Chili’s is one of America’s most popular casual restaurant chains with thousands of locations across the globe.
They are known for their fast-food style food options, so what many people don’t know is that the chain actually offers some vegan options. In this article, we have the 7 best of them!
While not the best of chains when it comes to their overall consideration of vegan customers, these options are good enough for when you pass by a Chili’s and are simply craving something.
The 7 Best Vegan Options At Chili’s
1. French Fries
A classic option for all vegans in restaurant chains like Chili’s that are focused on meat lovers and promote their burgers and sandwiches, French fries are a safe vegan menu item to order.
100% vegan, they are certainly not the healthiest vegan meal you can have, but they will do the work for when you are craving some deep-fried carbs.
2. Mexican Rice And Beans
While you might not consider this a proper meal, we bet there’s been a time when you were short on time and simply had homemade rice with beans for lunch or dinner.
Simple and convenient, this is actually a pretty decent option to order from the Chili’s menu and a very healthy one.
Rice is a good source of carbs and beans are an amazing source of fiber as well as protein. However, this is a side in the menu item, so if you are really hungry you will probably have to order something else too or ask for two portions of each.
If you want some other vegan sides to match this, some corn on the cob, grilled asparagus, or grilled broccoli can work.
However, there’s nothing stopping you from being more creative. If you want to make your own vegan burrito, ask for some tortillas too, and fill them with rice, beans, and guac. Even add some veg there if you want and you have the best DIY burrito!
3. Caribbean Salad
The Caribbean Salad is one of the restaurant chain’s vegan salad options (we will tell you about the next one in a bit).
To honor its name, this salad includes sliced pineapple, mandarin oranges, cranberries, red pepper, green onion, cilantro, and a honey-lime dressing.
As you can imagine, the dressing is off the table since honey is one of the ingredients, but that shouldn’t be much of an issue.
While you will miss out on the authentic taste of this salad, you can replace the honey-lime dressing with a balsamic vinaigrette. And, of course, skip the meat too!
4. Side House Salad
The restaurant’s Side House Salad is another vegan menu item, but again you will have to skip on a couple of ingredients.
The veggies used to make the salad are certainly vegan and you get to enjoy every single one of them. Tomato, onion, and cucumber slices with all their freshness are staying on the plate.
What you need to say ‘no’ to is the croutons and cheese that are typically added to this salad. As for the dressing, while you can ask for any dressing from the menu, the only one that’s vegan-friendly is the Citrus Balsamic Vinaigrette.
While there isn’t a lot of option, the good thing is that the vinaigrette is actually a great match for this particular salad, so even people who are not vegans usually have it with this dressing
5. Chips And Salsa
Cooked in the same fryer as all the other vegan options, you have nothing to worry about when it comes to these freshly made chips.
These extremely thin corn tostada chips are served fresh with a simple red salsa on the side and taste even better than tacos!
6. Fresh Guacamole And Chips
Avocado is hailed by vegans, vegetarians, and carnivores and so is guacamole. This avocado-based dip is the perfect accompaniment to nachos, so it would definitely be added to Chili’s chips too.
Just like the salsa we mentioned above, guacamole is vegan and delicious, making this meal option another one to add to the list.
Of course, this is not a complete meal but not all days are perfect!
7. Fried Pickles Without Ranch Dressing
Chili’s Fried Pickles are vegan! These tart and crunchy nibbles are an excellent snack for any hour of the day. However, Chili’s serves them with ranch dressing too, which is unfortunately not vegan.
The good thing is that you can always substitute the ranch dressing for some BBQ Sauce, Citrus Balsamic Vinaigrette, or salsa. You can even have them with some guac.
If you love experimenting with taste combos, even though we cannot guarantee you will like the taste.
The Bottom Line
Chili’s vegan food options are quite limited. Sadly, it belongs to that list of restaurants where vegans need to use much of their creativity to mix and match sides to create a complete meal.
While there are always times when you simply have no time to cook and find it easier to order or pop in a Chili’s to get something, if you are looking for a vegan burger, this is not the place to go.
Hopefully, with veganism becoming more popular every day, the chain will start updating its menu and creating more meals for vegans so that people won’t have to improvise or skip on ingredients. Some vegan cheese or meat would be a great start!