Vegetarian food that’s not “unintentional” was the goal with this sandwich Jeffrey Quasha, CEC, CCA, ACE, corporate executive chef R&D for Morrison Healthcare. “Why can’t a vegetarian or flexitarian experience a two-fisted burger-style sandwich that screams flavor, has a bite and is messy but so good?” We say why not! The cauliflower is battered, fried, then tossed in a sweet-heat Buffalo sauce then topped with vine-ripened tomatoes, organic leaf lettuce and sliced red onions. And you can’t forget the bleu cheese dressing.
Buffalo cauli wrap
Virginia Tech Dining Services
Same basic idea as the previous sandwich, but completely different direction. This wrap of tempura-battered cauliflower tossed with Buffalo sauce, rice, greens and vegan cheese was a collaboration between Virginia Tech’s always creative culinary team at West End Market and students who were pushing for more whole foods and plant-forward ingredients.
Fried green tomato po’ boy
Central Washington University
CWU’s Chef Joe Ritchie saw a perfect storm one summer with basil and tomatoes in season and an increased demand for creative vegetarian sandwiches, so he created this dreamy, Southern inspired sandwich.
Portobello banh mi
BU’s Chef Chris Bee took advantage of grilled mushroom’s meaty nature with this sandwich. He also paid obsessive attention to detail with the flavors (ginger, chili, mint, lime) and the build (layering with fresh veggies on a local baguette).
Balsamic roasted portobello sandwich
Chartwells K-12 at Pewaukee (Wis.) School District
Another great way to bring out the best in portobello mushrooms, this sandwich gets extra umami from balsamic vinegar, goat cheese, cherry tomatoes and wilted kale with garlic and onion.
Chicken fried tofu biscuit
Metz Culinary Management at Mid Atlantic Christian University
There’s no chicken in this sandwich but it does gives you that same feeling of crispy chicken on a biscuit; hard to beat!
Szechuan patty melt
Morrison Living, State College, Pa.
And moving onto the meat pretender side of plant-based sandwiches, this patty melt from Morrison Living Executive Chef Brian McCarthy is made with a vegan burger patty with pickled yams and a spicy tomato relish on rye bread.
Perfectly plant club sandwich
Sodexo at Liberty University
Chef Sarah Falls, CEC, CCA, created this sandwich for committed vegetarians who miss a classic sub sandwich, cold cuts and all. Instead, she used vegan ham and portobello jerky with tofu herb spread and vegan mozzarella to recreate a classic.
Plant-based “chicken” and waffled donut sandwich
Plant-based nuggets are tossed with smoky, spicy maple syrup and combined with plant-based mac ‘n cheese, plant-based chipotle mayo, pickles and candied jalapenos on this “more is more” sandwich, all on a waffled glazed donut.
Vegan meatball marinara sub
There’s nothing like a classic Italian meatball sub…or is there? This version from Aramark Catering Chef Charles Bixler makes a great case with plant-based meatballs, sauteed peppers and onions, vegan mozzarella and marinara sauce on a French hoagie bun.