investigates: Austin, TX is a popular
vegan friendly destination. So let's
take a look at Austin's Vegan Restaurants,
Food Trucks, Bakeries and more.
Texas… named #1 vegan city by PETA,
America’s fastest growing city,
rated 11th Fittest City in America by The
American College of Sports Medicine and #1
fittest city in Texas in their latest American
Fitness Index (May 2013).
So after learning about all the wonderful
things that Austin has to offer I just
had to check it out!
Restaurants, Food Trucks and Vegan Friendly
Restaurants in Austin, TX
I learned that
according to GrubHub Inc that Austin
took the #6 spot of the ten most
vegetarian-friendly cities in the United States,
behind Seattle, San Jose, San Diego, Houston
and Dallas. And let’s not forget, Austin
is the home of Whole Foods Markets,
which opened their first store in
1980 with a staff of only 19 people and now
is of one the biggest natural foods chain
in the USA.
Cafe and Garden, Austin, TX
My plans included visiting most vegan restaurants
and food trucks plus the beautiful natural
parks. So day 1 started with a visit to Mother’s
Café and Garden, 4215 Duval
St, Austin, TX 78751 | (512) 451-3994 | motherscafeaustin.com
I had heard of the vegan lasagna and chocolate
cake, and was totally ready to try!
The location was beautiful and inviting.
I met the owner that day and she was so friendly
as well. She told me about the restaurant’s
devastating fire years ago and about the re-model.
They now have a cute indoors garden and waterfall,
and they are opened 7 days a week.
I tried one of their sandwiches and the pina
colada smoothie (pineapple-coconut juice and
banana) and loved them. For the dessert I
tried the famous chocolate cake and I must
say: It's now my new favorite
I told the owner how chocolate cake is my
favorite dessert and therefore had tried many
to date, but hers was the best! :) She explained
how they beat the batter in increments, for
several minutes at a time, to make the cake
extra soft. And I must add, I don’t
even like cake frosting and always take
it out... but the deep richness of the chocolate
frosting and creamy textures were amazing!
The next day I attended the “Austin
Vegan Riot”, a gathering a foods trucks
which included vegan foods by BBQ
Revolution, Red Rabbit Bakery, and Taco ‘Bout
It. Initially I was very excited
to attend this event but I had a couple disappointments…
I decided to try a vegan BBQ dish. They were
having a busy night and the food was taking
a long time to be served.
Meanwhile I was surprised to see the cupcake
truck with zero costumers. So I went
to grab one to support them, and to my surprise
they were completely sold out of every single
item! I guess I should have known... never
underestimate the power of dessert! lol It
looks like everyone ordered cupcakes before
dinner. So unfortunately I couldn't try them.
Here are a couple pics below:
Foods, Austin, TX
I love Whole Foods Market and it’s
in fact my favorite market. So visiting their
stores was on the top of my list.
Whole Foods Market
525 N Lamar Blvd. (between W 5th & 6th),
Austin, TX 78703
There I grabbed something quick from the
food bar and a green smoothie.
Loved the plant wall above
the escalator! While at the beautiful downtown
location, I was impressed by the high foot
traffic and I decided to ask one of the workers
about the number of visitors per day…
she indicated 80 to 100 thousand. Wow!
To my surprise, Whole Foods had just opened
doors to a beautiful new location that week
and decided to visit it the next day.
The new Whole Foods store
opened January 15th 2014 and
is located at 11920 Domain Dr. Austin,
TX, 78758. I was impressed not only
by the size and beauty of the new store but
also all by all the new variety of offerings.
Loved the new Ramen Menu, tried
it and it was pretty good for Whole Foods
if you know what I mean, since sometimes the
foods at the bar are not so flavorful, but
the Ramen Noodles with veggies, sprouts and
tofu were awesome!
I visited 3 Whole Foods stores. One was closed
for renovations. And the downtown
store replaced the original mothership
store as I was told, which was across
the street from it.
Located at 1901 E Cesar Chavez St, Austin,
TX | (512) 477-5228 | http://www.mrnatural-austin.com
I visited Mr. Natural during their first
Vegan Brunch Buffet, first
Sundays of every month, 11-3pm $16. The menu
seemed heavily inspired by Mexican cuisine.
Desserts included vegan cupcakes, cakes and
de Luz, Austin, TX
Next day I headed to Casa de Luz
at 1701 Toomey Rd, Austin, TX 78704
| (512) 476-2535 | casadeluz.org/austin
They offer a self-serve food bar and prepare
fresh vegan desserts daily which can be purchased
separately. Beautiful place and a relaxing
atmosphere! Lunch starts at $12, which includes
soup, salad and an entree.
It was while at Casa de Luz that I
finally began realizing that a big part of
the vegan cuisine in Austin was inspired
by Mexican cuisine. So tortillas,
tacos, beans and burritos were very popular.
There were no shortage and delicious vegan
treats to try. There were Pies, Cookies
and Puddings, including a Creamy
Coconut Pudding, a Strawberry Orange Coconut
Pudding, a Carob-Pudding with Coconut Cream
Lake: An awesome oasis in the middle of downtown!
This place was freaking awesome. I read the
city spent many thousands cleaning the park,
waters and re-modeling to create what we see
now. And they did an amazing job! The energy
of everyone walking, running, bike riding
or even canoeing was contagious: A variety
of activities to be enjoyed! I can totally
see how everyone falls in love with Town Lake.
It's easy! The energy, activities,
beauty, and even parking, are plentiful everywhere.
A wonderful place the whole family
can enjoy any day of the week.
I love asian dishes, so just had to stop
by MT Supermarket at 10901 N Lamar Blvd, Austin,
TX 78753 | (512) 454-4804 | mtsupermarket.com
Asian dishes are easily made vegan as you
know, and asian markets are always full of
amazing choices. While there I searched for
unique items and was happy to try a
vegan friendly Taro Root ice-cream, super
awesome! And grabed some natural coconut water
(without added sugars) as well.
Next door, on the same mall, was TC Noodle
House, 10901 N Lamar Blvd #203, Austin, TX
78753 | (512) 873-8235
The tofu eggplant dish is
always a favorite of mine and definitely one
of the best I've tried in a while. The food
was very good, and service was fast. I loved
it so much I went back a couple days later
to try a couple more dishes. ;)
Next I headed to Rios, a Brazilian restaurant
in Austin which surprisingly had a vegan menu,
408 N Pleasant Valley Rd, Austin, TX 78702
| (512) 828-6617 | www.riosofaustin.com
Now, since I’m from Brazil I naturally
assumed the owners and staff spoke Portuguese,
so at first I was disappointed and slightly
confused since this was not the case. The
menu offered the following vegan options:
Aipim Frito | Açai na Tigela | Estrogonofe
I ordered all 3 to try. The fried
Aipim tasted pretty good. My first
impression of the Estrogonofe
was also good. It was creative since the chef
replaced the traditional fries for Aipim fries,
and replaced the dairy and meat with coconut
cream and tofu instead. However, I would have
liked a few more tofu squares as the dish
was mainly rice and fries. Next the
Acai Bowl was really liquidly, not
as I expected, but still tasty.
Let me start by saying that the locals did
warn me! Another vegan I met called this place
a total dump and online reviews were not very
good either. But hey, I was in town and decided
to try it anyways.
Veggie Heaven, 1914 Guadalupe St, Austin,
TX 78705 | (512) 457-1013 | veggieheavenaustin.com
Well, unfortunately they were right! :/ Portion
sizes were ok, but the vegetable fried rice
was mostly rice, and the eggplant tofu (usually
I favorite of mine) wasn't the best. I also
had to keep my eyes focused on the food and
not look around, as the place was more than
just a greasy spoon. So I just wanted to eat
quickly and 10 minutes later I was out.
Vegan Chocolate Cake Bite :)
It was time to leave town, but not until
I could grab my last bite of my favorite vegan
3 tries but I didn't give up: Hamilton Pool
Before heading to the airport I had a couple
hours to spare and just had to give it a final
Hamilton Pool Nature Preserve,
24300 Hamilton Pool Rd, Dripping Springs,
TX | (512) 264-2740 | 9 to 6pm / $10 per car
Here is the story. On my first visit
the weather was so cold it was unbearable
to walk outside being that I am from Brazil.
On my second try the gates were locked due
to the cold weather. Finally, on my third
try, after paying and parking and wearing
3 layers of clothing and still very very cold,
I was able to walk to the lake. I was the
only visitor at the park, guess not the best
time of the year to visit anyways, but was
totally worth the effort.
Absolutely beautiful! The waterfall and nature
were mind-blowing. Would love to come back
one day and enjoy the warm waters and trails.
Overall Austin was awesome.
:) Loved the people, the restaurants, the
nature, everything. Wished I had experienced
the live music scene and wish some days were
not so cold as they were. I'm still curious
about a lot more and there is lot more to
see, so hey, might have to come back for more.
There were so many wonderful
restaurants I didn't get to try.
Thanks everyone for the hospitality!
Great city, great people!
PS: If you've read The VSG you know that
it's almost impossible to eat really healthy
while eating out. Like we talk about in the
book, this trip was one of those cases where
I used up my monthly "restaurant food
quota" in a few days. It was back to
green smoothies and home cooked meals when
back from the trip. lol
have a favorite vegan restaurant or food truck
in Austin? Be sure to share with us below...