Buffalo Wild Wings is an American restaurant chain perfect for sports fans who love to dine, drink beer, and watch the biggest sporting events at the same time. The menu focuses around finger foods, small bites and fried dishes, perfect for nibbling on whilst watching football on the big screen!
With a name like Buffalo Wild Wings it comes as no surprise that it could be difficult to find some 100% vegan options at the restaurant chain. As Buffalo Wild Wings offers mainly chicken wings and fried foods served in beef shortening, it can be a bit of a challenge to find an item on the menu that will suit a vegan diet and lifestyle.
In any restaurant that fries its food dishes, you will run the risk of cross contamination in your food. This can make it difficult for a vegan to dine in restaurants that use the same deep fat fryers for their fries as they use for their non vegan foods, as this will make even vegan friendly ingredients non-vegan.
For example, there is actually a vegetarian Black Bean Burger on the menu, however this is cooked upon the same grill as normal burgers, so cross contamination of your food will be highly likely.
A little more bad news for vegans is that Buffalo Wild Wings fries many of its dishes in a beef shortening mixture. This means that their vegan and vegetarian friendly dishes such as onion rings, french fries, potato wedges, buffalo chips and tortilla chips are not actually 100% vegan friendly!
Despite that being said, there are a few vegan options available at Buffalo Wild Wings that will be completely, 100% vegan and vegetarian friendly, so you can dine guilt and worry free when the next big game is on!
6 Vegan Options at Buffalo Wild Wings
If you want to dine at Buffalo Wild Wings, but you are a vegan, there is nothing to worry about. There are a few options available for you to choose from!
1. Veggie Boats
The first in this list of options is the Veggie Boat. This can be ordered as a side to any meal, and is simply a dish of celery mixed with some carrot sticks. We know how unexciting this can sound, but we really are scraping the barrel with vegan options at a chicken wing restaurant. However, when paired with one of Buffalo Wild Wings’ vegan sauce options, these celery and carrot sticks are a real treat!
One of the best things about Buffalo Wild Wings is their amazing selection of sauces. What is even better is that a lot of these are actually vegan, too! Luckily for you, we examined the allergen guide from the restaurant themselves, and discovered a whole range of tasty sauces that are vegan. However, you may want to consult the guide for yourself, as restaurants can always change the ingredients they use, or change the processes in which their sauces are made.
Currently, the Buffalo Wild Wings sauces that are vegan are as follows:
- Chipotle BBQ seasoning
- Lemon Pepper seasoning
- Salt and Vinegar seasoning
- Desert Heat seasoning
- Light French
- Lemon Vinaigrette
- Sweet BBQ Sauce
- Hot Sauce
- Wild Sauce
- Teriyaki sauce
- Yellow Mustard
- Mango Habanero Sauce
- Caribbean Jerk sauce
- Blazin Sauce
- Asian Zing Sauce
3. Big Twist Pretzel Without Queso
One of the most popular items on the Buffalo Wild Wings menu, is the Big Twist Pretzel. This is a much more filling option from the menu, however it is normally served with Queso, which is cheese.
To make the Big Twist Pretzel a vegan menu option, you will have to remove the cheese, and substitute it for a vegan Buffalo Wild Wings sauce! What is even better is that the Big Twist Pretzel is baked rather than fried, so there is no risk of cross contamination either!
4. Side Salad
As with many restaurants, the Side Salad is a 100% vegan friendly dish that you can choose on your next visit to Buffalo Wild Wings. This Side Salad is served up with tomato, cucumber, house greens, red pepper, pickled red onions, garlic toast, croutons and a lemon vinaigrette.
The Side Salad is also topped with shaved parmesan cheese, and so you will have to remove the cheese and croutons, and this salad will be perfect for a vegan diet! Also, if you are not keen on the lemon vinaigrette, then you can substitute this for your chosen vegan dressing or sauce for a unique twist.
5. Wraps & Buffalito
Luckily for you, Buffalo Wild Wings’ flour tortillas used in their wraps and Buffalitos are 100% vegan. However, most of the wrap options contain meats or cheese. To get around this, you can still order a Buffalito, and have it your own vegan way.
All you have to do is order the Chicken Buffalito, but ask for it without chicken, cheese, or sour cream, and instead add some avocado, salsa or your favorite vegan Buffalo Wild Wings sauce. Top with a few celery sticks for an extra crunchy bite, and you are ready to go!
Whilst the food menu may be lacking in vegan options, the drinks menu has vegan options in abundance! All of their sodas such as Dr. Pepper, Lemonade, Diet Pepsi, Sierra Mist, Pepsi, Mountain Dew, and Mug Root Beer as 100% vegan friendly. In addition, the bottled water, iced tea, coffee, sparkling juice, and speciality lemonades are also vegan.
If you are looking for something a little stronger, then there are many Buffalo Wild Wings cocktails available to choose from that are vegan:
- Hendrick’s Gin & Tonic
- Bloody Mary
- Buffalo Zoo
- House Margarita
- Moscow Mule
- Black Cherry Bourbon Smash
- Knockout Punch
- Old Fashioned
- Red Sangria
- Strawberry Kick Coronarita
- Spicy Passion Fruit Margarita
- Twisted Margarita
- Tee Time
Many of the beers and wines available at Buffalo Wild Wings are also suitable for vegans, but it is best to check with your local BWW restaurant, and with your server, as options can vary across chains.
In the Aloha state, you can actually order white rice as a side dish with your food. This would go great with some veggie sticks, or in addition to one of your favorite vegan sauces from Buffalo Wild Wings for the perfect vegan meal.
To conclude, there are very few completely vegan options available at Buffalo Wild Wings. It is best to stick to the side salad, veggie sticks, vegan sauces, and the Big Twist Pretzel (no queso) for a 100% vegan friendly meal.
Are the cauliflower wings at Buffalo Wild Wings vegan?
No, the cauliflower wings at Buffalo Wild Wings are not vegan. They are fried in beef shortening. There is nothing on the Buffalo Wild Wings menu that is guaranteed to be completely meat-free due to the potential for cross-contamination in their kitchen.
According to some employees, you can request your cauliflower wings baked rather than fried. In this instance, they would be considered to be vegan as none of the ingredients used to make them are animal by-products.
There are some vegan options at Buffalo Wild Wings including the brioche bun, hoagie bun, flour tortilla, carrot and celery sticks, white rice, mandarin oranges, soft pretzels, and a plain side salad.
Does Buffalo Wild Wings have cauliflower wings?
Yes, Buffalo Wild Wings does serve cauliflower wings. They were introduced onto the menu in September 2020 as a way to include more fast foods in their repertoire.
These have been added to the boneless and traditional wings on their menu. There is no vegan wing option if you are ordering them as stated on the menu. The meat and cauliflower wings are all fried in the same fryers, before being sauced and seasoned in shared bowls.
Does Buffalo Wild Wings fry in lard?
No, Buffalo Wild Wings does not fry in lard. Lard is a semi-solidified white fat that comes from rendering down the fatty tissues of pigs.
Buffalo Wild Wings uses beef shortening to fry in, also referred to as tallow. This is used to fry everything on the menu, meaning that next to nothing here is suitable for followers of a vegan diet.
There was a case that made headlines back in 2016 to 2018, regarding the frying processes used by Buffalo Wild Wings. A vegetarian attempted to sue them for misleading information on the menu, but ultimately this case was dismissed.
What sauces at Buffalo Wild Wings are vegan?
The Asian Zing, Blazin’ California Reaper, Caribbean Jerk, Hot, Jammin’ Jalapeno, Mango Habanero, Nashville Hot, Smoky Adobo, Sweet BBQ, Teriyaki, and Wild sauces are vegan.
You cannot have the Lemon Pepper, Medium, Mild, Parmesan Garlic, Spicy Garlic, or Thai Curry sauces as they contain egg. The Original Buffalo, Parmesan Garlic, and Thai Curry sauces all contain milk. As a vegan, you also cannot eat the Honey BBQ sauce.
All of the dry seasonings are vegan, with the exception of the Buffalo seasoning which contains milk.
You can also have salsa, pico de gallo, and avocado from here. All of these are certified vegan.