Whether or not you’re vegan, you’ve probably heard of meatless Monday or even dairy-free Friday (a thing, maybe). But no matter if you’re hoping to help save the planet or save yourself from inflammation, living that meat-free lifestyle is often easier said than done.
WalletHub has crunched the numbers to calculate a ranking of America’s 100 largest cities in terms of vegan- and vegetarian-friendliness. Yep, the consider the fiber- and protein-rich beans spilled on whether living in New York City, Los Angeles, or some other metropolis is the easiest for meat-free living.
While New York City ranks highly for restaurants, menu options, salad shops, and juice stores, Gotham doesn’t crack the top five for vegetable nurseries or lowest cost of vegetarian groceries.
Using a formula that included grocery costs, restaurant menus with meatless options, plus other relevant indicators, the findings confirm some suspicions: New York City comes out on top (all those By Chloe outposts sure help). The Big Apple is followed by Portland, Oregon, Orlando, Seattle, and San Francisco. On the other end of the list is Bakersfield, CA, Fresco, CA, and Baton Rouge, LA.
While New York City ranks highly among indicators including restaurants, menu options, salad shops, and juice stores, Gotham doesn’t crack the top five for vegetable nurseries or lowest cost of vegetarian groceries (which might have to do with the city’s infamous space limitations). So basically, if you can afford the gourmet options at chic eateries, you’ll be living your best veg life in NYC.
But, back to affordability: Three of the five cities ranked for offering the cheapest veggie groceries are in Texas, while four of the five cities with the highest-priced groceries are in California. Hey, at least those Californians probably have a sunny outlook about the pricey produce.
Originally published October 16, 2017; updated on October 15, 2018 with additional reporting by Tehrene Firman.
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