The Vegetarian Resource Group Blog


Posted on May 29, 2014 by The VRG Blog Editor

By Priscilla Broadwater

As many of us know, the excitement of soccer will return this June 2014.
The FIFA World Cup, which occurs every four years, will take place in
Brazil this time. Millions of soccer fans from all over the world will
be watching soccer matches, cheering for their team, and living and
enjoying the passion of the sport. Other soccer enthusiasts have decided
to travel to Brazil and take their experience to a whole new level.
Let the games begin!!!

According to the CIA and the World Factbook, Brazil is slightly smaller
than the United States with an area of 8,514,877 sq Km, and a population
of 201,009,622. This wonderful and majestic country has something to
offer to everyone who visits.Given that many people will be packing their
suitcases and heading to Brazil this summer, I thought it would be a great
idea to list some useful information, phrases, and some restaurants where
you can find vegan and vegetarian options.

I spoke with my Brazilian friends and from what they told me, Brazilians
are big meat eaters, which could make things a bit difficult for
vegetarians and vegans. But don’t feel discouraged; this doesn’t mean
you won’t be able to find options. My advice is, “always be prepared.” You
may want to bring with you: nuts, granola bars, and all your favorite
vegan snacks, especially if you plan to bring your little ones along.

Here are a couple more facts I would like you to be aware of: Some
restaurants in Brazil are hard to find because they don’t look exactly
like a restaurant, but more like a house. Yes, I know that is a bit
strange, but that is just part of the culture. Some other restaurants
may not have a proper sign, or may simply be slightly to the left or
right of what your GPS tells you. Thus, be prepared and ask someone if
you need help. Brazilians are very friendly and would be glad to help
you. Secondly, use your own judgment and be careful. Every country has
safe areas, and areas you want to avoid. Thus, do some homework before
you go. Perhaps you can borrow or buy a book that will provide important
information you need to know. If you get the chance to speak to a native
Brazilian, do so. This could be very helpful to you. Or, find reliable
websites where you can obtain ample information. When going to a
restaurant, make sure you have cash with you since not all restaurants
accept credit cards. Check the hours before you make the trip to a
restaurant. Some open from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., and others will open
from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

As I already mentioned, Brazil is a vast country. Depending on where you
are in Brazil will make vegan options more accessible than in other

Useful Phrases
‐Hello = oi
‐How are you? = Como vai você?
‐Brazilians typically greet you by saying “Tudo bem?” which literally
means “is everything good?”
And the answer to that is, “Tudo bom” or “Tudo bem.” Which means “I am
doing good, or everything is good.”
‐My name is… = Meu nome é…
‐Pleased to meet you = Muito prazer
‐Thank you = men say “Obrigado” and women say “Obrigada”
‐See you later = Até mais
‐I don’t speak Portuguese = Eu não falo Português
‐I am American = Eu sou Americano
‐Where is the bathroom? = Onde é o banheiro? / Onde fica o banheiro?
‐I’m hungry = Estou com fome
‐I am a vegetarian = Eu sou vegetariano (for male), and Eu sou
vegetariana (for female)
‐I don’t eat meat, fish, or fowl = Eu não como carne, peixe ou frango
‐I am vegan = Eu sou vegano (for male) and Eu soy vegana (for female)
‐I don’t eat anything prepared with animal products = Eu não como nada
preparado com produtos animais
‐I don’t eat dairy products, eggs, or honey = Eu não como laticínios,
ovos ou mel

Vegetarian and Vegan Restaurants in Brazil

Rio de Janeiro
Dona Vegana
This restaurant offers vegan food.
Address: Av. Marechal Floriano, n° 13, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Telephone: 2223‐0303

Refeitorio Organico
This restaurant offers vegan food.
Address: Rua Dezenove de Fevereiro, 120, Botafogo, Zona Sul, Rio de
Janeiro, Brazil
Telephone: 2537‐0750

Vegetariano Social Clube
This restaurant offers vegetarian and vegan food.
Address:Rua Conde de Bernadotte, 26/ Loja L‐ Leblon, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Telephone: 21‐2294‐5200

São Paulo
Banana Verde
This restaurant offers vegetarian and vegan food.
Address: Rua Harmonia, 278, Vila Madalena, São Paulo, Brazil
Telephone: 11‐3814‐4828

This restaurant offers vegetarian food, as well as vegan friendly food.
Address: Rua Bela Cintra, 1343, São Paulo, Brazil
Telephone: 11‐3062‐3727

This is a vegetarian restaurant that offers vegan food as well.
Address: Rua Cônego Eugênio Leite, 1152 Pinheiros, São Paulo, Brazil
Telephone: 11‐3031‐0680

Belo Horizonte
Salada Saudavel
This is a vegeterian restaurant that also offers vegan and raw food.
Address: Av Olegario Maciel 742, Belo Horizonte, Brazil
Telephone: 31‐9912‐5367

San Ro
This is a vegetarian Chinese restaurant. They offer vegan food as well.
Address: Rua Professor Moraes, 651 ‐ Funcionários, Belo Horizonte, Brazil
Telephone: 31‐3264‐9236

Health Valley Brasil
This restaurant offers vegetarian and vegan food, as well as snacks.
This restaurant is buffet style, thus you pay certain amount and you eat
all you want.
Address: Rua Direita da Piedade, 17 ‐ Dois de Julho, Salvador ‐ BA,
40060‐300, Brazil
Telephone: 71‐3329‐2176

O Vegetariano
This is a buffet‐style restaurant. They offer vegetarian food and vegan
options including vegan desserts.
Address: Rua Conde D’eu, 118, Boa Vista Recife, Brazil
Telephone: 81‐3423‐3638

Cantina Vegetariana
Another self‐service restaurant in Recife. They offer vegetarian and
vegan food, soul food, pizza, and more.
Address: Rua Arcenio Calaça, 102, San Martin, Recife, Brazil
Telephone: 81‐3228‐2502

Veg Gourmet Delivery
This is a vegan restaurant that brings food to your door. You need to
order one day in advance. The chef at Veg Gourment Delivery will amaze
you with his wonderful vegan dishes.
Telephone: 85‐3212‐0282

A Fantástica Cozinha da Carol
Reservations are required, and you must bring cash. The owner of this
restaurant can show you that vegan food is delicious!!
Address: Rua Júlio César, 1364, Damas, 60425‐808 Fortaleza, Brazil
Telephone: 85‐9986‐7073

This restaurant offers a variety of vegetarian food. Soups, salads,
sandwiches, and more. This is also a buffet style restaurant.
Address: CLS 409 Bl. B Lj. 15/16 Brasília, Brazil
Telephone: 61‐3242‐1542

Boa Saúde
This vegetarian restaurant offers salads and hot dishes. They also sell
pizza made with Brazilian vegan cheese.
Address: SRTVN 702, bloco P, loja 128, Edifício Brasília Rádio Center,
Asa Norte, Brasília, Brazil
Telephone: 61‐3328‐6958

Porto Alegre
This is a vegan restaurant. At Bonobo they care about our environment.
Bikers are welcome at this restaurant. There is parking spaces for bikes.
Address: Rua Castro Alves, 101, Bonfim, Porto Alegre, Brazil
Telephone: 51‐3013‐1464

La Rouge Bistro
Here you can find vegan food. They offer mostly organic food including
raw dishes and a variety of organic teas.
Address: Ave Mariland 1587, Porto Alegre, Brazil
Telephone: 51‐3019‐7638

This is a casual restaurant that offers vegetarian and vegan food. At
night, you can try their tasty vegan pizzas.
Address: Av. José Bonifácio, 605, Bomfim, Porto Alegre, Brazil
Telephone: 51‐3332‐1704

Bouquet Garni
This restaurant offers a vegetarian buffet, as well as vegan food.
Prices vary on the weekend.
Address: Alameda Carlos de Carvalho, 271, Centro, Curitiba, Brazil
Telephone: 41‐3223‐8490

Sorella Restaurante Vegetariano
This is a vegetarian restaurant with plenty of options. They offer all
kinds of salad, and also delicious fresh bread.
Address: Rua Marechal Hermes, 728, Centro Cívico, Curitiba, Brazil
Telephone: 41‐3026‐5794

Other Resources
The World Factbook:‐world‐factbook/
Happy Cow The Healthy Eating Guide:

Since restaurants open, close, and change menus, you may want to call

For information on eating in the U.S. see
For other international eating info, see

For information on athletes and vegetarian diets, see


Posted on May 29, 2014 by The VRG Blog Editor

The 2014 Food and Health Survey asked, Which of these sources would you trust the most to provide accurate information about nutrition? 50% said health professionals. Then it dipped down to 15% for health-focused websites, 11% for scientific journals, 9% for government agencies, 5% for food manufacturers, and 5% for friends and family.

The survey also asked, Which of these sources would you trust the most to provide accurate information about The Ways Foods and Beverages are Farmed and Produced? 28% said government agencies, while 17% said scientific journals, 13% health-focused websites, 12% health professionals, 12% news media, and 10% food manufacturers.

The survey questioned, “Over the past year, how much thought have you given to whether your foods and beverages are produced in an environmentally sustainable way?” 19% said a lot, 43% said a little, and 35% said none.

Another question was, “Over the past year, how much thought have you given to the ways the food and beverages you consume are farmed or produced?” 23% said a lot, while 48% said a little and 27% said none.

Interestingly, in a separate question, 70% of people said they consume peanut butter or nut butters to get protein. 22% consumed meat alternatives.

So for manufactures producing products, certainly there seems to be different audiences. Businesses have to figure out how to meet various needs. Possibly about a quarter to a half of consumers have an interest in vegetarian related issues, though not necessarily vegetarianism (for example they may be interested in organics, but care about organic meat as well as organic vegetables, or eating peanut butter for cheap protein and taste, not necessarily because it’s vegetarian.)

For those companies and nonprofits trying to share their nutrition messages, there would appear to be several avenues, but reaching health professionals seems to be important.

The 2014 Food and Health Survey was sponsored by the International Food Information Council Foundation and conducted by Greenwald and Associates, surveying 1,005 Americans.

Here is more information about IFIC.

For more information on vegetarian polls, see

Outback Steakhouse® Vegetarian and Vegan Menu Options

Posted on May 28, 2014 by The VRG Blog Editor

By Jeanne Yacoubou, VRG Research Director

Outback Steakhouse® opened its first restaurant in 1988 in Tampa, Florida. Today there are approximately 760 restaurants in most states as well as in other countries. To find a location visit

The VRG contacted Outback Steakhouse in March through May 2014. We communicated with two nutritionists by phone and email about vegetarian and vegan menu options. They told us that they had screened menu items “…for eggs, dairy, honey, meat, animal fats, animal rennet, and gelatin.” They did not screen for insect-derived colorings.

According to the Outback Steakhouse dietitians, the following menu items are vegetarian defined as not containing “animal meat, fish, shellfish or animal by-products.” They could contain eggs or dairy.

Vegetarian Options at Outback Steakhouse

  • House Bread and Butter
  • Steakhouse Salad without Sirloin
  • Aussie Cobb Chicken Salad without chicken or bacon
  • House Salad
  • Fresh Steamed Broccoli with seasoned butter
  • Fresh Steamed Mixed Vegetables with seasoned butter
  • Garlic Mashed Potatoes
  • Baked Potato without bacon
  • Sweet Potato with honey butter and brown sugar
  • Grilled Asparagus (cross-contact with grill; see below)
  • No Rules Parmesan Pasta without protein options
  • Mini Milkshakes (vanilla, chocolate, strawberry, oreo)
  • Sweet Adventure Dessert Sampler Trio
  • Classic Cheesecake
  • Carrot Cake
  • Chocolate Thunder from Down Under

The vegan options at Outback Steakhouse are defined as those that do not contain “…animal meat, fish, shellfish or animal by-products, eggs, dairy or honey.”

Vegan Options at Outback Steakhouse

  • House Bread
  • Fresh Steamed Broccoli without seasoned butter
  • Fresh Steamed Mixed Vegetables without seasoned butter
  • Plain Baked Potato or Sweet Potato
  • House Salad without cheese and croutons

The nutritionists at Outback Steakhouse noted that “the Grilled Asparagus comes in contact with the same grill that is used to cook animal and seafood proteins. Other items do not typically come in contact with non-vegetarian or non-vegan ingredients. It is recommended that a guest specifies that he/she is placing a vegetarian or vegan order and discusses the order with the server and manager.”

The VRG also contacted a Baltimore area Outback Steakhouse through the restaurant chain’s website contact form asking the manager if and how he could accommodate a vegan. Within a day we received this reply:

“I greatly appreciate your reaching out to us…We can create any vegan meal either grilled vegetables, baked sweet potatoes, or baked potatoes. We will do what is necessary to make…[a vegan] feel comfortable.”

The manager of the Baltimore area Outback Steakhouse also mentioned that he was connected to Carrabba’s Italian Grill® (another restaurant chain owned by Bloomin’ Brands, Inc.®) and could accommodate a vegan through them.

The contents of this posting, e-mail, VRG website and our other publications, including Vegetarian Journal, are not intended to provide personal medical advice. Medical advice should be obtained from a qualified health professional. We often depend on product and ingredient information from company statements. It is impossible to be 100% sure about a statement, info can change, people have different views, and mistakes can be made. Please use your best judgment about whether a product is suitable for you. To be sure, do further research or confirmation on your own.

For more information on restaurants, visit

To support The Vegetarian Resource Group, join at



Posted on May 28, 2014 by The VRG Blog Editor

Jane Easton from VIVA found an article on our website about vegan in the UK, which was written 14 years ago. So she sent this update:

Hi to all at VRG. The UK has changed hugely for vegans even in the past 5 years. It’s far easier now to get vegan food in the major towns and cities and even smaller places. Here are a few useful links.

You may contact Ms. Easton as follows:

Jane Easton
Food & Cookery Coordinator
Viva! and Viva!Health
8 York Court, Wilder Street
Bristol, BS2 8QH
Viva! 0117 944 1000
Viva! Health 0117 944 1000

Serve Vegan Food this Memorial Day Weekend!

Posted on May 21, 2014 by The VRG Blog Editor

Hopefully you’ll be spending this weekend with family and/or friends. You might want to serve one of these vegan dishes from Vegans Know How to Party, by Chef Nancy Berkoff. This book can be purchased from The Vegetarian Resource Group. See:

Tofu Caprice Sandwiches
Serves 6

3 loaves Italian or other crusty French bread, cut into halves lengthwise
12 slices ripe tomato
1 pound smoked tofu, cut into twelve slices (found in natural foods stores)
12 leaves fresh basil
1 Tablespoon vinegar
2 teaspoons olive oil
Cracked pepper to taste

If desired, lightly toast or broil bread in a hot oven. Cut each half loaf of bread into three pieces. Place on individual appetizer plates or on a serving platter.
To assemble the sandwiches, place a slice of tomato on each bread piece. Top with a slice of smoked tofu, then a basil leaf. Repeat. Drizzle top with vinegar and olive oil. Very lightly sprinkle with black pepper and serve.

Bow Tie Pasta Salad
Serves 10

12 ounces uncooked bow tie pasta (or other pasta of choice)
2 cups cooked or canned, drained garbanzo beans
1 cup diced carrots
1 cup diced red onion
1 cud diced green bell pepper
1 cup thinly sliced fresh zucchini
1 cup frozen, thawed or fresh, uncooked green peas
½ cup pitted and sliced black olives

¼ cup olive oil
¼ cup water
3 Tablespoons cider vinegar
3 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
3 Tablespoons nutritional yeast (optional)
1 Tablespoon Dijon or spicy prepared mustard
1 Tablespoon minced garlic
2 teaspoons minced fresh basil
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

In a large pot, cook the bow tie pasta in boiling water until al dente (still chewy). Drain, rinse with cold water, and drain well again. Transfer the cooked pasta to a large bowl, add all of the vegetables, and toss well to combine
In a small bowl, place all of the dressing ingredients, and whisk well to combine. Pour the dressing over the top of the pasta mixture and gently toss together. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour or more to allow the flavors to blend. Toss gently again before serving.

Spring is in the air and so is the smell of veggie dogs!

Posted on May 21, 2014 by The VRG Blog Editor

By Priscilla Broadwater

Two brands of veggie hot dogs I’ve tried are: Tofurky and Lightlife. Both brands are excellent; however there are differences between the two. The following information may be helpful to you as of what brand to choose depending on your preference.

Lightlife: This was the first brand of vegetarian hot dogs I tried. These veggie dogs are relatively soft. This means that when you’re grilling you must keep an eye on them because they will cook very quickly. The first time I ate one was on a hot dog bun with a little bit of ketchup and yellow mustard. The second time I wanted to try something different, so I cut up two veggie dogs into little chucks which I dipped into brown mustard. Yum!! I personally liked eating them that way better.

Tofurky: For those who prefer a firmer veggie dog with a chewier consistency; Tofurky may be your best bet. My favorite way of eating a Tofurky veggie dog is on a bun with vegan mayonnaise and ketchup. Plus I added a couple of kosher pickles and some corn chips.

So, invite some friends over and get grilling!! Vegan hot dogs are delicious and they are for everyone to enjoy.

Though a little old, readers may be interested in this article:
Here are some picnic ideas:

Priscilla grew up in Costa Rica and is doing volunteer work with The Vegetarian Resource Group.


Posted on May 19, 2014 by The VRG Blog Editor

By Jeanne Yacoubou
VRG Research Director

Also known as: HFCS, glucose-fructose, glucose-fructose syrup, fructose-glucose syrup

Commercial source: corn

Used in: soft drinks, juice, bread, cereal, granola bars, yogurt, soup, condiments, confections, desserts, ice cream, pharmaceuticals

Used as: sweetener, texturizer, anti-crystallization agent
Definition: A mixture of simple sugars glucose and fructose, HFCS is produced by microbial enzymes that convert some glucose to fructose. The major types of HFCS contain roughly equal amounts of glucose and fructose.


According to ADM, their high fructose corn syrups “…do not contain, and are not processed, with any animal products, by-products, or any animal derived products.”

According to Tate & Lyle, their high fructose corn syrups: “…do not contain any ingredient of animal origin. The processing aid used to produce these products is not derived from animal origins.”

According to Ingredion, “We do not create product from cane sugar or animal-derived processes.”

Classification: Vegan

Entry added: May 2014

For information on more ingredients, see

To support VRG research, donate at
To join The Vegetarian Resource Group, go to


Posted on May 19, 2014 by The VRG Blog Editor

By Amory Fischer
VRG 2013 Scholarship winner

I am writing to report a successful year of college that could not have happened without your scholarship support. Please accept my thanks again. Here is an update of my work.

Academically, my current college GPA is 3.94 and I am on the path toward graduating a year early. I took my major’s introductory course, Environmental Policy and Planning, and found it to be a perfect fit for my interests.

During the spring semester, I successfully conducted a campaign to encourage Virginia Tech Dining Services to provide more vegan and vegetarian options. Options have flourished in the past decade, including an entire buffet devoted to vegetarian food, so instead of a confrontational demand for better choices, I decided on a thank you letter reading “Thank you for improving Vegetarian and Vegan options! Please keep up the good work!”

I worked with the newly forming Animal Rights @VT club (I am the vice president), the Environmental Coalition, and Peta2, the college branch of the PETA. We gathered 782 signatures via text message for the Director of Dining Services, Mr. Ted Faulkner. During Earth Week @VT, we gathered signatures and Vegetarian Starter Kits on the school’s “Food Day.”

2013 VRG scholarship winner, Amory Fischer tabling on Earth Day

After this, I met with Mr. Faulkner on April 29th to give him the letter. During this meeting I gave him a gift of Vegan in Volume, a cookbook published by the Vegetarian Resource Group and donated for the cause by Peta2.

Mr. Faulkner was very appreciative of the gift and the thank you letter. He said, “Sometimes people in my department look at how we strive to get better and at how we’ve improved and say, ‘We’ve achieved good, we’re done.’ I will take this letter to them as a reason to keep working.” He also asked and I accepted to be the point person for student volunteers on a panel for testing new vegan and vegetarian options in the upcoming year.

Other bits of work: Along with this campaign, I am helping form an Animal Rights @VT club, who did a screening of the movie BlackFish on May 5th. We plan on continuing the campaign for vegetarian options as well as starting to work with animal shelters in the fall. I am the rising Vice President of the Soil and Water Conservation Society @VT. This year the group attended educational forums about sustainable agriculture and built no-till soil displays. I wrote, submitted, and gained approval for a “Green Request for Proposal” of $27,000 to install water bottle refilling stations around campus to reduce plastic bottle use. This was through the VT Office of Energy and Sustainability, for which I will be an intern next school year. I am also actively involved with Ballroom Dance @VT, Luther Memorial Lutheran Church, and the Environmental Coalition (I was a State Lead organizer for Power Shift 2013). This summer I will be working as the Lead Organizer for the Solar Schools Initiative, a program to install solar power on all of Albemarle County schools. Best wishes! – Amory Fischer, Environmental Policy and Planning, Virginia Tech class of 2016, VRG 2013 Scholarship winner

VRG also received this note from Nora Allen RD,a previous VRG scholarship winner. She recently volunteered to exhibit for us at the annual meeting of the Pennsylvania Dietetic Association. Nora said said,

Thank you for the opportunity to represent an organization I am passionate about! And of course, being a great source of evidence based information for my patients and fellow practitioners. I would not be a dietitian without your help!

For information about the next college scholarship contest, please see

Donations towards VRG scholarships and internships can be made at


Posted on May 16, 2014 by The VRG Blog Editor

We received this inquiry:
I just received some “Nabah” seeds from Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds or and I am looking forward to planting them in my garden. The only problem is, once they start growing, how do I cook them? I have done an internet search which led me to some interesting Indian and Egyptian cuisine websites but no specific recipes for Nabah. I understand that these need to be soaked to leach out the bitterness, but what do I do after that? Would anyone in your community have any recipes?

According to nabah is a variety of lupines.

Francesca Del Vecchio, RD answers:
Being from an Italian family we eat lupines often. You actually eat the seed not the flower, but you can grow them if you want. This link is to exactly what we do to prepare:
Here is another I found:

In order to make lupini beans edible, they have to be soaked in a brine solution to draw out the alkaloids. Typically, the beans are washed first and then soaked in a brine which is changed until the brine no longer tastes bitter. It can take as much as five days with twice daily changes of the brine. When properly soaked, these beans have a great flavor, and are high in protein, making them a good choice for vegans and vegetarians.

Remember the beans have a thick, tough skin. The skin makes the beans fun to eat because you pop the bean out by squeezing the skin. Hope this helps!

For other bean recipes, see:


Posted on May 16, 2014 by The VRG Blog Editor

Job opening for executive chef at Sublime in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. We are located 10 minutes from the beach and downtown. This vegan restaurant has received countless accolades for decor, food, and service. Locals, celebrities, and politicians dine at Sublime. Sublime’s rooftop garden is one of two gardens supplying some ingredients. Salary commensurate with ability. Send resume to

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