Vegetarian options at Outback Steakhouse? - VeggieBoards - A Vegetarian Community
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#1 Old 12-20-2010, 01:37 PM
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My grandmother has booked Christmas Eve dinner at Outback Steakhouse.

Yay.

I realize that everyone else in the family is thrilled by this turn of events. Far be it from me to rain on everyone's parade.

I am starting to realize I will have to order off the "freshly made sides" menu and I'm thinking a house salad with no dressing and some potato wedges or steamed veggies is what I will have to go with. Even their baked potato with no toppings has over 2,000mg of sodium so I am definitely not ordering that.

Has anyone here been to Outback recently and if so, what did you order?????
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#2 Old 12-20-2010, 01:40 PM
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As I recall, the only veggie friendly things they have are lettuce and dry potatoes. Hate that place.
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#3 Old 12-20-2010, 01:40 PM
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How do you get 2,000mg of sodium into a plain baked potato!??!

I thought Outback had baked sweet potatoes, I would have recommended one of those with a garden salad. Their margaritas are pretty good too.

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#4 Old 12-20-2010, 01:54 PM
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Can you eat before you go out substantially, then order a small salad when you are out and some fruit or something? Then you won't be hungry and grumpy about the lack of options but you still get to eat something so you won't get moaned at by family relatives
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#5 Old 12-20-2010, 02:48 PM
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The baked potatos are rolled in sea salt. I am pretty certain that you can request that it not happen like that. Last time I was there, I had a potato and a salad.

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#6 Old 12-20-2010, 02:54 PM
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They used to have a pasta that was vegetarian, or at least, you could ask for it without chicken or something. It looks like there is one still, but it's covered in dairy, so if you're a vegan, you might be SOL
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#7 Old 12-20-2010, 03:11 PM
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I'm pretty sure the veggies have parmesan cheese on them. You could always ask for them without it. The potatoes might too. There's always the blooming onion and cheese fries if you feel like being unhealthy and you aren't a vegan (no bacon on the fries, of course). You could also have salad, but I'm afraid that's it. The pasta they have has alfredo sauce and comes with chicken.
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#8 Old 12-20-2010, 08:34 PM
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Ugh...I think sometime after Christmas I will have a talk with grandma about next Christmas Eve but in the meantime I think it's a house salad and steamed veggies for me.
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#9 Old 12-20-2010, 09:06 PM
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if you're having steamed veggies and don't eat butter you should be very careful.
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#10 Old 12-20-2010, 09:13 PM
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As an Australian I find that entire restaurant hilarious. I once had an American ask me something about 'Bloomin Onion' and I had no idea what it was. Turns out it was invented for that restaurant, not an Australian thing at all haha. No wonder no Australians actually know what it is.

Sorry to hear there is no vegetarian options on the menu. That's actually not very Australian at all. As I said I live in Australia and every restaurant here (even steakhouses) have at least one vegetarian option, if not a whole section or page.
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#11 Old 12-21-2010, 01:01 AM
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My vote is you eat before and get a DESSERT
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#12 Old 12-21-2010, 03:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zirpkatze View Post

if you're having steamed veggies and don't eat butter you should be very careful.

Good point as most places will add butter to steamed veggies without asking, but I'm still not totally off dairy.

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Originally Posted by Critter View Post

As an Australian I find that entire restaurant hilarious. I once had an American ask me something about 'Bloomin Onion' and I had no idea what it was. Turns out it was invented for that restaurant, not an Australian thing at all haha. No wonder no Australians actually know what it is.

Sorry to hear there is no vegetarian options on the menu. That's actually not very Australian at all. As I said I live in Australia and every restaurant here (even steakhouses) have at least one vegetarian option, if not a whole section or page.

I think most of us know that it's not really Australian. And that Bloomin' Onion thing is disgusting. So greasy.

It'd be like Australians going to a TGI Friday's in Sydney and assuming that we all eat like that. But actually TGI Friday's would be much closer to the average American diet than Outback Steakhouse would be to the avg Australian diet, I'm guessing. Though I hear the Australians are chubbing up quite nicely. Is that true?

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My vote is you eat before and get a DESSERT

Hehehe...oddly enough I don't have much of a sweet tooth. I'm really good at making desserts but not so good at eating them. I'd rather munch on nachos, pickles, crackers, nuts, salty things.
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#13 Old 12-21-2010, 03:51 AM
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I should probably add that due to my shellfish allergy, fried things are off my menu at Outback because they fry shrimp in the same grease that they use for everything else. So if I ordered french fries (which I love), they could take a batch of shrimp out of that grease and dump my fries in there, which might send me to the hospital for the evening. And I don't trust waiters/kitchen staff with my life so even if they "swear" they'll use fresh grease for my order, I wouldn't believe it. They might forget, or they might just outright lie because they don't understand how severe a food allergy can be.

So I have even fewer options than most people. This was the case even when I was an omni. Last year at Outback I had a baked potato and a salad because I couldn't eat anything that could potentially come into contact with shellfish so grilled and fried items were out.

Sucks because I'd love to nosh on an order of fries drowning in ketchup.
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#14 Old 12-21-2010, 04:31 AM
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Though I hear the Australians are chubbing up quite nicely. Is that true?

This is true, Australians have been getting fatter and fatter since the influx of US fast food chains. McDonalds, KFC etc. I think we aren't too far behind US now in the obesity scale.
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#15 Old 12-21-2010, 04:38 AM
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I was at Outback last week with my son and ordered the baked potato (had no idea they rolled it in salt!!!), a house salad and a side of sauteed mushrooms. Delicious and I was really full-took home half the potato.
I hope you can enjoy your time with the family and find something yummy to eat too...
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#16 Old 12-21-2010, 04:51 AM
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This is true, Australians have been getting fatter and fatter since the influx of US fast food chains. McDonalds, KFC etc. I think we aren't too far behind US now in the obesity scale.

I don't think it's the US chains as much as it is the lifestyle.

I lived in the UK for many years and endured a lot of blame and finger-pointing from British people over their increasing obesity; they blamed it on US restaurant chains. I pointed out to them that nobody is holding a gun to anyone's head and that British people were perfectly free to refuse to patronize those businesses. They, like Australians, are choosing to patronize those businesses so they, like Australians, have only themselves to blame.

Just wanted to make that clear.

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Originally Posted by amytech View Post

I was at Outback last week with my son and ordered the baked potato (had no idea they rolled it in salt!!!), a house salad and a side of sauteed mushrooms. Delicious and I was really full-took home half the potato.
I hope you can enjoy your time with the family and find something yummy to eat too...

Me too, though Christmas with my family is something to be endured rather than enjoyed.
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#17 Old 12-21-2010, 12:41 PM
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Could you call ahead and ask? Sorry that, that's where the event ended up. Our family doesn't go out to eat too often so this hasn't been an issue for me yet..

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#18 Old 12-21-2010, 01:20 PM
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I googled "Vegetarian Options + Outback" and came across this review:

Outback steakhouse is a wonderful place to eat. Not only is the service great, but the overall atmosphere is unlike anywhere else. Most importantly, the food is absolutely delicious. They offer a variety of foods, from appetizers to soups and salads to meals to desserts. The best part about the Outback steakhouse is that they offer foods for even vegetarians. Who would have thought a vegan could eat at a steakhouse! They provide several vegetarian options, including the Veggy Mixed grill (which is what I usually get). It comes with many grilled vegetables, wild rice, and grilled pineapples. This plate is also served for non-vegans, as it is optional to have steak, chicken, shrimp, salmon, or scallops, as well. Overall, the Outback is a great place to take a large group of people to, thanks to their accommodating "No Rules" approach. It allows just about anyone to be satisfied! After a visit with my cousin who is allergic to wheat products, I also realized that they offer a Gluten Free menu. Many people are unable to eat at other restaurants due to this problem, but since Outback makes just about everything fresh and from scratch, they are able to alter their cooking procedures to allow those who need to eat gluten free to do so. She was even able to have a choice of salad dressings and many options for meals, as opposed to other places only offering a single gluten free meal if any. If you go to Outback I suggest getting the chocolate thunder from down under as your dessert. It is HUGE! I usually share it with one other person, however, if you are a big eater, you can take it on solo. It is a chocolate brownie(warm and freshly made each day), vanilla bean ice cream, hot chocolate sauce, and fresh whipped cream (also made fresh daily on site). It is to die for!


However I don't see that Veggie thing on their menu so perhaps it's something they'll make special order? I'd give a call ahead of time and ask if there's anything they can make to accommodate a veg*n other than a salad & steamed veggies - can't hurt, ya know?

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#19 Old 12-21-2010, 05:21 PM
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Originally Posted by kari_lynn222 View Post

I googled "Vegetarian Options + Outback" and came across this review:

Outback steakhouse is a wonderful place to eat. Not only is the service great, but the overall atmosphere is unlike anywhere else. Most importantly, the food is absolutely delicious. They offer a variety of foods, from appetizers to soups and salads to meals to desserts. The best part about the Outback steakhouse is that they offer foods for even vegetarians. Who would have thought a vegan could eat at a steakhouse! They provide several vegetarian options, including the Veggy Mixed grill (which is what I usually get). It comes with many grilled vegetables, wild rice, and grilled pineapples. This plate is also served for non-vegans, as it is optional to have steak, chicken, shrimp, salmon, or scallops, as well. Overall, the Outback is a great place to take a large group of people to, thanks to their accommodating "No Rules" approach. It allows just about anyone to be satisfied! After a visit with my cousin who is allergic to wheat products, I also realized that they offer a Gluten Free menu. Many people are unable to eat at other restaurants due to this problem, but since Outback makes just about everything fresh and from scratch, they are able to alter their cooking procedures to allow those who need to eat gluten free to do so. She was even able to have a choice of salad dressings and many options for meals, as opposed to other places only offering a single gluten free meal if any. If you go to Outback I suggest getting the chocolate thunder from down under as your dessert. It is HUGE! I usually share it with one other person, however, if you are a big eater, you can take it on solo. It is a chocolate brownie(warm and freshly made each day), vanilla bean ice cream, hot chocolate sauce, and fresh whipped cream (also made fresh daily on site). It is to die for!


However I don't see that Veggie thing on their menu so perhaps it's something they'll make special order? I'd give a call ahead of time and ask if there's anything they can make to accommodate a veg*n other than a salad & steamed veggies - can't hurt, ya know?


Thanks but I can't have grilled items; they grill shellfish at Outback and there is a risk of contamination. Veggies for me have to be boiled, steamed, or baked. Plus I didn't see the veggie mixed grill on their menu.
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#20 Old 12-21-2010, 05:40 PM
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I don't think it's the US chains as much as it is the lifestyle.

I lived in the UK for many years and endured a lot of blame and finger-pointing from British people over their increasing obesity; they blamed it on US restaurant chains. I pointed out to them that nobody is holding a gun to anyone's head and that British people were perfectly free to refuse to patronize those businesses. They, like Australians, are choosing to patronize those businesses so they, like Australians, have only themselves to blame.

Just wanted to make that clear.

Yeah, I'm sure it has absolutely nothing at all to do with the introduction of more and more fast food chains, most of which are American.
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#21 Old 12-21-2010, 05:42 PM
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Yeah, I'm sure it has absolutely nothing at all to do with the introduction of more and more fast food chains, most of which are American.

Having lived abroad for so long and having been the target of a lot of gratuitous anti-American abuse, I'm somewhat sensitive to this.

Australians are no less free to eat whatever they choose to eat than they were before American fast food landed. Blaming us is convenient and a BS cop-out. Australians, like everyone else, need to take responsibility for their own diets and their own health.

I don't accept the fast food excuse from Americans and I don't accept it from Australians or Europeans either. I don't want to hear it. I don't eat fast food and I'm not fat.

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaand it goes without saying that if no Australians chose to eat at these establishments, they'd close and go away. So....
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#22 Old 12-21-2010, 06:06 PM
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Seriously dude chill out. I wasn't blaming America. US Fast Food joints are a major problem in regards to obesity, but it's the individual Australians decision for if they eat there or not. No one is forcing them to eat there just because it's there, it's their fault that they do. Nonetheless though it is a problem when it comes to the countries obesity issues.

That's all I was trying to say.
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#23 Old 12-21-2010, 07:01 PM
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Seriously dude chill out. I wasn't blaming America. US Fast Food joints are a major problem in regards to obesity, but it's the individual Australians decision for if they eat there or not. No one is forcing them to eat there just because it's there, it's their fault that they do. Nonetheless though it is a problem when it comes to the countries obesity issues.

That's all I was trying to say.

I'm not a dude.
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#24 Old 12-21-2010, 07:09 PM
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I'm a girl as well, but I call everyone that, male, female, young, old. No one seems to mind. But if it offends you in some way then I apologise.
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#25 Old 12-21-2010, 09:46 PM
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I'm a girl as well, but I call everyone that, male, female, young, old. No one seems to mind. But if it offends you in some way then I apologise.

Nah, doesn't offend. Just clarifying that I'm female.
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#26 Old 12-22-2010, 10:52 AM
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I would like to add in that I don't think America as a whole seems to make an effort to fix obesity as much as they could. In that I mean that we could make more "quick restaurants" healthy (for instance more veggies, salads, whole grains etc. less corner cutting and "quick" fatty fixes)
Think of some of the shows on the food network or travel channel for instance (outrageous food, man vs food) that exploit placed that serve disgustingly huge portions that should NEVER have been created (who needs to eat a 12 lb burger? ew)

That said I am with SMOB on this one in that every individual has a choice to eat or not to eat. It would be nice to see something other than a McDonald's or other fast food joint on every other corner.

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#27 Old 12-22-2010, 11:37 AM
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I haven't been to an Outback in years and years. But if I had to go, I think I would order the potato, and only eat the inside. Maybe add the steamed veggies on top of the potato. I'd also have the garden salad and bring my own dressing in my purse. Actually, that sounds like a pretty good meal! If only it weren't served in a steakhouse!

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#28 Old 12-22-2010, 01:52 PM
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I would like to add in that I don't think America as a whole seems to make an effort to fix obesity as much as they could. In that I mean that we could make more "quick restaurants" healthy (for instance more veggies, salads, whole grains etc. less corner cutting and "quick" fatty fixes)
Think of some of the shows on the food network or travel channel for instance (outrageous food, man vs food) that exploit placed that serve disgustingly huge portions that should NEVER have been created (who needs to eat a 12 lb burger? ew)

That said I am with SMOB on this one in that every individual has a choice to eat or not to eat. It would be nice to see something other than a McDonald's or other fast food joint on every other corner.

I agree with this. Our culture seems to promote stunt food and pigouts but people also have the option to say no, despite how difficult it can be to do so.
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#29 Old 12-27-2010, 11:04 AM
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Smob, I totally agree!
I was just watching the MSNBC (okay I only got to watch parts of it) documentary on "America, overweight". It's sad to see that obesity is growing into quite the epidemic (they were not implying people slightly or moderately overweight only seriously obese).
I think the one doctor nailed the issue on the head when she said "people want a miracle cure, take a pill and the fat melts. They don't want to eat healthy or work out. And you just can't. It wont work unless you put int eh effort." (quote not verbatim).

We all make choices on what to eat, and if we exercise. I do think that some people are naturally going to be larger than others, but I don't think the "obesity" problem is as easy as "genetics" as some people claim.

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#30 Old 12-27-2010, 11:16 AM
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Just to let people know how it went...

I had the house salad with tangy tomato dressing on the side and the cheese on the side (which I didn't touch since it came out with that oily sweaty sheen that cheese gets when it has been left out at room temperature for a while). It was good; the dressing was fantastic. They brought it with everyone else's appetizers which I didn't like, but I guess they assumed that it wasn't part of my actual meal so I can't really fault them for that.

I also had a double order of their seasonal steamed veggies and I thought the portion was kind of paltry for a double order but the veggies were cooked to perfection and the butter was on the side as I requested. I used the salad dressing on the vegetables (which were just broccoli, carrots, sugar snap peas, and yellow squash) and it was good.

The place was busy and it was Christmas Eve and we were a huge table so credit where credit is due...they got the order 100% right and 100% as I requested. And it tasted good.

So while I won't be frequenting Outback Steakhouse, I did encourage my grandmother (who paid for the meal) to leave a huge tip (which she did) and I left a little something extra myself. And I dropped a note via their website to their corporate office to compliment them on the service and also to gently nudge them to include more healthy vegetarian-friendly options. Pasta Alfredo? Are they kidding???
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