Our Myrtle Beach Vegan Experience

Our little family decided to take a trip to Myrtle Beach over the week of Memorial Day. It was a last minute, spur of the moment kind of trip. Since becoming vegan, we take a lot of time planning our meals and making sure we know where we can eat. One thing we noticed first off is that Myrtle Beach is not very vegan friendly. I guess this is to be expected. Being by the ocean and very tourist heavy, we knew it was the home of all-you-can-eat, meat-filled restaurants. We had little time to plan so we figured we would be cooking our own food throughout the trip. We made sure to book a room with a full kitchen so we could cook what we needed. This worked for some of the meals, but sometimes when on vacation, you just do not want to cook. So, for a few of our meals we looked for places to eat food. Here are some of our last-minute vegan experiences.

Abraham’s Gyros:

Located on the Boardwalk (960 Ocean Front Boardwalk, Myrtle Beach, SC 29577)

First, let us say, this place was amazing. It is not a vegan place, but there are vegetarian items on the menu. Abraham is such a wonderful and happy person. He was so helpful and very nice to talk to. We asked him if he could make our falafel pita vegan. He knew exactly what to do. He took off the tzatziki sauce and added hummus and hot sauce for us. It was wonderful. We could not believe how good it was. He was very knowledgeable and knew exactly what to do to make it vegan for us. We were very pleased. I basically ate every bite of the food he made. Our suggestion: Order the falafel pita combo. Ask for no tzatziki sauce and add hummus and hot sauce (if you like spicy). The combo comes with fries and a drink. F.Y.I: Abraham does charge a small fee (50Ā¢) for refills… so if you get hot sauce… prepare to pay for refills. šŸ˜€ I can honestly say it was the best falafel I have ever tasted, so it is well worth it to give it a try. This place is a must-go!!!

Redi-et Ethiopian Cuisine

Located at 746 Main St, Myrtle Beach, SC 29577

At first, we thought the place was really run down and we were not sure if we should eat here. We are, however, so glad we did stop and have dinner. The biggest thing we were glad to see is that all of their vegetarian items are naturally vegan. So, if the menu says vegetarian, it meant vegan. The waitress was also very knowledgeable about contents of all the food and was able to tell us very specific information about how everything was cooked. We first had the Shorba (the soup). It is vegan so long as you have it made with olive oil instead of clarified butter (this is noted on the menu). The soup was delicious and was made with carrots, potatoes, tomato, onion, ginger, garlic, and rice. It is well blended together. The taste was amazing. We were so impressed with how good it was. We finished it so quickly, I think we shocked the server.

Next, we each got the vegetarian platter. We highly recommend this option. It gives you a chance to try three different entrees and the salad with the Injera (Ethiopian fermented crepe-style bread). The injera was perfect and had a wonderfully sweet taste which complimented the spicy food on the platter. Each of the options we sampled were perfect and we ate every bite of the food on the plate. Some of the entrees we got to try on our platters included:

Misir Wat – red split pea lentils cooked with onions, garlic, and ginger root with spices and red chili pepper.

Cabbage Wat – cabbage stewed with onions, garlic, and ginger root with herbs and spices.

Gomen – (This was only on my plate) Fresh collard greens cooked with onions, garlic, ginger root with a delicious blend of herbs and spices.

Kit Kei Wat – (This was only on my husband’s plate). Split peas cooked with onions, garlic, green pepper, and ginger root with herbs and spices.

Selata – traditional salad.

One thing to remember when eating Ethiopian is that your utensils are your fingers and the Injera provided. The only thing that had utensils was the soup. We knew this going in, but it was clear that some of the other diners in the place were not aware of it and needed instructions from the server on what to do.

The food was terrific and we would highly recommend giving it a try. This place is a must!!!

Masala Myrtle Beach

Located at 1711 N Kings Highway, Myrtle Beach, SC 29577

We were excited to find another place that had vegan food. Indian establishments usually have a couple of things that vegans can eat, so we decided to give this place a try. We were very happy with the food. Unfortunately, I forgot to take a photo of our dishes during the meal. The server was very knowledgeable about which items were vegan. We started to get the buffet, but after talking to the server, we realized there were only two things on the buffet that were vegan: the rice and the fried squash. We wanted more than that, so we ordered from the vegetarian menu. A few of the items on the vegetarian menu are vegan. So… my husband and I ordered two entrees and shared. We ordered…

Chana masala w/ rice – Chickpeas cooked with spinach in Indian spices.

Aloo Gobhi w/ rice – Cauliflower with potatoes sauteed with onions and tomatoes.

We also ordered some vegan Naan. Their house Naan bread is not vegan, but our server was able to show us which ones were vegan. We chose the Lachha Paratha and it was delicious. They can customize each dish to the level of spiciness that you prefer. We got the Chana masala really hot and the Aloo Gobhi medium. Both were delicious. The one thing I will say is that it tasted like typical Indian food you could get anywhere. We make Chana masala at home and it tasted very similar. It was great, but it did not taste exceptional compared to other Indian food we have eaten. In the end, this place is a must as well.

In the End…

We still cooked some of our meals in our hotel room. There were not a lot of vegan selections we could find last minute. We are sure that if we looked harder, we would have found more options. This is not an all-inclusive list. This is just what we found during a quick search when we did not want to cook on our own. We hope to eat at these places again sometime. We really enjoyed the experience and all of the places were very knowledgeable about their vegan options. I was very pleased with the food and the people who were serving us. We had a great experience and only wish there were more vegan options in the area.

Let us know what you think. We are looking forward to hearing if you have eaten at these places or if you think you will try them.

Happy vegging,

Trisha & Shaun

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Introduction to Our Veganism

My wife and I, at the request of our son, became vegetarians August 1, 2015. My wife is a biology professor and I am a chemistry professor so we did what we always do, we researched vegetarianism. The more we read, the more we began to realize that veganism was the way to go. We came to understand the problems associated with the ingestion of animal products of any kind on our bodies. Additionally, we are animal lovers and had been having issues with people killing animals just so we could eat or wear something. On October 1, we made the decision to go vegan and we have been vegan ever since. Admittedly, I’m sure that non-vegan ingredients have made it into our food when we have eaten out, but it is my opinion that it is impossible to be 100% perfect and we do the best we can. Our son didn’t want to join us in veganism, but he eats what we cook, which is always vegan so I’ll classify him has a sometimes-vegan.

One of the reasons that I decided to start this blog, was the experiences I have had as a chemist and a vegan. While it seems obvious to me now, it never occurred to me that the things we get from animal products are available in plants. I’m not sure why the chemist in me didn’t realize earlier that plants and animals are biological systems that contain the same basic chemicals. This idea in my face the first time we used ground flaxseeds and water (1:3 by volume) to make a binder to replace eggs. When we first mixed them together and had a mixture that appeared exactly as gelatinous (“gloppy”) as eggs I was amazed.

One interesting issue I have is the commonality of vegans attaching themselves to the non-GMO movements. Genetically modified organisms are as old as civilization itself. I have chuckled to myself when I see a “non-GMO” label on seedless grapes. Clearly these have been genetically modified since its really difficult for grape plants to reproduce if they can’t produce seeds. The huge ears of corn that plants grow today nearly cause the plants to collapse. These have been engineered by humans over thousands of years. I know that what people object to is genetically modifying organisms in a lab. I’m not sure why since any GMO must pass a lot of tests before they can make it onto the market. I think the main point is that GMO foods are not inherently bad. In fact we need them. We need to genetically modify the organisms we eat because humanity has over populated the planet. We need to have plants that use as little soil as possible as well as being as resistant to pests and disease as possible in order to feed the world’s population. If all GMO’s disappeared, we would see wide scale famine.

I can somewhat understand vegans attachment to organic label. The pesticides that are sprayed on crops are not something that I want to ingest. However, we need to spray these plants so that we can get as large of harvests as possible. Once again, we need to feed an over-populated planet. Because I understand that need, I am willing to ingest the chemicals. I think it is important to understand that we ingest chemicals all the time. On one level, water is a chemical. In fact, everything is a chemical or made up of chemicals. Maybe people’s issue is with synthetic chemicals. That doesn’t work either because all of the medication that we take are, in some way, synthetic chemicals. Are there problems associated with ingesting chemicals? Of course. As a chemist, I understand that randomly ingesting chemicals is really bad. However, the chemicals we ingest as medication have been tested for toxicity, as have the pesticides so toxicity is not a problem.

Overall, this blog is a place for my wife and I to post our thoughts on veganism. Some of these posts will be topic posts like this one. Posts that will hopefully cause people to think and post that may result in replies that cause us to think. Other posts may be recipes that we have found, modified, etc. I need to note that while I appreciate discussions and differing ideas, this is our blog and inappropriate/hateful comments will be immediately removed. Everyone has the right to their own opinions… just not on our blog.

Shaun