We recently visited Birmingham for a concert and faced the usual conundrum when hitting a new city. Of course, Happy Cow came to the rescue and the Teen and I were able to happily fill our boots during the duration of our stay. It was great to see so many vegan options available, which made it quite difficult to choose! If you’re new to the area you may find this little run through of where we ate handy. Enjoy!
Not Dogs – LinkStreet, Upper West Mall, Bullring
We couldn’t visit Birmingham and not try out the famous Not Dogs I’d heard so much about on social media. With plenty of the ‘dogs’ available to be veganised I was spoilt for choice but eventually settled on the What The Duck Dog, which was loaded with Hoisin ‘duck’ and spring onions. I also enjoyed a Peanut Butter and Chocolate Cup Milkshake which was made using rice milk.
Far from being the dominion of bearded hipsters it was lovely to see a wide demographic eating here. My son, usually a neigh sayer when it comes to veggie food, was even won over by the meaty quality of the Not Dog. He said that if all vegan food was this good he’d sign up tomorrow. Seriously, they need to tell me where they get their sausages from so I can tempt him away from whatever bits and pieces are hidden in the meat varieties. Yuck!
Check out the Not Dogs website to find out the story behind the brand and salivate over the menu. Every city should have a branch.
Fressh – 5, City Arcade, Union St,
An all-vegan establishment, we happened to stumble upon Fressh by chance. It has only been open a month or so but word is spreading about its plant-based menu and spin on junk food classics like Macaroni Cheese and the good old Meatball Sub.
I wanted to try out the Mac ‘n’ Cheese as it had been a while since I’d enjoyed a good hearty bowl. The sauce was made with sweet potato and almond and topped with coconut bacon which I found too sweet. Personally, it lacked the salty savoury tang of a good Macaroni Cheese.
The Son of a Bun Burger, made with black beans and sweet potato, was far more appealing. The vegan cheese-topped patty was even given the thumbs up from the Teen, who promptly stole it from me after turning his nose up at the Macaroni Cheese. We’d recommend you give this healthy vegan take on these classics a try if you are wanting to be virtuous.
The Veggie Chippy – 228 New John St West, Birmingham
We really didn’t need to visit The Veggie Chippy after eating so much throughout the course of the day but felt it would be rude not. The Teen is a big fan of battered Halloumi – he could eat it ‘all day long’, apparently – so I thought trying out what was the UK’s first-ever vegetarian chippy in the UK was more than necessary for us both. The menu featured plenty of vegan dishes emulating British chip shop classics like Fish & Chips, as well as non-meat fried ‘chicken’ and dairy free pizzas.The issue was deciding what to try! The prices were reasonable considering the portion sizes, and the guys there are so lovely. The Teen enjoyed Vod and Chips served with curry sauce. I struggled to finish my meatfree kebab as I’d eaten a lot over the course of the day, so he decided to polish off the rest for good measure.The texture of the Vod was good, as was the kebab. Too often these can be greasy – Little Piece of Sky in Newcastle is certainly guilty of going overboard with the fat – but we found them to be spot on.
Serious conversations were had with the Teen too about his own prejudices towards vegan food after he’d heartily enjoyed so much of what we ate during our whistle-stop visit.
He agreed that based on the food eaten at Not Dogs and The Veggie Chippy he’d have no problem transitioning to veganism. Here’s hoping he makes the switch in the future!
Thanks for reading,