A quartet of deliciously creative non-meat dishes
There was a time when vegetarian food was a mere afterthought for restaurants. But with increasingly more people opting for plant-based choices that are mindful of health, environmental concerns and animal welfare, we’ve happily moved past those dark ages. These days, high-end restaurants, pizza chains and even sports bars offer vegetarian fare to tempt the most hardcore carnivore. Creativity and top-notch ingredients take center stage in these four favorite vegetarian options that put the “ate” in creative.
Trolley Wing Co.
Vegan wings $9.99
The relocation of the popular sports bar Trolley Wing Co. from Trolley Square to Sugar House brought a new clientele hungry for an alternative to chicken wings. “When we moved to Sugar House, we decided to give the vegan wings another shot on the menu. We sell so many vegan wings now—people come from all over to eat them,” owner Jeff Krie says. Served alongside fresh carrot and celery sticks with a side of vegan ranch, the toothsome morsels of mock meat come slathered in a variety of vegan-friendly sauces from sweet-and-tangy teriyaki to smoky ancho. Beer from Uinta Brewing is on tap for a perfect pairing.
Trolley Wing Co.
2148 S. 900 East, SLC
Jerusalem artichoke $10
If anyone takes vegetables seriously, it’s the chefs at Table X. An onsite culinary garden provides seasonal inspiration as well as fresh ingredients. Succulent and flavorful, the Jerusalem artichoke appetizer embodies Table X’s love and care of veggies. The flavor is earthy and smoky, while the presentation is stunning. We asked Nick Fahs, one of the three chefs and co-owners of Table X, about the dish. “Gently cooked Jerusalem artichokes are smoked and then served with a purée made from sunflower seeds and sunflower sprouts,” he says. “We garnish the dish with sunflower sprouts, champagne vinegar and maldon salt.” It’s as artful an artichoke as you’ll ever find.
1457 E. 3350 South, SLC
vegan pizza $7.95
Boasting delectable toppings like artichokes, arugula, Kalamata olives and roasted garlic, Blaze Pizza is making a great impression with pizza fanatics—vegans, vegetarians and omnivores alike. “Our mission at Blaze is really simple: We’re taking pizza back to its roots,” President and COO Jim Mizes says. “By making dough in-house, carefully sourcing ingredients and cooking by fire, we’re giving guests a great way to enjoy artisanal pizza without the wait. It’s changing the way people think about and eat pizza.” Opt for the Veg Out loaded with zucchini, mushrooms, red onions, mozzarella and gorgonzola, or make your own creation with vegan cheese that melts, stretches and tastes like the real thing. Speedy service (you can even order online!), low prices and pizza perfection—what more can you ask for?
Korean fried cauliflower $12
Cauliflower is having its moment, showing up on menus throughout the country and being touted as one of the biggest food trends of 2017. We’re especially fond of Log Haven’s rendition with crushed peanuts, scallions and a sweet-and-spicy glaze that is like nothing else. “It’s a twist on the cauliflower craze, only done with the Gochujang sweet-and-spicy sauce,” Chef David Jones says. “Gochujang is a fermented Korean chile paste, which adds a savory and spicy base to the sauce.” The Korean fried cauliflower is offered as a shared plate, serving 2-4 people but it’s tempting to keep it all to yourself. We won’t judge.
6451 E. Millcreek Canyon Road, SLC