Veg Guide: Plant-Based Eating at the University of Minnesota

There are tons of tasty plant-based food options right here at the U of M! In fact, we found that nearly two-thirds of dining locations on campus and in the surrounding neighborhoods carry at least one regular menu item that’s fully plant-based. Dozens of local restaurants, coffee shops, grocery stores, and dining halls are catering to a growing market of plant-based consumers—which means choosing compassion has never been easier!

Whether you’re vegan, vegetarian, or just interested in food that’s good for your taste buds, animals, and the planet, we’ve got you covered. Check out the list below for some of the many plant-based options you can find on and around campus. And follow the link here for a comprehensive breakdown of plant-based options at local dining locations.

Like what you see? Let us know what new plant-based dishes or locations you’ve tried because of the veg guide!

Near-Campus Restaurants

Vegan Food in Dinkytown

The Cove

The tofu banh mi can be made vegan by ordering without the coleslaw side. You can also build your own vegan rice bowl or poke bowl by choosing tofu as your protein and selecting from plant-based toppings and sides, including pineapple, corn, and edamame.


A fast-casual health food restaurant founded and based in the Twin Cities area. The Seoul Bowl is vegan as-is, and you can build your own bowl with plant-based toppings including tofu, roasted mushrooms, and roasted cauliflower. All smoothies are vegan, and plant-based acai bowls and dressings are clearly marked on the menu.

D.P. Dough

Classic, hefty calzones that will leave you full for a while, and open until 1:00 AM daily and 3:00 AM on the weekends. The Dinkytown location carries two vegan calzones, the Vegan Gopher and Vegan Drop, with plant-based meats and cheeses from the Herbivorous Butcher.

Insomnia Cookies

Get your late-night cookie fix in-person or by delivery as late as 1:00 AM on weeknights and 3:00 AM on weekends! Insomnia carries several plant-based options which are marked on the menu, including the Vegan Chocolate Chunk, Vegan Double Chocolate Chunk, and Vegan Birthday Cake. The Vegan Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip cookie is available for those with gluten sensitivities.

JJ’s Poke

Build your own vegan bowl by selecting tofu as your protein and choosing plant-based toppings including edamame and kimchi. The Tamari Soy Sauce, Ginger and Yuzu Citrus, Hawaiian Classic, and Garlic Soy Yuzu sauces are vegan. The Veggie Tofu Ramen can be made vegan by omitting egg.

Lepot Chinese Hotpot

Authentic Chinese hot pot in Dinkytown! Build your own vegan hot pot by choosing one of their six plant-based broths (House Mushroom, House Tomato, Pickled Pepper, Chinese Sauerkraut, Rattan Pepper, or Mala Spicy) and selecting from a wide variety of plant-based toppings.

Mesa Pizza

Pizza by the slice, with a 50 cent discount for paying in cash! They carry one vegan pizza, which comes loaded with spinach, artichoke, and veggies.

Nautical Bowls

Dairy-free acai superfood bowls! All ingredients are plant-based except for honey and honey oat granola.

Pho Mai

Authentic Vietnamese food in Dinkytown. Plant-based options include the Mi Xao, Veg Eggrolls and Springrolls, and Hot & Spicy Tofu. Everything marked vegetarian on the menu is also vegan, except the fried rice which contains eggs.

The vegan menu at Wally's, a restaurant near the UMN. The list includes pita bread, hummus, baba ganoush, falafel, musabaha plate, veggie samosa, maza plate, stuffed grape leaves, tabouli, wally's salad, falafel sandwich, falafel deluxe, veggie heaven feast, veggie lovers plate, basmati rice.
Wally’s vegan menu items (may have updated)

A vegan, plant-based dish including falafel at Wally's, a restaurant near the UMN.


A hearty sandwich shop with surprising plant-based options. The PB&J is the only permanent menu item that’s vegan, but the Veggie Melt can be made vegan by omitting cheese and mayo and adding vegetables of your choice. All breads are vegan except the multi-grain, which contains honey.


Plenty of plant-based options if you’re looking for something quick. The Fajita Vegan Bowl is vegan as-is, and you can build your own plant-based bowl, burrito, tacos, or salad by omitting meat and choosing from plant-based toppings including rice, beans, and vegetables. The citrus lime vinaigrette is also vegan.

Shuang Cheng

Cantonese food served in Dinkytown since 1990. All of the vegetarian menu items are also vegan, except those with animal-based broths or sauces. Per the manager, you must specify no animal-based sauces to avoid cross-contamination.

Tasty Pot

One of Dinkytown’s two hot pot restaurants! Build your own vegan hot pot by choosing the “Healthy Veggie Hot Soup” base and selecting from a variety of plant-based add-ons including rice, kimchi, vegetables, and six varieties of tofu.

Wally’s Falafel and Hummus

A favorite for students in Dinkytown! Wally’s carries a wide variety of plant-based foods, including the falafel, falafel sandwich and falafel salad, baba ganouj, tabouli, stuffed grape leaves, hummus and pita bread, and the delicious veggie lovers plate. Vegetarian items are marked on the menu. Most are vegan or can be made vegan by omitting dairy-based sauces.

Vegan Food in Stadium Village

Afro Deli

A fast-casual restaurant featuring African, Mediterranean, and American cuisine at its locations in Cedar-Riverside and Stadium Village. Plant-based items are marked on the menu and include the Veggie Curry, falafel, and hummus. Vegetarian items can be made vegan by omitting tzatziki sauce, cheese, and/or mayo-based dipping sauces.

A photo of vegan, plant-based pizza at Blaze Pizza, near the UMN, with crust, sauces, cheez, and veggies.
Build-your-own Blaze pizza with plant-based cheese

Blaze Pizza

Famous for its speedy personal pizzas and plant-based options! The ready-to-order vegan pizza comes with plant-based cheese and chorizo, and you can build your own pie by choosing from the classic, high-rise, and gluten-free dough, the classic and spicy red sauce, the vegan cheese, vegan chorizo, and an assortment of vegetable toppings. The cheesy bread can also be ordered with vegan cheese.

Bruegger’s Bagels

Almost all bagel options are vegan (see the full list here). You can also build your own sandwich with plant-based condiments and an assortment of veggie toppings.

Burger King

Home to two vegetarian burgers—the Impossible Whopper and Impossible King—which can be made vegan by omitting mayo and/or cheese. The fries are also vegan! If you’re worried about cross-contamination from meat products, request a non-broiler method of preparation.


Plenty of plant-based options at their locations in Stadium Village and Cedar-Riverside. The Veggie Full Bowl and Plant Powered Bowl are vegan as-is, and you can build your own taco, burrito, salad, or bowl with any of the tortillas, rice, beans, and vegetables, and fajita vegetables or sofritas as your protein. (If you opt for fajita vegetables instead of a traditional protein option, guac is free!)

The Market at Malcolm Yards

An innovative food hall featuring nine vendors and events open to the public. Several vendors carry plant-based menu items, including the vegan beef empanada from Delsur, the vegetable curry and masala dosa from Momo Dosa, and seasonal ice cream and sorbet flavors from Bebe Zito (vegan flavors are marked on the menu).

My Burger

A Minnesota-based burger chain with two vegetarian options. The Impossible burger can be ordered without mayo or butter on the bun to make it vegan. The veggie patty is vegetarian but not vegan, as it contains mozzarella cheese.

Noodles & Company

A fast-casual restaurant with all types of noodle dishes. The Japanese Pan Noodles are vegan as-is. Other menu items can be made vegan by selecting seasoned tofu or Impossible Panko Chicken as your protein and omitting cheese, if applicable.


This fast-casual Mediterranean restaurant with unlimited toppings is a veggie lover’s dream! Build your own plant-based bowl, pita, or salad by choosing falafel as your protein and selecting from plant-based menu items including rice, hummus, and vegetables.

Stub & Herbs

Even classic bar food can be vegan! The Veggie Hummus Wrap is vegan as-is, and the Falafel Wrap can be made vegan by omitting tzatziki. Ask about preparation methods for the fried appetizers if you’re worried about cross-contamination, and ask for no ranch or honey mustard.


Get a ready-to-order salad or build your own. The Shroomami is vegan as-is, and you can get a custom bowl with plant-based menu items including curry-roasted cauliflower, roasted tofu, and the warm portobello mix.

Vegan Food in St. Paul

Colossal Cafe

Open from 7:00 AM to 2:00 PM, Colossal Cafe carries a vegan chorizo burrito and bowl on its breakfast menu and a falafel burger on its lunch menu that can be made vegan by omitting tzatziki. Soy and almond milk are available for coffee with an additional charge.

Finnish Bistro

A homey cafe with periodic live music and a separate vegan menu with plant-based entree options like the portobello mushroom burger and vegan BLT. Plant-based sides include the vegan Korean BBQ strips, sriracha mayo, and herb cheese.

Mim’s Cafe

Mediterranean food just down the street from the St. Paul Student Center! The falafel, veggie kabob, sauteed veggies, and Mim’s veggie combo are vegan as-is. Just make sure the house salad comes with no cheese if you order a meal.

Lanna Thai

Opened summer 2023 in Saint Anthony Park, Lanna Thai has plenty of plant-based options and a protein selection including vegetables, tofu, and mock duck. Vegetarian items are clearly marked on the menu, and all vegetarian curry and stir-fry dishes are also vegan.

Vegan Food on West Bank

Afro Deli

A fast-casual restaurant featuring African, Mediterranean, and American cuisine at its locations in Cedar-Riverside and Stadium Village. Plant-based items are marked on the menu and include the Veggie Curry, falafel, and hummus. Vegetarian items can be made vegan by omitting tzatziki sauce, cheese, and/or mayo-based dipping sauces.

The vegan, plant-based sofritas burrito bowl, with guacamole, salsa, chips, and more, from Chipotle near Dinkytown near the UMN.
Plant-based Sofritas burrito bowl with chips and guac from Chipotle


Plenty of plant-based options at their locations in Stadium Village and Cedar-Riverside. The Veggie Full Bowl and Plant Powered Bowl are vegan as-is, and you can build your own taco, burrito, salad, or bowl with any of the tortillas, rice, beans, and vegetables, and fajita vegetables or sofritas as your protein. (And if you opt for fajita vegetables instead of a traditional protein option, guac is free!)

Hard Times Cafe

An all-vegetarian grunge punk cafe with strong coffee, breakfast served all day, and American and Mexican-inspired entrees. Vegan dishes are marked clearly on the menu, and many dishes can be made vegan by substituting dairy-free cheese. Be sure to bring cash or use the on-site ATM, as they do not accept credit cards. And check out their daily selection of vegan baked goods!

Lucky Dragon

Chinese and Vietnamese cuisine. Vegan items are marked on the menu, including General Tao’s Tofu, Sesame Tofu, Tofu Garlic Curry Stir Fry, and vegan fried rice. Egg rolls and spring rolls can be ordered vegan with tofu or mock duck.

Oasis Mediterranean Grill

Mediterranean food right next to the West Bank campus! The Veggie Burger, Falafel Plate, Falafel Salad, and Ful Medames are vegan, as well as most sides and appetizers. Ask for no cucumber sauce with the Falafel Sandwich (opt for tahini instead) and make sure the house salad comes with no cheese.

Pizza Luce

Who doesn’t love pizza? This one is off campus, but they offer free delivery! Vegan pizzas, appetizers, and sandwiches are marked on the menu, and many pizzas can be made vegan by substituting dairy-free cheese.

The Red Sea Ethiopian Restaurant

Check out their vegetarian menu section! The miser, lentil alicha, veggie firfir, veggie sambusas, injera, and fries are all vegan. Other vegetarian dishes may contain butter, which you can request to omit.

TAMU Grill

A Kenyan-fusion caterer and restaurant with a variety of plant-based dishes, including the coconut curry beans with rice or chapati, the veggie samosa, and the Impossible beef samosa. Plant-based items are clearly marked on the menu, and all dishes are free of dairy, eggs, and nuts.

The Wienery

The vegan tofu dog, seitan brat, and seitan Italian sausage can be paired with any plant-based toppings for a cheap and delicious meal at this West Bank restaurant once featured on the Food Network’s “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.”

Tea and Coffee Shops

All on-campus coffee shops also accept students’ Dining Dollars and Gopher GOLD!

Boba Tea

  • Bober Tea & Mochi Dough in Dinkytown has a menu section for non-dairy milk teas, as well as a fruit tea section with several vegan options. Ask the cashier if other teas can be ordered with plant-based milk.
  • Feng Cha in Prospect Park has vegan and dairy-free “Pure Teas” and fruit drinks. Plant-based milks are available for milk teas, and milk foam may be omitted.
  • Mango Mango Dessert in Dinkytown has dairy-free drink options clearly marked on the checkout kiosk.
  • Mu Mu Tea in Stadium Village marks menu items containing dairy. The classic teas and fruit teas are all vegan.
  • Niko Niko Boba in Dinkytown has a selection of vegan fruit teas, and all milk teas can be ordered with almond milk for an additional charge.
  • Kung Fu Tea in Dinkytown and Stadium Village has non-dairy and vegan options marked on its website, including most Classic Series and Punch Series flavors. Most of the topping options are also vegan, and you can find a full guide here.
  • TIGER SUGAR in Dinkytown marks menu items containing dairy. Plant-based milks can be substituted for no extra charge, and cream topping may be omitted.

On-Campus Coffee Shops

All five Minnesota Mug locations—at Blegen Hall, the Health Sciences Education Center, St. Paul Student Center, and Walter and Wilson Libraries—carry non-dairy milks for an additional charge. The Bistro at Northrop carries a hearty vegan Avocado Toast and almond, oat, and soy milk for an upcharge.

Caribou Coffee

Caribou has four locations on or near campus: Hanson Hall on West Bank and Moos Tower on East Bank, and two in Stadium Village. Drinks can be ordered with almond or oat milk for an upcharge, but Caribou Perks members can get them for no extra cost by ordering on the app. Caribou also carries the JUST Egg Roasted Tomato & Pesto Flatbread, their first-ever plant-based menu item!


Locations in Dinkytown, Stadium Village, Lind Hall, and Coffman Union. Drinks can be ordered with almond, coconut, oat, or soy milk for an additional 70 cent charge. Sign the petition here asking Starbucks to drop the upcharge!

On-Campus Restaurants and Convenience Stores

All dining locations listed here except D’Amico & Sons also accept Dining Dollars and Gopher GOLD!

D’Amico & Sons Express (McNamara)

Open for lunch Monday through Friday at the McNamara Alumni Center. The chickpea salad sandwich and mixed green salad are vegan as-is, and the Mediterranean quinoa salad can be made vegan by omitting cheese.

Einstein Bros. Bagels (CMU)

Almost all bagel options are vegan (see the full list here), including the chocolate chip bagel which is dairy-free! The avocado, peanut butter, and jelly spreads are vegan. The Avocado Toast is vegan, and the Avocado Veg Out can be made vegan by omitting garden veggie schmear.

Goldy’s Gameroom (CMU)

Located in the Coffman Union basement, Goldy’s Gameroom carries plant-based Beyond brats, burgers, and chicken tenders which you can enjoy alongside open bowling, billiards, and foosball every Monday through Saturday night!

Panda Express (Carlson & CMU)

American-Chinese fast food, with two locations on campus. The lo mein and veggie spring rolls are vegan, but cross-contamination is possible.

Shake Smart (RecWell)

High-protein shakes and bowls, conveniently located in the RecWell lobby. Most menu items are plant-based or can be made plant-based by selecting almond or oat milk and substituting 100% plant protein in place of whey protein.

Subway (Blegen Hall)

Classic sub sandwiches. The Veggie Delite is vegan when ordered without cheese and on Italian, multigrain, or sourdough bread, flatbread, or a wrap. Plant-based sauces include yellow and brown mustard, oil, vinegar, sweet onion sauce, and buffalo sauce.

Wild Blue Sushi (CMU)

Fresh rolls made daily, located on the ground floor of Coffman Union. The Avocado Salad Roll and Vegetable Combo are completely plant-based!

Other On-Campus Restaurants

Four more dining locations are specific to the University of Minnesota:

  • Chaat House at Coffman Union carries a selection of plant-based Indian and Mediterranean dishes, including the tarka dal, dal makhni, and coconut curry.
  • Crave at St. Paul Student Center carries a plant-based falafel salad, buffalo cauliflower bowl, southwest bowl, and elote fritter bowl.
  • Holy Guacamole at Coffman Union allows you to build your own bowl, burrito, salad, or tacos by choosing fajita vegetables or tofritos as your base and selecting from a completely plant-based topping menu including dairy-free shredded cheese and sour cream.
  • Tu Taco at Carlson allows you to build your own rice bowl or tacos by choosing veggies as your base and selecting from a variety of plant-based toppings including beans, salsa, and vegetables.

University Vending and Convenience Stores

The Gopher Spot at St. Paul Student Center, Gopher Express at Coffman Union, Gopher Express West in the West Bank Skyway, Carlson and Blegen convenience stores, and the University’s 480+ vending machines carry countless “accidentally vegan” items, including Oreos, Lay’s, Fritos, Swedish Fish, and more. See here for a list of snack foods you may not have known are vegan!

Dining Halls

If you’re living in a University residence hall, then M Food Co is your home base for eating. You can find daily menus for each dining hall using the Dine on Campus website and app. There’s a vegan entree option and plant-based sides for every meal, all indicated by the dark green “vegan” symbol. If the options aren’t satisfying, don’t be afraid to contact your dining hall manager or M Food Co. They have a registered dietitian on staff available to help students navigate vegan and vegetarian options.

Every dining hall has a plant-based milk dispenser, which is great for anytime cereal. There’s also a pasta option for each meal, and the classic red sauce is vegan. The salad bars and daily soups typically have veg options, and fried tofu is often available. Many dining halls also have a vegan soft serve machine for dessert.

  • Pioneer has the largest dining hall and the best variety of plant-based food. It’s usually busy, but there’s always a vegan entree station and options at the salad bar.
  • 17th Ave is the second-largest dining hall and has a large variety of food, including fresh fruits and vegetables, tofu, and more at the salad bar and entree stations. Sanford is similar but smaller.
  • Bailey and Middlebrook are a bit out of the way, but useful if you live there or have classes in St. Paul or West Bank. Comstock dining hall is open to Comstock residents only.

Residential Convenience Stores

Centennial, Middlebrook, and Sanford Hall feature their own convenience stores, which are open until midnight daily and carry “accidentally vegan” items like Oreos and original Chex Mix, as well as dairy-free ice cream. These locations also accept Dining Dollars and Gopher GOLD!

Off-Campus Vegan Dining Locations

The Twin Cities community has countless plant-based options outside the U of M. In fact, Minneapolis was named #4 on the Top Ten Vegan-Friendly Cities of 2018! Be sure to check out MN Veg Guide’s page on plant-based eating. And if you’re feeling adventurous, you might want to try the following off-campus dining locations that are entirely plant-based. (That means no more guesswork figuring out which menu items are good for you, animals, and the planet!)

Francis Burger Joint

A classic burger joint with a plant-based menu! Francis carries Impossible and black bean patties, house-made seitan bacon, creamy dairy-free cheeses and ranch, and tender chicken sandwiches—as well as the first full vegan bar in Minnesota.

Hark! Cafe

A two-minute walk from the light rail, Hark! is a vegan, gluten-free bakery with seasonal cakes, pies, tarts, cupcakes, muffins, bagels, and lattes. You can also custom order their baked goods and have them shipped nationwide.

The Herbivorous Butcher

The first-ever vegan butcher shop in the United States is just a mile from Dinkytown! Choose from a wide variety of authentic meats and cheeses to bring home and prepare for yourself, including Korean BBQ Ribs, Hickory and Maple Glazed Bacon, Sriracha Brats, Smoked Gouda, and more.

Herbie Butcher’s Fried Chicken

A dine-in fried chicken restaurant brought to you by the Herbivorous Butcher. Fried chicken baskets and buckets, wraps and sandwiches with original queso, dusted tater tots, and deep-fried pickles and jalapenos. Plenty of options to test your spice tolerance, too!

Heal Mpls

A proudly Black woman-owned cafe in North Minneapolis, Heal brings wholesome, nutritious food to the community and hosts inclusive community healing events. The menu changes daily, but you can always expect whole-food plant-based options made from locally grown fruits and vegetables.

Hi Flora!

Marketed as Minnesota’s first THC restaurant, Hi Flora! combines creative plant-based takes on American cuisine with its signature THC-infused mocktails. The food is THC-free, but customers can purchase a five-milligram tincture blended with beet, juniper, and herbs to sprinkle over their meal.

J. Selby’s

J. Selby’s in St. Paul serves plant-based comfort food, including house-made burgers, wraps, sandwiches, mac & cheese, and award-winning chili. Be sure to check out their oat milk milkshakes and wide selection of vegan baked goods!

Lulu EthioVegan Cuisine

An all-new vegan Ethiopian restaurant in Uptown Minneapolis! Authentic African and Mediterranean food and drink, including falafel, sambusas, and more. Most dishes are made with whole-food plant-based ingredients including lentils and chickpeas.

Reverie Cafe + Bar

An entirely made-from-scratch, plant-based menu featuring comfort foods, salads, and their famous Nachos Supreme with jackfruit carnitas! A full coffee bar, local beers, ciders, and kombucha, and a rotating selection of baked goods and desserts.

Trio Plant-Based

Minnesota’s first Black-owned plant-based restaurant, opened in 2018. Hefty Beyond burgers, creamy Mac & Cheeze, and BBQ and buffalo cauliflower wing wraps. The BBQ Pit, Jackfruit ribs, Burger Mac, and Lou Wrap come with their famous house-made BBQ sauce!

Vegan East

An all-vegan bakery and cafe with two locations in Minneapolis. Vegan East Bakery carries a rotating variety of cakes and cupcakes with many gluten-free options. Vegan East Cafe carries a dessert menu alongside savory soups and sandwiches and breakfast served all day.

Vegan Grocery Shopping

If you’re living off-campus and cooking for yourself, then Twin Cities grocery stores have plenty of plant-based options for you to choose from.

Close to campus, the Dinkytown Target carries many plant-based staples and meat and dairy alternatives, including Impossible and Beyond beef, dairy-free milks, butter, yogurt, and ice cream, and tofu, tempeh, beans, and lentils. Fresh Thyme in Prospect Park offers an even wider selection, including a full plant-based aisle and plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables.

Off campus, Trader Joe’s in downtown Minneapolis and ALDI’s multiple locations have a similar selection as Target. The Seward Community Co-op near West Bank and Whole Foods in downtown Minneapolis have substantial plant-based selections that make vegan eating easy!

If you’re not sure what to get, or you just need some cooking inspiration, check out the CAA recipe archive for ideas. You can also look at our events page to see details on upcoming cooking classes.

Note: Menus and ingredients may have changed since this list was last updated. Stay up-to-date on local veg options by checking out each location’s menu and using helpful resources like Happy Cow, VeggL, and MN Veg Guide.

Last updated: January 22, 2024

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