Best Vegan/Vegetarian Comfort Food

SweetArt Bakeshop & Cafe

Staff Pick

If anyone ever gets all up in their cups about how vegetarians are uptight, health-obsessed yuppies or some such total nonsense, the easiest way to set them straight forevermore is to chuckle at their folly, then call up SweetArt Bakeshop & Cafe and place an order. For many years now, this Black-owned restaurant has been serving up vegan soul food and scrumptious cupcakes that will satisfy any mouth, vegan or otherwise. How do they craft a housemade Audre Lorde’s Chikn Challenge sandwich to rival any meat-based version in the city? With “love + magic,” they say, and that’s as good an explanation as you’ll need. That sandwich has been raved about since it debuted a couple of years ago, but it faces stiff competition for best offering on their menu: from Zora Neale Hurston’s Spicy Chikn Sandwich, say, or the Mackin Cheese, or the L+M Kale Salad, or the Southwest Burger topped with batter-dipped onion rings. And that doesn’t even count dessert, where their “Fauxstess” cupcakes and “Come Hither” carrot cake cupcakes steal the show with icings that are flat-out superior to any dairy-based pretenders. There’s much more to the menu — those fried n’ breaded cauliflower bites are, just, like, WOW — but the point will have been made and won by then. This is food by real people for real people, and now you’ve got the grease stains to prove it. — Evan Sult

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