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Houston’s Green Seed Vegan Cafe

This past weekend, I was back in Houston for Rice University’s Homecoming and Centennial Celebration — and my 20th Class Reunion. Good times!

In the midst of all the celebrating and catching up with old friends, my husband Seth and I discovered a little place not too far from campus that became our favorite lunch place. Green Seed Vegan started as a food truck before it found its home at 4320 Almeda (at Wheeler) about two years ago. Everything on the menu sounds so mouth-watering good that it warranted repeated visits just so we could try new things each time. I love that the focus is on whole foods; instead of using mock meats, the staff here uses vegetables and spices creatively, turning sandwiches, burgers, and salads into delectables that surely will keep customers coming back for more. If I still lived in town, Green Seed quickly would become a regular haunt.

Sandwiches & Panini
On our first visit, Seth went for the Illy Cheesesteak: on a french wheat baguette, you’ll get a heap of portobello mushrooms, caramelized onions, and melted vegan cheddar. Fresh pressed panini include the Tosh (Seth’s official fave here): maple jerk garbanzo tempeh with grilled plantains, spinach, and jerk aioli. He also tried the PB&P— caramelized plantains topped wit spinach and nut butter spread. Meanwhile, the man at the table next to ours that day was having the Garden Fresh panini, seasonal vegetables and roasted red peppers in a balsamic glaze topped with spinach and melted nondairy cheese.

Illy Cheesesteak

pb&p panini

While Seth went for the panini, I went the burger route. My first visit, I decided on the Cali Burger, actually a large slice of cauliflower breaded and fried; top this off with arugula, onions, pickles, tomato with spicy aioli on a whole wheat bun, and you’ve got one tasty lunch. But I also enjoyed two variations of GS’s buckwheat burger, which has a softer consistency than the usual veggie burger but is still very flavorful and satisfying. I loved the Fungus Amongous, which piled on mushrooms, cheese, caramelized onions, tomato mayo and mustard; my next lunch there, I went with for the Big Tex (when in Texas…). Topping off the buckwheat patty on the whole wheat bun, a few zucchini “bacon” slices, avocado, cheese, onions, tomato, and mayo (I had them hold the jalapenos). You also might want to try the Dirty Burque, which was awarded this year’s “Best Veggie Burger” status by the Houston Press. Sides at GS include fries, dill sweet potato fries, battered and fried cauliflower florets, and — for something a little healthier — a small kale salad.

cali burger

big tex

Smoothies & Salads
And then there are the smoothies. Go ahead — treat yourself! I had the Peaces, a blend of nutter butter, cacao nibs, dates, and banana. When I checked in with FourSquare, I unlocked a special that gave me a free “add on” to my smoothie, so I added a little coconut to the mix. Ridiculous delicious.

Alas, I didn’t have enough days in Houston to try some of the entree salads. But I promise I will be back. More to the point, as I was leaving on Monday, I asked them to promise me that they’d still be around when I’m back for my next big reunion year. I’m also hoping that, within the five years, maybe they’ll open up a location in NYC.

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Author: Sharon Discorfano

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