10 Eco-Friendly Restaurants in America
You know we love any restaurant that provides stellar vegan options. This Earth Day, though, we want to focus on restaurants around the country that go above and beyond when it comes to doing good for the environment. From sourcing local, regeneratively farmed ingredients, to powering the restaurant with renewable energy, here are some eco-conscious spots we think you should have on your radar.
Honestly, Plant Miami is more than a restaurant—it’s an experience. Sourcing their vibrant ingredients from their own regenerative and certified organic farm, Paradise Farms, Plant Miami has your health (and the planet’s) in mind every step of the way. The restaurant’s dishes are inspired by the local South Florida landscape, and they also offer sustainable wines and craft cocktails. Their farm supplies the Metropolitan International School of Miami’s garden-to-table curriculum and organic lunch program, and you can even get a weekly box of their regeneratively-farmed produce through their Community-Supported Agriculture program. We are huge fans.
Using ingredients from their own 5,000 square foot garden, as well as sourcing from 50 local farms and producers, Vital Roots focuses on sustainability and local community connections in Denver. Even more impressive, their kitchen and dining areas are powered entirely by wind energy! Check out their health-conscious grub, which includes raw and vegan options.
Los Angeles, CA
A.O.C. is a small plates restaurant driven by seasonal, locally sourced ingredients—many of the plates can be made vegan. We’re loving this place for the wine—with 24 wines by the glass and 150 bottles to choose from. All are either organic, biodynamic, or sustainable.
Los Angeles, CA
With several locations throughout Southern California, Sage is basically an institution at this point. Run by Mollie Engelhart and her husband Elias Sosa, these chefs and farmers focus on growing organic produce at their regenerative Sow a Heart Farm. Ninety percent of the produce Sage uses at their restaurants comes from local farmers who focus on organic, pesticide-free farming as well as regenerative agricultural practices that help sequester excess carbon dioxide from the air.
If you’re in Washington D.C. and haven’t been to one of the Busboys and Poets locations yet, you’re missing out. In addition to brewing fair trade coffee and tea, as well as using recycled paper products, Busboys and Poets utilizes renewable energy to power their restaurants. While not fully vegan, they offer some killer vegan options that don’t disappoint. They call themselves a “community gathering place,” open to writers, artists, thinkers, and dreamers. Busboys and Poets locations also have small bookstores within, and they run awesome local community events, so you can meet like-minded people while you’re there.
Photo credit: @late_brunchclub on Instagram
This vegetarian (mostly vegan) restaurant in Boulder, Colorado is known for whipping up some of the best veg options in the area. Leaf sources its ingredients from its own urban farm, Three Leaf Farm, which also operates as an education center and botanical sanctuary.
Little Rock, AR
If you find yourself in Little Rock, Arkansas, check out The Root Cafe, which has been visited by Guy Fieri himself. This spot has several vegan options and focuses on local sourcing of ingredients to reduce the number of emissions needed to transport the ingredients from farm to table. They also partner with neighborhood elementary schools and social justice organizations to get fully involved with their local community.
Located in Branford, Connecticut, G-Zen is a fully vegan, organic, eco-friendly restaurant, with all food made from scratch each day. G-Zen focuses on every detail, even filtering their water in three different ways and sourcing wine only from biodynamic vineyards. Even cooler, the restaurant is entirely zero waste, with all leftover food being composted.
Iowa City, IA
Head to Iowa City to try out this cafe that focuses on sustainability and community involvement. Trumpet Blossom Cafe uses no animal products and sources as many ingredients from local producers as possible, with a heavy emphasis on organic produce.
If you are looking for an authentic Pacific Northwest farm-to-table experience, look no further than Farm Spirit. Chef and owner Aaron Adams travels each week to local farms within a 105-mile radius to source the ingredients for his fully plant-based menu. Farm Spirit uses a communal-service dinner party approach, where customers are guided through the creation of each dish. Diners also have the option of eating at the intimate 14-seat chef’s counter, where each course is prepared in front of them. Sign us up!
Chelsea is an attorney and Virginia native who spent two years living and working in Los Angeles. Passionate about climate change, energy policy, and food systems, she is currently completing a Master of Laws in Energy and Natural Resources Law at Queen Mary University in London. She discusses these topics and more in her newsletter, found at nettingzero.earth. Chelsea enjoys cooking, camping, hiking, and photography and has traveled to nineteen countries, seeking out the best vegan food she can find along the way.
More from VegOut
19-Year-Old Entrepreneur Opens Gourmet Vegan Bakery in Washington, D.C.
Last March, Chanice McClover-Lee, a 19-year old Howard University student, launched Baked by Chanice, a gourmet vegan treat company that specializes in cookies and custom cakes. The young entrepreneur began selling baked goods at farmers markets in her hometown of South Florida, and after a successful launch, McClover-Lee is now relocating the business to a food hall and commercial kitchen in DC’s Brookland neighborhood. The new shop is set to open on May 22-23 at 1pm, and will operate on weekends for takeout only.
Soy Concha Bakery to Ship Vegan Pan Dulce Nationwide
Southern California’s first vegan panaderia, Soy Concha Bakery, is launching nationwide shipping. Formerly Vegan by Victoria’s, the business launched in 2018 at Orange County’s SoCal Vegfest and quickly took over a brick-and-mortar in a small Santa Ana strip mall. Since its founding, owner Earvin Lopez has expanded his offerings from Oreo-topped tres leches and crunchy puerquitos to colorful conchas, vegan gansitos (“vegansitos”), jalapeño-stuffed bolillos, and other classic panaderia goods.
Matthew Kenney Opens Two Vegan Restaurants in Baltimore
Celebrity chef and restaurateur Matthew Kenney is opening two vegan restaurants in Baltimore, MD on July 1. Under the Matthew Kenney Cuisine umbrella, Double Zero and Liora will be the first Matthew Kenney restaurants in Baltimore. The establishments will take root in two adjoining spaces within Baltimore’s downtown Inner Harbor.
Vegan Activist Haile Thomas Is Opening a Teahouse in Beacon, NY
Enjoy vegan and gluten-free sips and bites as you help support the community at this new teahouse!
The Top 11 Vegan-Friendly MLB Baseball Stadiums
While vegan-friendly options might have been limited to peanuts and Cracker Jack in years past, America’s baseball stadiums are upping their plant-based game—and we’re here for it! From Beyond Meat burgers to sriracha brats, you can be sure to stay fueled while you root for your favorite team. Here are the 11 most vegan-friendly baseball stadiums across the US!
Canada’s All-Vegan Grocery Store, PlantX, Is Coming to San Diego
PlantX is a one-stop vegan retailer that sells everything from oat milks and canned goods to all-natural soaps and air-purifying indoor plants. They carry thousands of products across 350+ brands—meaning if it's vegan, it can most likely be found in one of their stores. If not, then it’s probably being loaded on a delivery truck to be stocked on shelves later in the week. Leading up to 2021, this West Vancouver-based business was only located throughout Canada, but it will soon make its United States debut in the Hillcrest neighborhood of San Diego.
This South Carolina Luxury Resort Is Hosting a Plant-Based Wellness Retreat in July
As spring blends into summer, and many of us are planning our first vacations in over a year, a luxury South Carolina resort will be hosting an inaugural wellness retreat weekend featuring big names in wellness, plant-based cooking, and health, including Deepak Chopra, Ryan Engelhart, and more.
Jaden Smith Is Opening a Vegan Restaurant Where Unhoused People Eat for Free
Entertainment artist Jaden Smith has re-launched his initiative to provide free, plant-based meals to the unhoused population of Los Angeles. What originally began in 2019 as the “I Love You” food truck that serviced the streets of Skid Row, the eat-for-free concept is evolving into a brick-and-mortar.
6 Vegan-Friendly Meal Delivery Services to Try This Year
Take the guesswork out of dinnertime with vegan-friendly meal delivery services. They provide fresh plant-based ingredients straight to your door, as well as instructions on how to prepare them, so you can have something fresh and new to eat every day. Here are the meal delivery companies we are loving!
The Best Vegan Dal Ever
This is my go-to dal. It’s creamy from the coconut milk, tangy from the lemon. It pulls sweetness from the tomatoes and sneaks in some surprise spinach (mostly because I wanted to add some greenery). It’s energizing and light, while remaining both grounding and comforting.
Subscribe NowOrder the magazine!