Going Veg*n...Again


I'm trying to go mostly vegetarian again. "Mostly" meaning that I'll occasionally allow myself to have seafood (mmmm, sushi). I'm not doing this as a silly new year's resolution -- I just waited until after the holidays to make holiday cooking easier on my parents.

I've tried some flavor of veg*n a few times in the past. I'd love some support and accountability from my friends to try to help it stick this time, so please feel free to share tips (add info on github or tweet at me).

I want to keep track of the info people share with me and share it with others, so I'll collect it here. These are mostly recommendations from others, so I can't personally vouch for them. I'll add notes as I try things.


Recipe sites


  • Daiya (vegan cheese)
  • Earth Balance (vegan butter alternative)
  • Upton's Naturals Seitan - I tried the Italian flavor, and I think it cured me of missing italian sausage

Miscellaneous vegetarian notes

Stuff that's not vegetarian (but might not be obvious)

  • Jello, marshmallows, and other stuff with gelatin
  • Parmesan cheese and other cheeses that use rennet
  • Some baked good mixes (check for lard)
  • Some beer and wine (often not labeled one way or the other)

Miscellaneous vegan notes

  • Earth Balance is recommended as a butter replacement.
  • Daiya is recommended as a cheese replacement.

Local options in Pittsburgh


Restaurants I frequent

  • Aladdin's Eatery - Squirrel Hill - Mediterranean - cheap and yummy Mediterranean with lots of vegetarian and some vegan options
  • Bangkok Balcony or Silk Elephant - Squirrel Hill - Thai - These restaurants have very similar menus, both of which include awesome tofu dishes.
  • Double Wide Grill - South Side - American - Really delicious seitan wings and the veggie burger is pretty good.
  • Mad Mex - Shadyside (and other locations) - Mexican/American American-style Mexican food with some decent vegetarian options. I'm especially fond of the tofu tacos.
  • Over the Bar Bicycle Cafe - South Side - American - yummy salads and sandwiches in a cute biker friendly bar with fun bike decor
  • Ramen Bar - Squirrel Hill - Ramen - I'm fond of the vegetarian ramen with a shoyou base and extra garlic.


  • East End Food Co-op - a lot of the same stuff as Whole Foods, but locally owned
  • Giant Eagle Market District (some regular Giant Eagles have veg stuff, but it's pretty hit or miss)
  • Trader Joes - affordable, but pretty hit or miss with what they'll have
  • Whole Foods - expensive, but lots of options