third in operation, and it has been such a hit that the vegan restaurant week will be offered twice a year starting in 2022 (once in the spring and once in November). That gives you even more time to support local favorites and find new ones.
During the event, participating restaurants offer two to three special vegan options. With dishes priced at $8 and up, you won’t have to break the bank trying out multiple establishments throughout the week. Good news considering you’ll probably want everything when you see what’s on the menus, like vegan buffalo chicken pizza, Thai yellow curry with tofu, chorizo chickpea tacos, falafel pita, and more.