Cincinnati isn't the first place that comes to mind when you think of vegan food: The city's signature dish is chili, made with ground beef and consumed at fast-food parlors around the city, often served over a bed of spaghetti topped with mounds of shredded cheese.

Despite this being the city's favorite dish, you can find delicious plant-based food that packs in the taste and nutrients. Check out these 7 spots next time you're in The Queen City.

1. Essen Kitchen, 1 Findlay Street, Cincinnati

Plant Yourself: There are only two tiny tables at Essen, so this is best to-go. Bring your grub to Rhinegeist Brewery, just a couple of blocks away. The taproom allows you to bring in your own food and the IPAs are delicious

Don't Miss: The Reuben: a sandwich made with smoked and roasted beets and portobellos, on grilled rye bread, with pickles, horseradish spread and Russian dressing. Messy and delicious.

Order For the Table: Biscuits & jam. Cincinnati has a strong southern influence, so these are on point. They are served with plant-based maple butter along with jam.

2. Pho Lang Thang,1828 Race St, Cincinnati

Calling All: Pho Lang Thang is the perfect treat for Vietnamese soup lovers.

Plant Yourself: Sit at the bar, where you get a local beer on tap. The formerly tiny Pho Lang Thang moved a block from Findlay Market to much roomier digs.

Don't Miss: The super-sized bowl of vegan pho, loaded with fresh herbs, bean sprouts, jalapeños and lime. Add tofu, mushrooms and bamboo shoots. It looks like too much to eat but somehow we slurp up every drop. And if you don't? Wrap it up to finish later.

Order for the Table: The vegan salad rolls with tofu, mushrooms and herbs in rice paper are merely a delicious vessel to eat the irresistible peanut hoisin sauce.

Leave Room For: There are no desserts, but the homemade pickled plum or dragonfruit sodas satisfy a sweet tooth. Or walk over to Findlay Market, where Maverick chocolate has vegan dark chocolate bars (try the spicy Fahrenheit 513, with chilies and cinnamon).

3. B&A Street Kitchen, 1500 Race St, Cincinnati

Calling All: Diner food lovers. B&A is the place to go with your meat and egg loving friends because there are plenty of plant-based comfort foods for you, and options for your friends as well.

Plant Yourself: Choose to sit in the quieter back room for a more tranquil experience.

Don't Miss: Anything with the chorizo tofu or vegan goetta. The Breakfast sandwich “Running the Garden” with bell peppers, caramelized onions, spinach, avocado and chorizo tofu. There are also south of the border tacos with the vegan goetta.

Order For the Table: You'll want seconds and even thirds of their delicious hips and guacamole.

Leave Room For: Spicy Mexican hot chocolate made with soy milk.

4. Happy Chicks Bakery, 4035 Hamilton Ave, Cincinnati

Calling All: All-day breakfast lovers. Happy Chicks café is open till 6, so go for breakfast, lunch or dinner at this entirely dairy-free eatery.

Plant Yourself: Order at the counter and sit a bar stool overlooking the street.

Don't Miss: Any dish with a homemade croissant. I’ve never had such a flaky, butter-free croissant. They pair well with the Daiya cheese, roasted red peppers and kale in the Emily Sandwich.

Order for the Table: Chick nuggets, which are chickpea nuggets, dipped in spicy homage ketchup.

Leave Room For: Cupcakes! Unique flavors like Green Fairy which features fennel, anise absinthe and chocolate frosting or Black Velvet, featuring chocolate cake and almond cream icing. There are also many gluten-free cupcakes.

5. Maplewood Kitchen and Bar, 525 Race St, Cincinnati

Calling All: Salad lovers who like trendy-looking cafes and fresh-pressed juices will love Maplewood Kitchen and Bar.

Plant Yourself: Order at the counter and grab a seat at the plant-filled café.

Don't Miss: The Power salad loaded with kale, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, pomegranate, peppadew peppers, roasted sweet potato, chickpeas, pear, coconut and chia-lemon vinaigrette.

Leave Room For: The Roasted Tomatillo Bloody Mary includes super greens juice, so we feel a little less guilty drinking one at brunch!

6. MadTree Brewing, 3301 Madison Rd., Cincinnati

Calling All: Beer lovers. MadTree's taproom & beer garden has wood-fired pizza from Catch-a-Fire Café. Try the signature Psychopathy, a very hoppy IPA.

Plant Yourself: If you are bringing your pup, the heated beer garden is the place to be in winter. In warmer weather, there’s a huge patio.

Don't Miss: The cashew ricotta and vegan sausage pair well with the baby kale and mushrooms.

Order for the Table: The veggie power salad has Brussels sprouts, kohlrabi, pistachios and pomegranate vinaigrette

Leave Room For: A dessert beer like the Saison with strawberries or Mexican lager with agave.

7. Peace Street Bakery, Various Locations

Plant Yourself: At home! If you live in the Cincinnati area, you can order Peace Street's 100% vegan baked goods by email,  phone (513-205-4679) or on their Facebook page. If you can't wait, the first restaurant on our list, Essen, carries an assortment of Peace Street goodies in-store, as well as local favorites Clifton Natural Foods, Unwind and The Whole Bowl.

Don't Miss: The Caramel Pecan Magic bar is called magic for a reason! Other favorites include Strawberry Almond Bars, gluten-free brownies, chocolate chip cookies and the Ohio classic Buckeyes, which are peanut butter balls dipped in chocolate.

Order For: Your next special occasion. Peace Street takes custom orders and by the looks of their Grateful Dead Dancing Bear Cookies, they can make almost anything. They also take pie orders for Thanksgiving with the option of three delicious flavors: Classic Pumpkin, Cinnamon Apple and Caramel Pecan Pie and make custom cookies for any holiday or occasion.




More From The Beet