Big E's Soul Food

Twin Cities, Minnesota


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The menu only specifies one item (Blackened Mushrooms and Eggplant Ettoufee) as vegan friendly, but when I asked the waiter about it, he said the Smoked BBQ Tofu was vegan as well, without the cornbread/muffin on the side. I asked about the Jambalaya, and he said it has worchesticer sauce in it. I thought it was odd that they would have it listed under vegetarian options when they were conscientice enough to let us know it wasn't vegan, but oh well. If you ask, they do seem to know what's in everything and how it's prepared. The man was very patient with me while I asked a bunch of questions, and when he wasn't sure he went in the kitchen and double checked, which I always appreciate. Side dish orders reported as vegan are: corn on the cob, red beans and rice, potato wedges, and something else I can't remember. I wish they did substitutions, as I would love to have tried one of those - but I wasn't about to shell out $2.50 for beans and rice.

The place is a bit pricey - but the two vegan options they had were really good. The BBQ tofu was firm and had red onions mixed in the sauce, served over white rice. There was some stir fried veggies (bell peppers, corn, green beans, etc) on the side, which was awesome. Everything has a smokey flavor and was just a tiny bit charred, which I liked a lot. It's a bummer they don't have more otpions - the food was quite good.

The art in there is awesome - and I quite liked the music... ecclective R&B and soul to match the portraits of notable african american musical talents.

Image for Dave Rolsky

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While they don't offer a very large selection, it's pretty darn cool to find a soul food place offering anything vegan at all.

I tried the BBQ tofu, and it was quite good. It came with a side of corn, peppers, and onions that was really tasty as well. My wife got the jambalaya and that was also quite good.

Both of these dishes normally come with a choice of bread, but none of them (cornbread, biscuits, etc.) are vegan, and they don't do any substitutions.

The staff was really helpful, and even came out to tell us that the french fries we ordered were cooked in the same deep fryer as animal products, to see if we minded. The fact that they actually paid that much attention really impressed me.

I'll definitely be going back in the future.

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