Veganism is in and Nashville local and Radical Rabbit owner Mariah Ragland is helping you make the transition without giving up the food you know and love! Located at Citizen Kitchens in East Nashville, Radical Rabbit is the latest Black-owned vegan spot to make you a believer in the vegan dream.
What inspired you to start your food concept?
As a vegan, I am able to advocate for the better treatment of animals, the Earth, and the health of our people. Once I discovered that food was my life’s calling, the veganism part fell into place. Vegan soul food is an approachable way to go plant-based. This food supports the health of the black community, which is usually overlooked (proven through food deserts). I believe that this food concept as well as other vegan food options have the ability to not only change lives but the entire planet through compassion in food and cooking.
I moved to Nashville to attend Fisk University in 2012. After graduating with a business and art degree, I stayed for the love of the city. I fell in love with the people, the food, the progressiveness of the city, and its urge to help others, which I discovered while working at The Nashville Food Project fresh out of college. Nashville is the place where dreams are brought to light and supported if you work hard and stay consistent. All of these supported my decision to stay in Nashville!
What are your must-try signature items?
Fried Jackfruit! It is battered in a buttermilk mixture and smothered in various sauces such as Carolina Gold, Jerk, Lemon Pepper, Mango Habanero, and more! Our second signature items are the grilled BBQ Rad Ribz. These are vegan ribs make from seitan, banana blossom, and jackfruit. They’re a must-have!
Going vegan is a thing right now, what led you on this journey?
The love for animals led me to veganism. Eating my morals is huge for me. Some go vegan for their health, the environment, or because of an illness. I always say it doesn’t matter how you got here, but I’m glad you came!
What do you hope patrons walk away with when they experience your food?
I hope that customers leave Radical Rabbit with a new outlook on plants. There are about 4 animals that are commonly eaten in the US. However, there are over 20,000 species of edible plants in the world! This amazing number shows just how amazing and nonrestrictive a vegan lifestyle is. I hope customers feel new hope for a plant-eating future through the food.
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