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Written by Editorial Staff Category: Web Extras Issue: January 2014

Top 5 Vegan/Vegetarian Restaurants

Dr. Paul Mittman, ND, President of the Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine & Health Sciences
Dr. Mittman has been a vegan for several years. He's an advocate for plant-based diets, which he says can significantly reduce cholesterol and provide myriad health benefits.

1. Pomegranate Cafe: "Really amazing. There's so many meals. They have breakfast burritos, breakfast scrambles, they have their own version of a BLT sandwich that's made with tempeh. They serve great coffee there. They make all their desserts from scratch, and they're delicious."

2. Desert Roots: "A nice little establishment with outdoor seating. They're open for breakfast and lunch, and it's kind of nice, because for a set price, you get to pick three items. It could be a wrap, a salad and a side, or you could have some combination thereof, like a soup, a side and a salad."

3. Chakra 4: "I almost always get some kind of burrito, but they make a really delicious cheese-type-thing. Even though it's completely vegan – there's no cheese in it – it tastes just like cheese. They do great burritos, great salads, and they have a whole bunch of plant-based or vegan chocolate that they create there."

4. 24 Carrots: "They're very good."

5. Green New American Vegetarian: "Sort of a guilty pleasure. For people who just want to check out plant-based food, Green is easy entry because it's very tasty. It probably has more fried food than I'd eat on a regular basis, but if I have a hankering for fries or a po' boy, they have some really delicious ones. And they have healthier options also."

PHM0114 XTRA1Top 5 Kid-Friendly Restaurants

Cheryl Najafi, CEO of multimedia lifestyle company CherylStyle
Najafi is a New York Times best-selling author and a mother of three. She is currently working on a cookbook and developing a television show with producer Gordon Elliot of The Chew.

1. Cafeteria on Thomas: "A very inexpensive, kid-friendly place where you can get amazing sandwiches and grilled food."
2. The Parlor Pizzeria: "Parlor offers great pizzas that are healthful, and they accommodate a more adult palate, as well as having things the kids can eat."
3. Delux Burger: "A fun place to get burgers and French fries, but also classic salads and chicken sandwiches. It's a nice, open atmosphere. You can also sit outside, which is really nice."
4. Kitchen 56: "It has a lot of comfort foods kids enjoy, like mac 'n' cheese, meatballs and things like that. It's loud and noisy, and no one will care if your kids are loud and noisy, too."
5. Chelsea's Kitchen: "There's a nice hustle-bustle about. You can sit outside with the kids, and the menu accomodates children really well."