Welcome to Meatless Miami

Dear readers, I'm excited to announce that the awesome team at Choices Cafe are taking over Meatless Miami. Expect great things! Don't be a stranger and swing by Sweat Records now and then for a vegan latte.

Cheers, Lolo (@LKRMIA on Twitter and Instagram
)

Choices Cafe - Upper East Side

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646 NE 79th St / Miami / 786.803.8352

Vegetarian Friendly: 100%
Vegan Friendly: 100%

Would it be easier to convince your non-veg friends to join you for a plant-powered dinner if didn't look and feel like your 'typical' vegan joint, and they could pair it with some libations? Enter - Choices Cafe Upper East Side. This Choices concept features the full menu you have come to know and love, plus a few more 'choices'. At this sleek space they also serve 100% organic and vegan beer, wine and sake. That's right, not all beer and wine is vegan, as it is often processed with fish-bladder and other animal products. But at Choices you can rest assured that your drink is free of pesticides and 'other' things. Choices UES also has a new and improved bakery selection - all made in house and all gluten free. Some highlights include pumpkin cheesecake, raw date balls and gooey-good gluten free brownies.

With free wifi, a shaded patio, pancake brunch, and vegan spirits, this place is hopping' on the weekends.  And be sure to follow them on FB, Instagram and Twitter to stay in the know of their events (which are usually FREE!), such as wine tastings, cooking classes, educational speakers and more!

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Sweet Earth Cakes

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305.749.5458
Vegetarian-friendly: 100%

Vegan-friendly: 100%

Sweet-lovers...there's a new game in town!  Sweet Earth Cakes (which operates from a bakery in Miami but doesn't currently have an actual store front) is now open and serving up 100% vegan, gluten-free desserts with no added sugar or artificial sweeteners. Some stand-outs include brownie cakes, chocolate chip cookies, cocoa-nut cookies and plantain-nut muffins. The price is right at $2.50–$3.00 per piece (minimum order 4 count).

Baked goods are made fresh to order, and they deliver! Please allow up to 24 hours to accommodate orders/delivery. 



You can also find these sweet treats at The Honey Tree in the MIMO area, Kaplan Chiropractic on South Beach or The SER Institute in Coral Gables.

www.sweetearthcakes.com 


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Choices Kitchen

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711 NW 27th Ave. / Miami / 786.953.6053



Vegetarian-friendly: 100%
Vegan-friendly: 100%

8/14 - UPDATE: FULL Choices Cafe menu is now being offered, in addition to the 'daily plate'!

OK, so maybe we're a bit biased, but this place is the bomb dot com. 100% plant-based? check.  Sustainable practices such as composting food waste and a bag-share program? check.  Gluten-free goodies and raw treats too? check. Organic marketplace to get your shop on after you enjoy your meal? check.

Choices Kitchen is the offspring of Choices Cafe. Here, the daily plate (which is a steal at $12) includes an entree, a salad, a cup of soup and unlimited organic iced tea. The venue is spacious and open - much unlike the flagship Brickell location which could be a BIT crowded at times. The plate of the day is posted on their website, and includes anything from comfort foods such as mac n' cheeze or tacos, to raw delights of pesto zucchini noodles and walnut pate. After your done eating, browse the organic marketplace showcasing rare finds such as organic, gluten free cereals to soy-free 'soy sauce'. And don't forget to bring your own bag, or take one from the 'give a bag - take a bag' bucket next to the cash register! 
  

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 ChoicesCafe.com  
ChoicesKitchen.com 

-Review by Lori

Blue Collar

★★★★
6730 Biscayne Blvd. / Miami / 305.756.0366

Vegetarian-friendly: Yes
Vegan-friendly: Yes

Blue Collar (in the former American Noodle Bar spot) serves new-school American comfort food and excels in veggie-friendliness.  They also have thoughtful, cute touches like thermoses full of Panther coffee and paint buckets to chill your bubbly.

On to the food!  Their "Veg Chalkboard" is one of my favorite options in Miami: a massive list of 20+ veggie and carb sides that can be purchased individually for $4 each, or you can get four of them for $14.  I am a Brussels sprouts aficionado and their caramelized ones don't disappoint.  


Blue Collar also has a house-made veggie burger which I believe is vegan.  For the non-vegans their Mac (with cavatappi, trugole, chedder and parm) and Chanuka Latkes are to die for.  Note: this place is popular, and TINY.  Don't come in a large group, and if you're more than two head out early or late to ensure a seat.    

$$
bluecollarmiami.com


-Review by Lolo

Yard House

★★★★
320 San Lorenzo Ave. / Coral Gables / 305.447.9273
601 Silks Run / Hallandale Beach / 954.454.9950


Vegetarian-friendly: Yes
Vegan-friendly: Yes

At first glance, Yard House could easily be mistaken for just another upscale sports bar (after all the one I went to is in Merrick Park, one of Miami's schmanciest shopping centers).  However, all it takes is one solid read through the menu to realize that someone there knows what's UP.

One word: Gardein.  They have an entire section on the menu dedicated to dishes featuring this fantastic meat substitute that's winning vegetarian and omnivore fans alike (my omni boyfriend is obsessed), featuring everything from Sliders to a BBQ Chicken Salad.  You can also have any of their burger variants with a Gardein patty instead of meat.  

Yard House sets a great example for modern restaurants.  Why NOT carry a substitute protein, now that they're readily available and often less expensive than actual meat?  There are huge movements dedicated to "Meatless Mondays", being a "Weekday Vegetarian", and so on, so it's great to see a growing chain like Yard House leading the way.  They also have a squillion beers on tap (to find out which ones are vegan, check Barnivore.com).

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yardhouse.com


-Review by Lolo

MAOZ Miami Beach

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1657 Washington Ave. / Miami Beach / 305.534.MAOZ [6269]

Vegetarian-friendly: 100%
Vegan-friendly: Yes

We've already posted that there is a MAOZ in Boca but we're so excited because now there's one right on South Beach!  It's on Washington just across from the Fillmore so here's hoping they stay open late(r) for post-concert munchies.

The premise of this Amsterdam-originated chain is simple: they serve up crispy falafel, either in a sandwich or on a salad.  You can start with "premium" add-ons (avocado, feta, hard-boiled egg), and/or just deck it out at the Salad bar, which has everything from roasted veggies to tabbouleh, salsa and sauces.

Maoz also has Belgian fries, daily vegetarian soups, reasonably-priced fresh juices, and great graphic design.  It's CHEAP too, $5.95 for the sandwich, $7.95 for the salad, with combo deals available.  They also cater so keep that in mind for your next event.  Hoping to see many more of these pop up around South Florida!

maozusa.com

Woodlands Indian Cuisine

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4816 N University Dr. / Lauderhill / 954.749.3241

Vegetarian-friendly: 100%
Vegan-friendly: Yes

Guest review by Emerge Miamian Sara Yousuf
 
Woodlands is a fully-vegetarian Indian restaurant and their menu is enormous!  Appetizers, sides, soups, dosa (super thin stuffed crepes), uthappam (lentil and rice cakes), house specialties, dinner specials, pullavs (rice specialties), curries, breads and desserts.  No dessert is priced at over $3.50, and each one would rival those made by my Indian-born grandmother.  
 
I had a delightful daal served with rice and raita for a mere $6.50!  A giant set meal including, coffee or tea, soup, an appetizer, a main dish, and various other treats goes for $13.50, and is probably enough to fill you up and provide you with lunch for the following day.  A vegan can easily order a satisfying meal from Woodlands' array of daals, samosas and soups (anything with paneer, and many of the kormas will have dairy in them).  The spicy "rasam" soup was the best, I never wanted it to end!  Also, the samosas were wonderful and the potato and pea filling was perfectly seasoned.  They were fried to perfection, and served VERY hot with two types of chutney.  Surprisingly, the coffee is also fantastic.  There are hints of spice in it, and it is served steamed (with milk in it) and frothy on top.  
 
My main critique is that the ambiance doesn't feel like a fine Indian restaurant.  At the same time, I appreciate the fact that the prices are so low, and I imagine that if the place was spruced up, the prices would increase as well.  I'll take my restaurants affordable, delicious and slightly dive-y.  The service however, is fantastic.  It seems like every employee has a personal stake in your experience there, and every waiter makes sure that each table is happy.  Recommended!

Choices Cafe

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379 SW 15th Road / Miami / 305.400.8895

Vegetarian-friendly: Yes 
Vegan-friendly: 100%

I know I took forever to add Choices but they've become one of the best vegan spots in Miami (in the old Om Garden space in The Roads).  They've got a huge menu of juices, smoothies, salads, sides, wraps, burgers, tacos, sandwiches, stews, pizza, burritos and beyond.  On weekends they do customizable pancakes which are fantastic (who knew a savory kale and onion buckwheat pancake would be so damn good?) and literally everything I've tried there has been delicious, savory and not overprices as some veg places can be.  

The place is called Choices because you can eat any "style" from completely raw to hearty cooked food, and everything there is vegan.  The staff are great and they throw vegan-related events too.  Highly recommended!

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Cafe Prima Pasta

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414 71st St. / Miami Beach / 305.867.0106

Vegetarian-friendly: Yes 
Vegan-friendly: Somewhat 

[Full disclosure: I was invited to a dinner here on the house.  As always, my reviews remain unbiased.]

Italian restaurants are vegetarian-friendly by default: noodles and tomato sauce, what could be easier?  However, finding something delicious to eat beyond eggplant parmigiana is less common.  Cafe Prima Pasta is trying to change that with their "Veg Out Tuesdays" six-course vegetarian tasting menu, as well as a regular menu of vegetarian options (though I believe you need to specifically ask for it when you go).

The tasting menu was great, a full review of it can be found here.  My personal favorites of the night were the Grillata (an insanely perfect plate of grilled vegetables), the zucchini rolls with sun-dried tomato and arugula, and the fiocci alla pera (pasta "packages" filled with cheese and pear).  Some items on the main menu are vegan-able, and they were very accommodating to requests.



It's a cozy, dimly-lit spot perfect for a date, the service was impeccable, and they have a renowned early bird special.  I seriously can't wait to go back just for the Grillata... Recommended!

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primapasta.com

Darbster

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8020 S Dixie Hwy / West Palm Beach / 561.586.2622

Vegetarian-friendly: Yes
Vegan-friendly: Yes


Oh Darbster, how I wish I lived closer to thee. Several months back my friend and I made a pilgrimage to West Palm Beach to eat at the much-heralded vegetarian bistro Darbster (okay, and South Florida's only H&M).  To fuel up for our shopping excursion we hit Darbster first.  It's a cute little indoor/outdoor spot located next to a canal, and the menu is a smorgasbord of creative, veg-ified comfort food dishes (like palm cakes made with hearts of palm instead of crab cakes).  The prices are reasonable and everything looked so good it was hard to pick.  Here's what we ate:


Chicken Caesar wrap

Steak sandwich with a side of mac & cheese

Raspberry cheesecake!

All the food was delicious - for real delicious, not just "delicious for veggie food" - and the cheesecake was amongst the best I've ever had.  Judging by all the updates and photos on their Facebook page, they seem to be doing well.  Here's hoping to a long future for them, and perhaps one day another location further south!

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darbster.com