A not-very-definitive guide to eating (and living) as a vegan in Nashville.

Qdoba October 7, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — Nashvegan @ 9:15 pm
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Chips & Guacamole, Black Bean Taco, and Tortilla Soup

Chips & Guacamole, Black Bean Taco, and Tortilla Soup

I will just come right out and say it: I hate Qdoba.  Not because the food is bad, but because when I was an undergraduate, Qdoba replaced Baja Burrito Kitchen in my Student Union.  Baja Burrito had the best queso (now irrelevant, for obvious reasons).  They had an epic salsa bar.  Their vegetarian options were unmatched elsewhere on campus.  And Qdoba stamped them out!  At Qdoba, your meal does not come with free chips and salsa.  This is basically blasphemy as far as I’m concerned.  I mean, seriously, doesn’t all Mexican food come with complimentary chips and salsa?  What is the world coming to?

So why, with all my vitriol towards Qdoba, did I dine there on this particular day?  Well, my friends, Qdoba has a rewards card program and I got an email with a coupon for free chips and queso.  Since I am totally a sucker for coupons, especially coupons that provide me with things that are free, I moseyed on over to The Dobe (let’s make that name stick) for my free food.  Obviously, as a vegan, I do not dine on queso.  The staff was kind enough to let me have complimentary guacamole instead.

The guacamole was average.  Nothing to write home about, but it’s not like it was bad.  I decided on a taco-and-soup combo to go with my chips.  Above you see a black bean taco.  With pico.  And that’s it.  The line was moving so quickly, the person asked me if I wanted pico and I said “yes” and then he pushed my food on along and no one offered me anything else.  Since I don’t really know what all the strange Qdoba condiments are, as I do not dine there often, I just let them all pass me by.  There’s something with corn in it that looks pretty good, and it probably would have gone great with my little taco.  The most fantastic thing you can order at Qdoba is the Tortilla Soup.  Yes, it’s vegan.  Order it EVERY SINGLE TIME YOU GO or you are missing out.  I’m not kidding.  I could eat this stuff by the gallon.  It’s especially amazing now that the weather is changing.

Will I be back to Qdoba?  It’s almost a certainty.  Do I miss Baja Burrito Kitchen?  Yes.  Would I rather have Moe’s, with its tofu and complimentary chips and best salsa ever?  Yes.  But I can walk to Qdoba, and that soup is awesome.  Furthermore, Qdoba is super vegan friendly.  You can basically eat anything except the meat and the cheese and the sour cream.  I recommend you refer to this list of vegan offerings before you visit.  And get the soup.  For real.


2019 West End Avenue

Nashville, TN 37203



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Bruegger’s Bagels August 25, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — Nashvegan @ 1:51 pm
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Leonardo da Veggie & Fire Roasted Tomato Soup

Leonardo da Veggie & Fire Roasted Tomato Soup

Bagels are often a vegan-friendly treat, and bagel shops usually have great stuff for vegans.  Bruegger’s is one of my favorite quick-service lunch spots in midtown.  Almost all of Bruegger’s bagels are vegan.  They have a really informative website with full ingredient lists for all of their food, which is a lifesaver for vegans.  If you don’t have the chance to check the site before you go, the staff (at this location at least) is extremely knowledgable about product ingredients…. or so I thought.  Upon further research, it turns out that even though I was told that the tomato soup did not contain any dairy, according to the Bruegger’s website, it does.  I suppose it’s possible that this particular location’s soup did not contain dairy, but I doubt that.  This is just one of those things about being vegan that happens sometimes: you do the best you can, you ask the right questions, and you still end up with dairy in your food.  I try not to feel too horribly about these things for two reasons: (1) I requested a dairy-free meal and it’s not my fault the staff thought the soup was free of milk; and (2) veganism is not about perfection, it’s about reducing suffering.  The moral of this story is to avoid all soups at Bruegger’s.

Don’t let my experience with the soup scare you away from Bruegger’s because it’s still a great place to grab breakfast/lunch/a snack, and the sandwich in that picture was totally awesome!  It is a variation on the Leonardo da Veggie sandwich.  The Leonardo da Veggie is supposed to come on an asiago softwich (clearly not vegan) and be topped with herb garlic cream cheese (also not vegan) and Muenster (definitely not vegan).  I had them swap out the asiago softwich for an everything softwich (totally vegan) and leave off all the cheese in favor of hummus (mmmmmmm).  The final sandwich contained hummus, roasted red peppers, lettuce, tomato, and red onion.  Everyone at the table was impressed with my sandwich while they chomped away on roast beef.  I’ll definitely be going to Bruegger’s again soon.

Bruegger’s Bagels

Multiple Locations – Midtown, Harding Pike, Brentwood

I went to this one:

422 21st Avenue South

Nashville, TN 37203


Website with full ingredient list for all menu items

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