Goooood morning and Happy Hump Dayyy! I hope you are having a great week! We are halfway to the weekend!
I’m popping in today to share another What I Ate Wednesday post, this one being a date night edition! I thought it would be fun to show you guys what and how I normally order things at a restaurant being a vegan/(mostly) gluten free foodie.
You may laugh at the fact that I love The Cheesecake Factory since I am vegan.. but, it is one of the top restaurants around here that we go to often for date nights. And this date night we had this past Saturday was no different, we went to The Cheesecake Factory! Actually, I think I love it because their salads are always so good (and large), and because I know that both Michael and I will be getting something we love! The options are endless, especially for Michael!
Whenever I go to any restaurant as a vegan, I usually peek at the menu ahead of time online (but if we are going to a restaurant like on the fly or something, or to somewhere that does not provide an online menu, I do not, no big deal) and I check out their salad options as well as their vegetable sides…because most often than not, every single restaurant has vegetables and lettuce. I don’t necessarily have a (known) allergy, but I still treat it as an “allergy” whenever a waiter or waitress asks if someone has a food allergy, because I feel better knowing that the restaurant knows that I am vegan. You never know if you order “plain” veggies if it will come out covered in butter, and you never know if a dressing is in fact not vegan because it could have milk in it, so telling your waiter can avoid those little hiccups because he/she will be aware of your allergy or intolerance and will alert the chef as well.
Since I have been vegan for a bunch of years now, I pretty much know HOW to order my food, and I know I am “not the norm” since I basically eat only fruits and veggies and am completely happy with getting a bowl of plain romain lettuce if it comes down to that….but I feel like it is better to eat something that I know will not upset my stomach than to be in intense pain for the rest of the night.
You can (most of the time) substitute things and modify choices to meet your diet. For instance, whenever we eat at The Cheesecake Factory, I get a salad that includes chicken in it but I always order it without the chicken and without the dressing. So, if a salad has egg, milk products, cheese, meat, etc., you could order it without that stuff to make it vegan. (I always apologize to our waiter for being “difficult” too) Along with that, I have found that The Cheesecake Factory employees have been more than accommodating with me whenever we dine there. (I understand not every one has good experiences like I have, but I am only speaking on my behalf here.)
Please take note: this is NOT all I ate in one day, this is what I ate at dinner. I ate more before AND after this. 🙂
What I Ate Wednesday:
Date Night Edition at The Cheesecake Factory
To start, Michael and I were brought a basket of bread and butter. Classic Cheesecake Factory…and obviously not gluten free, and I am not sure if the bread is vegan but that “brown bread” is sooooo gooodddd. I swear when we were dating (and I wasn’t vegan or gluten free and would just have major stomach aches because I was eating every thing) we would eat so much of that bread, I think we could have ate that alone and would have been good. I actually peeked at the “brown bread” ingredients list that can be bought in grocery stores, and there doesn’t seem to be any dairy products, eggs, or honey to be seen in the list that I saw, but please check beforehand if you are dining there as a vegan.
We ordered the Thai Chicken Lettuce Wraps for an appetizer and of course I made my lettuce wraps with the cucumbers and carrots…leaving the rest for Michael. See? Vegan, a normal “menu item”, and delicious!
For my meal, I ordered the Chicken, Mango, and Avocado Salad….just like every other time we go there, but ordered it with no chicken, no avocado (I think I am the only human in the whole world who doesn’t at all like avocado), romaine lettuce instead of mixed greens, no crispy wontons, and no dressing. I also requested extra veggies and fruit instead of all of that stuff, and they definitely delivered! So my salad included romaine lettuce, peppers, tomatoes, onions, carrots, cucumbers, mango, pineapple, and I saw some sliced almonds in there as well. The salad was so good, I know I have said it before but I am saying it again…I swear their veggies and fruit tastes SO GOOD and so fresh like they have a garden or something in the back. Haha.
Believe it or not, I was never a big cheesecake kinda girl, so not being able to order cheesecake for dessert isn’t a big deal to me and even if I “could” eat it (without feeling sick, that is) I wouldn’t order it. We of course order dessert for special occasions (like birthdays), and if I am not getting a bowl of fresh strawberries from there, then it’s just Michael who orders their cheesecake during special occasions, which he usually only can fit one bite in before feeling super stuffed and bringing the rest home.
..And there you have it! I never feel like I am deprived of food whenever we dine at The Cheesecake Factory because I know what and how to order my meals as a vegan!
What is your “go to” dish at The Cheesecake Factory?