Kaya’s Kitchen — A favorite for vegan dining

One of my favorite vegetarian/vegan restaurants is Kaya’s Kitchen in Belmar, NJ.  I first discovered this restaurant when my daughter and I were visiting relatives in the area.  We simply googled vegetarian restaurants, and Kaya’s Kitchen came up.  It looked good so we gave it a try.  Now I try to get there whenever I am in the area!

The food is fresh, organic, and the vegetarian entrees can easily be made vegan.  And for those of you who are Gluten Free, they have plenty of GF options as well.  I recently enjoyed a dinner at Kaya’s with 3 non-vegetarians and they also enjoyed their dinner!


We started with the Turkish Delight, which consisted of plenty of hummusKayas, falafel, babaganouj,tabouleh, olives, pita bread and tahini — Delish and just enough for an appetizer to share or even for a meal.




Kayas2For dinner I tried the Coconut Pineapple Curry which included sweet potatoes, vegetables and pineapple in a mild curry sauce all served over brown rice.  As I’ve been here quite a few times, I have tried several of the entrees and even some of their sandwiches — all very good.  Plus, the vegan cupcakes are terrific!


Darbster, A Vegetarian Bistro Making a Difference

Continuing my posts on vegan dining, I reached out to a friend of mine who owns Darbster, a vegetarian bistro, and asked her to share a little information about her bistro.  Here is the Darbster story.

Darbster prides itself on its natural and organic cuisine as well as its charitable efforts to raise awareness on animal welfare.  With two locations, West Palm Beach & Boca Raton, and an eclectic menu consisting of classic comfort food as well as some Living Food items Darbster will appeal to both the vegetarian and mainstream diner.  Our number one goal is to provide delicious, natural, organic and vegetarian friendly cuisine that will satisfy all palates.

A portion of the restaurant’s profits goes toward the Darbster Foundation, created by the owners, Ellen Quinlan and Alan Gould, which helps with the spaying and neutering of cats and dogs as well as sponsoring medical care for the animals.  The foundation has participated in and funded the rescue of 24 Labradors in Palm Beach County that were being bred and in poor health including 14 adults, 8 puppies and 2 pregnant females.   They’ve also funded and transported over a dozen kittens and a dozen dogs to new homes in New Hampshire.

For those who need extra convincing, bring your pet with you to Darbster on Sundays from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., and you’ll get 20 percent off your entrée.

Darbster Palm cakes

Palm Cakes are the signature dish served both in appetizer and entrée format.  Made with crispy hearts of palm, savory yellow rice, citrus spinach, pink peppercorn and whole grain mustard aioli.  These   are a take on Maryland crabcakes.



Another great item would be the Black & Bleu Burger Darbster black and blumade from brown rice and lentil, topped with tempeh bacon, caramelized onions, and tofu bleu cheese on a challah bun.




If  you are traveling to or live in the West Palm Beach or Boca Raton area, make sure to visit Darbster!

Dining Out Vegan Style

I try to eat a vegan diet, and I succeed most of the time.  While it is difficult when I go out to eat, I have learned that carefully reading the menu and requesting no butter, cream or cheese has resulted in some great meals and allows me to eat more than just a salad!  However, sometimes I find some fantastic restaurants that have a vegan menu, or at least a bunch of vegetarian options that they can easily make vegan as the cheese isn’t already precooked into the entree!  I am starting a new section of this blog called Dining Out where I am going to feature some great vegan and/or vegetarian restaurants as well as “regular” restaurants that have provided me with great vegan options.

So, let’s jump right in…

While I was on vacation earlier this week in Park City, Utah, I stumbled upon 501 on Main.

This is a fantastic, fresh, local restaurant that features not only fish, beef and chicken, but also vegetarian, vegan and even gluten free entrees.  My dinner companions and I were all able to enjoy our dinners without compromise!

I had the beet salad which included apples, apricots, toasted and spiced pumpkin seeds
and lemon cayenne dressing.  For those who wanted cheese, the salad can also be ordered with a touch of gorgonzola.

And for dinner, I had the Organic Risotto with cremini mushrooms, shallots, yellow and zucchini squash, roasted garlic and caramelized onions.  I was able to request that they leave off the regional aged cheddar cheese.O

If you find yourself in Park City, I highly recommend this restaurant!