New vegetarians are faced with a number of challenges. One issue that often comes up is finding appropriate restaurants.
Many new vegetarians may feel that is it difficult to eat at restaurants. This can alienate people and limit social gatherings. However, it is possible to have a great time at restaurants while adhering to a vegetarian diet.
Check the Menu Ahead of Time
These days, many restaurants have their menu posted online. Some quick research can take away some of the pressure people feel with a waiter standing over them. Read through the menu and see if there are any vegetarian choices.
Sometimes these choices are hidden. If a restaurant has a list of burgers, read the fine print. Some will offer the choice of a meatless burger patty. The appetizer listing is another good place to look. Large garden salads, soups, fried mushrooms, and vegetable platters can easily be had as a meal.
Since vegetarianism is becoming more popular, restaurants are starting to add these dishes to their menus. Fast food restaurants like Burger King and Subway offer alternative meat patties. While substitute meat is not a great thing to have daily, it can be a convenient fast food meal.
Communicate with the Server
It is important to talk with the person serving you. They know the menu very well, and can help you make appropriate choices. Sometimes dishes that sound vegetarian can actually contain meat. By letting the server know that you are a vegetarian, they can tell you if the chili is made with beans or beef.
Some meals can be reconfigured with the help of the server. If a pasta dish contains chicken, ask if it can be replaced with mushrooms. Try to keep it simple. Changing a selection too much can be difficult for the kitchen. However, simple changes are usually fine.
Always be polite. People in the restaurant industry say that there is nothing worse than a finicky, rude, and self righteous vegetarian! By using humor and having a polite attitude, a server will be willing to work with you. Be sure to be courteous by thanking them.
Being a vegetarian means expanding your palate. Some new vegetarians end up living on pasta because they never try any different foods. There are many ethnic dishes that are vegetarian and taste great!
Most Asian restaurants offer vegetarian meals. Chinese noodles with vegetables are a simple and traditional choice. This dish is available at most Chinese restaurants. Thai food is spicy and exciting. They use unique ingredients such as peanuts and coconut that make for a delicious taste. Many Japanese sushi restaurants offer vegetable rolls made with rice and avocado.
Mexican food utilizes beans as a protein source. Their food is colorful and fun. Most of the time a burrito will be made with beans instead of meat, however, it is still important to ask just to be sure.
For those who enjoy spicy foods, Indian cuisine also offers vegetarian meals. Most menus will have a brief description of a dish. Feel free to ask the server for more information if needed.
Vegetarians can still have fun and go out to eat at restaurants. By checking the menu ahead of time, communicating with the server, and trying new things, an overall great experience can be had. New vegetarians can be confident about eating at nearly any restaurant.