MENUMENU
January 8th, 2019
Posted By: Emily Vallely

Last month I went to Des Moines, IA to visit my boyfriend’s extended family. This was my second time visiting Des Moines in the past year and it is swiftly becoming one of my favorite cities. There are so many vintage stores, vegan restaurants, and a growing music and art scene. I truly think it’s the Portland of the mid west. I was only there for two full days so I was unable to visit all the restaurants I would have wanted to dine at, but this is a small selection of the delicious vegan options this beautiful city has to offer.

Railroad Bill’s Dining Car

621 Des Moines St
Des Moines, IA
50309

The first stop was breakfast. We went to a local joint called Railroad Bill’s Dining Car which had tons of vegan options. Brandon got the French Toast with Tofu Scramble and I got the Biscuits and Gravy with a side of Vegan Sausage. Bonus points for this restaurant: It’s connected to an antique store! I scored a Glenn Miller vinyl record and a couple Archie Comics.

Zombie Burger

300 E Grand Ave
Des Moines, IA
50309

We didn’t eat lunch the first day because breakfast was so filling, but for dinner we went to Zombie Burger which is a Iowa based Burger Chain. They serve the Beyond Burger and offer two completely vegan burger options (The Negan which is their own vegan patty and the Undead Glenn which is the Beyond Burger and what Brandon and I both ordered). I think it’s so important to support burger joints that offer a vegan option and it makes me so happy that more chains are starting to offer the Beyond Burger and Impossible Burger. Zombie Burger also has locations in Ankeny, Coral Ridge, and Jordan Creek.

Molly’s Cupcakes

215 East Third Street
Des Moines, IA
50309

For dessert we went to Molly’s Cupcakes which was just a short walk from Zombie Burger and also across the street from Dumpling Darling. They had a few vegan cupcake options. I got a chocolate with vanilla frosting as well as a chocolate raspberry. I saved one for breakfast the next morning (I was on vacation, what can I say?). Molly’s Cupcakes also has locations in Chicago, New York, and Iowa City.

Dumpling Darling

212 E 3rd Street
Des Moines, IA
50309

For lunch the second day we went to Dumpling Darling, an adorable modern Dumpling restaurant offering an array of vegan and vegetarian options. I ordered the Chipotle Tofu Fried Dumplings and they were delicious! There was so much more on the menu I wish I would have tried like Japchae and Green Curry Steamed Buns. Don’t go to Dumpling Darling without stopping by Molly’s Cupcakes across the street! Dumpling Darling also has a location in Iowa City.

Fong’s Pizza

223 4th St
Des Moines, IA
50309

One of my favorite spots in Des Moines is Fong’s Pizza and Tiki Bar. On my first night in Des Moines I went to their bar and got a delicious tiki drink. My second night in town I got Fong’s takeout while we had a game night at Brandon’s aunt’s house. They have a Vegan Supreme pizza as well as a build your own option. I did the build your own with baby corn, olives, and mushrooms. They also have an Egg Roll which we were told is vegan! In the past year I have developed a deep affection for tiki bars. Fong’s is not a traditional Hawaiian style tiki bar but a Chinese style one. It is kitschy and adorable and my #1 Des Moines recommendation. Fong’s also has locations in Ankeny and Cedar Rapids.


Last Summer when I went to Des Moines I made two YouTube videos highlighting some of the vintage shops I visited and also what I bought. So if you are interested in visiting vintage shops in Des Moines checkout the descriptions in those videos for links!