Where to Find Flavorful Vegetarian Dishes in NB
Now that the holidays AND Restaurant Week are over, most people are looking towards healthier options or to trim back their waistline. There is no shortage of delicious vegetarian options in Newport Beach spanning a broad spectrum of cuisines. With such a rich array to choose from, you won’t even have to wait until Meatless Monday to indulge.
This East Hampton transplant has comfortably settled at Crystal Cove where the pristine décor makes for an ideal spot to dine al fresco. Breakfast includes the Olympian omelette with spinach, tomato and feta, or Tuscan Frittata dotted with artichoke, sun-dried tomatoes, and kale. For lunch, Babette’s Ace of Clubs is a portabella sandwich with smoked mozzarella on organic whole grain toast. Babette’s Quinoa Bowl with organic kale, fingerling potato, sunny-side up eggs, toybox tomatoes and pesto is also a huge hit.
If you’re looking for Asian cuisine, Bamboo Bistro off PCH in Corona del Mar has the answer. Tofu can substitute for most proteins on the menu and paired with plenty of selections. Choose Steamed Tofu & Asparagus Spring Rolls with avocado & fresh basil come with a delightful soy base vinaigrette dipping sauce. Vegetables Quinoa Clay Pot contains shitake mushrooms, asparagus, and sugar snap peas tossed in ginger lemongrass sauce and serves as the perfect meatless main course.
Bluewater Grill’s original location on the Lido Peninsula bay is not only iconic, but also a Newport Beach favorite. Their grilled artichokes, and a variety of salads from the regular menu, are stellar choices. A secret vegetarian menu is also available upon request. The restaurant is also extremely accommodating when it comes to preparing meatless dishes for its customers – as long as they have the available ingredients – including pastas and sandwiches!
Citrus (formerly Bambu)
At The Fairmont Hotel’s Citrus restaurant, fresh and nutritionally balanced ingredients appear on a Lifestyle Cuisine menu that’s tipped to contribute to optimal health and wellness. From breakfast, lunch to dinner, you’ll find vegetarian selections to suit all tastes. Enjoy chilaquiles and California avocado frittata at breakfast, purple kale Caesar salad for lunch, and the best and freshest of ingredients on your dinner plate.
Blink and you might miss Go & Go Asian Cuisine, tucked away in a little strip mall next to Sgt. Pepperoni’s Pizza. If you’re looking for something quick and affordable, this little place offers a respectable selection of vegetarian items, which rivals any fast food Chinese restaurant you know. Choose from 15+ items including Orange Chicken and Beef with Broccoli, all using meat substitutes and cooked to order. However, Garlic Eggplant with Miso Sauce and Ma Po Tofu stand out most. All items cost under $9 for lunch and $11 during dinner and include an egg roll and steamed rice.
Chef Alan Jackson’s vegetarian options are endless at the Fashion Island outpost of Lemonade. This L.A. based cafeteria-style restaurant is located next to the movie theater and gives customers the freedom to create their own meal from the countertop cornucopia. Options include salads with Israeli couscous and mushrooms, olive onion goat cheese flatbread, and a Caprese sandwich.
This delightful eatery, located just steps away from the Fun Zone, offers some of Orange County’s best Thai cuisine. Vegetarian appetizers include dumplings and crispy rolls, as well as various curries, noodles and rice dishes. Add tofu to spicy eggplant or traditional “prik king” with green beans to complete a delicious and fulfilling main course.
Vegetarians will find a variety of Indian dishes catering to their needs at Saagar, located in a strip mall off Martingale Way. Choose from more than 20 items, ranging from appetizers such as Paneer (cheese), Vegetable Pakoras, or Samosas stuffed with peas and potatoes. Entrees include Aloo Gobi, a cauliflower and potato dish prepared with various spices, and Jeera Aloo, cumin spiced potatoes. Variety is nearly endless at Sagaar, so come hungry!
Tommy Bahama Island Grille, at Corona del Mar Plaza, is a restaurant eager to please its vegetarian customers. They omit meat from any dish if you ask them. A vegetarian choice such as Grilled Artichoke is a perfect appetizer of perfectly crispy artichoke hearts with soft centers. Roasted Seasonal Vegetables is an ample entrée consisting of cauliflower “steak” topped with an array of vegetables such as portabella mushrooms, carrots, Brussels sprouts, and a warm farro salad. Lemon arugula adds a splash of brightness to the plate.
True Food Kitchen
If you’re looking for phenomenal vegetarian dishes, True Food Kitchen is definitely the go-to place. The restaurant’s huge array of vegetarian-friendly dishes includes a roasted seasonal vegetable board with a wonderful array of salads, and spaghetti squash casserole, a low carb version of spaghetti with marinara sauce. The innovative “Inside Out” quinoa burger remains a firm favorite with delicious vegetarian quinoa patties serving as the “bun” with hummus, tzatziki, tomato, cucumber, red onion, avocado and feta sandwiched between bread.