What Are the Vegan Options at Hooters? (2021)

Hooters has been getting a lot of press for their realistic meatless wings (“Unreal Wings“). Sadly for vegans, these meatless wings contain egg. But luckily, there are still some vegan options. As someone with 13 years of vegan dining experience, I can help you figure it out!

Vegan options at Hooters:

  • Impossible Burger (Select Locations)
  • Curly Fries
  • Tortilla Chips (No Queso)
  • Garden Salad (No Cheese or Croutons)
  • Broccoli
  • Green Chiles
  • Mixed Vegetables
  • Jalapenos
  • Celery Sticks (No Ranch Dressing)
  • Vegan Sauces: 911 Wing Sauce, BBQ Sauce, Cajun Sauce, Daytona Wing Sauce, General Tso Wing Sauce, Habanero BBQ Wing Sauce, Wing Sauce (Mild, Medium, or Hot), Samurai Wing Sauce, Three Mile Island Wing Sauce.

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

Hooters Vegan Menu

The following vegan menu was compiled with the help of the nutrition and allergen information on the Hooters website.

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

1. Impossible Burger (Select Locations)

Hooters does have the Impossible Burger at some locations, but I struggled to find a list of where. Recently, it’s been over-shadowed by their “Unreal” meatless wings in the media. But the meatless wings contain egg, so for vegans, the Impossible Burger is more interesting.

If your Hooters location has the Impossible Burger, check about the bun. In one review, they said it came with a “Toasted Brioche Bun.” Brioche buns are sometimes vegan, sometimes not. So if you want to be sure it’s vegan, I’d ask the staff at your location about the bun.

Also, of course, be sure not to order it with cheese, bacon, or any other non-vegan toppings.

Lastly, be aware that it may be cooked on a shared surface with real meat burgers. That said, they may be willing to clean off a spot on the grill for you, specifically to minimize cross-contact with meat.

2. Curly Fries

Hooters has Curly Fries, sometimes sold as “Curley (Q) French Fries,” and you can bet they’re vegan!

As usual for restaurants, the fries come with the possibility of cross-contact with chicken and other animal products fried at Hooters. If this bothers you, ask staff about the fryer setup at your location.

3. Tortilla Chips (No Queso)

Another simple snacking option—just chips. You might be able to get some pico de gallo, salsa, or vegan guacamole to go with these chips. But be aware that the typical dip is queso, and that’s definitely not vegan.

4. Garden Salad (No Cheese or Croutons)

The Garden Salad can be vegan-ized pretty easily: Just ask for “No cheese” and “No Croutons.” After removing those ingredients, you’ll get: Romaine and iceberg lettuce, tomato, and cucumber, with a choice between two vegan dressings (below).

You can also order the “Side” version of the Garden Salad the same way—no cheese, no croutons—and you’ll get basically a smaller version of the same thing.

Vegan salad dressings:

  • Olive Oil and Balsamic Vinaigrette
  • Lite Italian Dressing

5. Veggie Sides

Hooters typically offers a few vegetable sides, but they can vary by location. Again, I’d mention that you want these dairy-free, to make sure there are no surprises:

  • Broccoli
  • Green Chiles
  • Mixed Vegetables
  • Jalapenos
  • Celery Sticks (No Ranch Dressing)

6. Sauces

I wasn’t able to get the full ingredients for these sauces, but they are all egg-free and dairy-free according to the allergen menu. So chances are good that these sauces are vegan:

  • 911 Wing Sauce
  • BBQ Sauce
  • Cajun Sauce
  • Daytona Wing Sauce
  • General Tso Wing Sauce
  • Habanero BBQ Wing Sauce
  • Wing Sauce (Mild, Medium, or Hot)
  • Samurai Wing Sauce
  • Three Mile Island Wing Sauce

Note: The Spicy Garlic Wing Sauce contains egg. The Triple Dog Dare Wing Sauce contains milk.

Four More Possible Vegan Items

Here are a few more options that might be vegan at Hooters. I wasn’t able to get solid confirmation before publishing this post. I’ve contacted Hooters to ask about each of these options, and I’ll update this post if/when I get a response:

  • Bavarian Pretzels (No Cheese) – I noticed my local Hooters has pretzels that you can dip in “Beer Cheese.” Most likely, if you exclude the cheese, you’d be able to get this side of plain vegan Bavarian pretzels.
  • Tater Tots – I can’t imagine why the “Plain” Tater Tots at Hooters wouldn’t be vegan. However, I noticed that they’re listed as containing 10 mg of cholesterol. Since dietary cholesterol only comes from animal fat, this was concerning. I’m not sure what’s up with it.
  • Garlic Fries – I saw these on the Nutritional Menu on Hooters’ website. They’re supposedly dairy-free and cholesterol-free, so they’re likely vegan. That said, my nearest Hooters location doesn’t have them.
  • Baked Beans – Some Hooters locations apparently have a side of Baked Beans. You’d want to check if these contain lard or not. Baked beans can contain lard, but they don’t always. So it’s worth checking.

Again, the key is to ask at your specific location, as it seems like Hooters is not entirely consistent with its menu from location to location.

But What About…

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

  • The Fried Jalapenos are not vegan, due to the breading.
  • The Fried Pickles are not vegan, due to the breading (contains egg).
  • The Onion Rings are not vegan.
  • The Coleslaw is not vegan, as it contains egg.

Now let’s answer some common questions about eating vegan at Hooters.

Are Hooters Unreal Wings Vegan?

Hooters Unreal Wings are not vegan, as they contain egg. They are made by Quorn, with their signature “mycoprotein” made from fungi.

Does Hooters Have Vegan Wings?

Hooters does not have vegan wings. They have vegetarian wings—called “Unreal Wings”—at many locations, but those are not vegan-friendly, as they contain egg.

Is Hooters Wing Sauce Vegan?

Many flavors of Hooters Wing Sauce appear to be vegan. See a full list above. However, the following three wing sauces have clear animal-based ingredients: Spicy Garlic Wing Sauce (egg), Triple Dog Dare Wing Sauce (milk), and Parmesan Garlic Wing Sauce (milk).

Is Hooters Ranch Vegan?

Hooters Ranch is not vegan—it contains both milk and egg ingredients.

Does Hooters Have a Veggie Burger?

Some Hooters locations offer the Impossible Burger on a Toasted Brioche Bun. But it is not available at all locations currently.

In cases where the Impossible Burger is not available, you may be able to get another veggie burger at Hooters instead. I’ve heard stories about a “secret veggie burger” at Hooters, and this was confirmed in one review I read.

The only problem? This “secret veggie burger” is likely not vegan. So that doesn’t help us vegans. That said, vegetarians may want to ask about this option.

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 Hooters? Actually, yes!

WFPB options at Hooters:

  • Garden Salad (No Cheese or Croutons)
  • Side of Broccoli
  • Green Chiles
  • Mixed Vegetables
  • Jalapenos
  • Celery Sticks (No Ranch Dressing)

All these simple vegetable options should be free of processed ingredients. You may want to double check about the cooked vegetable sides (they could contain butter or oil at your location).

More Vegan Guides to Restaurants

I’ve reviewed the vegan options at nearly 100 restaurant chains. Here are some similar restaurants you might want to check out:

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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