Since reading Jonathan Safran Foer’s 2009 book “Eating Animals,” I’ve done my best to stop eating animals, while also not being an annoying or self righteous in the matter.

That means consensually dining alongside carnivorous friends, family, colleagues, etc. and ordering French fries, green beans or bread and pickles as a meal. First world probs, I know.

But I always perked up for lunch at Chip’s Old Fashioned Hamburger, which began in 1981 and has locations at Lovers at the Tollway, in Lakewood and now in Oak Cliff. That’s because Chip’s has a delicious veggie and also a portobello burger.

Chip’s has fried cheese, fried pickles, fried mushrooms and fried green tomatoes (I never said healthy). Chip’s has football-sized spuds on which you can load — if you are not vegan — butter cheese and sour cream for a filling side or full meal.

Chip’s also has spinach and mushroom quesadillas and a whole slew of healthier accompaniments — steamed spinach, steamed broccoli, steamed corn, fruit salad, pinto beans, sautéed cabbage, steamed rice … you get the idea. Sides galore.

My only beef is with the salad menu — the salads look amazing but you would have to make more modifications than I would care to (I care for zero modifications when gauging convenience and the best chance of an error-free to-go order).

And here’s where Chip’s menu gets into danger territory — pies. When you pick up your order at new Chip’s in Oak Cliff near Methodist Hospital you encounter Chip’s bakery which includes shelves of darling, delectable, rich, whipped creamy pies in varieties such as peanut butter chocolate, key lime, coconut and I-don’t-even-know-how-many more. I was quite overwhelmed and just asked the cashier to pack up one of her choice (she picked the peanut butter chocolate one and I will dream of her and it until we meet again, which will hopefully be tonight).

This burger-plus joint has been in Dallas since 1981. Brent Gamster bought it in 2011 and expanded from one location on Lovers at the Tollway to outposts in Lakewood and Plano, and now — for pleasure or demise — Oak Cliff. Chip’s on Beckley also has a full bar and is a great place to watch the Cowboys with a nice view of the Dallas skyline if you do not have a TV. Just saying.

The following are a few other hamburger joints with vegetarian and vegan offerings (chosen for convenience and quality, bearing in mind that I live in Oak Cliff but also frequent Preston Hollow, Lakewood/East Dallas and Lake Highlands for work.):

Shake Shack (Preston Hollow, Old Town/East Dallas)

Hunky’s (Oak Cliff, Oak Lawn)

Twisted Root (Deep Ellum, suburbs)

Jake’s (Lake Highlands, East Dallas, Oak Lawn, suburbs)

Burger King (everywhere) — you can’t take my foodie card because I never had one anyway, and the Impossible Whopper and offshoots such as nuggets and breakfast sandwiches are the ultimate convenience on road trips and late nights. Side note: Harder core vegetarians and vegans have pointed out that BK grills plant-based products alongside the real meat.


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