Lovin Spoonfuls Vegetarian Restaurant

Tucson, Arizona

Reviews


rating star

Original review, Dec 10 07: The first time I came here, shortly after it opened, I was incredibly unimpressed and didn't think I'd ever come back again. It turns out that my companion and I just ordered the wrong items -- a veggie burger and a turkey sandwich. I was served a Gardenburger and he was served a Tofurky sandwich. We both felt very cheated, as these were items we could have bought at the store and prepared ourselves at home. (NB: They have recently ditched the Gardenburger and come up with their own soy burger recipe, which is much better.)

However, reviews in the Weekly finally convinced me to give it a second chance, and I'm really glad I did. I've tried a variety of the soups, all of which were packed with flavor. All of the pasta dishes are great except they have a tendency not to drain the pasta adequately. The chicken Parmesan, which is occasionally a dinner special, is probably my favorite of the pastas.

My favorite meal to get here is classic comfort food -- the homemade adzuki burger is the best veggie burger in town. It pairs nicely with a chocolate shake, which is probably the best vegan shake I've ever had. Skip the french fries, though -- they aren't seasoned. I had to take them home, add my own seasonings, and throw them in the toaster oven for a while before they were to my liking.

Lastly, there is a good selection of vegan desserts. The cakes are good when fresh (though the frosting is overly sweet) and the cheesecake, danishes, and muffins are wonderful. However, the ice cream sundae isn't a very good value for your money, and the brownies are really hard.

My only major complaint is that the food isn't always as fresh as I'd like it to be. Plus I have a suspicion that the mashed potatoes are powdered.

Updated review: This place has really gone downhill in recent years, I hate to say. The adzuki burger used to be my favorite, now it's bland. The soy burger also used to be quite impressive but several years back something about it changed. The breading to "chicken" ratio in their fried chicken has changed and is now too bready, also usually overcooked. They use ice in their chocolate shakes. They sell DVDs that advance dubious, anti-medicine conspiracy theories about cancer treatments. The dishes that used to be my favorite aren't good anymore, and I haven't found anything to replace them. The people there are so nice but I wish there were vegan competition in town to keep them on their toes! (And get rid of the woo and pseudo-science, seriously!)


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I have been twice and not been impressed. The best item I had here was the bacon cheeseburger, which was pretty good, but seemed to be assembled from store bought convenience products, so I could easily make the same thing at home. The other items have ranged from disappointingly mediocre to downright awful. My husband got a burrito which had absolutely no flavor on it's own, but was served with a "salsa verde" which tasted like straight pureed raw garlic. I mean, I love garlic, but this was horrible.

It's doubly disappointing that this is the only purely vegan restaurant in town, and it's close to where I live, but the food has been so bad that I won't be going back.


rating star

Vegan comfort food at it's finest! The staff, and especially the owner, are always pleasant. Everything I've gotten has been delicious, except the "Bacon Cheeseburger" had a cheddar on it that I wasn't fond of. Besides that, I can't get enough of the food! I would eat here everyday if I could.

UPDATE:
I feel compelled to reduce my rating after a unsatisfactory experience. My dining companion ordered waffles and was told the pancakes were better. He agreed to change his order and also asked for veggie bacon. The pancakes came out with a side of veggie sausage, and although he was offered a correction he accepted the sausage and was then informed that "its ok because the sausage is better than the bacon". Poor customer service in my opinion; why have items on the menu that are so bad you talk people out of ordering them? And then make a mistake on an order and try to convince your customer that its a good thing? Very condescending. I'll leave my original review up because it was true at that time, but I've since tried various vegan eateries around the state and can say that unfortunately Lovin' Spoonfuls is not up to par with the best any longer. Not in food quality and not in customer service.


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A great place to get your fried chicken fix! The portions are plentiful.


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Love this place...the only place I can go in Tucson and have so much choice as a vegan! Their breakfasts are fantastic, especially the tofu scrambles. I suppose their menu is mixed Americana, nut loaf, burgers, country style platter, stir fry, curry...but all vegan. My favorite is the adzuki burger, I could eat it every day.

Ambiance is nice, but order at the counter makes it quite casual. The owner is nearly always there, she is wonderfully friendly.

The desserts are a stand-out, any of the chocolate varieties are fantastic. They always have several cakes, pies and cookies, sometimes I go just for dessert.


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Best vegan in town, and competes with any vegan restaurant anywhere, in my opinion.


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I'm in Tucson for a month and was told this was a really nice vegetarian restuarant. I've been here twice, so far, and find the cuisine, menu, service, staff and ambience outstanding. loved the route 66 burger - delicious! I also had the fried chicken and it was very good - but not as tasty as the veggie burger.

Highly recommend!


rating star

The fact that Lovin Spoonful is all vegan is reason enough for me to like it. The service is always quick (rare for vegetarian restaurants). Peggy manages it well. The food is good, not great. I always find it a bit on the bland side and wish the menu was a bit more creative. I still go there at least twice a month because it is predictable and a central location.


rating star

By far the best restaurant i've ever been too. Hands down. Which is funny to say now, because I went to Lovin Spoonfuls when they first opened, and the food was terrible! I didn't come back for more than a year, and WOW has it changed. The food now is absolutely fantastic. The staff is fantastic as well, always welcoming and pleasant to be around. The Golden Chicken Nuggets are to die for. Their dinner menu is superb. But I always get the Chicken Melt Sandwich for lunch, it's probably my favourite item there. I visit probably once a week. Worth the money.


rating star

Vegan restaurant in town. Yaay! Good place to go for birthdays. The ambience is great -- earthy while classy and comfortable. In general, we kinda like the food there. It's more of an american diner fare, with a good selection of sandwiches and salad. Dinner is more eclectic. Prices are definitely big-city style. It's no cheaper than Chicago Diner (obviously in Chicago) while portions are much smaller. When it first opened, the portion size was sad but have since improved. Despite its still rather small portion size, we find the food there very rich. Every time we eat there, we don't really feel full but we will be bloated for the next 6 hours! We find the food very salty and oily, but that's probably just us. Ever since we brought it up with a friend who seems pretty closed to Peggy (the owner) a few months ago, the salt level seems to have become much more tolerable. All in all, we are grateful to have a vegan restaurant in town.


rating star

I LOVE this place! I was so excited when it opened! The homemade adzuki burger is so yummy it's hard for me to order anything else. I also enjoy the club sandwich. My only complaint is that all the take-out comes in Styrofoam, which is why I try to stay away from taking out.


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Excellent all around. This and Guilin are just superb in Tucson. Too much to try!


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My friend and I were hoping for a wider selection of organic, vegetable-based fare. If you are a fan of stick-to-your ribs, processed, comfort food, you can't go wrong here.


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My faves are the deli sandwich and the adzuki burger (probably the best veggie burger in town). The atmosphere is clean, sophisticated yet not stuffy, and the service is very fast and friendly. It's a good place to go for lunch.. I've talked to others who think the dinner leaves something to be desired because they don't give enough vegetables, too much processed stuff. But definitely one of my two favorite restaurants. The only suggestion I would make is to maybe have the option of replacing the potato chips and side coleslaw with something like chips and salsa and/or a fresh little garden salad.


rating star

You can't go wrong with anything on the menu. I recommend ordering the Daily Special.


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This ENTIRELY-VEGAN restaurant makes it much easier for me to live in Tucson! I love being able to come to a restaurant where I can order ANYTHING on the menu! Their food feels so homemade (I mean that in a good way). I just adore their Golden Nuggets, Tempura Shrimp, Pasta Primavera, Stroganoff, and Bacon Cheeseburger. They have such incredible sauces and dips that I just cannot replicate at home. They have a lovely dessert case, and fantastic smoothies and milkshakes. Everything is vegan!! I only wish their prices were a little lower, so that I could eat there more often. That's not to say they're overpriced, because the wholesome organic ingredients they use are just more expensive than the slop used at other restaurants. Vegan heaven in the midst of the stinking desert. ;) Here's their menu: http://www.lovinspoonfuls.com/menu.html


rating star

I love this place and eat here about once a week.
I've gotta disagree with the review that mentions the fries not being good. I enjoy their fries. To me and my girlfriend they taste no different than other fries, reminds me of Eegee's fries and you can dip em in ranch and or ketchup when their served so nice and hot - yum! Maybe you got an undercooked batch or not enough salt or maybe I'm just a sucker for any fry.

I really like the sesame chick salad, Mediterranean plate, or just some nuggets, fries and coleslaw. The potato salad and slaw is awesome, just like mom used to make. Carrot cake and cookies I've tried, so good.

It will take me a long time to try everything because it so hard to stray from what I'm already addicted to!

This is a also great place to bring friend and hand them a vegetarian starter kit to take home or come alone and sip a shake while browsing issues of vegan magazines and publications in a really peaceful atmosphere.


rating star

If you are a fan of mock meat and dairy dishes, you will love this restaurant. It has some excellent imitations: try the breaded shrimp and chicken fingers for example. If you like more organic, fresh vegetable-based, less-processed meals, however, this may not be suitable.


rating star

I love this place! I can eat every single thing on the menu! When I gave up dairy I gave up ranch dressing, but at Lovin' Spooonfuls the ranch is vegan and delicious, as is the rest of the menu.


rating star

My Dad (not a vegetarian or a vegan) and I went to Lovin' Spoonfuls.. we both give it a 7. I had the Tuna Melt (made with Tuno-delicious!!) and thought it was heavenly! Instead of sourdough bread, I had it on whole-wheat bread... I don't know if ordering a different type of bread affected it, but the bottom of the bread was a little too greasy for my liking. Other than that, it was absolutely wonderful. Dad had the chili and liked that it was spicy, but he said the cornbread didn't taste 'real' enough, and I have to agree. It tasted great (like 'real' cornbread) at first, but it left me with too nutty of an aftertaste. The fries were the worst about it though: no seasoning! They seemed to us like they were just the type of fries one can buy in a bag and heat up for oneself.

I will go back to Lovin' Spoonfuls to try other things on their menu, but as for now, I do not recommend the french fries! The atmosphere is wonderful, service is a breeze, and food arrives quickly and piping hot. Great restaurant!


rating star

The best vegan restaurant ever! I eat there almost on a weekly basis. I love the portabella griller and Route 66, but have also tried the sesame chicken salad, french toast, waffles, pancakes,dolmas Deluxe BLT, Lasagna, Mediterranean plate,stuffed pasta, cream puffs, french fries, and spiced tea...I have yet to be disappointed- the staff is friendly and makes the whole experience wonderful! I hope she takes her restaurant across the US. All the vegans and animals out there think she and this restaurant are worthy of nothing but praise!!


rating star

I've had appetizers, all three meals, and desserts at Lovin' Spoonfuls, and I honestly believe the best vegan food in Tucson is made there. That said, I did want to mention that I haven't tried any of the mock meat meals.

Anyway, I think they've really outdone themselves with their breakfast offerings. Their spinach tofu scramble is awesome. Next time I go I want to make sure to try their breakfast smoothies. I just wish there was a sister restaurant in Sierra Vista.


rating star

I love this restaurant! Everything was perfect, the service, ambiance, and especially the food. I had the Route 66 Bacon Cheeseburger (all vegan) and this is by far the best veggie burger I ever had! I would recommend this restaurant to anyone.


rating star

As a vegan there are very few things I miss about my old diet. One of them is the ability to go out to a certain type of restaurant. A restaurant where the breakfast menu includes pancakes and the lunch menu juicy burgers. A restaurant that's tastefully decorated, where the waitstaff looks and acts professional. A nice, middle of the road place where the restaurant foods of my childhood meet my updated ethical sensibilities. A place to take my pretty redheaded wife for a special Sunday breakfast.

Lovin' Spoonfuls is that restaurant.

I ate here twice over the course of two days on a trip to Tucson. The first thing I noticed was the decor--beautiful tile work, handsome paneling, and richly toned wooden tables. The waitstaff is courteous and professional, and tasteful piano music fills the air. You could imagine taking Mom here on Mother's Day. You order at the counter, and the breakfast menu spans an entire page. I had a breakfast burrito the first day, and the fabulous french toast the second day. The food was hearty, filling, and very traditional American. I also had a bite of my companion's huge burger. It was delicious, and it was topped with the best veggie bacon I've ever tasted. I also tasted one of their fresh-blended smoothies, a milkshake, and one of their "cheese" danishes. Everything was wonderful, and deeply satisfying.

The best part though, is that everything in the restaurant is one hundred percent vegan.

If I lived in Tucson, I know I'd be here once a week at least. Highly recommended.


rating star

We dined here recently and found the review from the Daily Star to be very accurate. My lasagna was rich and covered in a very nice tomato sauce. My partner's ravioli was equally good, stuffed with tofu filling and sauced with a creamy and rich white sauce. The owner, Peggy, has the most infectious laugh in Tucson. We wish her well.

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