Cracker Barrel Old Country Store is a restaurant chain in the United States that serves country style comfort food. Each of the Cracker Barrel locations have the same iconic items - the rocking chairs on the porch, the country store with the cute kids clothes, and the candy. Also, there're lots of meals made of meat and items smothered in cheese and not too many vegan menu items. But the exciting news is that new this year is Impossible Sausage! Cracker Barrel has added it to their all day breakfast menu. They had originally been testing it in 50 locations but now have expanded to all of their restaurants.
Back in the day, I'd look forward to stopping at a Cracker Barrel on a road trip just to get some buttermilk biscuits and an order of hashbrown casserole. Those days are long gone and unfortunately Cracker Barrel doesn't have very many vegan options. But what's vegan at Cracker Barrel? Let's take a look at their vegan-friendly options.
All of this information has come from Cracker Barrel's website and Allergen Menu. On the PDF, it's noted that "The information provided in this guide is based upon ingredient statements provided to us by our suppliers and highlights which menu items are prepared without allergen containing ingredients. Our normal kitchen operations involve shared preparation and cooking areas, including common fryer oil; therefore, cross-contact of all our menu items is possible." However, cross contamination is a risk at pretty much any restaurant that isn't strictly vegan. The good news is that they use soybean oil in their fryer, not lard.
Unfortunately, most of the breakfast menu items contain eggs or dairy products including the oatmeal. But the addition of Impossible sausage is making it possible for vegans to have a more complete meal instead of just a few side menu items. The vegan breakfast options are:
- Impossible Sausage
- Course Ground Grits
- Multigrain Toast
- English Muffin, Plain (only available at select locations)
- Fresh Seasonal Fruit
Vegan Sweet Toppings
There are several sweet toppings that are vegan. While there aren't any vegan pancakes or French toast, you could add one of these toppings to an order of grits if you like them sweet.
- 100% Pure Maple Syrup
- Our Blueberry Syrup
- Sugar-Free Syrup
- Low-Sugar Fruit Spread
Vegan Kids Breakfast
There is one kids breakfast options that's vegan.
- Tater Rounds
Lunch and Dinner Options
All of their salads contain meat and dairy items. However, you can make them vegan with modifications.
- House Salad - Omit the bacon, cheese and croutons
- Chef Salad - Omit the turkey, ham, bacon, croutons and eggs
- Homestyle Chicken Salad - Omit the chicken, egg, shredded cheese, croutons, and cheese wedge
Non-Dairy Dressings and Sauces
Luckily, there is a salad dressing available that's also vegan.
- Balsamic Herb Vinaigrette
- BBQ Sauce
Vegetable Sides and Sides of the Day with Vegan Ingredients
Note: A couple of the vegetable sides may be cooked with lard (animal fat) so you'll need to check that at your location. Not every restaurant cooks them the same way.
- Steak Fries
- Breaded Fried Okra
- Sweet Whole Baby Carrots
- Whole Kernel Corn (some locations may cook with lard so make sure you ask)
- Fresh Steamed Broccoli
- Turnip Greens (some locations may cook with lard so make sure you ask)
- Boiled Cabbage
- Lima Beans
- Fried Apples (YAY!)
- Plain baked potato or baked sweet potato
- Fresh apple slices
Unfortunately, the pinto beans and green beans both contain animal products. It would be great if there could be an option for pinto beans without animal ingredients since they are such a great protein source. But on the upside, their famous Fried Apples are dairy-free! That might be enough for me to make a stop on my next road trip.
All soups, including the Vegetable Soup, contain dairy products and are NOT VEGAN.
Non-Dairy Iced Tea n' Beverages
- Unsweetened iced tea
- Sweetened Iced Tea
- Orange Juice
- Apple Juice
- Soft Drinks
- Hot Tea
All desserts contain dairy unfortunately. That being said, an order of their fried apples definitely tastes like dessert to me.
Cracker Barrel does not have a ton of options for breakfast that do not contain meat, dairy or egg products. There are a few breakfast items that can make up a reasonable breakfast. With the new addition of Impossible Sausage.
- Impossible sausage, ground grits with fruit on the side and a cup of hot tea. If you like your grits sweet you can add some maple syrup on top.
- Multigrain toast, Impossible sausage, and fruit on the side and a cup of coffee.
Lunch or Dinner Ideas
There are somewhat more vegan options for lunch or dinner.
- Salad (with modifications) with a baked potato or steak fries
- Vegetable plate with broccoli, baked sweet potato, and fried apples.
- Any other combination of vegan vegetable sides plus an Impossible sausage
If you follow a vegan diet, Cracker Barrel isn't one of the best restaurants to go to. It also certainly isn't the worst...that is probably Arby's. As there are several vegan side dishes, the Country Vegetable Plate (with vegan items) might be your best bet for lunch or dinner as long as you omit the country biscuits and corn muffins. You can also take out the animal products from their salads for another good option. The good news is that all locations now have Impossible Sausage on their menu which greatly improves vegan meal options.
Are you wondering about other restaurant or fast-food chains? Check out