It is all about texture and flavor. When ordering from a vegan menu as a non vegan, there is no need to panic. Vegetarians should have no problem with the crossover, but meat eaters are used to the thick pulling and tearing texture of chicken, beef and even seafood. There are great meatless substitutes used in many vegan recipes that rival meat dishes, sometimes even raising the skeptical carnivore eyebrow.
It’s Just Wheat
The closest feel to meat is a wheat protein called seitan (say-tan). This comes in a pulled pork texture and is often used in vegetable stews absorbing the flavor of what it cooks with, which in many cases includes sage. Sage is used in vegan meals producing a deep smoky flavor sometimes mistaken for meat, particularly chicken. Look for seitan and sage on your vegan menu. Note: If you follow a gluten free diet, seitan will not comply.
Not the Best Choice
Stay away from tofu dishes unless your server assures you that it is firm. Tofu, made from soy beans, absorbs herbs and spices, but has a consistency that can be much too loose for the teeth of a carnivore lover.
Tempeh is another ingredient used in many dishes that can go either way. This is a grainy food often in the shape of cubes that does not have the texture of meat, but is more filling and somewhat more satisfying in texture than tofu.
Go for the Carbs
Many non vegans complain that the food is too mushy or not filling. Therefore, it is probably best to look for the carbs on the menu. Potatoes, rice, sandwiches…these are all familiar dishes that a non vegan would most likely be satisfied with.