Vegetarian/Vegan Dining in China: In Style and On a Budget

This past summer I had the opportunity to backpack through China for a month, and though the country is beautiful, and the people are friendly, the biggest surprise was the food. I always liked American-Chinese take-out, but had only had a few different dishes, because most things weren’t vegetarian. Even in New York City, when my friends want to go for Chinese, they look at me and say “oh wait… what are you going to eat?”.

So when they found out I was going to China, they asked me the same question.

Though China has reputation for its (sometimes peculiar) meat, it is not too “hard” to be a vegetarian or vegan in China. Despite what you may have heard, in many cities, Vegetarianism is a growing trend, and one can find all kinds of options: from vegetarian pages in menus, to entirely vegetarian food-court buffets and even upscale vegan restaurants. However, the latter establishments can be quite pricey for a college student. Personally, I enjoyed eating street food– it’s cheap, delicious, and I could see exactly what it was made of.

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