It’s no secret that campus dining leaves vegans in the dust. With limited options in Smith Memorial Student Union, where in Portland is a vegan student to go? Thankfully, within a short walk or trip on Trimet, you’ve got access to a widespread trove of plant-based delights. From lunch on campus to a night on the town, we’ve got you covered with a starting plan of vegan places to explore within reach of Portland State.
Come to this all-vegan west coast food chain with a location by Pioneer Square and be shocked that what you’re eating is vegan. Veggie Grill has a huge menu that includes a rotating seasonal selection: current features include BBQ pulled pork sandwiches and bulgogi beef bowl.
Campus Food Carts
Perfect for lunch breaks in between class, PSU is home to a smorgasbord of food carts. The hot spots are by Millar Library, the block of carts at Hall and 4th and the carts dotting the Park Blocks. Check out PDX Mac and Cheese Bar by the library for vegan bacon mac, Dogs and Fries in the Park Blocks for a Field Roast hot dog and Veggie Bowl on 4th for hearty Sriracha goodness.
You may have seen the smiling green Saturn all around Portland, but did you know that everything on their menu can be fully vegan-ized? I’m talking vegan cheese, vegan sour cream, tempeh, tofu—you name it. With a location on campus, you’ve got a great opportunity to go and try filling dishes like the Cuban Burrito (with plantains, yum!), the vegan chili (ask for vegan cheese on top), or the seasonal dish, bi-bim-bap with tofu.
With several locations—the closest being across the street from Powell’s—this Portland pizza behemoth boasts a rotating menu of vegan pies. The huge slices at low prices are unbeatable, and with flavors like “Buffalo 666,” “Spiral Tap” and “A.C.A.B” (a May Day special), you won’t miss cow corpse pizza at all. Overwhelmed? You can’t go wrong with “Thunder and Lightning,” a classic cheese and pepperoni.
Ready for a hard drink after a shitty class? Hop on the bus to Hungry Tiger, a bar filled floor-to-ceiling with tiger artwork. Dark lights, pounding music, and a busy bar make this a great late-night option. Pair your Tiger Iced Tea with buffalo “vings,” a vegan corn dog basket or fully customizable vegan mac and cheese. Keep an eye out for their daily specials, such as 75 cent wings on Thursdays.
Belmont Fermentorium/Modern Times Beer
Another 21+ option, this time with an exclusively vegan menu, it’s a more relaxed and open environment than Hungry Tiger. If brews and brunch are what you’re after, come here and order the #Newmoney flight with some breakfast tacos. Arriving later in the night? Ask for the best vegan meatball sub that you’ll ever have.
Simple and straightforward, this quick establishment will have you out the door with a steaming hot take-out container in no time. Tucked in the Urban Plaza, it’s a great choice to grab before your long lecture. Make your own tofu bento for only $6.75, douse it in one of their many sauces and you’re golden.
If you’re in town over the summer, mark your calendars for VegOut! Portland Vegan Beer & Food Festival 2019: a weekend-long event where you can sample vegan food and beer from hundreds of vendors. It’s a great way to get to know more vegan options in the city, as well as get involved in activism and organizations in and around Portland.
Maggie Lombard is a future theatre educator and current grocery store cashier. She has been published by the Portland State Vanguard and Neopets. You can find her online @calilombardi on twitter or in the park blocks, acting like a Disney princess to urban pests.