Mar 13, 2023 - Things to Do

A vegetarian's guide to the Houston Rodeo

Photo of a burger in front of "Trill Burgers" stand

Photo: Shafaq Patel/Axios

When you think of the rodeo, you probably don't think of vegetarian food. For meat eaters, it may be the last thing they think of.

  • But my fellow vegetarians, fret not, there is food you can eat.

Driving the news: I ate for three hours straight to find the best vegetarian (and vegan) food at the rodeo so you don't have to.

The side-dish route: You are probably used to turning potato sides into your full meal — and plenty of booths at RodeoHouston offer fries, chips, mashed potatoes and more to snack on. I'd recommend the Tots Spot for its buffalo tater tots.

  • Corn can be a nice respite from the fried food. I'd skip the confusing flamin street corn concoction (and everything else) at Paradise Burgers, even though their staff was sweet. Get the elote in a cup from Cadillac Bar instead.

Special orders: Several booths have burritos and quesadillas that can be made vegetarian.

  • Yes, but: Confirm if the beans are meat free — a few stalls had beans with pork.

Classic, with a twist: Regular pizza is available, but since you're at the rodeo, eat food on a stick. The Pizza on a Stick booth had a pickle pizza option — weird at first, but then amazing.

Sandwich saviors: Bun B's Trill Burgers may be our saving grace — it had one of the few full-vegan meal options at the rodeo. The OG Trill Burger won the title of "best burger in America," and I'm sure the vegan version was not too far behind. The burger, with the caramelized onion, melts in your mouth.

  • If burgers are not your thing, there's also a grilled cheese sandwich and spinach dip bites at Finer Diner, which was dry and bland but just fine if you need a quick bite.

The bottom line: You won't go hungry. A ton of options are available and adjustments can be made. I ate more than I could handle, and there was still more to eat.

  • Plus: You can also just snack on the abundance of desserts on a stick (guide coming soon 👀).
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