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February 11, 2011

Wedding planning and vegan eats in Las Vegas

See that? That's me. In a tshirt. In February. Outside.

I was lucky enough to spend 4 days in sunny Las Vegas, returning home Wednesday morning. I was accompanied by my friend Becca, and our mission was wedding planning! That's right, Steve and I are planning our October 2011 wedding in our favorite southwestern city. It was a very productive trip, and the most important decisions have been made (namely ceremony/reception locations and the vegan menu!). I will save those details for another time, for now I wanted to share my well documented vegan food extravaganza!

Tacos and Tequila
We had our first lunch out at Tacos and Tequila inside Luxor. There are two great vegan options there including these vegetarian tacos (minus sour cream). On other visits I have gotten the falafel tacos which are also awesome, and really unique. I found out that since my last trip to Las Vegas the beans are no longer vegetarian, so they gave me a double side of rice instead. Added bonus, there are always coupons available on, making this a very affordable place to dine as well.

Vanilla bean cake
On Saturday afternoon we had an appointment for vegan wedding cake testing. We tried the vanilla bean pictured above, and the red velvet pictured below.

Red velvet cake
The cakes were both very good. I am thinking about having each of the 3 tiers a different flavor so I don't have to choose just one!

Gluten-free brownies and carrot cake
The cake lady also brought samples of her carrot cake and gluten-free brownies, in case we want to do a whole dessert table. Sounds good to me!
Mint Indian Bistro

For dinner on Saturday we went to a place picked out by Becca, Mint Indian Bistro. I was ecstatic when I saw that all of the vegan options on the menu were clearly marked, including several dishes which are typically not vegan (naan, saag, daal maharani). Overwhelmed with having to decide on one dish, my decision was made easy when I noticed the vegan sampler at the end of the menu. In the end, I think it was overpriced ($27) for the amount of food provided. Especially considering that I didn't care for a few of the dishes. Next time I'll order one entree, and that will probably be the chana saag. YUM!
P.F. Chang's
We started our Sunday cheaply with a buy one get one free coupon at P.F. Chang's. Some of the items in the vegetarian section are naturally vegan, but I chose to modify the Vegetable Chow Fun which usually includes egg. This dish was spicy, delicious, and the portion was huge!

Sunday night we had a simple dinner at Chipotle, located on the north end of the strip near Harrah's. This is by far my favorite chain restaurant, and I always order my burrito the same way --rice, beans, hot salsa, corn salsa, and guac!

Bellagio breakfast buffet
Vegas is famous for their buffets. You can even buy an all day pass to sample several buffets in one day, oh my! I promised Becca that I would do one buffet with her in Las Vegas, and Monday morning I fulfilled that promised. We didn't skimp on this meal, we chose the Bellagio which is famed to be the best brunch buffet in town. I was a little worried that it would be a waste of money for me, without many vegan options, but I was wrong! One of the chefs kindly pointed me in the direction of several vegan options. I visited the impressive oatmeal bar, topping mine with figs, almonds, walnuts, and banana chips. I filled a separate plate with Mediterranean lentils, black beans, roasted potatoes, tomatoes with capers, melon, and bok choy with chili sauce. They even had soy milk in the kitchen for my oatmeal and coffee! Way to go Bellagio!

Mt. Everest Indian Cuisine
For dinner Monday night we had Indian again, this time at Mt. Everest Indian Cuisine. I chose the Aloo Kauli, a yummy curry dish of cauliflower, potatoes, peas, and tomatoes.

Ronald's Donuts
Tuesday morning started out very naughty with a trip to Ronald's Donuts. Actually I didn't eat these donuts in Las Vegas, they came home with me. Most of the donuts at Ronald's are vegan (top two rows in the case), but better to ask and confirm which are which if you visit. These vegan donuts are better than any non-vegan donut that I have ever had!

Go Raw Cafe
Craving some good healthy greens, I opted for Go Raw Cafe for lunch. I started out with a raw kale salad from their impressive raw buffet.

Go Raw Cafe
I followed up my salad with the "Traditional Pizza". Oh my goodness, this was amazing! The raw bread, raw marinara, and the walnut "sausage" were all superb. I was floored by how much this tasted like pizza.

Whole Foods salad bar
For my final meal in Las Vegas I hit the Whole Foods salad bar and built my own asian noodle salad. I started with the oil free sesame linguine noodles and topped it with cauliflower, green onion, roasted garlic, tofu, carrots, shredded zucchini, mushrooms, and a little bit of oil free tamari miso dressing. This was so filling and delicious, and kept me full all evening and during my red eye flight home (remind me not to do that again, by the way!).

What a delicious trip! I am also relieved by the wedding planning success. Now if only October would come sooner...


  1. Wow! I wish this post had existed before we went to Vegas this summer (also to get married! :) We had some great Japanese food in the Bellagio, but everything else we ate was mediocre.

  2. Funnnnn!!! I've never been to Vegas, and I am DYING to go!

  3. Awesome that you're having a Vegas wedding! Every single thing you ate on that trip looks great. I'm a sucker for donuts, so those made me super excited.

  4. Will your wedding involve Elvis in any way? ;)

    I would totally go for a multi-flavor cake. When my friend got married last summer, she had a three-tiered cake and each layer was a different flavor. And then there were two OTHER cakes on the side, plus a platter of Italian cookies... Desserts were overflowing at her shindig!

  5. i love all things mexican and those tacos look so amazing! happy wedding planning

  6. Oh, my gosh, HOW FUN!!! What a fun little getaway. Can you believe I have never been to Vegas? I feel like I'm the only person I know who hasn't experienced it. Haha

    I could comment on every picture, but it would basically just be a lot of "YUM"s, so here's one to be applied to every food pic: YUM!!! ;)

  7. Great eats! I need to get back to Vegas .. will be fun as a vegan.

    Guess what? I got married in 1998! So excited for you!

  8. How fun. I've never tried Chipotle but they are putting one in here soon. Very excited about that. Loving all that food!

  9. Thanks for the great food-filled post! One question: I've been consistently told by PF Changs that all of their menu items marked with the vegetarian symbol are vegan (except for that they make no claims about the refining process of their sugar). I've never seen egg in the chow fun; is it visible or sneaky?

  10. RONALDS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  11. Hey...welcome to my part of town! It is so warm here and I am such a baby in the cold! Looks like you hit up all the delicious places to eat here!!

  12. Good question Abby, you are probably right. I asked if it had eggs or dairy and he thought it had eggs. So I asked him if it could be made without and he went to the kitchen to ask. He came back and said that I could have that dish, which actually could mean that it was ok as is. Not entirely sure if it has eggs in it normally or not to tell you the truth :)

  13. Oh! haha! i thought you said Los Angeles! LOL I am a Southern Cali girl in LA. I was wondering about the showgirls BUT I just thought, hey its LA and you get all kinds of stuff here. :) :) BUT I do go to vegas about every 4 months or I know it pretty well there. Glad you had fun!

  14. Its a small world as we were in Vegas at the same time. I was working though.

    I have only been a vegetarian for two months and was on day 25 of my 28 day vegan diet when I was there.

    Here is a tip for any vegans who may be going to Vegas. We went to a restaurant in the Hotel Wynn called Stratta.

    I was surprised to see Vegan options in the main menu even pizza with soy cheese. I spoke to the server who said they had only recently added the vegan dishes to the 'main option'. He said more and more vegans were requesting dishes. He also said I should always ask at the restaurants in Vegas as the chefs will usually make something or even that in some places they have a special menu.

  15. i was scrolling down thinking "where are the donuts!?!" and then i found them. man, they look sooooo goooood! dan went to vegas last year with a group of peeps and didn't make it to ronald's - i told him he reallllly missed out. a multi-flavored tier cake sounds great - and you could always do lots of different flavored cuppins cakes, too. mmmmmm! those gluten-free brownies look great, and so awesome on the Bellagio having some pretty darn tasty vegan eats. nice! i'm always down for some chipotle or the whole foods bar, and might i add i'm a bit jealous of your indian foods feast. delicious!

  16. congrats! Having lived in Vegas previously I miss Go Raw Cafe and Ronalds (My kind sister in law actually mailed us some donuts after we moved since I wouldn't stop talking about them ;) We also really miss Pin Kaow Thai where they'll make the tofu pad thai vegan and it's so delicious. Looks like a fun trip!

  17. Wow. That is a lot of good eatin'! Congrats on your impending nuptials!

  18. OMG!!! This vegan food looks so delicious...I should try it too! I also had my wedding in Las Vegas two years ago and it was so nice memories...I recommend this site for an exceptional wedding planning...I was also helped by these guys and I was very satisfied! Congrats, Sarah!

  19. Yay for getting your planning knocked out. Good for you. I know you are feeling much better now. Big hugs!

  20. Yum! Delicious eats! We got married at Chapel of the Flowers in October 2010. Enjoy the wedding!

  21. Wow I didn't know there were so many vegan options in Las Vegas!! How awesome. Can't wait to see how all the wedding planning (and wedding) turns out. :)

  22. I found you by searching for vegan wedding cakes in Las Vegas- thanks so much for the VERY informative food post! What is the name of the baker/bakery for the cake you tasted? I'm starting to plan my wedding now and would LOVE to have a vegan wedding cake!


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