National Vegetarian Week is nearly over for another year but for me every week is vegetarian week, so I’m pleased the nation is celebrating. Vegetarianism wasn’t particularly fashionable a few years ago. It was all unimaginative salads and soups, but now it looks like the veggie lifestyle is officially becoming cool. So put down the steak knives and join the meat-free revolution with these delicious dishes, specially selected to fill you up.
Pancho’s Burritos, large, £5.30/extra-large £5.80
Holy guacamole! Looking for a flavoursome lunch? Head to Pancho’s Burritos, where you can select either a burrito wrap (plain, spinach or tomato tortillas available) or burrito bowl. Expect rice, refried beans, griddled onions and peppers, cheese, guacamole, jalapenos, cactus, sour cream and shredded lettuce. Choose your filling (there’s home cooked vegetarian chilli or griddled vegetables) and a salsa from a list that covers mild to XXX hot. Let me know about that last one. This little stand is headed up by Mexican street chef Enrique ‘Mad Burrito’ Hernandez, who promises to love all vegetarians.
Arndale Food Market, 49 High St, M4 3AH
World Peace Café’s spinach, lemon and coconut dhal, £5
Enjoy a mild creamy dhal served with rice, onion bhajis, shredded spinach and sweet chilli sauce in a tranquil setting. The World Peace café sits in the Kadampa meditation centre and is staffed by lovely volunteers. All profits are given to causes dedicated to world peace and the running of the caf is interwoven with ethical and spiritual principles while each item on the menu is home-made and vegetarian friendly. Good vibes only.
76 High Ln, Chorlton M21 9XF
Bosu Body Bar’s protein box, regular £6.50/king £8.50
These guys know a lot about protein. Here you can make up a box with halloumi (25g protein) or tofu (11g protein), served on a base of either baked sweet mash, spicy brown rice or mixed bulgar wheat.
Still not satisfied? There’s a side for that. Choose from root veg, green beans, apple coleslaw, spinach, broccoli, fresh peppers, cucumber and clean beans. And don’t forget your sauce! There’s blueberry BBQ, peri-peri drizzle, ranch, jalapeno, chilli mango or southwest. Finish up with a health juice or smoothie.
559 Barlow Moor Rd, Didsbury, M21 8AN
Pho’s Bun Chai Gio Chay (tofu and mushroom), £7.95
Authentically cooked vermicell rice noodles with a mean lemongrass and chilli-wok fired topping. Served up with fresh herbs, beansprouts, veggie spring rolls and peanuts. This meal is a miniature culinary experience. Light, fragrant, and served up truly Vietnamese-style with nuoc cham side sauce and room-temperature noodles.
15 The Corn Exchange, 37 Hanging Ditch, M4 3TR
Teatime Collective’s chilli cheese hotdog, £4.50
Have you ever had a vegetarian chilli cheese hotdog? If you haven’t, you’ve come to the right place. If you have, this will make you forget about the others because it’s smothered with a generous portion of chilli and cheese and the faux-meat is finger-licking good. Teatime Collective is a vegan café and ice-cream parlour and was built on the values of high quality, home cooked food. How lovely.
St. Wilfrid’s Enterprise Centre, Royce Rd, Hulme, M15 5BJ
Fuel Café’s full veggie, £5.70
We’ve found a hangover cure for vegetarians! Go to Fuel café and ask for the full veggie. Tell them we sent you. Enjoy two sausages, two hash browns, a fried egg, baked beans, grilled tomato, mushrooms and two slices of toast. Because breakfast is the most important meal of the day! (Although this dish is actually served until 4pm.)
448 Wilmslow Rd, Manchester M20 3BW
Ocean Tr235ure’s veggie mock duck, £9.80
Ocean Tr235ure’s vegetarian delight is the slick option. Go beyond The Bamboo Curtain and enjoy a traditionally Cantonese dish of mock duck served with your choice of sauce: sweet and sour, Szechuan, satay, chilli and garlic, black bean, black pepper, Cantonese, kung po or curry. The restaurant is affiliated with Manchester 235 casino so you’re guaranteed entertainment. Remember, always bet on black.
2 Watson Street, M3 4LP
For more great meat-free meals in Manchester now read: