Vegan Nom Noms Does America: South Dakota and Wyoming

Vegan MoFo Post #4!

This is where the veganism started to get a bit difficult and where I had my least vegan friendly restaurant experience so far, albeit with some very well-meaning staff. Silver lining is that we stumbled upon a random small town called Cody with a little natural foods shop and they even had Dandies vegan marshmallows so I could prepare for s’more domination while camping!
Yolo Wall Drug Sign | Vegan Nom Noms After Minneapolis we headed towards South Dakota, where we couchsurfed with an awesome host living on the Pine Ridge Reservation. The silly roadside tourist traps started once we left Minneapolis. This YOLO one I found particularly funny. It’s for Wall Drug, a big store that has 5 cent coffee, a restaurant, pies, etc. We never ended up checking it out, but billboards for it started from 250 miles away building up to it.Tourist Trap Wyoming | Vegan Nom Noms Here was another roadside attraction in the middle of nowhere. 1880 Town and a giant diner on a train. There was an entrance fee, so we didn’t go in, but they basically build an old west style town you could walk through.Frank Couchsurfing South Dakota | Vegan Nom Noms Bonus cute animal picture of the day, this is Frank, our couchsurfing host’s adorable dog and also my dog alarm clock, as he really woke me up at 6am by running full speed from our host’s room to jumping on me and intensely licking my face. I didn’t even care because it was so hilarious. Look at that face! On the Border Grand Rapids South Dakota | Vegan Nom Noms This was a big win on the #makingitwork scale. After driving 100 miles to the nearest civilization from the Pine Ridge Reservation through the Badlands we ended up in Grand Rapids, South Dakota at an On the Border chain Mexican restaurant. No joke, our host told us this was the distance she needed to drive for her grocery runs, mind-blowing! The benefit of the middle of nowhere-ness being that I got to see the Milky Way for the first time and realize there are a lot more stars than I thought, what an amazing view when there’s no light pollution!

Anyway! This On the Border chain ended up being awesome. Not only were the free chips and salsa great, my veggie fajitas with no sour cream or cheese and extra guac instead were delicious!

After South Dakota, our next overnight on the way to Yellowstone was in Greybull, Wyoming as it was the cheapest hotel we could find at a good stopping point. We stayed at the Antler Motel for $65 for the night through Booking.com. Split between my friend and I it was less than $35 each for the night. The motel was small, clean, simple, fridge and coffee in the room, wifi, everything you need for a good stopover and a bit quirky a well.

Below is my biggest meal fail so far at a place called Uptown Cafe on the main street of Greybull. We went to one of the only places in town serving breakfast and I scoured the menu for anything that might possibly be vegan. I got hash browns and noticed they had a salad bar for lunch so asked if they could just steam me some vegetables from there for breakfast. What did they choose? Soggy probably canned peas. Womp womp. Worst Vegan Meal Greybull Wyoming | Vegan Nom Noms Accepting my plan to get any sort of vegetables into my body that morning was not going to pan out, I also asked for toast with margarine, which I figured was safe. I specifically asked about margarine, which they said they had. They delivered me that toast in the picture smeared with butter, so I asked nicely if I could have new toast and margarine on the side. They then brought me new toast and a bowl of butter. I asked again and they said they only had I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter, so they brought that and I read it and realized there was whey in it. Toast with peanut butter from a packet it is then! Ah well, at least I got some protein. They weren’t trying to be jerks, but the concept of no meat or dairy was totally and absolutely foreign to this town. Cody Wyoming Natural Foods Store | Vegan Nom NomsSilver lining, about a 20 minute drive from Greybull, we pulled into a slightly bigger town called Cody, Wyoming to get gas and stumbled upon a little natural foods store called Mountain High Health Foods. One of the employees was vegan and found some Dandies for me for camping and another even gave us a local cucumber she had just bought at a farmer’s market and told us where to get some good produce. They even had this case filled with Daiya, Tofutti, soy creamer, etc. In the middle of Wyoming!!! I was shocked. The town also had a Starbucks where I got a little oatmeal with fruit and soymilk to make up for my less than satisfying breakfast.

Moral of the story, don’t eat in Greybull, Wyoming, head a bit further to Cody instead! Lesson learned!

Next stop…Yellowstone! Wanna catch up on where I’ve been so far? Check out the Posts by Location page or follow me on Instagram!

What’s your worst vegan fail travel story?!

veganmofologo2014



  1. I’ve had quite a few vegan travel fail stories! I don’t know which one could be the worst! Traveling through small towns in the Southern United States was up there for sure! We have On The Border in Michigan too, but I never eat there because there are better options available. Sometimes you don’t realize the things you take for granted until you end up in a vegan food desert! I’m glad you found something! I love your courage traveling through places like this. 😉 🙂

    East Meets West Veg / Reply
    • Uh-oh, I’m heading through the south next! We’ll see how it goes! It’s mostly okay as I’ve been hoarding food in my car and when traveling alone I can just eat trail mix if I feel like it, even if that is not so exciting. I’m not sure if On the Border is amazing or was just amazing given my location at the time, haha.

  2. I don’t know if you’ll be heading through Jackson, WY or if you’ve already passed on through (we did on our way south from Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons) and there is this lovely restaurant called the Lotus Cafe and they have so many vegan options.

    You can also buy soy milk at the Old Faithful Grill house place in Yellowstone National Park.

    Also Cody looks like a great place to go. Not bad at all. How random to run into a vegan in WY. 🙂

    MeShell / Reply
    • Ah yes I’ve already passed through Wyoming twice, once on the way to Portland, OR and just now on the way to Denver, CO. Good to know for next time though, thanks for the tip! 🙂

  3. Yay for marshmallows! The less said about those peas the better.

    veganinbrighton / Reply
  4. Too bad about the breakfast fail! That’s so sweet of them to help you out by giving you a cucumber and finding you Dandies though. Yay for meeting other vegans on the road!

    Caitlin @ The Vegan Word / Reply

Leave a Reply