The best menu options to try

If hearing “vegan food” conjures up images of a bland lentil ball, a plate of no-frills mixed greens, or a humble bean patty doing its best ground beef impression between a whole wheat bun, it’s time to reevaluate.

The annual Phoenix Vegan Restaurant Week is back for its second year, September 11-18, with over 20 restaurants, cafes, food trucks and pop-ups showcasing their best vegan offerings. For plant eaters, it’s a chance to try a new place. For curious vegans, this is an opportunity to explore the delicious possibilities of a meat-free, dairy-free, and honey-free diet.

Most offer a fixed price multi-course menu for breakfast, lunch or dinner. But some restaurants offer a one-course meal with accessories. Please note that any references to dairy such as ‘cheese’ or meat such as ‘sausage’ in the descriptions are vegan versions.

All menus are on But, these 11 stood out above the rest, whether it was for selection, value or both.

Nana’s kitchen

The lunch ($20) and dinner ($33) menus come with freshly squeezed homemade lemonade. Choose an appetizer consisting of an egg roll filled with creamy mac and cheese, candied yams and collard greens, or fried corn on the cob topped with homemade sauces. Cajun seafood porridge with sausage, corn, broccoli, scallops and potatoes; and Nana’s Soul Special with barbecued ribs slowly smoked over hickory and glazed with barbecue sauce, fried chicken, creamy macaroni and cheese, collard greens, baked beans and cornbread are choice choices. ‘hall. Dinner includes a choice of southern peach cobbler or grandma’s soft and moist pound cake with a touch of cheesecake for dessert.

Details: 777 N. Arizona Ave., Chandler. 480-963-9490,

Give Tree Cafe

The "Lunch on top of a skyscraper" sculpture at the Giving Tree Cafe in Phoenix on Monday, February 7, 2022.

Three menus will be offered daily at the Giving Tree Café. For lunch ($15), start the day with buckwheat pancakes topped with macadamia nut butter, fresh fruit, and maple. The meal is accompanied by coffee or tea. Take a lunch break ($20) with a jackfruit barbecue pancake stuffed with spicy mac and cheese and jackfruit topped with sweet mustard mashed potatoes, barbecue sauce and maple syrup. It comes with a choice of Superfood soda. For dinner ($33), choose from five different Krunch Raps (original, Korean BBQ, Mediterranean, Big Maxx, or breakfast), served with turmeric cauliflower with mint chutney and blueberry cheesecake for lunch. dessert.

Details: 2024 N. Seventh St., #111, Phoenix. 480-630-0200,

Restaurant Salvadoreno

Pupusas at Salvadoreño Restaurant in Sunnyslope, Phoenix.

This family-run restaurant with Salvadoran roots specializes in hearty comfort food from all over Central America. Stop at one of its five valley locations throughout the day for all-day dining options. For breakfast ($15), enjoy diced country potatoes with capsicum, tomato and onions served with casamiento rice, sliced ​​plantain, refried beans and two thick handmade corn tortillas or a pupusa. Add a JUST Egg if desired for an additional cost. A two-pupusa breakfast combo ($20) includes a choice of pupusas with beans, squash, spinach, or a combination of the two, served with two sides, curtido (coleslaw) and salsa. It comes with agua fresca, vegan horchata, tropical fruit salad drink, Jamaica or tamarindo. Dinner ($44) starts with a tamale with chipilin and cheese and is followed by a choice of chili relleno, rice, beans, and two handmade corn tortillas or a pupusa. A plantain empanada filled with beans is a dessert. Dinner comes with agua fresca, vegan horchata, tropical fruit salad, Jamaican or tamarindo.

Details: 12550 W. Thunderbird Road, El Mirage. 623-225-7442. Other locations on

Dilla Libre

A gourmet California Dilla vegan quesadilla at Dilla Libre Uno at 1339 E. Northern Ave.  in Phoenix on April 14, 2021.

Lunch ($20) and dinner ($33) menus come with a choice of drinks: agua fresca, hibiscus tea, or Dragon’s Blood (strawberry, pineapple, coconut water). Both also include an appetizer of elote, tapatio crema, tajin, and cheese, or a queso dip and fries with an entree. Choose from four main course options, including a tempura cauliflower taco with pico, coleslaw, cream and cheese; Chickpea Chorizo ​​Dilla made with chickpea chorizo ​​with fried potatoes, pico and cheese; the Papa Verde Dilla with potatoes, diced green peppers, pico and cheese; or a bean burrito with Spanish rice, cream, onion, cilantro, cheese and roasted peppers. Dinner also includes a churro for dessert.

Details: 1339 E. Northern Ave., Phoenix. 602-399-4024. Alternate location on

La Locanda Ristorante Italiano and La Locanda Italian Bistro

Both sister restaurants will offer the same four-course dinner ($44) that includes a Vacanza cocktail made with luxardo aperitif, fresh pink grapefruit juice and triple sec with a twist of lemon. The traditional bruschetta with roma tomatoes, fresh basil, extra virgin olive oil and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar is the opener. A spring green salad with carrots, red onions and dried cranberries with citrus vinaigrette follows. Choose between linguine in garlic sauce, sautéed mushrooms, wilted spinach, sun-dried tomatoes and black olives or penne arrabbiata made with spicy Italian plant-based sausage and roasted garlic in a spicy tomato sauce. Consider a “cheese” cake with strawberry coulis or lemon sorbet for dessert.

Details: La Locanda Ristorante, 6830 E. Fifth Ave., Suite 108, Scottsdale. 480-284-6511, Bistro, 3915 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale. 480-393-3606,

Solar, a vegan restaurant

A burger, hot chicken sandwich and fries from Solar, a vegan restaurant.

Located in the Tempe Food Court, head here for lunch ($20) or dinner ($44). Both are accompanied by non-alcoholic Sangria Senorial. The two-course lunch menu begins with a green salad of charred corn, red pepper, cucumber and roasted cherry tomatoes, topped with crispy paprika onion strips and served with chipotle ranch. A choice of three entrees follows: two jackfruit enchiladas in corn tortillas topped with nut-free cheese and served with mild green salsa; a burger consisting of two Impossible beef patties seasoned with the Spanish house mix and topped with your choice of jack pepper fondue, chunky pico de gallo chili or green salsa aioli; or two shredded green jackfruit tacos fried in white corn tortillas topped with homemade lemonade coleslaw and herb cheese dust with a side of green salsa. The dinner menu includes salad and entree options as well as a choice of appetizer: mini empanadas stuffed with jackfruit simmered in a mix of red peppers and served with lime-pepper guacamole; or charred jalapenos stuffed with cheese, herbs, and smoked paprika panko. A mini chimi stuffed with banana vanilla pudding and tossed in cinnamon sugar with a side of hot dark chocolate and caramel is the dessert.

Details: 1900 E. Fifth Street, Tempe. 480-862-9065,

Nice Burger

A skimpy deal ($20) satisfies with Sloppy Josiahs made with Where’s the Beef mince, grilled onion, garlic, peppers and sloppy gravy on a potato bun. Join the party with Louisiana Brussels sprouts fried in a tangy southern sauce. A peach and cookie-and-cream shake also incorporates Oreos and whipped cream for good measure.

Details: 3301 E. Indian School Road, Phoenix. 480-239-6983,

Pizza Freak Brothers

The family recipe for Lebanese hummus and freshly baked pita from Freak Brothers Pizza.

A three-course menu ($25) begins with the family recipe for Lebanese hummus paired with two baked pita breads. For the second course, the sophisticated 12-inch vegan pizza is anchored with a homemade pesto base, Miyoko’s liquid vegan mozzarella, sausages, rainbow cherry tomatoes, arugula, feta crumbs and MiaBella balsamic. Choose from three locally made desserts: Sea Salt Brownie by Sugarloaf Lane Bakery; churro cupcake by Positively Frosted and chocolate chip cookie by Yum AF Bakery.

Details: 901 N. First Street, Phoenix. 602-354-7723,

Vegan tacos

This vegan street taco food truck will fill you up with the loaded Barbacoa Vegano Plate ($15). Jackfruit and mushrooms are slowly cooked in a red chilli stew with potatoes and green olives. Refried beans cooked with soy chorizo, Mexican cold pasta and three corn tortillas are part of the offer.

Details: 2144 E. Indian School Road, Phoenix.

Simon’s Hot Dogs

Simon's Hot Dogs Dirty Fries.

A three-course menu ($20) starts with a choice of appetizers of chili mac empanadas, roasted peppers and potato empanadas or Maduritos sweet plantains. For the main course, consider Lebanese dog with tahini, tabbouleh, and garlic sauce; a dog topped with sweet corn and barbecue onions with parmesan cheese or a dog of southwestern chili salad with chipotle mayo. They come with a macaroni salad, dirty fries with cheese, bacon bites, and ranch or chipotle sweet potato. An alfajor, a popular Latin American cookie, is a dessert.

Details: 4280 N. Drinkwater Blvd., Scottsdale. 480-426-9218,

Steep Tea Company

Two options await you. Breakfast ($15) includes breakfast bao with a lotus leaf bun filled with seasoned tofu and sausage potatoes topped with pea shoots. Lunch ($20) includes a lotus leaf bun bao with chicken, cucumber, carrots, crushed peanuts, and barbecue sauce and three crispy vegetable spring rolls with sweet chili sauce. Both come with a choice of drink: pistachio matcha latte, maple peanut butter café latte or the Dragon #7 made with organic green tea, unfiltered apple juice and lemon juice .

Details: 960 W. University Drive, Tempe.

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