Plant-Based Dieters Will Love These Niagara Eating Options

image02 Dining on local organic foods is part of the Niagara Falls experience you won’t want to miss. The region is home to local farmers markets, organic-certified farms, specialty shops catering to vegans and vegetarians as well as restaurants that feature menus with locally grown produce and locally raised beef.So after you’ve settled into your accommodation consider these delicious and sustainable eating options.

Dining Out

Heading out on the town for a meal is the perfect time to experience locally sourced fruits, vegetables, and meats. These restaurants are delicious, and you can trust the source of their ingredients.

Rise Above. – If you are seeking an eatery that uses 100 percent plant-based ingredients, look no further than Rise Above. This vegan restaurant and bakery, located in downtown St. Catharines, features comfort foods (mac and cheese, lasagna and pizza), a kids menu, and fresh baked desserts. Their vegan doughnuts are available Thursday to Saturday. Rise Above is open Tuesday through Sunday.

Seeing the Source

Niagara Falls is home to organic farms as well as local farmers markets. Walking around, seeing the sights and smelling the fresh produce is an educational and fun addiction to any Niagara vacation.

Angel’s Place Organic Fruit Farm. This organic fruit farm grows fruits without pesticides or herbicides and is a member of the Niagara Chapter of Canadian Organic Growers. Visitors should call before visiting the farm to confirm that produce, including organically grown cherries, apples and apricots, is available. image03

Bartel Organics. Bartels sells organically grown vegetables, cut flowers, raspberries, potted vegetables, perennials and Christmas greens.

Clayton Farm. Clayton became officially certified organic in 2004, three years after starting their family farm on five acres in St. Davids. The farm produces gooseberries, currants, pears, sweet cherries, and table grapes, utilizing environmentally friendly and natural pest controls. The farm, located below the Niagara Escarpment, also grows heartnuts, hazelnuts and walnuts. Prior to visiting, call to confirm hours of operations and produce availability.

ElmRidge Farm. The 35-acre ElmRidge Farm is certified organic and located on the Niagara Escarpment. It is home to eight acres of certified organic vineyard, which produce table grapes and vinifera wine grapes. Irish Dexter cattle, which are strictly grass fed, are also raised on the farm to supply the vineyards with fertilizer as well as produce healthy beef.

Gwennol Farm. The Gwennol Farm is a family-friendly, pick-your-own blueberry farm. It is open to visitors during from mid-July through late August, during the blueberry harvest season. Be sure to call ahead to confirm picking condition.

Joe Tries. The Joe Tries farm stand offers organic fruits and vegetables for purchase from June through October. The stand is on the “pick-up picnic” tour and offers raspberries, blackberries, beans, onions, garlic, herbs, cabbage, peppers, carrots, and corn as well as other in season produce.

Grabbing to Go

Niagara Falls also features a number of shops that provide and assortment of snacks and supplements that fit into a plant-based diet. If you like to pack snacks to munch on during your trip, you might stop at one of these places to pick up a few goodies.

The Peanut Mill Natural Foods. The Peanut Mill is a health food store focused on offering on-the-go options for those with special diets. Customers can purchase freshly ground peanut butter as well as plant-based dairy alternatives and organic produce. The store features food demonstrations and special events. It was founded in 1976 and is located in St. Catharines.

Commisso’s Fresh Foods. This Niagara Falls-based grocery store offers visitors a place to purchase food items that support a plant-based diet. Or, for those interested in learning more about veganism, Commisso’s has organized their stores by putting both “regular” and “specialty” foods together, helping customers see all their options for a particular food item. For tourists, this grocery store offers a place to purchase locally made preserves, ready-made meals, and on-the-go snacks.

Bamboo Natural Foods Market. This St. Catharines food market is a self-described “vegan-centric extravaganza” and features Niagara’s largest selection of gluten-free products. The store’s shelves feature flax milk, raw vegan cheeses as well as an assortment of nut butters and vegan snacks. Bamboo Natural also hosts a variety of on-going special events.

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