Culture

This Is What Growing Up Vegetarian In A Latino Household Looks Like

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It took a while for most of my family and some of my friends to embrace, or even understand, the concept of vegetarianism. Before that, I was officially the martian at any gathering that involved food. It wasn’t fun or easy for them and most certainly not for me:

1. Inviting me would automatically make the host nervous.

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“Ay Dios, I love you, pero I don’t know how to cook vegetarian!” (Hummus is your friend, party planners!)

2. People would ask me how I even managed to stay alive.

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“How do you live on tomatoes and lechuga?!” (Yeah, because there are no other veggie options).

3. They were concerned about my drinking habits.

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“Can you take a shot?” (Last I checked, tequila is plant-based).

4. I was a walking wonder.

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“No one can survive without meat!” I am secretly Wonder Woman.

5. Abuelita thought I was borderline anorexic.

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“¡Estás tan flaca mija! OK, but I’ve put on 10 pounds since you saw me last.

6. Mami would blame any minor health issue on my dietary choices.

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“That’s what you get por no comer bien.”

7. Often enough, they didn’t even know what being vegetarian really was.

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“What does a cheese-less pizza taste like?” (You should Google “vegan.”)

8. I was often starving.

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“Mira mija, eat some crackers,” they’d tell me, while the rest of the family pigged out on asado.

9. Mom just didn’t know what the f**k to cook for me.

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“I made you a salad.” Again. And again. And again.

10. Their arguments to try to get me to stop being vegetarian were absurd.

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“You’re killing plants, which is pretty much like killing an animal.”


Are you vegan or vegetarian? How’d your family react?

READ: Worst Questions Latino Vegans Get Asked

If You Are Looking For A Vegan Taco Crawl In Los Angeles, We Just Created It For You

Culture

If You Are Looking For A Vegan Taco Crawl In Los Angeles, We Just Created It For You

fatveganguy / Instagram

There might officially be more veganos than vegans in America, but nobody is really keeping track of Latino-American diets. For all the veganos out there looking for their next food-tour vacation, forget Portland. Los Angeles is where all of the best vegan tacos and Mexican food calls home.

Almost every taco truck would be able to accommodate you, and, yes, know whether their frijoles are vegan, because we’re everywhere in L.A. In such a competitive market for hungry vegan Latinos, we’ve generated a list of the top vegan tacos in Los Angeles. If you’re not hungry now, you’re about to be.

1. Cena Vegan

@grubshots / Instagram

Cena Vegan’s fame is all in their homemade vegan meats. The meats are so good that you can order them in bulk to use at home. At the truck, you can get carne asada, pollo asado, al pastor and a gluten-free carnitas meat option. Then, you add it to tacos, burritos, nacho boats, etc.

This Instagram reviewer puts it bluntly, “literally how are these vegan HOW. @cenavegan you’re magic.”

They’re a winner for obvious reasons.

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You can try all four taco meats and get four tacos for $11, without having to worry if the beans are cooked in lard, or if the crema is really vegan. It’s all vegan and so good.

2. Vegatinos Food Truck

@vegatinos / Instagram

They love to serve up their vegan shrimp tacos. The few times we can find vegan shrimp are usually at all-vegan Asian restaurants. Shrimp tacos?! Only in Los Angeles.

At Vegatinos, you can get suadero and chicharron tacos before enjoying some vegan flan. 😭

@vegatinos / Instagram

Quintin L. had some interesting things to say about Vegatinos in his Yelp Review. “I’m so in love with these freaking rockstar tacos… it feels like cheating on someone because everything tastes so good that it feels like you’re doing something naughty.”

3. Plant Food for People

@plantfoodforppl / Instagram

PPFP isn’t making high-protein vegan meats like Cena, but they’re keeping it classic in a different way with signature jackfruit tacos made four different ways. Plus, you can also get their breakfast tacos made with tofu and potato scramble if you get there early enough.

4. Hijo De Su Madre

@vegnews / Instagram

From left to right, we have a beer-battered avocado, chipotle crema, and pepita slaw; soyrizo, potato hash, and guac; Beyond Meat cabbage, avocado, secret sauce. That’s not even all their options because Hijo is all-vegan.

5. Dear Mama LA

@dearmamala / Instagram

You definitely want to check out this Latina-owned taco spot when you are in LA. Her caption reads, “This hood inspired traditional flavor is just what summer needed. Our citrus marinated chick’n or Hood Chick’n will have you reminiscing on the days you were a kid and you had carne asadas with the family. This hood staple of yellow looking chicken was what most kids enjoyed! So I’m bringing it back to you with a whole lot of love. We marinate it to perfection with oranges and bell peppers and of course love 🥰🙆‍♀️🔥”

6. Trejo’s Tacos Fried Avocado Tacos

@trejostacos / Instagram

Danny Trejo has outdone himself with a chain of authentic Mexican tacos all around Los Angeles. Danny knows his clients well by offering the only version of an avocado toast we want to have for breakfast: Fried Avocado Tacos.

You should also check out their Cauliflower Chorizo Tacos.

@trejostacos / Instagram

Listen, his taco game is on point. Trejo’s alway has at least three vegan options on the menu. As of June 2019, he has Young Jackfruit with avocado crema, Mushroom Asada with pepita pesto, and Cauliflower with cashew cream.

7. Doomies Home Cookin’ and Doomies NextMex

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Doomies is best known for replicating America’s favorite meat dishes (like fried chicken, and Big Macs) but vegan. The reviews are in and Next Mex is where it’s at.

8. Gracias Madre

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This restaurant is reserved for those special nights out. It’s LA prices, but it’s outrageously delicious. You can expect to enjoy all your vegan favorites from sopes to pozole, flautas and tamales. Their jackfruit carnitas tacos are rico. top it off with flan or pineapple upside down cake and you’ll be happy as a vegan clam.

9. Olga’s Naturally

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All their taco tortillas are handmade using organic blue maiz from Oaxaca. They always strive to source organic and also offer vegan chicken as a protein option, alongside vegan cheese quesadillas. Yup.

10. Sage Vegan Bistro

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It isn’t a taco joint but they do have great tacos. Plus, they know to call them street tacos. These are “made w/ marinated jackfruit, garlic aioli, cilantro and onions on an organic corn tortilla are served all day on weekdays and after brunch on the weekends! 🌮”

11. Organix LA

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They take Taco Tuesday very seriously with $2 vegan tacos and 20 percent off all vegan burritos. All their food is vegan, and you can enjoy anything from deep-fried vegan fish filet tacos to classic carne asada style grilled mushroom tacos like the ones you see above.

12. Chica’s Tacos

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Chica’s vegan tacos are made with spicy cauliflower chorizo and topped with a slice of marinated mushroom, avocado, and cilantro. You know they’re good because Chica’s stands by using only organic, never frozen ingredients to represent an authentic Méxican dish.

13. Un Solo Sol

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They essentially offer a vegan version of almost everything on their menu ranging from nopalitos tacos to pinto bean pupusas. You know when you order veggie tacos at a non-vegan taquería and it’s just onions and pico de gallo? These guys load up their veggie tacos with actual veggies ricos.

14. Tacos La Tehuanita

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Follow @tacoslatehuanita to get all the updates on where they’re parked tonight. “Yum! Come one, come all, come with hearty appetites,” are the types of rallying calls you can expect from them. You want to try the butternut squash tacos.

15. Taco Zone Truck

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Yelp reviewer Helen J. Puts it best. “VEGAN AND VEGETARIANS WELCOME HERE. The tacos are cheap but full of flavor. We came down here after the Griffith Observatory and these tacos hit the spot! Great food truck, friendly service, and fast at that.”

16. El Chato Taco Truck

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Folks rave about how you can feast and still have a pile of money leftover at El Chatos. While reviewers aren’t posting pictures of the vegan option, there are a dozen reviews about how delicious the veggie tacos are. It can never hurt to check it out.

17. Guisados

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Above are the two vegetarian options listed on the menu. We bet you could ask for it sin cotija, but the off-menu vegan accommodation is reportedly spicy. One Yelp reviewer said, “My friend who is vegan, was able to be accommodated at this place as well! He ended up getting the chiles correados taco. BEWARE!! It is extremely spicy ! But he really loved it !”

READ: 19 Dessert Tacos That Will Make Your Mouth Water

Here’s Your Guide To Eating Vegan Latin Food In Miami

Culture

Here’s Your Guide To Eating Vegan Latin Food In Miami

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Last year, Miami made PETA’s “Top 10 Vegan-Friendly Cities” list for the first time ever, and for good reason. For all the stereotypes around white vegans, once again, people of color are often ignored for their contributions to the animal rights movement. Next time you’re in Miami, trust that these beans have no lard and these croquetas are jamón-free.

Without further ado, here are all the vegan Latinos making moves and gifting us vegan food in Miami.

Sacred Space

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Chef Horacio Rivadero and Pastry Chef Veronica Manolizi come together to give us vegan and gluten-free tostadas, papaya confit, curry arepas, and fennel ceviche. All this on a patio lined with guava trees.

Charly’s Vegan Tacos

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Chef Charly was working as an executive chef in Mexico City when he learned how animal agriculture is decimating the earth. He decided to open his own 100 percent vegan taquería in Tulum and Miami and business is booming.

Vegan Cuban Cuisine

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Currently, VCC is only available via delivery, but you’ll find their vegan flan, sandwiches, and croquetas at some vegan establishments. Pro tip: Aguacate Wellness is known to carry their croquetas.

Choices Organic Café

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Choices Organic Café gives us traditional Mexican and Latin flavors without compromising on organic, non-GMO quality. Enjoy soyrizo quesadillas, or build your own burrito or bowl, where plantains and guacamole count as a ‘veggie’ option. That’s right. The guac is NOT extra.

Edukos

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Nestled in Little Havana, Edukos gives us twists on Venezuelan classics. It’s not entirely vegan, but offers impossible meat pasticho del valle, plantain hummus with mushroom soffit stuffed grape leaves and incredible flavors.

Bunnie Cakes

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Mariana Cortez founded Bunnie Cakes Studio after she couldn’t find a birthday cake for her dairy-allergic son. The studio will decorate fabulous vegan cakes for you, teach you to decorate your own cupcakes or cake, and hosts workshops, ranging from Frida Kahlo decorations to Pumpkin Spice Tres Leches.

Home Sweet Earth

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Bakery Chef Sabrina Carranza is giving Miami all the vegan postres we need. From the frosting-coated cinnamon rolls to Cuban guava pastelitos, your Latinx sweet tooth is covered.

The Spanglish Vegan

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This institution has only cropped up in the last few weeks and already the reviewers are raving. The Spanglish Vegan is giving us all our classic favorites, like mofongo and yucca, with vegan carne asada and shredded jackfruit.

Plant Theory Botanical Cafe

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Serving you all vegan meals, including brunch, at the Whitelaw Hotel, Plant Theory is not a tapas place. Enjoy hearty meals, including a guava BBQ jackfruit burgers,

Vegan and Juice

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Their Instagram game is weak, but that’s because its vegan Dominican flavors are strong. You can get El Plato del Día for just $9 and pick four of whatever is remade for the day, from malanga pastelon, platanos maduras and empanadas. It’s probably the most affordable, authentic vegan place in Miami but don’t expect organic labels or compostable to go containers. Pack your own.

GLAM Vegan

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Enjoy jackfruit tacos, watermelon ceviche and tres leches cake at GLAM vegan. It’s not a classic Latin restaurant, but about a third of its menu are made up of vegan twists on Latin classics.

Love Life Cafe

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While not entirely vegan, everything here is plant-based and rico. Try the sancocho soup, any of their arepas, or this pictured picadillo bowl made from Beyond meat. Tengo hombre.

Happy Vegan Bakers

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This Colombian owned bakery is a hole in the wall, and also boasts as the first all vegan pastelito establishment in Miami. Come through for papa rellenos, croquetas, and even tamales.

My Roots Juice Bar

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Yes, this is a juice bar, but it’s serving Miamians what we need: Cayenne Mango smoothies, frijoles bowls and so many empanadas. Choose from “Supreme,” “Tropical,” Spinach and Mushroom varieties of gluten-free, vegan empanadas.

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Taco Chido

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It’s hard to find authentic Mexican food in South Florida, but when you do, you go often. This taquería has only been open a couple weeks and is creating buzz for it’s vegan longaniza, soyrizo and mushroom tacos. Take your carnivorous friends y disfruten.

St. Roch Market

CREDIT: @st.rochmarket / Instagram

In the heart of Miami’s Design District is this food hall with a wide variety of cuisines. Check out Chef Chloe’s vegan tacos and avocado coconut soft serve!

READ: Latino Food Is Getting The Vegan Makeover Thanks To These 11 Southern California Restaurants

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