Vegan Options at Chili’s

Your friends love their chips n’ dips, but are there vegan options at Chili’s? Chili’s offers a number of vegan choices that are both delicious and fairly nutritious. Are you ready to take a look at the veggie-friendly side of Chilis?

Which Foods Are Vegan At Chilis?

Let’s take a look at the menu items of this classic restaurant to see what works and what won’t for vegans. 

Chips & Salsa (Or Guac!)

Would it really be a trip to Chili’s without the delicious crunch of those paper-thin chips? No, no it would not be. The good news for all Chili’s fans is that you can have all the chips, salsa, and guacamole you want. It’s all vegan!

Veggie Burgers

Unfortunately, Chili’s Veggie Burger is NOT VEGAN. Due to the fact that the bun is made with eggs and milk, none of the burgers at Chili’s qualify as vegan. However, they are vegetarian, so if you’re just vegetarian, it’s worth a try.

Salads

Salads at Chili’s are a bit of a strange order. If you order them off the menu as-is, they are NOT VEGAN. Here’s what you need to do to make them vegan:

  • House Salads. You need to ask for a vegan salad dressing, no cheese, and no croutons. 
  • Caribbean Salad. This just needs to have a different salad dressing, really.

Salad Dressings And Sauces

Honestly, you only have one vegan salad dressing choice here, which is pretty rough. According to Chili’s sources, the following salad dressings are vegan:

  • Citrus balsamic vinaigrette
  • Ketchup
  • Pico de Gallo
  • BBQ Sauce

Fried Pickles

If you love sinking your teeth into some battered and fried pickles, you’ll be happy to know that these are vegan. The only issue that you may have with this option is that the ranch dressing is not vegan. So, you might just have to eat the pickles solo. 

Fajitas

Obviously, if you order fajitas with meat and cheese, they are not going to be vegan. Sadly, the vegetable fajitas are also NOT VEGAN. This is because of the condiments (cheese, sour cream) and because some branches use butter in their cooking. If you want something that can work like a fajita, order the rice and beans on a tortilla. 

Sides

They can be, however it matters what you get. We’re going to give you a quick run-through on most of the sides that people want. 

  • Rice and Beans. Yep. The rice and beans sides are both vegan and delicious. Most vegans who go to Chili’s order these as their full entree. 
  • Fries. Though they are not quite Tex-Mex, these tasty spuds can serve as a vegan treat in a pinch. 
  • Steamed Broccoli. While it’s not the funnest, it’s still vegan. 
  • Steamed Asparagus. This can work well as a meaty (but vegan) entree. 
  • Chips & Salsa & Guacamole. All guacamoles are vegan at Chili’s. The same can be said for salsa. 
  • Flour/Corn Tortillas. Thankfully, all the tortillas that are served by Chili’s also happen to be vegan. 
  • Avocado Slices. You can’t get any more vegan than these.
  • Garlic Dill Pickles. Along with being an amazing way to get a garlic kick to your tastebuds, these pickles are 100 percent vegan. 
  • Mandarin Oranges (Or Fresh Pineapple). While these sides aren’t always available to people at all Chili’s location, they are still vegan. 

Soups

You would think they are, but NONE of the soups are vegan or vegetarian. That’s right. All of Chili’s soups are off the menu. 

What Foods Are Not Vegan At Chili’s?

Chili’s is a carnivore’s chain, for sure. Unfortunately, this means that almost all the entrees and all of the soups are not vegan or vegetarian. Foods you need to watch out for, specifically, include:

  • Tacos & Fajitas with Meat
  • All Desserts
  • All Soups
  • Cheese
  • Their Black Bean Patties

FAQ

What Does Chili’s Fry Their Food In?

All of Chili’s fried foods are fried up in soybean oil. So, the oil itself is a vegan-friendly option. It is worth noting, though, that it is GMO. 

Does Chili’s Have Cross-Contamination Issues?

Though there are issues with cross-contamination, Chili’s can always make an effort to help avoid them. If you’re concerned about a specific contaminant, talk to a manager before you order. 

Why Are Chili’s Burger Buns Not Vegan?

Chili’s burger buns contain eggs, therefore making them not vegan. 

Conclusion

Chili’s is one heck of a good Tex-Mex restaurant, with chains in almost every state. Though this is definitely a chain geared towards vegetarians and meat-eaters, there are some vegan options for those of us who want to tag along. 

Is Chili’s a vegan-friendly restaurant? Well, they don’t really have any entrees that qualify as vegan, but they do offer enough sides to make it possible to feel satisfied. So, it’s an alright choice.