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Native Foods Restaurant Review

By Lucía Rivera, VRG Intern

There was not a single part of my meal at Native
Foods (Point Loma) in San Diego, CA that was not extremely enjoyable! From my
flavorful Peri Peri “Chicken” Sandwich, to my lightly spiced side of sweet potato
fries, or the vegan blueberry muffin to top of the meal, I was all smiles.

Part of a nationwide chain, Native Foods is a
vegan restaurant that offers a variety of dishes in different forms, inspired
by different cultures. When I first walked into one of their San Diego
locations, I was comforted by the positive messages painted on their walls.
After taking my time to browse the menu, I ordered one of their year-round

The dish arrived quickly and was presented nicely,
with the colors of sweet potato fries and green lettuce complementing each
other nicely. The food had the right amount of flavor and spice, along with a
pleasant texture combination provided by the soft bun and the sauce covered soy
chicken. Native Foods often includes crispy potato chips in their sandwiches,
soups, or tacos to add a unique textural element, although my meal from this
visit did not include this feature.

After I happily devoured my food, I got a chance
to speak with the manager of the restaurant. He described to us the high
standards he keeps his kitchen in, stating he makes sure to only serve a dish
he would feed to his own family. An insider tip was for us to try the Korean
BBQ Sliders, which were his current favorite thing on the menu. Getting closer
to the human side of the restaurant significantly added to my dinner experience
at Native Foods that night.

Although everyone might not get this unexpected
insight into Native Foods on their visit, they can easily sign up for the
restaurant’s newsletter to receive information about sales and specials. For
example, to spice things up, they have a monthly special order available to
customers at every one of their locations. Another fun feature they have is a
monthly Native Pals Day. On this day, Native Foods gives a portion of their
proceeds to their “Native Pals,” which is currently the Farm Sanctuary, which
in turn help prevent animal cruelty at multiple sanctuaries nation-wide.

Another feature I found engaging was Native Food’s
free smartphone app. It begins meals off on an amazing note when it
automatically grants any new customers five dollars off their purchase for
downloading the app onto their phones! Furthermore, the app awards points for
every purchase, motivating customers to come back until reaching another five
dollar prize. At the end of my meal I had earned five dollars in points and was
able to purchase a blueberry muffin for free, ending my meal with a fresh and
sweet addition.

All in all, I know I will be returning to Native
Foods, hopefully in the near future, partially because of their great food, but
also for what they stand for. It always feels good to help oneself, the planet,
and animals through food, especially when food is as delicious as the offerings
of Native Foods.

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Vegetarian News

Marinated Tomato and Avocado Salad

I did not like tomatoes as a child. My mom grew tomatoes in our garden and I always turned up my nose at them. What a missed opportunity to enjoy something so delicious! As an adult with my own garden, I was excited to grow a big harvest this summer. Unfortunately, both tomato plants died before they produced any fruit! If you’re lucky enough to have a homegrown bounty of fresh tomatoes still warm from the summer sun, I beg you to make this marinated tomato and avocado salad.

In fact, I beg you to make this marinated tomato and avocado salad even if you don’t have a vegetable garden. That is, unless you’ve discovered this recipe in the dead of winter and all you can find are bland greenhouse tomatoes. In that case, bookmark this page and come back in summer when tomatoes have the absolute best flavor. I used pearl tomatoes on the vine for this recipe because they’re the perfect bite size when sliced into quarters. Feel free to use whatever tomatoes you have on hand!

marinated tomato salad

This marinated tomato and avocado salad is a fantastic summer recipe whether you’re barbecuing at home or headed out for a picnic. The tomatoes can chill in the fridge while you prep the rest of your feast, making this a really simple recipe to prepare if you’re in charge of multiple dishes. Dice and add the avocado just before serving for the best results.

While incredibly fresh and delicious on its own, there are many ways you can bulk up this marinated tomato and avocado salad if you need to feed a crowd. Try adding cooked quinoa, couscous, or farro. Or, turn it into a pasta salad by adding cooked and cooled shells or penne. I have big plans to spread this salad on crusty bread for a bruschetta-inspired appetizer.


Marinated Tomato and Avocado Salad

  • Author:
    Kate Kasbee

  • Prep Time:
    10 mins

  • Cook Time:
    30 mins

  • Total Time:
    40 minutes

  • Yield:
    8 servings

  • Category:

  • Cuisine:

  • Diet:


  • 2 pounds pearl tomatoes on the vine
  • ½ red onion
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 ½ tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon agave
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • A few twists of black pepper
  • 1 or 2 ripe avocados, diced (depending on your preference and the size of your avocados)
  • ⅓ cup cilantro, chopped


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