The Healthy Vegan Guide to Veggie Grill

I can still remember my first-ever visit to the Veggie Grill. It was 2008, and the VegNews team had been invited to Los Angeles for a private tasting experience at the fast-casual chain’s brand-new El Segundo location. From the moment we walked in the door to the very last bite of those heavenly sweet potato fries (still on the menu 15 years later!), the experience was revelatory.

First, there’s the fact that this brand-new chain—which launched in California but has since grown to nearly 20 locations spanning the distance from Washington State to Harvard Square—is 100 percent vegan. As in everything on the menu, from the Steakhouse Burger dripping with blue cheese crumbles and horseradish aioli to the Belgian Chocolate Cake with fudgy frosting. 

Secondly, Veggie Grill’s menu isn’t just loaded with vegan-meat-heavy burgers, fries, and gooey mac and cheese; they’ve also got a complete menu that speaks directly to my everyday eating habits: light, healthy, and fresh. It’s no wonder they’ve won so many VegNews Veggie Awards over the years! They’ve truly got something for everyone, including omnivores and gluten-free peeps.

Every time I visit Veggie Grill, I discover something new that I love, but I definitely have my favorites. These are the top 10 menu items that keep me coming back to Veggie Grill, year after year.

1. Kale and Quinoa Power Salad
Chopped kale topped with organic quinoa, cucumber, carrot, avocado, gigante beans, and pickled onions, napped in a mango-lemon vinaigrette. So fresh, hearty, and nourishing!

2. Cali Power Bowl
Grilled tempeh and toasted almonds atop a bed of ancient grains and power greens marinated in a mango-lemon vinaigrette. It's basically a salad that makes you feel like a superhero!

3. Chipotle Harvest Bowl
It's the best, most healthy burrito you've ever eaten, in bowl form. Roasted butternut squash, turmeric cauliflower, and tamari-grilled mushrooms bring the flavor and chipotle marinated greens bring the freshness. 

4. Power Wrap
When I'm craving something indulgent that still qualifies as healthy, I'll order this hefty wrap filled with power greens, a decadent caesar dressing, and optional crispy chick'n or Beyond steak.

5. Far East Bowl
Grilled tempeh atop nutty brown rice, served with roasted broccoli, tangy pickled vegetables, fresh cilantro and mint, and crowned with a generous pour of Thai coconut curry sauce

6. Kale Caesar Salad
Crisp, chopped kale drizzled with VG’s signature Caesar dressing, then tossed with shredded vegan parmesan, crunchy croutons, and the novel addition of grilled lemon for extra zest.

7. Crispy Cauliflower
When I’m craving something salty and indulgent but still healthy, I opt for the tempura battered cauliflower dusted with sesame seeds and green onions and served with buffalo dipping sauce.

8. Catalina Taco Salad
A bed of fresh lettuce and cabbage topped with roasted tomato corn salsa, seasoned taco meat,  ranchero beans, crunchy jicama, and creamy avocado, then tossed in tangy Catalina dressing.

9. Classic Romaine Caesar
Crisp romaine hearts tossed in a creamy Caesar dressing, then sprinkled with parmesan and savory, flatbread croutons and a wedge of grilled lemon. So simple and satisfying!

10. Sweet Potato Fries
Does it get any more decadent than crisp-tender sweet potato fries served with a side of chipotle aioli for dipping? I think not! The portions are generous so they’re perfect for sharing.