Here’s Every Vegan Option at IHOP (2020)

It may feel like your dreams have been crushed when you find out that IHOP doesn’t have vegan pancakes… But take heart. There are actually still plenty of vegan options left for us to enjoy. Including avocado toast!

Vegan options at IHOP:

  • Hash Browns
  • Crispy Potato Pancakes
  • Grits or Oatmeal (Ask About Dairy)
  • Baked Potato
  • French Fries
  • Bread or Toast (Sourdough Only)
  • Avocado Toast (Without Butter)
  • Minestrone Soup
  • Broccoli Florets
  • Sauteed Veggies
  • Penne Pasta (Without Marinara Sauce)
  • Tortillas (Corn or Flour)
  • House Salad
  • Fresh Fruit
  • Toppings
  • Beverages

Below, I’ll share my tips on how to order these items vegan. I’ll also share which menu items are surprisingly NOT vegan! I’ll answer some common questions, and I’ll end with a list of whole-food plant-based (WFPB) options—in case you’re avoiding processed food, too!

IHOP Vegan Menu

This vegan menu was compiled with the help of the allergen checker on the IHOP website. I also consulted some posts by other vegan bloggers.

Restaurant menus change frequently and may vary by location. I recommend double checking any important information with staff at your local IHOP.

1. Hash Browns

I love me some hash browns. These are loose hash browns—not a hash brown patty like you get at McDonalds.

See the Toppings you can add below. Of particular interest might be the Sauteed Pepper & Onions, Avocado, or Salsa. There’s also ketchup on the table you can use.

2. Crispy Potato Pancakes

Here’s another fried potato product, very similar to the hash browns—but packed into little pancakes. A fun side!

Again, see the toppings list for ideas on how to dress it up.

3. Grits or Oatmeal (Ask About Dairy)

The Grits are fully vegan! The Oatmeal is possibly not vegan—according to IHOP’s website, it has milk. However, if you’d prefer oatmeal to grits, then I’d check at your location to see whether it’s made with milk or water.

I say that because, more often than not, oatmeal at restaurants is made with water. Plus, some of the vegans I know say they’ve definitely gotten IHOP’s oatmeal before.

For the grits or the oatmeal, it may be best to just ask and double check that they’re dairy-free.

Pro tip: Get the fresh fruit side, and add your fruit to your grits or oatmeal.

4. Baked Potato

I love when chain restaurants have baked potatoes. It’s actually a whole-food vegan option, not fried in oil. You can get some Sauteed Veggies or even some steamed broccoli to go with it!

Note: You may want to specify that you do NOT want any added butter, sour cream, cheese, or other non-vegan toppings. I don’t believe they come standard with it—but this may vary by location.

5. French Fries

Yes, IHOP has vegan french fries. Not really what you’d associate IHOP with… but they’re pretty good since they’re “Seasoned Fries“—not just the run-of-the-mill salted kind.

6. Bread or Toast (Sourdough Only)

The Sourdough bread and toast are vegan, as long as you order without butter! Unfortunately, the Rye, Wheatberry, White, and Whole Wheat breads are all listed as containing milk and eggs.

7. Avocado Toast (Without Butter)

This is an exciting one for me. I love avocado toast!

Take note that it comes standard with buttered Sourdough bread, so you need to ask for it without butter. But the other ingredients are all vegan:

INGREDIENTS: Avocado, Buttered Sourdough, Tomato, Lemon, Seasonings.

8. Minestrone Soup

Another big win. There’s a vegan soup at IHOP! Minestrone soup is an interesting menu item, too, because at some restaurants it’s vegan, and at other restaurants, it’s not:

And here at IHOP, the minestrone soup IS vegan!

9. Broccoli Florets

This is one of the healthiest menu items. Just steamed broccoli. Make sure to ask that yours doesn’t include any butter. (It shouldn’t—but some locations may do things differently.)

10. Sauteed Veggies

These sauteed veggies can be added to a bunch of the potato/bread dishes above to really help them sparkle, and pack some extra nutrition, as well:

  • Sauteed Green Peppers & Onion
  • Sauteed Mushrooms
  • Sauteed Spinach

Note: The Sauteed veggies contain a butter flavoring, “IHOP Liquid Butter Alternative,” but it apparently does not contain actual milk ingredients.

11. Penne Pasta (Without Marinara Sauce)

You may see this menu item. Again, pasta is not what we often associated with IHOP. But they do often have this as a side.

Take note that the marinara sauce likely contains cheese. (The allergen checker on the IHOP website said it does.) So you may want to ask staff about that, and get it without marinara sauce if so.

12. Tortillas (Corn or Flour)

The tortillas are vegan and can potentially be used in combination with some other menu items. You’d probably want to add some Sauteed Veggies, greens, or avocado. Heck, throw in some hash browns for a sort of breakfast burrito/taco!

13. Salad

The House Salad is totally vegan—just choose one of the dressings from the list below. You can also get the “Citrus Chicken Pecan Salad” without chicken, and then it’s vegan, too.

Vegan salad dressings:

  • Creamy Italian
  • Fat Free Catalina Dressing
  • Fat Free French Dressing
  • Fat-Free Raspberry Vinaigrette
  • Orange Vinaigrette
  • Raspberry Vinaigrette

Note: The Balsamic Vinaigrette contains milk and egg. The Light Italian Dressing contains milk.

14. Fresh Fruit

This is just going to be a fruit bowl of fresh seasonal fruit. Typically it might have some melon, grapes, strawberries—but it’s going to vary.

15. Toppings

You can creatively load up your potatoes, hash browns, toast, and other items with some of these vegan toppings.

Sweet Toppings:

  • Blueberry Compote
  • Blueberry Syrup
  • Brown Sugar
  • Boysenberry Syrup
  • Chocolate Sauce
  • Jam
  • Maple Syrup
  • Peanut Butter
  • Strawberries in Glaze
  • Strawberry Preserves
  • Strawberry Syrup

Savory Toppings:

  • Avocado
  • Salsa
  • Sauteed Green Peppers & Onion
  • Sauteed Mushrooms
  • Sauteed Spinach
  • Tomato

Also take note that these sneaky toppings are NOT vegan:

  • The Chocolate Chips are not vegan, as they contains milk.
  • The Vanilla Sauce is not vegan, as it contains milk and egg.

16. Beverages

There are plenty of vegan beverages to choose from, starting with juices:

  • Apple Juice
  • Cranberry Juice
  • Grapefruit Juice
  • Orange Juice
  • Tomato Juice

Here are the coffee and hot tea options:

  • International House Roast Coffee
  • International House Roast Decaf Coffee
  • Hot Tea: Decaf
  • Hot Tea: English Breakfast
  • Hot Tea: Golden Chamomile
  • Hot Tea: Organic Green Tea

Here are the soft drinks and sweet teas:

  • Barq’s Root Beer
  • Brisk Raspberry Iced Tea
  • Cherry Coke
  • Coca Cola
  • Coke Zero
  • Diet Coke
  • Dr Pepper
  • Fruit Punch
  • Iced Tea
  • Iced Tea & Lemonade
  • Manzanita Sol
  • Minute Maid Lemonade
  • Mountain Dew
  • Mug Root Bear
  • Orange Fanta
  • Pepsi
  • Pibb Extra
  • Sierra Mist
  • Sobe Yumberry Pomegranate Life Water
  • Sprite
  • Sweet Iced Tea
  • Sweeter Iced Tea
  • Wild Cherry Pepsi

And they also have a special drink called IHOP Splashers that are vegan:

  • IHOP Splashers: Splashberry
  • IHOP Splashers: Tropical Island Twist

But What About…

Here are some of the menu items you might hope would be vegan—but they’re not:

  • The Crispy Breakfast Potatoes are not vegan, as they contain milk.
  • The Onion Rings are not vegan, as they contain milk.
  • The Marinara Sauce is not vegan, as it contains milk.
  • The Garlic Bread is not vegan, as it contains milk.
  • The Red Skin Mashed Potatoes are not vegan, as they contain milk.
  • The Oatmeal is not vegan, as it contains milk.
  • The IHOP Sauce is not vegan, as it contains egg.
  • The Chocolate Chips topping is not vegan, as it contains milk.

Are IHOP Pancakes Vegan?

IHOP Pancakes are not vegan. All pancakes, waffles, french toast, and crepes at IHOP contain milk and egg ingredients. However, this may be changing in the future.

In 2019, there was a petition for IHOP to add vegan pancakes to their menu, and it garnered over 20,000 signatures. IHOP responded by saying that plant-based options are “something we are closely looking into.” (source)

So that gives us some hope… we may have vegan IHOP pancakes in the future! That’s a lot better than we can say for restaurants like Arby’s, which has promised they’ll never sell a vegan burger.

Does IHOP Have a Veggie Burger?

IHOP does not have a veggie burger. They don’t have vegan sausage or veggie bacon, either. Hopefully in the future, they follow the example of Carl’s Jr., Dunkin’ Donuts, and other restaurants by adding Beyond Meat or similar products.

Whole-Food Plant-Based Options

What if you’re a whole-food vegan? What’s remaining on the menu for someone trying to eat a whole-food plant-based (WFPB) meal at IHOP?

Here are the WFPB options I see:

  • Baked Potato
  • Broccoli Florets
  • Fresh Fruit
  • House Salad (No Dressing)
  • Avocado
  • Salsa
  • Tomato
  • Grits or Oatmeal (double check about dairy or oil)

As you can see, this is way more options than a lot of places. Compare it to Waffle House, for example. Waffle House doesn’t have a baked potato or broccoli. They don’t even have fresh fruit or avocado to add (at least they didn’t when I went).

If you’re more flexible—not eating strict WFPB—you could maybe include the items below and still feel like you had a healthy meal. But these are not fully WFPB:

  • Sourdough Bread or Toast
  • Avocado Toast (Without Butter)
  • Minestrone Soup

Two More Recommendations for Your Vegan Journey

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