Where to Eat Vegan in Central Florida: Orlando; V’s Diner

Credit: Igot_theshot

The Florida peninsula is a place that can be the seat on a journey that takes you all around the world. From Brazil to Ethiopia, from Asia to Paris, from the Mediterranean Sea to the Arabian Sea; Florida will take you there by way of plate. The Caribbean flair reigns supreme here but, the whole world can be found here.

Something I hadn’t found here until recently, was vegan diner food. Diner’s can be found all over Florida, BUT, a diner, offering a complete vegan menu, loaded with traditional diner favorites wasn’t right around the corner like a Cuban and/or Jamaican restaurant. This has changed and I am glad!

One day I bumped into V’s Diner (how cute huh?), in Casselberry, an area just a few minutes north of Orlando. V’s Diner makes handmade/homemade vegan meats that they transform into American diner favorites. The menu is loaded with offerings that aren’t easy to find in other vegan establishments, like: a ‘beef and cheddar’ or chili ‘cheese’ fries.

Credit: Igot_theshot

So, it should go without saying that I was very excited to come in and feast, and it should also go without saying that one of the menu items I feasted on was V’s Burger:  a deliciously dense and flavorful handmade and homemade burger, topped with cheese, lettuce, onions, tomatoes, and pickles. I was so impressed, the burger was amazing! I also had:

  • The chicken ceasar wrap:
  • The chili cheese fries
  • A Brownie
  • A chocolate chip cookie
  • A sweet tea

Everything I ate, I devoured. The food is delicious!

The 13th < Where to Eat Vegan with the Traveling Cannabis Writer>  features V’s Diner! Get to know them through founder, owner, and recipe creator: Mackenzie Singleton

Q&A with the Founder and Owner of V’s Diner: Mackenzie Singleton

Credit: Igot_theshot

Where are you from, where your family is from, and where were you raised?

“I’m from Kansas. I grew up in Lawrence, KS which is an incredibly diverse little city with people and cuisines from all around the world.”

What did you do for work and/or, other businesses owned and worked prior to V’s Diner?

“I’ve been in Media Production since the mid-90’s. I started to get into Marketing about twenty years ago. Before V’s Diner I was working on projects and campaigns for major brands.”

Can you give readers a little insight into the 10 year old you, what were your hopes and dreams?

“I’ve always been an overthinker. Even then I was obsessed with finding solutions to things.”

When did cooking and meal creation start for you? 

“When I hit the point of no return on my journey toward veganism, I had to cook at home a lot more. It was a few years later that I started to work on a menu, making meats at scale with a recipe and not just freestyling it for dinner that night.”

When did you know you wanted to feed others?

“I’ve always had that in me but when I was growing up working in the industry was looked down upon. I had a few food service jobs in my teens but from about twenty on I focused on computer work (graphics, video, 3D).”

Credit: Igot_theshot

What’s your favorite thing to create and feed others?

“Their favorite meal in a long time. That’s always the goal.”

When was the concept of V’s Diner born and what was the reason(s)?

“I was a frustrated vegan who wanted a world class vegan restaurant near me.”

What is the official birth date of V’s Diner?

“June 1st 2019 was our first popup.”

What is the mission and core values of V’s Diner?

“To be the transitional vegan option that so many people are going to need on their journey toward eating more plant based.”

What are 3 things people should know about V’s Diner?

“1) We make our own vegan meat proteins in-house from ingredients you can get at the grocery store. 2) We focus on recreating dishes that are decidedly not vegan to help those in transition, and to be a fun safe option for those who are dedicated to the vegan lifestyle. 3) We focus on taking care of our employees who take care of our guests and their experience because at the end of the day, that’s everything.”

What inspired the menu and offerings?

“Americana Diners of every flavor: Northern, Southern, Soul, Greek, Cuban, Mexican, Italian…the options are limitless on the things we can veganize.”

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You all make your own vegan meats; tell me about that…the why…a little insight into the how.

“When I came up with this concept, I was going to opt for the new Impossible Burger that had just come out, Gardein Chicken, etc. A chef friend of mine challenged me to dig deeper and I put the entire project on hold while I created our first meat recipes through two months of trial and error.” 

During my visit, you told me about your son, the taste tester. Can you tell readers about how he approves or doesn’t approve new menu offerings?

“After 32 revisions to the first V’s Burger patty, my not-vegan son (then 12, now 18) actually ate over half a burger. It was the moment I knew I was on to something.

Are any of your products locally sourced?

“We get our bread from a local bakery that doesn’t use any preservatives. We get everything else from local distributors. However, the vital wheat gluten that we use for some of the meats is decidedly not local. We get it imported from Australia where there are no pesticides. The quality is far superior to anything else.”

How do you all feel about cannabis for wellness? 

“It’s absolutely necessary for many different affiliations.”

Any hemp offerings on your menu/as an ingredient (hemp seeds/milk/protein)? 

“Not as of now, but we would be open to the idea.”

Have you learned anything about cannabis recently that surprised you? 

“Not recently.”

Final Words

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V’s Diner hosts cool events at their location in Casselberry and I wanted to make sure and point out that Mackenzie truly appreicates the people that come in and make the business boom each day. He made sure to tell me while there and I could tell by the flavors on my plates that V’s Diner is a collective… of the vision and the hard work to keep that vision alive.

Visit V’s Diner on their website and/or on social media.

Credit: Igot_theshot

Veronica Castillo is a published writer known as the Traveling Cannabis Writer. She was born and raised in Miami, and recently retired from road life after 5 years of traveling the United States and the Caribbean on a mission to learn and educate on all things plant medicine. Though her body of published work is mainly in cannabis, Veronica is passionate about plant based lifestyles. She lost 95 pounds, began her healing journey, and treated her migraines with a plant based lifestyle. 

Her Where to Eat Vegan Series explores vegan menus and plates, helping travelers navigate their plant based lifestyles on the road.  Follow her on IG at @vee_travelingvegcannawriter and LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/vee-traveling-veg-canna-writer/ 

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