Wagamama launches new vegan-themed dishes – vows to make menu 50% meat free in this ‘Year of Change’ – Totally Vegan Buzz

Wagamama launches new vegan-themed dishes – vows to make menu 50% meat free in this ‘Year of Change’

Wagamama launches new vegan-themed dishes - vows to make menu 50% meat free in this 'Year of Change'
Image: Wagamama

“Vegan choices should be so delicious that everyone should want to include them in their lives, whether a strict vegan or someone who has never thought of themselves as a vegan before.”

Peterborough-based restaurant chain, Wagamama is moving ahead with a new vegan-themed menu for Veganuary amid its pledge to make 50% of its menu meat-free by the end of 2021.

According to the pan Asian restaurant, the move is in line with its campaign ‘Small Choices, Big Change’ – launched in response to growing climate concerns.

The new menu launching on 5th January will offer plant-based versions of cult favourite dishes; Chilli Squid, sticky ribs, Firecracker Curry and Grilled Duck Donburi, which the company hopes will entice even their ‘most set-in-their-ways meat-eating fans’.

Wagamama launches new vegan-themed dishes - vows to make menu 50% meat free
Image: Wagamama

‘Championing a plant-based diet’

Acknowledging the bizarre decision of launching a new menu, in the middle of a second wave of the pandemic, Wagamama chief executive Emma Woods said the group wanted to ensure 2021 is a “year of change”.

Wagamama launches new vegan-themed dishes - vows to make menu 50% meat free in this 'Year of Change'
Image: Piranhi / shutterstock.com

She told the PA news agency: “2021 feels like a year that we should be trying to make a positive impact.

“For us, that’s about championing a plant-based diet. That’s one of the promises we’re making as a business.”

Wagamama’s new vegan menu

The four new vegan dishes on the menu include Wagamama’s iconic king oyster mushroom-based Chilli ‘Squid’, which will be served with a tantalising dipping sauce of chilli and coriander.

The Vegan Sticky Ribs are made combining mushroom and soya protein and the No-Duck Donburi is made with shredded seitan and shiitake mushrooms coated in a cherry hoisin sauce.

Wagamama has also veganised Firecracker – one of its popular curries and crowd favourite.

According to Woods, “Vegan choices should be so delicious that everyone should want to include them in their lives, whether a strict vegan or someone who has never thought of themselves as a vegan before.

“As Covid causes us all to press pause on so many things, let’s make sure we fast forward the small decisions which can better our planet”.

‘Can’t wait to try it

“Thrilled” at Wagamama’s commitment to half meat offerings on menus by 2021, Toni Vernelli, International Head of Communications at Veganuary said: “It’s a big step as a high street restaurant shows their dedication to making vegan eating as accessible as possible to the masses.”

He added: “Every year Wagamama has consistently made it easier to persuade people to try vegan food by introducing great-tasting, high-quality vegan dishes to their menu.

“This year is no different, as their Small Choices, Big Change campaign continues to champion the vegan movement by empowering their teams and guests to make sustainable choices.

“This new menu clearly embraces the opportunity to create vegan versions of fan This new menu clearly embraces the opportunity to create vegan versions of fan favourites, while also introducing guests to new innovative plant-based options. It will appeal to non-vegans and vegans alike, and we can’t wait to try it.”

While all Wagamama sites have closed for dine-in options, 118 of its 148 sites will remain operational for takeaway and click and collect services.

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