BEST VEGETARIAN FAST FOOD AT A CHICKEN PLACE (2009)

California Chicken Café

Just an aside: Did you ever notice that even holier-than-thou vegetarians still sport leather bags and shoes—as if "wearing" animals doesn't count? Hypocriticality aside, when you skip the footed foods at California Chicken Café, you should feel positively virtuous dining on any of the chain's incredibly healthy and dirt-cheap veggie delights. While your carnivore cowhide-wearing chums feast on what's just the best rotisserie chicken around, you can honor your animal-free commitment by wearing cruelty-free canvas and chowing down on the 100-percent vegan broccoli or veggie soup, along with vegetarian sides such as fruit salad, squash, mashed potatoes (sans gravy), roasted potatoes, broccoli pasta salad, veggie rice primavera and Chinese cabbage salad — all prepared without oils, mayo or butter. Prices range from $2.75 to $8.50 for half-pints, pints and quarts. Check Web site for more locations.

—Heidi Dvorak

Location Details

6805 Melrose Ave.
Los Angeles CA 90038
323-935-5877