It’s tacky to say out loud in today’s cultural climate, but sometimes fast food is a necessary evil. When traveling, dining with strangers, in a hurry, or caught unprepared, a chain restaurant can provide an easy solution for a variety of tastes without much investment. Sad but true. Folks tend to get nervous on the behalf of us vegetarians when fast food comes up, but a few universal spots make meat-free incredibly easy and are even happy to cater to our non-carnivorous lifestyle.
It seems like, at least in SoCal, Subway is starting to rival McDonald’s and Starbucks for the title of who can squeeze in the most locations per capita. Conveniently, Jared’s much-publicized weight loss secret is the perfect dine and dash option thanks to its step-by-step sandwich building. Veggies can pick and choose what works for their diet and tastes with a customized Veggie Delight or fake it with a Veggie Patty sandwich.
Taco Bell has been one of my fast food staples since I first became vegetarian when I was a kid. A lot of what’s pretty terrible nutritionally about the Bell goes out the window when you ditch the urban legend-inspiring meat. I’ve never had an issue asking for any meat to be subbed for beans instead, and more recently potatoes are a good filler too. (I had to try the Doritos Locos Tacos, what better way than stuffed full of tater tots?)
Lastly, it seems to go against everything that makes sense, but In-N-Out Burger is still delicious even without a juicy burger. Take full advantage of the secret menu options by getting a loaded grilled cheese that encompasses literally every component of their burgers with no burger, and Animal-Style fries, topped with cheese, Thousand Island spread, and grilled onions. Burger King is another unlikely-seeming candidate, but offers a pretty delicious fire-grilled MorningStar Farms Veggie Burger. — Casandra Armour