What Are the Vegan Options at Cafe Zupas? (2021)

Cafe Zupas doesn’t really broadcast itself as a vegan haven. There’s no vegan meat, vegan cheese, or anything like that. However, when you dig into the details, there’s actually quite a lot for vegans to eat here!

Vegan options at Cafe Zupas:

  • Harvest Quinoa Bowl (No Chicken or Cheese)
  • Asian Steak & Quinoa Bowl (No Steak)
  • Vegetarian Sandwich (Custom Order)
  • Chickpea & Vegetable Soup
  • “Nuts About Berries” Salad (No Cinnamon Almonds)
  • Mango Berry Salad (No Cinnamon Almonds, Swap Dressing)
  • Fresh Baguette Bread (Rolls)
  • Lay’s Classic Potato Chips
  • Lay’s Oven Baked Potato Chips (Original)
  • Fresh Fruit Cup
  • Raw Veggie Cup
  • Beverages

Below, I’ll share more about how to order these items vegan, and some other menu items that are surprisingly NOT vegan. I’ll answer some common questions, and I’ll end with a look at the whole-food plant-based options, too!

Cafe Zupas Vegan Menu

The following vegan menu was compiled with the help of the full menu and nutrition info on the Cafe Zupas website. Unfortunately, they don’t have an allergen menu or full ingredients posted.

This means the following menu is an estimate. I have 13 years of vegan dining experience, and I’ve made guides for 100+ restaurant chains. I spent over an hour going through Zupas’ menu and nutrition info in detail. So the following is an informed estimate—I’ve noted places where I’m not certain.

Restaurant menus change and often vary by location. I recommend double checking any important information with staff at your location!

1. Harvest Quinoa Bowl (No Chicken or Cheese)

This is one of the two “Protein Bowls” that are easiest to make vegan. It should be vegan if you ask for “No Chicken and No Mozzarella Cheese.” You can also ask them to add Tofu or other ingredients.

After removing those ingredients, you’ll get: Baby kale and greens, quinoa, golden beets, sliced avocado, watermelon radish, grape tomatoes, toasted seeds, and Sherry Vinaigrette dressing.

2. Asian Steak & Quinoa Bowl (No Steak)

This is the other “Protein Bowl” that is easiest to make vegan. Just get it with “No Steak.” You can also ask them to add Tofu or other ingredients.

When you remove the steak, you’ve got: Baby butter lettuce, quinoa, fresh herb broccolini, tri-color peppers, edamame, chopped cashews, and baby cucumbers—with Thai peanut sauce and Thai basil vinaigrette.

3. Vegetarian Sandwich (Custom Order)

It looks like you can get the Vegetarian Sandwich made vegan if you order it with “No Cheese and No Pesto Spread.”

After removing those ingredients, the sandwich contains: Coconut-grilled tofu, roasted red peppers, spinach & arugula blend, tomatoes, baby cucumbers, micro greens, and avocado.

You can get it with Ancient Grain or Ciabatta Bread. It seems that either would be vegan, but you may want to double check with staff.

4. Chickpea & Vegetable Soup

The only vegan soup at Zupas, this veggie-bean soup contains chickpeas, leek, celery, diced yellow onion, tomato, and broccolini.

Another notable fact about this soup: The “Half” portion is only 60 calories, while the “Large” size is only 120 calories. So it’s quite a light dish!

The following Soup Mix-Ins are also vegan:

  • Onions Crisps
  • Tortilla Strips
  • Sliced Avocado

5. Salads

There are two salads that are pretty easy to make vegan at Zupas:

  • “Nuts About Berries” Salad (No Cinnamon Almonds) – Mixed Greens with blueberries, strawberries, blackberries, raspberries, and Poppyseed Dressing. (I believe the dressing is vegan, but I’d double check with your server.)
  • Mango Berry Salad (No Cinnamon Almonds, Substitute Dressing) – Mixed greens, blueberries, strawberries, and mangos. Choose one of the vegan salad dressing below. (The default dressing contains yogurt.)

Vegan salad dressings: (double check about your choice with your server)

  • Fresh Herb Vinaigrette
  • Poppyseed Dressing
  • Sherry Vinaigrette
  • Strawberry Champagne Vinaigrette
  • Thai Basil Vinaigrette
  • Thai Peanut Sauce

Fresh Salad Toppings:

  • Apples (Gala)
  • Artichoke Hearts
  • Berries (Raspberries & Blackberries)
  • Black Beans
  • Black Olives
  • Blueberries
  • Broccolini (Fresh-Herb)
  • Corn (Fire-Roasted)
  • Cucumbers (Baby)
  • Edamame
  • Golden Beets
  • Grapes
  • Kalamata Olives
  • Mango
  • Quinoa
  • Pickled Red Onion
  • Red Onions (Diced)
  • Strawberries
  • Sugarsnap Peas
  • Tofu
  • Tomatoes (Grape)
  • Tricolor Peppers
  • Watermelon Radish

Dry Toppings:

  • Almonds
  • Cashew Pieces
  • Cinnamon Almonds
  • Cranberries (Dried)
  • Pistachios
  • Toasted Seeds
  • Tortilla Strips

6. Fresh Baguette Bread (Rolls)

Vegan rolls! These may come free with another dish you’re ordering already—but if not, they’re definitely a little side worth grabbing.

7. Chips

There are typically a few vegan options for chips at Zupas:

Note: The Miss Vickie’s chips are not vegan—they contain milk.

8. Fruit and Veggie Cups

The Kids Menu will typically have these simple whole-food options:

  • Fresh Fruit Cup
  • Raw Veggie Cup

9. Beverages

Plenty of vegan drinks to choose from:

  • Orange Berry Infusion
  • Turmeric Lime Green Tea
  • Blackberry Basil Infusion
  • Barq’s Root Beer
  • Cherry Coke
  • Coca-Cola Classic
  • Coke Zero Sugar
  • Diet Coke
  • Diet Dr Pepper
  • Dr Pepper
  • Gold Peak Tea
  • Hi-C Flashin’ Fruit Punch
  • Honest Tea
  • Minute Maid Light Lemonade
  • Powerade Mountain Blast
  • Smartwater
  • Sprite
  • Vitamin Water

But What About…

You might think some of the following items would be vegan, too—but unfortunately they are not:

  • The Tomato Basil Pasta on the kids menu is not vegan.
  • The Mushroom Bisque, Tomato Basil Soup, and Wisconsin Cauliflower Soup are not vegan.
  • The Belgian Chocolate-Dipped Strawberries are not vegan (they’re dipped in milk chocolate).
  • The Avocado Herb Dressing is not vegan.

Whole-Food Plant-Based Options

What if you’re not just vegan but also trying to avoid processed foods? Can you get a whole-food plant-based (WFPB) meal at Cafe Zupas? That means no processed sugar, oil, or flour.

Yes, this is actually an area where Cafe Zupas shines! There are a number of menu items which are WFPB or very close.

  • First, you can get a salad, and you can potentially load it up with extras, too. The two salad entrees outlined above are mostly WFPB. My only suspicion would be for sugar on the cinnamon almonds, or oil or sugar in the dressing.
  • When you order the Harvest Quinoa Bowl with “No Chicken or Cheese,” it is essentially a big, filling salad. My only suspicions for processed ingredients would be oil in the toasted nuts, or oil or sugar in the dressing.
  • The Chickpea & Vegetable Soup appears to be WFPB or nearly so. My only suspicion would be that it contains some oil, but the total fat is only 3.5 grams in the Large size—so it doesn’t contain much, anyway!
  • If you’re not above ordering from the Kids Menu, then look for the Fresh Fruit Cup or the Raw Veggie Cup.

More Vegan Guides to Restaurants

I’ve made vegan guides to around 100 restaurant chains. Check out the vegan options at some of these other, similar chains:

Two More Recommendations for Your Vegan Journey

1. This is the best vegan multivitamin I’ve found in 13 years of being vegan. It has vitamin B12, vitamin D, omega-3—and nothing else. Translation: It only has the nutrients vegans are actually low in. Read my full review of Future Kind’s multivitamin here (with 10% discount).

2. This is the best vegan starter kit I know of. It’s a bundle of 9 beautiful e-books that help you transition to a healthy plant-based diet—the right way. The advice is spot-on, and it has print-outs and checklists that make it easy to implement. Read my full review of Nutriciously here.

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