Happy birthday to you
Happy birthday to you
Enjoy all this free food
It’s all vegan, too!
I recently celebrated my birthday, and as I write this I happen to be enjoying my free birthday frapp from Starbucks (made with soy milk and no whip cream, of course.) Starbucks Rewards members can enjoy a complimentary drink or food item each year on their birthday. So that got me itching to search for what else I could rake in just for getting one year older.
Turns out, there are actually several chain restaurants that offer free birthday stuff for vegans and vegetarians. Here is a list of some birthday freebies you can collect at chain restaurants, along with an explanation of how to make the perk vegan.
Birthday Perk: Free Drink or Food Item
How to Get It: Sign up for Starbucks Rewards.
Make it Vegan: Order your choice of drink with soy milk, coconut milk or almond milk and NO whip cream to make it dairy-free. Also, make sure the drink you want has all dairy-free syrups and sauces, as well. Some contain dairy and some do not. The Mocha Sauce is vegan, but the White Chocolate Mocha Sauce is made with condensed skim milk. The Caramel Syrup is vegan, but the Caramel Drizzle contains milk. My go-to vegan Starbucks drink is a Soy Mocha Frappuccino with no whip cream. You can see the ingredients for all of the drinks on the Starbucks website.
Birthday Perk: Free Small Birthday Smoothie
How to Get It: Sign up for Jamba Insider Rewards.
Make it Vegan: Choose a drink that does not contain animal products from the All-Fruit Smoothie line, such as the Strawberry Whirl Smoothie or the Peach Perfection Smoothie.
Which Wich? Superior Sandwiches
Birthday Perk: Free 7″ Sandwich
How to Get It: Sign up for Vibe Club Rewards.
Make it Vegan: You can make your own vegan sandwich if you know the individual pieces to order that are vegan. Which Wich has an easy-to-follow vegan section on their website where you can see exactly which items are free of meat and dairy. I like the Black Bean Patty with hummus, avocado and lots of veggies on either the white bread or the Lettucewich.
Birthday Perk: Free Burger or Garden Bar Entree up to $11
How to Get It: Sign up for So Connected.
Make it Vegan: Choose the salad bar option. It’s actually possible to create a filling, hearty meal from the Ruby Tuesday salad bar, especially now that they have added new and better toppings. They even have hummus, baby carrots and celery sticks!
CHOPT Creative Salad Company
Birthday Perk: $5 CHOPT Credit
How to Get It: Download the CHOPT app on your smartphone; create a profile via the app and turn on e-mail notifications.
Make it Vegan: CHOPT is a great place for vegans. You can make your own salad, bowl or sandwich creation, or choose one of their menu suggestions and just substitute any cheese or dairy dressings for a vegan option. Check out CHOPT nutrition info on their website.
Birthday Perk: Free Bagel
How to Get It: Sign up for the Brugger’s Bagels eClub
Make it Vegan: Choose a bagel that is vegan (most of them are) and just skip the cream cheese, unfortunately, since it contains dairy. A free bagel is better than nothing! Instead of cream cheese, you can opt for hummus instead, however, that would be an extra charge. I was bummed to learn this when I asked if I could get hummus instead of cream cheese. Come on, Bruegger’s…how about changing your birthday perk to include free hummus instead of cream cheese for the vegans, eh?
Noodles & Company
Birthday Perk: Free Noodle Bowl up to $9
How to Get It: Sign up for the Eclub and Noodlegrams.
Make it Vegan: Choose a bowl that contains no meat or dairy. Most of the bowls have animal ingredients, but the few vegan options are the Japanese Pan Noodles and the Indonesian Peanut Sauté. Check out the Noodles & Company Nutrition Information on their website.
The restaurants may change their offers at any time. To obtain the offer, you need to keep up with your e-mail and text notifications. During the month of your birthday, the restaurants will send you the birthday promo as part of their regular newsletter blasts. So don’t opt out of the company’s marketing communications, or you may miss the code/coupon for your freebie!
Have you tried any of the food items on this list?