Though it may not sound like it to you or your friends, sushi is often an excellent option for vegan dining. Why? Because sushi means “vinegared rice.” Sushi does not have to mean dead sea animals.
Here’s what most sushi restaurants have to offer to vegetarians and vegans:
- edamame (steamed and usually salted soy beans)
- vegetable roll (a mix of about 4 vegetables rolled up in rice and nori)
- asparagus roll
- avocado roll
- plum roll
- cucumber roll
- other types of vegetable or fruit rolls
- inari (rice inside a bean curd “boat”)
- vegetable tempura (fried veggies. Double check to make sure it’s vegan because it might have egg in the batter.)
- vegetable tempura roll (fried veggies inside rice and nori)
- vegetable gyoza (ask to make sure it’s vegan)
- miso soup (a salty soup with bits of nori and tofu. Double check with your waiter, though, because sometimes it’s made with a fish base rather than a vegetable base, thus some miso soup is not vegan.)
- salads (often vegan, but ask to make sure)
The other great thing about sushi restaurants is that they’re virtually always willing to make you something special. In fact, many sushi chefs take pride in making something off the menu, espeicially for you. Just tell your server or the chef that you’re a vegan and ask if they can make you something special.
Bonus: If you’re with omnivores and you order something off the menu, everyones attention gets directed towards you and your hip, special food (instead of their dead sea kittens wrapped in rice and seaweed.)
Oh, and don’t worry if you don’t know how to use chopsticks or how to pronounce the words on the menu. Feel free to eat with your (clean) hands. And just ask your server how to pronounce something.