My family and I recently took a quick trip to the great state of Washington in the Pacific Northwest. Our destination was Seattle, our time limit was four days and our agenda was to see all that we could see without the use of a car. Needless to say, we averaged about a 9 miles a day of walking which is a great way to see a new city, meet new people and get those steps in! It is also a great way to build an appetite!
Traveling and eating plant-based doesn’t have to be difficult. The internet is full of websites to help you locate a place to eat and of course there are grocery stores where you can get all kinds of fresh produce.
We traveled with two kids under the age of 10 who tend to be on the picky side when it comes to eating but we managed just fine. It helps that their little legs walked all over the city too.
Here are a few of the places where we were able to grab quick plant-based bites to eat while traversing all over The Emerald City.
The VeggieGrill was our first stop. I will be completely honest, we were starving having started our travel day at 3:00 in the morning. I did not have time to glance fully at the menu and despite being a “chain,” VeggieGrill had many options that appeased everyone in my family.
All of the VeggieGrill menu items are free of meat, dairy, eggs and other animal products. Yes there are items with oil but there are also items without, you just have to look and ask.
From bowls and salads to burritos and tacos, VeggieGrill had a huge menu. Our first trip (yes, we went more than once), both my husband and I picked one of their bowls.
The second time we dined there, I created a meal piecing together a bunch of side dishes. They also have kids menus so our kids were totally happy.
Items that I would recommend are the: Black Beans & Quinoa Mini Bowl (contains black beans, quinoa and a roasted red pepper sauce), a side of yams (yes! They sell a plain side of yams!), a side of Roasted Broccoli or Turmeric Cauliflower.
On another day we were sight seeing by the Seattle Center and stopped for lunch in this touristy area. The Plum Pantry popped up as a plant-based option on my map so we decided to check it out.
Plum Pantry is a 100% vegan and organic company that strives to utilize at least 90% regionally grown foods. This was a delightful find!
I had the Mama Africa Salad and my husband had the Baked Tempeh Kale Caesar Salad. Both were reasonably priced and delicious.
The food is made to order while you wait. You can see the mountain of fresh greens right in their kitchen. They were super helpful and accommodating too.
Whole Foods (and other markets)
A mile from our hotel was Whole Foods which is always a great place to stop and grab some lunch. We stopped here a few times during our trip for either salads or bean and rice burritos for the kids. We also stocked up on fruit, veggies and Engine 2 hummus for energy while walking around the city.
Yes, it is a tourist trap but you can’t deny that it has fresh fruits and veggies galore! We knew that we had a long walk back to our hotel so we purchased some fruit to-go. Easy.
Amazon’s Banana Stand
It is no secret that Amazon is headquartered in Seattle. While we were there, I discovered that they had a Banana Stand somewhere in the city where they hand out FREE bananas to anyone who wants one, or two, or three!
We stumbled on the cart and chatted with the Banistas (that’s what the people handing out bananas are called). The Banana Stand was started in late 2015 and gives out about 1.7 million bananas a year! There are now two carts within the city. We sat and ate our banana watching as tons of people wandered up on their way to work or exploring the city and grabbed a banana! I love the idea behind this, encouraging healthy breakfasts and snack habits.
Of course there are tons of other grocery stores and restaurants all over the city, we were only there four days. We also dined at a vegan Thai restaurant but failed to snap any photos. My kids are not that exotic but were able to get a huge side of steamed broccoli, rice and even a side of steamed tofu. All you have to do is ask and that goes for anywhere that you travel. If you don’t ask, you’ll never know what your options might be.
Don’t let being plant-based keep you from exploring.