Vegetarian

The Ten Best Vegan Wings in Denver

Watercourse makes wings ether with seiten, like these, or cauliflower.
Watercourse makes wings ether with seiten, like these, or cauliflower. Facebook/Watercourse Foods
Chicken wings are the quintessential bar food — but an obvious off-limits appetizer for vegetarians and vegans. With a growing interest in veg options, eateries are using seitan and cauliflower to replace the poultry, making wings fair game for everyone. Here are ten vegan wings you'll want to fly in for right now.
click to enlarge Known for the wings, Fire On The Mountain offers a house-made seitan option. - FIRE ON THE MOUNTAIN
Known for the wings, Fire On The Mountain offers a house-made seitan option.
Fire On The Mountain

Fire on the Mountain

3801 West 32nd Avenue
303-480-9464
fotmdenver.com

The seitan used for wings at Fire on the Mountain is made fresh daily and designed to replicate the texture of traditional wings. Bite sized pieces are lightly fried and smothered in housemade sauces, ranging from a traditional extra-hot Buffalo to a cool lime-cilantro. Other finishes include spicy peanut, bourbon-chipotle, Jamaican jerk, raspberry-habanero, and the tongue-blistering El Jefe. Cool down the heat with a creamy (but dairy-free) vegan ranch.
click to enlarge The cauliflower wings at ShaWING are lightly fried and smothered in hot sauce. - SHAWING
The cauliflower wings at ShaWING are lightly fried and smothered in hot sauce.
ShaWING

ShaWING

303-957-6892
shawingtruck.com

The goal of ShaWING, a Denver-based food truck, was to make Buffalo-style bar food for Denver. For the veg substitute, owner Chris Rizzo fries cauliflower florets, without breading, in canola oil. The simple, crispy wings are tossed in butter-free buffalo sauce cranked up with cayenne. The cauliflower wings are served along crispy carrot sticks for more healthy crunch.
click to enlarge City, O' City's seitan wings are also available in a wrap. - CITY O' CITY
City, O' City's seitan wings are also available in a wrap.
City O' City

City, O’ City

206 East 13th Avenue
303-831-6443
cityocitydenver.com

Of course, Denver’s iconic vegetarian restaurant is going to come strong with its wing game. The faux flappers here are made from seitan and can be tossed in a traditional spicy Buffalo sauce or a slightly sweet barbecue sauce. Served as an appetizer, they come with vegan ranch and celery, but the wings also make another appearance in the eatery's Buffalo wrap, tossed in Caesar dressing and showered with greens.

Collision Brewing Company & Restaurant


1436 Skyway Drive, Longmont
720-996-1850
collisionbrewco.com

The majority of the massive menu at Collision Brewing can be made vegan by swapping in dairy-free queso, vegan sour cream or a plant-based protein, such as miso-ginger tofu or an Impossible burger patty. The brewpub offers both seitan and cauliflower for wing options, both tossed in a variety of housemade sauces:  barbecue, Buffalo, maple-chipotle, mango jerk, sweet Thai chili, mustard glaze or the zingy Bangin’ sauce.
click to enlarge Choose from cauliflower or seitan wings at Watercourse. - WATERCOURSE
Choose from cauliflower or seitan wings at Watercourse.
Watercourse

Watercourse Foods

837 East 17th Avenue
303-832-7313
watercoursefoods.com

The wings at Watercourse Foods fit right in with a completely vegan menu loaded with hearty comfort foods such as burgers, nachos, pasta and mac and cheese. Choose between gluten-free cauliflower wings or seitan wings, then get saucy with house Buffalo, Memphis-inspired barbecue or orange glaze. Vegan ranch dressing and celery come alongside.

click to enlarge Vital Root uses cauliflower and broccoli for its Korean-style wings. - VITAL ROOT
Vital Root uses cauliflower and broccoli for its Korean-style wings.
Vital Root

Vital Root

3915 Tennyson Street
303-474-4131
vitalrootdenver.com

Vital Root’s menu is all about healthy food that’s unexpected, fresh and unique. The Korean BBQ Veggie Wings start with broccoli and cauliflower that get smoked for a boost of flavor. After that, they're sauced and pelted with sesame seeds and "toga-ranch-i," a tangy take on Japanese togarashi seasoning.
click to enlarge Vegan Van makes its own seitan and turns it into spicy wings. - VEGAN VAN
Vegan Van makes its own seitan and turns it into spicy wings.
Vegan Van

Vegan Van

303-656-1964
veganvan.com

Vegan Van serves fast food with a meatless twist, including cheeseburgers, bacon burgers, corn dogs, meatball heroes and tacos. Housemade seitan is turned into wing form and tossed in either Buffalo or barbecue sauce. As is customary, these bites are served with celery, carrots and ranch. Find the truck at Nooch Vegan Market, Alternation Brewing and Cerebral Brewing; follow @denverveganvan on Instagram for other locations.
click to enlarge Native Foods offers crunchy fried or grilled wings. - NATIVE FOODS
Native Foods offers crunchy fried or grilled wings.
Native Foods

Native Foods Cafe

680 South Colorado Boulevard, Glendale
303-758-3440
nativefoodscafe.com

Native Foods serves only plant-based foods in a casual setting. The restaurant’s take on chicken comes as wings or in sandwiches, wraps and salads. The wings, made from a proprietary plant-based blend (that's not gluten-free) can either be grilled or crispy and are served with a choice of Buffalo, spicy Korean or Thai chili-cilantro sauce. The wings are served on a bed of shredded cabbage, carrots and green onion with a side of ranch.
click to enlarge Buffalo-wing tacos from Migration are covered in a creamy, dairy-free vegan blue cheese sauce. - MIGRATION TACO
Buffalo-wing tacos from Migration are covered in a creamy, dairy-free vegan blue cheese sauce.
Migration Taco

Migration Taco

720-739-1413
migrationtaco.com

The Migration Taco truck creates tasty tacos minus meat, dairy and eggs. The Buffalo tacos are a customer favorite, filled with seitan Buffalo wings, crisp red cabbage, radishes, creamy blue-cheese dressing and green onions. Find out where Migration is dishing up wings at @migrationtaco on Instagram.
click to enlarge Veggie Yeti thinks you'll like the vegan wings, even if you're not vegan. - VEGGIE YETI
Veggie Yeti thinks you'll like the vegan wings, even if you're not vegan.
Veggie Yeti

Veggie Yeti

541-913-1778
facebook.com/theveggieyeti5280

The Veggie Yeti food truck was created with the goal of providing tasty plant-based food for both vegans and carnivores. Sample the wings in the Buffalo cauliflower tacos at Belmar in Lakewood, the Golden Farmers' Market and Alternation Brewing, among other locations. You can track down the Yeti on Instagram at @theveggieyeti5280.
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Kristen Kuchar is a Colorado writer covering craft beer, food and travel. For Westword, she explores vegan dining and the state's artisan beverages, such as cider and mead.