Is The House Salad At Olive Garden Vegan? (Updated 2024)

Vegan Options at Olive Garden

In the United States, when you hear that someone is going to get soup, salad and breadsticks, your first thought is probably that they’re going to Olive Garden.

As a vegan, we have to question what the ingredients are in everything we order at restaurnats that are not 100% vegan.

To begin, I want to mention that Olive Garden defines vegan as,

Vegan is defined as not including animal meat, stock, gelatin, rennet, or ingredients derived from animals, including honey.

And we, at VeggL, always point out that cross-contamination can occur at restaurnats that are not 100% vegan or do not offer a designated space for vegan-friendly items. You choose your level of comfort.

What Is In Olive Garden’s Salad?

Olive Garden’s salad contains lettuce, tomato, black olives, red onion, pepperoncini and croutons. The dressing Olive Garden uses on their House Salad is Italian Dressing.

Can Olive Garden’s House Salad Be Made Vegan?

Yes! Not all of the salad components of Olive Garden’s House Salad are vegan so here is how you will order your salad.

Order the House Salad with NO croutons. SUB the Italian Dressing with Oil & Vinegar.

The vinegar is a balsamic vinegar.

Simple as that!

What Else Can I Order Vegan At Olive Garden?

Well, remember when I mentioned soup, salad and breadsticks at the start?

The good news is, you can order ALL of these as a vegan! And not only these three menu items but also pasta.

Here are a few menu items we love…

As an appetizer, you can order the Breadsticks with Marinara Sauce. A regular order comes with 4 breadsticks while a large comes with 8.

Vegan Options at Olive Garden
Olive Garden’s Angel Hair Pasta with Broccoli and a Breadstick

But be aware, you do not have to order the breadsticks as an appetizer if you get the Create Your Own Pasta entree because 2 come with each order.

With the Create Your Own Pasta, there are a variety of noodles to choose from: Angel Hair, Fettuccine, Rigatoni, Small Shells, and Spaghetti. The pasta comes with Marinara Sauce.

You have the option to add a topping; however, the only vegan-friendly topping is broccoli.

Vegan Options at Olive Garden
Olive Garden’s Minestrone Soup

Next, you can choose either soup or salad which is included with your entree along with the breadsticks. This is going to be an easy choice for you because you only have two; the House Salad this entire article is about and their Minestrone Soup.

In Conclusion…

It had been many years since either Ryan or myself had been to an Olive Garden but we went in November of 2023 and were honestly pleasantly surprised by how much we enjoyed it.

To see a complete list of Olive Garden’s vegan options, visit our Vegan Guide for Olive Garden. We share in detail which items are vegan and how to order them.

Tell us in the comments what your go-to order is at Olive Garden as a vegan!

VeggL (Jen and Ryan)

VeggL is the passion project of Jen & Ryan. Both vegan (Jen since 2012, Ryan since 2018), they wanted to help other vegans & plant based folks through an incredibly frustrating process--trying to figure out what you can eat & where in the US. Pictured w/ our pups, Mia & Chompers.

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