While the Oyster Bar’s half-shell platters and Winfield’s award-winning clam chowder are Block Island staples, local restaurants also cater to the growing vegan community. Vegan diets that exclude all animal products including meat, fish, dairy and eggs have been on the rise. The main motivations for a vegan lifestyle are health, animal welfare and the environment. Luckily, there are plenty of plant-based options all over the Island!
Start the day off right with a healthy plant-based bowl, smoothie or toast at Persephone’s Kitchen. The vegan bowls include ingredients such as warm coconut quinoa, agave drizzle, blueberries, coconut cream, fresh strawberries, almonds, mint, cinnamon-ginger sweet potatoes and pecans. Their toast options include an almond butter and strawberry option or avocado, sea salt and radish.
For a more classic breakfast, head over to the Surf Hotel for their breakfast tofu scramble made with marinated, pressed tofu and your choice of veggies. They have great vegan options for lunch and dinner too, making sure they have something for everyone. Plus, they offer gluten-free bread!
If you prefer a simple and quick breakfast, stop by the Old Post Office Bagel Shop. For any early birds out there, they open at 6:30 AM every day and have a great selection of bagels. They offer hummus, peanut butter and jelly spreads plus they have a delicious coconut pumpkin bread that’s 100% vegan.
The Harbor Grill’s breakfast is heavy on animal products, but they also have amazing breakfast cocktails! From various mimosas to a bloody Mary and a ruby tootie that combines vodka, seltzer and freshly squeezed grapefruit juice– perfect for a liquid diet or a special occasion!
There’s also the option of stocking up on cereal and dairy-free milk at the Block Island Grocery store. A wide selection of cereal is vegan, including the Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup Cereal which is extra delicious with almond milk (although soy and coconut are great too). On some days, a cozy breakfast in bed just can’t be beat!
Lunch & Dinner:
It is possible to veganize something on the menu at pretty much every restaurant on the Island. For example, you can grab a simple salad at Finn’s Seafood and Winfield’s. However, if you’re on the hunt for mock meats, head straight for the Poor People’s Pub. Their mouth-watering assortment of burgers can all be made with a Beyond Meat patty for $3 extra (ask for no cheese). The Basic Babe Sandwich Turkey Burger offers a healthier wheat toast alternative for patties – just ask to omit the aioli, which is egg-based. If you want to replace the chips with fries, keep in mind that they are fried in the same vegetable oil as the meat.
For a more exotic meal, try some sushi! The Oar offers avocado rolls, a black bean burger with baby spinach, salsa and guacamole plus various salads. They also have a black bean burrito that can be made without cheese or meat. Captain Nick’s is another option for a taste of the East with a selection of spring rolls, wraps and veggie sushi.
If you’re craving a little spice in your life, visit the Mohegan Café for some chili, making sure to tell them to hold the cheese that normally tops the dish. They also offer edamame dumplings, veggie nachos, fries, pad Thai and falafel. They even offer a wide variety of beers, ciders and liquors including gluten free Tito’s vodka, a lager and Angry Orchard Cider. Another great place to eat falafel is Mex on the Deck. Then there’s Los Gattitos, offering nachos with cashew cheese and vegan sour cream-make sure to ask for it specially because it’s not on the menu yet.The two Calaveras located at both harbors also have a wide selection with guacamole, nachos, tacos and burritos and almost everything on their menu can be veganized.
Some healthier lunch and dinner options include the eggplant caponata at Manisses, hummus and veggies at Rebecca’s Dockside, coriander tofu at Tigerfish, quinoa bowl and beet salad at Kimbery’s, roasted butternut and quinoa at the Spring House Hotel, roasted veggies at the Oyster Bar, cauliflower steak at the Atlantic Inn and grilled veggies with sautéed spinach at Bethany’s airport café. You could spend days sampling food all these awesome restaurants!
Another great place with a myriad of options is the Surf Hotel,offering a homemade black bean sweet potato burger, tempura dried oyster mushrooms and grilled marinated tofu steak with asparagus and other veggies. Then there’s the National Hotel that doesn’t have anything specific on their menu but goes out of their way to accommodate everyone’s personal needs.
To awaken your inner Italian, you can enjoy some vegan pasta and/or noodle bowls at Dead Eye Dick’s, Eli’s or Ballard’s Inn. All three restaurants also offer salads if you want a healthy side dish to balance out those delightful carbs. If you’re craving pizza, Block Island Pizza Pie Company, Club Soda and Aldo’s Pizzeria are happy to serve you a scrumptious veggie pizza without cheese, meat or seafood.
A balanced meal is a cookie in each hand – or ice cream… Aldo’s offers a yummy selection of sorbet as well as dairy-free soft serve ice cream with a choice of chocolate, banana, black raspberry and mango. Unfortunately, no pastries are egg and dairy-free. If you’re got a hankering for something more substantial, head over to the B.I.G.for some cinnamon rolls, Oreos or entire tubs of dairy-free ice cream (sometimes even Ben & Jerry’s). Other than desserts, the grocery store also sells a hearty vegan pizza margarita.
There are plenty of places that offer great cocktails, beers, wines and liquors. If you’re looking for something special, don’t miss out on the Beachead’svegan mud slide. They use almond-milk Baileys combined with Kahlua and vodka to create this delicious concoction.
If your stomach starts growling while you’re out and about, take a walk up Corn Neck Road to find the Pots & Kettles food truck. They have a delicious chipotle burrito, potato salad, kimchi, falafel and Mexican rice & beans. Unfortunately, they are only open during the boisterous summer season and leave you craving their half-vegan menu all winter.There’s also the Three Sisters, a sit-in restaurant that can veganize anything on their menu. Their vegan specialty is the “Hippie Sister” – a delectable sandwich that’s perfect for on-the-go.
Hungry for more? Peapod from Stop & Shop will come to your rescue. Make an account, browse shops for thousands of grocery items and have them delivered to the Old Harbor dock. It can take up to a week so order your vegan haul in advance. Until it arrives, fill up on burgers, salads, burritos, sushi, ice cream, pizza and more– Block Island has so many vegan delicacies to choose from!