Indulging Without Dairy
by Emily Kovach
Think you need butter, cream and eggs to create rich, satisfying desserts? Think again. Philly’s new school of vegan chefs, bakers and artisans prove that a little ingenuity goes a long way when it comes to handmade goodies.
Thai Iced Tea
Dottie’s is well-loved for their selection of gourmet doughnuts, but the unsung hero at their West Philly storefront is the vegan Thai iced tea: a rich, creamy and powerful brew for those steering clear of dairy.
Get your sips: Dottie’s Donuts, 4529 Springfield Ave.
Mint Chocolate Shake
P.S. & Co.
This slightly more virtuous version of a milkshake from the clean-eating cohort at P.S. & Co. blends up organic vanilla cream, mint, chocolate mousse and Brazil nut milk with ice. The result is a deeply luscious way to fulfill a mint chocolate craving.
Get your sips: P.S. & Co., 1706 Locust St.
Brownies & Blondies
Sweet Freedom Bakery
These gooey, sweet brownies and their chocolateless counterparts make indulgence possible on even the strictest diets: They are not off-limits for vegans, those avoiding gluten, corn, peanuts and soy (they’re kosher, too!).
Enjoy it: Sweet Freedom Bakery, 1424 South St., with locations in Collingswood and Bryn Mawr as well.
Peanut Chew Croissants
Goldenberg’s Peanut Chews—chewy nuggets of peanuts and molasses covered in chocolate—have long been a go-to candy for vegans. Using them as a pastry filling? That’s some new-school vegan creativity at finest.
Enjoy it: The Tasty, 1401 S. 12th St.
Kitchen Sink Cookies
Sometimes more is more. So it goes with these loaded cookies from the vegan pizza wizards at Blackbird: chocolate chunks, pretzels, potato chips, pumpkin seeds, coconut and oats compete for real estate and make every bite chaotically delicious.
Enjoy it: Blackbird Pizzeria, 507 S. 6th St.
Vegan Banana Peanut Butter Pretzel Cupcakes
PB and bananas play so nicely together, and this cupcake takes the pairing to soaring new heights. Banana cake is filled with a hit of salty pretzel cream filling and topped with peanut butter frosting. Believe it or not, these babies are low glycemic, dairy and soy free.
Find your happy place: Online only.
Lemon-Lavender Mascarpone and Fruit Stuffed Challah French Toast
Miss Rachel’s Pantry
We’re not quite sure how she does it, but Rachel Klein is a true pro at putting up cruelty-free comfort food that’s indistinguishable from the “real” thing. This brunch dish, at once rich, fluffy and creamy, is a prime example of her kitchen prowess.
Find your happy place: Miss Rachel’s Pantry, 1938 S. Chadwick St.
The Chilly Banana
Also known as “banana whips,” these are 100 percent frozen bananas whipped to dreamy perfection. Jam harder with signature flavors like the Chilly Banana Split: housemade chocolate sauce, candied walnuts, toasted coconut flakes, coconut milk whipped cream and a cherry on top.
Find your happy place: Mobile food cart at various locations.