Al-Aqsa is cheap and good. What more could you ask for? In addition to vegan falafel (make sure to order with tahini and not tzatziki sauce) they also have a delicious roasted eggplant/cauliflower sandwich and other vegan Lebanese fare. It looks a little dive-y from the outside, but then again all the best places do.
If you are in the mood for something different and a little bit fancier – Amadeus in downtown Salem has several vegan entrees all of which are very tasty. They even have the word “vegan” on the menu, which is always a plus. The staff is knowledgeable about what is/isn’t vegan and can make suggestions/modifications to other items. It’s a bit pricey, but worth checking out if you want something nicer for a special occasion.
A new all-vegan and gluten-free donut business in Salem. They don’t have their own shop yet, but do a “pop up” style donut shop at Archive Coffee and Bar most Fridays from 9am to 1pm. We can’t currently recommend Archive for anything (other than coffee) as they have no vegan items on their menu (boo!) They don’t even appear to have anything vegetarian (it is 2015, right?) but hopefully that will change. But Friday mornings, if you want to get a coffee and donut fix, that’s where to go!
This local chain is located at 2755 Commercial Street SE, Suite 100 in Salem and is one of the newest veg-friendly restaurants in town. Their menu features veg bowls as well as a very tasty tempeh reuben (have to order with no cheese to make it vegan), BBQ tofu, and more. They’re very accommodating of vegan requests and know to leave off the sour cream and cheese from the deluxe toppings…even asking if you want extra avocado or cabbage and ginger instead. Top it off with a ginger cookie for dessert and it’s a tasty place to fill-up. Definitely worth checking out!
Maybe someday Salem will have good enough vegan options that we won’t need to eat at big national chains, but for now this is one of our best options. If you have never been, you can choose your burritos, bowls, or salad items at the location on Lancaster Drive in North Salem. If you get the vegan one (without cheese), guacamole is included for no extra charge. They also now have sofritas: a delicious tofu “meat” option, making what would otherwise be just beans and rice (and maybe the fajita vegetables) a lot more exciting. Another nice feature they have is you can put together your order online, then just stop by and pick it up.
It may come as a surprise to some that Costco is an amazing resource for vegans (who don’t live alone, or if they do, have an intense love for large quantities of Field Roast and Vegenaise). They carry so many products vegans needs and love: organic veggies, prepared foods, soymilk, tofu, fair trade chocolate bark, almond milk, and often vegan products like Daiya cheese. Sometimes their stock changes and you won’t find your favorite product there for a month, only to have it appear again the following month. Their prices are much more reasonable than other grocery stores, mainly because you are buying “in bulk.” An annual membership is $100 but if you shop there as much as we do, you earn that back as a cash rebate at the end of the year.
Salem’s newest Indian restaurant is a welcome change for vegans. Indian food generally offers plentiful vegetarian dishes, however most Indian restaurants add ghee (butter) or cream to everything. Cuisine India has a variety of vegan dishes and options. The staff is knowledgeable about dairy-free options. Worth checking out and supporting!
Donatello’s Pizza, located next to Northern Lights Theater & Pub is big — it can accommodate about 200 patrons or so. Really friendly/helpful staff and management. They have a decent selection of local beers on tap, live organ music, and serve Daiya cheese as the vegan option. They have thick or thin crust choice (both tasty). There is a jukebox, pinball machines, some video games, and a bunch of tvs with sports on. Kind of what you’d expect from a pizza place (except they serve vegan food!). We were told the gluten-free crust is not vegan. We don’t know why their online menu says nothing about Daiya being available, but one of our members confirmed that they do have it.
Join us for our second meeting and our FIRST dine out! Monday March 30th join us at IKE Box 5:30 to 6:30 to continue our discussion of ideas and plans for our group as well as to plan out our first tabling event at Earth 411 in Salem April 11th!
After the meeting we will have our groups’ first dine out (~6:45-8:00) for more informal socializing time at Venti’s on S. Commercial. If you can only come to the dine out and not the meeting, we’d still love to have you! Venti’s has agreed to create some special vegan appetizers and menu items for us that night! In case you are unfamiliar, a “dine out” is just an informal get-together where people can chat and hang out and support a business with our “veg dollars.” Everyone buys their own food and drinks. Hope to see you there!
RSVP and invite on Facebook
Last Thursday, twelve awesome people came down to IKE Box for a meeting about what Cherry City Vegans can do with our group and for our community! Thank you to everyone who came out!
One of the things we decided is to have some interactive online communications tools for our budding group. We created a Facebook and Google Group. If you use Facebook, please join the Cherry City Vegans discussion group. If you prefer email, join our CCV Google Group. If you have trouble joining either of these groups, please email us at email@example.com
We also had a lively and inspiring discussion about what we want to be/could be as a group and what we are excited about doing. The ideas we had fall into three main categories: Education, Resources, and Social/Community. Below are some of the ideas folks had!
- Writing letters to the editor
- Outreach events (tabling, leafleting, etc.),
- Writing letters (to businesses or decision-makers),
- Outreach to restaurants to increase vegan options,
- Cooking demos,
- Promoting Don’t Fear the Vegan CCTV show,
- Demos when something is happening that we want to educate the public about or oppose (example was given of recent donkey basketball game),
- Petitions, specifically an “open letter” type petition to local restaurants that their veg customers want more options!
- Putting up posters or handing out flyers around town,
- Working on Salem-Keizer Public Schools for better/more veg options in schools,
- Doing something for Meat Out, Earth Day, and other events.
- CCV could create a handout or flyer, or a leave-behind to give restaurant owners,
- Putting on lectures or films (Willamette University Vegan Club is already planning an April screening of Cowspiracy on campus–stay tuned for more info!)
- Cooking demos,
- Continue reviewing and providing info on site and social media about places to eat and promoting veg-friendly businesses, (we are looking for people to help with this!),
- A printed restaurant guide for our area.
- Veg Meet Up,
- Vegan Drinks,
- Making connections with other orgs,
- Connection with Willamette University Vegan Club (and possibly getting a Willamette Intern?)
These are just some of the things we are already working on or could work on.
Right now we are planning a March meeting which will also be a dine-out. The purpose of a dine-out is to increase the visibility of veg customers and also to encourage a restaurant to create veg options to cater to new customers who desire that kind of cuisine. We are going to try for a business that does not currently offer vegan options (Archive Coffee and Bar) and hopefully show them that we are a vibrant group looking for places to spend money and get great food! Stay tuned for info on the March meeting.
- Thurs. Feb. 12
- 9am – 5pm
- Sat. Feb. 14
- 1 – 3pm
- Sun. Feb. 22
- 1 – 3 pm
Farm Sanctuary Work Parties
- Green Acres Farm Sanctuary (Silverton): 2/14 & 2/28 (10am – 12pm)
- Wildwood Farm Sanctuary (Newberg): 2/21 (10am – 1pm)
- Lighthouse Farm Sanctuary (Scio): every Weds. & Sat. (10am – 1pm)
- Fri. Mar. 20
Falafel King is tasty and reasonably priced. They now have 2 Salem locations–on Church St. near Cinnabar and in the newly reopened bus mall. Falafel King has (surprise!) falafel sandwiches and platters, eggplant, lentil soup, hummus, babaganouje, dolmas, and other vegan Lebanese food. Just make sure you specify that you are vegan and you want tahini sauce, not tzatziki (yogurt) sauce.
The Laughing Lunchbox is a food truck and they have a vegan sandwich every day! They love their vegan customers and their ideas/suggestions (as seen in the photo)! They have made extraordinary efforts to have legit vegan options and are open to feedback. This is so unique among Salem businesses and we appreciate it! They are a mobile food business, but can often be found at the f/Stop Fitzgerald’s Public House. Check their Facebook page for days where they may be at other locations.
[The Laughing Lunchbox website (Facebook) || menu & directions change daily]
LifeSource Natural Foods grocery store is a great resource for vegans in Salem. Not only do they carry just about any product a vegan could want or need–stuff like bulk soy curls, vegan milks, Tofurky, Field Roast, Gardein, Treeline vegan cheeses, Daiya products, and more–but they also have a buffet and salad bar which often feature vegan foods. They even carry pre-made deli items like vegan sandwiches, too. This is a great alternative to take-out when your family is tired of the limited vegan choices to-go in town.
Los Dos Amigos is a local chain with restaurants in Salem, Independence, Albany, Eugene, Springfield and Sweet Home. They have several vegan friendly entrees, including soy fajitas and molcajete veggies on NE Lancaster. We haven’t been to the other locations outside of Salem, so we aren’t sure if the menu is the same at all of them. We were very impressed that the vegetarian fajita has Beyond Meat fake chicken, and not just a bunch of vegetables. The molcajete is something unique that we haven’t seen at other Mexican places and is very tasty. Order both with no cheese or sour cream to make vegan. I asked two different employees and both confirmed there is no lard in the beans. Has a nice atmosphere and good margaritas, too!