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Dining Tips

Vegetarian Dining Tips

New Jersey vegetarians do not have to go to New York City or Philadelphia for good food.  This site's Vegetarian Restaurants in New Jersey page lists many vegetarian (including some vegan) and "vegetarian-friendly" (having anywhere from several entrees to dozens, or maybe even a separate veg menu) restaurants in NJ, surrounding, and other areas.

Most Asian restaurants (especially Thai, Indian, and Chinese) have a number of vegetarian selections - but read the menu carefully to avoid entrees such as "Sauteed Green Beans (w/ minced pork)".  Be aware that some restaurants apparently use chicken as a base in vegetable dishes.  Most Chinese and Thai food is dairy free (be aware that many Thai restaurants use fish sauce and/or shrimp paste in many dishes - some restaurants even call these dishes "vegetarian"); some may contain eggs.  A lot of Indian food contains dairy in the form of yogurt, ghee (butter), and/or paneer (cheese).  Most Japanese restaurants have vegetable tempura and/or teriyaki, often several appetizers including sauteed tofu and edamame (soybeans, usually salted and served in the pod), plus several vegetarian sushi rolls.  Be aware that some serve otherwise vegetarian soups (miso, etc.) that contain fish flakes or slivers.

If you eat dairy, Italian restaurants usually have a number of vegetarian entrees (be aware though - for example, chicken broth is sometimes used in cavatelli & broccoli), and there's always pizza.  Some pizzerias have pies without cheese on their regular menus, and a few now serve non-dairy soy cheese (some soy cheeses contain casein, a milk protein).

A growing number of national and regional chain restaurants have vegetarian and vegan selections.  Among these: P.F. Chang's China Bistro, Qdoba, Saladworks, Chipotle, Panchero's, B. Good.  PETA has a helpful chain restaurant guide.

According to Vegan Action:   There are vegan options at many restaurants, including many Italian, Mexican, Indian, Thai, Chinese, Middle Eastern, and Ethiopian establishments.  If you're on a fast food schedule, pizza places, Taco Bell, and Subway all have vegan options.

Breakfast at restaurants is almost always easy for vegetarians, and there's usually vegan cereal available (although non-dairy milk is hard to come by).

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Updated 1/4/2013 Copyright © 2003-2017  Steven Fenster
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