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What the Hell Do PETA Employees Eat Anyway?

The question “What the hell do you eat?” is asked of many vegans. But when people find out that you’re vegan and that you work for PETA, the frequency of the question can become a tad annoying. Some people seem to assume that working for an animal rights organization means we remove animal products and all flavor from our food and are left with little more than grass or iceberg lettuce to graze on.

This is exactly why I want to give everyone an inside look at what we enjoyed at our summer party last week. If not the picture, the menu should be convincing that vegan food is far from lacking. Here’s a rundown of the Caribbean-inspired meal:peta_food_1.jpg

Jerk “Chicken” With Mango Chutney

BBQ Salisbury “Steak”

Fried Plantains

Caribbean Coleslaw

Basmati Rice With Coconut Milk

Everyone raved that the Jerk “Chicken” was the best, but I preferred the BBQ “Steak” because of the tender texture and sweetness of the sauce. I was very disappointed to find out that the plantains had been 86’d before I made my way to the buffet, but I’m sure they, too, were delicious. The slaw was delicately dressed and acidic enough to cut through the heavier flavors on the rest of the plate. It was a delicious meal, perfect for a summer afternoon, and obviously a far cry from grass or iceberg lettuce.

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  • lissivicious says:


    If you are concerned about vitamin D, I have 2 words for you:

    (lots of) mushrooms and sunshine (15 minutes a day)

    As someone said above, soy milk is fortified with D just like dairy milk is.

    Good luck

  • Deanne says:

    I come to the PETA website blogs to read and commune with like minded people. I consider it a safe haven, a place for me where people love animals as much as I do. I may have to stop reading and conversing on the blogs because I dislike very much the meat eaters that seem to have nothing better to do but go to a vegan/vegetarian website and post things against what I believe. It is starting to really bring me down. It is hard enough being vegan out there in this often cruel and misguided world dealing with these types of people; and then to come here, where I should feel comfortable around people who support wholeheartedly a lifestyle I adore, and read things from more cruel and misguided people is just plain sad. It seems there is no peace anywhere.

  • Tracy says:

    @ Big Daddy…
    Thank you for putting those thought-provoking comments up. I am a meat-eater who came to this site because I want to incorporate more interesting veggie recipes into our household rotation. I grew up eating a whole lot of wild game – I know how it was killed (quickly and humanely), how it was prepared (in an appropriate environment by a local butcher) and that the death of the animal was part of a culling process necessary in todays society due to the ever-expanding lines of our cities into “the wild”. For those of you who will disagree and say hunting is cruelty in itself, I encourage you to lobby your local Congressperson to fight for birth restrictions on humans, ’cause we aren’t becoming a less-populated world any time soon. Where do you think those crops are going to be grown if the everyone went veggie? What water are you going to use to grow them? And just an fyi for those who may not keep up with crop info, unless you are buying ONLY organic foods, you are likely eating crops that are genetically modified with genes of animals (some tomatoes have fish genes in them to make them more resistant to freezing, as an example).

    And to Mani:
    Unless your ancient ancestors lived within a relatively narrow corridor of the equator (yes, I would say India and Southeast Asia qualify), there was no way for them to be vegetarian year-round. Meat is a source of calories available year-round, and most primitive peoples utilized that source when plant-growth was scarce.

  • Amy says:

    Hi everyone! I’m in the process of trying to hunt down the recipes for you. I’ll post them here if I’m successful.


  • Laura says:

    Wow, I can’t believe the negative posts attacking vegetarians and vegans! Some very unhappy people looking to try to make others miserable too!

    Anyway, Amy and PETA, can you please post the recipes for the jerk “chicken” and BBQ Salisbury “Steak” because the picture make them looks so yummy! Please, please, pretty please!

  • Mani says:

    @ Big daddy>

    Having grown up in India (A veggie since birth), I find it hard to adjust in places where you have to place a special “order” for veggie food. It’s frustating when people don’t understand that, fish, eggs and vegetables cooked in the same oil you cooked your chiken in, is not considered vegetarian (I am in South east Asia, and in Phillipines, they sprinkle HAM on everything to improve taste!!)

    I saw Big Daddy’s post on man being the hunter. Well you are partially correct on this one. However not all mankind started eating meat, the few who did were the ones who got stuck in SIberia/Alaska etc during migration, and the habit stayed. Almost all of early mandkind were vegetarian. Early mankind used to feed on berries, fruits and nuts. The only grain they had was natuarally occuring grain like Bamboo rice (Not farmed rice).
    A huge percentage of Indians have been vegetarians since 7000BC. (as per records, but if religios text can be used to compliment evidence, since the birth of mankind!)
    The people who suggested the man the hunter theory are no different than the same ones who thought that the earth was flat.

    Man is vegetarian by nature, in fact most of the meat eating started during times of wars.

  • Mani says:

    I grew up in India a complete vegetarian. As a corollary to this article, a colleauge visited India on a business trip (I am living in South East Asia, for over a year). On his return he quipped “I never realized, you could have so many options in vegetarian cusine, that too without Tofu. 🙂
    After staying away I realized that India was indeed a goldmine for vegetarians, especially the south India. Every state, every community, every district within each state has it’s own distinct vegetarian cuisine, 80% of which you will never find in a restaurant.

  • Big Daddy says:

    Vegan/Omnivore/Vegetarian the argument and the ideology.

    I was reading above a post from Omnivorous Vegan, and then a reply about “blood thirsty savages” and I think the point is all lost. Eating meat does not make you a blood thirsty savage, and being a vegan does not make you an enlightened guru on compassion. Without meat, not a single human would be alive today to complain about the moral implications of survival. THe only way that a vegan is able to be true to their compass is if they realize that they are a vegan only because society no longer needs to hunt and gather in order to live. It’s not savage or blood-thirsty to act as nature intends. Is a lion a bloodthirsty savage? Are any of nature’s carnivorous and omnivorous animals savage for feeding their children and themselves in the only way that is NATURAL to them? No …. The truth is that the real problem is that the production of “meat” that we buy in stores is savage and disgusting, and I doubt many have ever had to hunt for food in order to survive, so it only then becomes a moral issue. You are able to be a vegan by circumstance and choice, But I can guarantee that not a single one of you would starve to death befor e following nature’s “survival” instinct and scooping up a fish, deer, clam, or other in order to feed yourself or your children. And if you did allow yourself to DIE or your children to STARVE rather than eat a fish, then not only is your moral compass skewed by some very unhealthy mental illness, but I think you may need to seriously consider an IQ test.

    However, if you can afford a vegan lifestyle without experiencing mal-nourishment and if you have children, can prevent them from being mal-nourished … then good on ya, but If you can’t … Why does that make you a savage, or blood-thirsty? It is what it is and name calling and the pompousness and ego stroking I see from most of you guys is no less barbaric.

  • lolly says:

    Casey, applause to you for trying out the veg lifestyle. Unless you have a lot of time & have a lot of local resources…it is probably NOT going to be cheap. At any restaurant or grocery store veg options are almost always more expensive. Think how expensive meat is though, not to mention bad for your health.

    To hollyfying: Vitamin D isn’t as much as an issue as B12 (only occurs in animal products). I choose B fortified cereals & take a B complex with B12.

  • liza says:

    To Eric Salado I totaly agree Im not a fan of tofu.I have a vegan italiano book that dosnt use any tofu,soy milk or other stuff just fruits or vegetables.The author is Donna Klein

  • Dana D says:

    I tried going Veg back in February. It wasn’t for me, I had a very difficult time with it. I felt tired all the time and I didn’t like what I was feeling. I started eating meat again (not as much as I used to) but I only eat organic meat from a local farmer.

  • Anonymous says:

    Jenna, I couln’t stop laughing when I read Omniverous vegan’s comment as I too immediately imagined myself on the menu (I’m made of meat too, and could be very tasy for all I know!!). The sheer naivety is astounding but at least this person sometimes eats vegan and is on a vegan blog. Surely that shows something.

  • Casey says:

    Hey folks. I’ve never tried “going veg” but I’m taking the 30-day challenge for health reasons. I believe in eating meat that is fairly gotten. If the animal is abused before it is slaughtered then I won’t buy from that company. But I don’t base it on religion. Religiously no one should eat pork either, but how many people (who aren’t vegetarian) can refuse bacon? If anyone can help me start a cheap vegan, vegetarian, etc. diet I’d really appreciate it. My email is [email protected]

  • Erick Salado says:

    As much of a vegetarian I am Tofu is the one thing I will not touch agian… besides I prefer eating things that grow closer to home less than 1500 miles from home. There are so many things that can be made without Tofu and still be vegan.

  • allen says:

    hollyfying, why do you think that eating meat, dairy or eggs is going to provide you with vitamin D? It’s not in meat or eggs and it’s only in milk because milk is fortified with vitamin D, just like soy milk is.

    also, maybe you could clarify why you think PETA are hypocrites instead of just making some vague statement. I don’t see any hypocricy. But, even so, there are far worse things than being a hypocrite – like being cruel and heartless.

    As for organic meat – it just means the animals are not pumped full of hormones. They are still mutilated without painkillers, crammed into tiny cages or sheds by the thousands and they are still mercilessly slaughtered for human greed.

  • gildthatlily says:

    hollyfying, it’s not a requirement to be a member of, or believer in, of Peta in order to be a vegetarian. If you don’t support Peta, that’s fine. You can still be a vegetarian. Vegetarians can obtain vitamin D from eggs and dairy products. Vegans can obtain vitamin D from fortified non-dairy milks and vitamin supplements. Slaughtering the cow for consumption in itself is inhumane, the fact that it is fed organic grain while alive does not change that.

  • Melanie says:

    a healthy vegan very much doesnt take part in consuming any sort of “chemically enhanced …”food”. or atleast i speak for myself to say i dont. I am the healthiest ive ever been being a vegan, i am the happiest and at peace being a vegan, and i feel great and full of energy everyday living this lifestyle. I think no animal should be used as a source of food. and neither did i ever enjoy the taste of meat as a kid. I.. like many people out there, like to know what it is that i am putting in my body.

    Simply if you dont know what you are talking about… dont talk at all.
    You learn more when you listen..
    and that is a quality many people need to develop.

  • Carol says:

    We would love to make the Jerk “Chicken” With Mango Chutney but cannot find it on your site. Where is the recipe on your site? Thank you in advance.

  • Leslie says:

    Just because meat is called “organic” doesn’t mean the animals were treated humanely. Your still eating dead animal.

  • Michael Scholz says:

    when you go to a restaraunt, usually they can, or will, rather, fix something special just for you… some places wont have the ingrediants- try carrying them in your purse to give to them… hope that helped!!!

  • Patallyho says:

    Go Jennie & Joe Juke! Touche to Omniverous vegan – what are you doing on a vegetarian cooking website anyway?

  • Margarita Cisne says:

    Beth, in restaurants there must probably be a choice of salads, some form of potatoes dish or other vegetable, breads, beans,etc.

  • Anonymous says:

    I often times have the same problem when I dine out but I have found that almost all places have a daily vegetable options, a house salad and I will often get a plain baked potato and ask for marinara on the side for it. I am usually very satisfied. AND BACK ON TOPIC, I don’t care what they call any food as long as it tastes delicious and has no animal products in its makeup. It’s just words.

  • Deanne says:

    If one is against PETA and believes all of us who support PETA to be hypocrites than what are they doing on the website? Surely they must have something better to do than to read comments posted from PETA supporters. To me a hyprocrite is someone who is against cruelty to animals but denounces the very organization that supports their ethical treatment. Also, how misinformed! organic meat doesn’t mean that there is no cruelty, it applies to what the animal is fed.

  • Camilla says:

    How can anyone say, “If God wanted us to eat animals”.. bla bla bla… Some may think eating animals is ok, but the point is, they are being tortured for this.. did GOD say THIS was ok??-don’t think soooo!!!! Don’t you know anything????? Eat your animals if that pleases you so, but don’t make “weird” analysis on top of it. Gee, use your heads!!!!

  • BullyDawg says:

    Hollyfing, I would add re: vitamin D that a person only needs 15 minutes of exposure to the sun to receive more than enough for the day. And that’s not laying out, that’s just on your face and arms! Long enough to take a quick walk down the street and back!

  • erin says:

    Why are people who believe in murdering animals on the peta site? Omnivores? Just seems a little suspect to me. And joe juke, about the slaughterhouse tumors, he’s right. Watch a few videos, see what these people do for a living, and if they can do that do an animal, what do you think they would do to a fellow person? I see no difference.

  • William says:

    For Beth,
    Depending on where you live there may be a vegetarian place where you all could go to eat. Also if they like to go to the same places most of the time you may be able to talk to the owner or cook and have then have something special for you and any other vegetarians/vegans that might then want to eat there. I haven’t had to do this but I know of others who have, they take their own food to there to eat. If asked they just explain to the manager that they are vegans and their establishment has nothing for them to eat. I work at a State university and we vegans(students, staff, and faculty) have forced the dining facility to provide vegan and vegetarian choices. My department also has their own kitchen so I and my vegan/vegetarian friends fix our own meals. Our food looks and tastes so good that we are often joined by “carnivores”, some of whom have become vegetarians.
    “Be kind to animals… By not eating them”

    P.S. I have been a vegetarian for my entire life, 70 years, and a vegan for almost that long. I have never eaten or tasted dead animal body parts nor do I have any desire to.

  • Sam says:

    Personally, I use the phrases “veggie chicken”, “veggie beef”, etc. It always catches people’s attention and they tend to ask about “veggie meats”. It’s a good way to get people interested in meat alternatives.

  • cramer says:

    hollyfing, Many soy milks, rice milks, and juices are fortified with vitamin d. You can also get vitamin d from multivitamins if you are avoiding sunlight.

    And I have to disagree about the organic meat. I believe that killing animals for food, regardless of how they’re treated while alive, is inhumane.

  • hollyfying says:

    I am against Peta as I believe they are hyprocrites, and if there is one thing I can’t stand it’s hypocrisy. I am facing a tough decision after REALLY looking to vegetarianism – there is little or no vitamin D in a vegetarian diet, and you’d need a whole lot of UVA-protective sun lotion to be able to soak up the UVB rays outside to get your vitamin D and prevent skin cancer. I am against cruelty to animals, yes, but eating organic meat, surely, isn’t inhumane?

  • Shawna says:

    I completely agree with you Deanne. I really do get very upset when people try to ruin a positive thing with their negative opinions. Some people are just so close minded that it’s maddening.

  • voiceofreason says:

    Hello Candie
    “…understand that it may be hard for new veggies to swallow terms like “tofu loaf”, but that’s part of turning over the new leaf; accepting it for what it is. if you care enough about the cause, then you’ll eat it…”
    Choosing a vegan lifestyle is one that consumes/uses no animal products correct? Is simply not using animals enough or is it also a moral obligation to not kill a living animal? If that is the case, then “accepting it for what it is” would then have to be accepting of the fact that by eating fruits and vegetables causes the killing of a large number of animals due to harvesting techniques that kill field animals. Where is the line really draw? At a balance between morality and convenience?

  • beth says:

    I recently became vegan, which works fine at home and I do feel physically much better with more energy. However when I dine out inparticular with co- workers there is almost nothing on the menu I can order.I have at times just had to have water while my family ate. Does anyone have suggestions? Right now I feel like its a total waste of time going out to eat.

  • Jaymie says:

    I love your comment Jessica.

    In response to:
    “If God hadn’t wanted us to eat animals, He wouldn’t have filled them with meat.”

    In the Bible, all humans (and other animals!) were vegetarians till the flood. So in actuality we WERE created to eat a vegetarian diet.

  • Deanne says:

    You know what I think is lame? People who put down compassion and try to corrupt positive energy. I understand that everyone is entitled to their own opinion but I am hurt and offended by statements such as
    “If God hadn’t wanted us to eat animals, ………”.

  • jessica says:

    This is for the “omnivorous” vegan. First, saying you’re an ominvorous vegan is like saying you are sort of pregnant or that you are an atheist Christian. It just doesn’t work. “Meat substitutes” are not chemically altered. Vegan diets are cholesterol free. And, I buy all natural and all organic soy products. WAY healthier than any meat, and the recipes are more creative. Making a conscious humane decision is what it is all about. Anyone can just be lazy and eat meat because it “tastes good.” For that matter, should we do drugs to feel good, or should we just turn violent when we’re angry? We are in control of what our choices are, and it’s about making the better choice, which takes self control and compassion! I’m lucky to live in a town where a vegan lifestyle is supported!

  • joe juke says:

    It all seems to be about splitting hairs. A rose by any other name…, and I know someone who won’t eat veggie burgers cuz they are shaped like meat burgers, and that’s regardless of what they are called. Lets face it, those who subsist on an animal based diet have typically three or four options, cow, chicken and pig being the common three, but just think of all the myriad fruits and veggies out there. What a bounty. And to the Omnivore, I have a friend who worked at a slaughterhouse for two yuears, all he did was remove the tumors from the cattle before it was processed into steak and chop-meat. Enjoy thjat next trip to the Outhouse, er, I mean the Outback. peace all

  • Yami says:

    Can we PLEASE get some of those recipes ! I’d LOVE to try these :
    Jerk “Chicken” With Mango Chutney

    •BBQ Salisbury “Steak”

    The others I can do ! I have in the past my own versions ! I love Toasted Coconut rice with Toasted Almonds in it ! YUMMMM!!!
    Or even Toasted Cashews!
    The taste of the TOASTED nuts gives the rice a nice little taste – and if you UMPH it with a little bit of Curry – even YUMMMMMIIIEERRR ! :o)

    SMN – the fried plantains are easy to do – you can purchase the green plantains and let them turn yellow/brown/black – then slice them – and fry them. OR – you can buy them in those colors already which just means they are ripe and sweet – and cut them and fry them!

  • Gina says:

    I think it doesn’t matter what you call it, no animal gave it’s life and that’s what’s important. People whe constantly criticise others for what they call “fake meat” are suffering from a superiority complex. Lighten up!!!

  • lissivicious says:

    Well I fell the need to make a distinction in order to make life less complicated for my young offspring and so that neither of us are innocently offered dead animal fresh from the spit because we were using the unclarified ‘chicken’, ‘burger’ et al. Not only is it appalling for us to be faced with that, creating an awkward situation but it is also inconsiderate to the person generously but unknowingly proffering the ‘real deal’ blue plate special. I make a point of saying ‘soy chicken breasts’ or ‘tofu/soy dogs’ or ‘veggie burgers/meatloaf’ etc. That way there is much less confusion over what we have eaten, are eating or are willing/allowed to eat. It helps to clarify things without resorting to the decidedly unappealing phrase ‘tofu loaf’. Let’s face it for the most part I couldn’t even sell ‘lentil loaf’ as an appealing sounding alternative to anyone but my little one and I and only then because she’s mad for beans and legumes of all shapes and sizes.

  • Jenna says:

    Omniverous vegan, do you eat humans? We are made out of the same material as cows, pigs, chickens, etc, in case you missed that in science class.

    So, if animals were indeed intended to be eaten by humans, then we would be able to tear an animal’s flesh from its body, swallow it without chewing, and digest it without fear of sickness or disease, or more importantly, vomiting!

  • Erin says:

    I got a whole bunch of recpies off of peta and they were all very good. Thanks so much PETA!!

  • candie says:

    i have to agree with mirine, usine those words makes it seem like it’s still ok to eat chicken, or steak. i understand that it may be hard for new veggies to swallow terms like “tofu loaf”, but that’s part of turning over the new leaf; accepting it for what it is. if you care enough about the cause, then you’ll eat it even if it’s called turd loaf [sarcasm, just trying to make my point].

  • Jenny says:

    Omniverous vegan. Everyoen is allowed to their own opinion. But how about this…

    If God had wanted us to be blood thirsty savages, he wouldn’t have filled us with compassion.

  • SMN says:

    Recipes for any of these?? Mmmmm….

  • Amy says:

    I agree with Heather that the term “tofu loaf” isn’t too appealing. Many people are opposed to tofu from the get go because they have either had it poorly prepared or have prejudices rooted in the health food genre in general. So trying to introduce them to a “tofu loaf” likely wouldn’t be as successful as say, a juicy “meatloaf.”

    We promote mock meats in general because they help people make the transition to a veg diet, and we eat them ourselves because they’re yummy!

  • Omniverous vegan says:

    you guys are lame why do you have to eat meat substitutes I have nothing against vegans or vegetarians but if I eat somthing vegen it is because I like the taste of the ingredients I’m not going to eat some sort of tvp chemically inhanced garbage I’ll eat meat.

    “If God hadn’t wanted us to eat animals, He wouldn’t have filled them with meat.”

  • Heather Lynn says:


    That looks delish!

    I personally still use the words “chicken” “steak” “fake meat” as I feel the term “tofu loaf” just doesn’t sound appetizing ….especially to people who I have recently converted over. I think calling it “chicken” (since in the end it is still shaped to taste and look like it, eh?) helps show that your not missing out on anything just replacing things, and hey-without all the death.

    I usually call the vegetarian dishes I make Bizarro (as in the superman comic, the world where everything is reversed). Like Bizarro-chicken, bizarro chili mac. yum!

  • Mirine says:

    Of course PETA has great, super great ideas for yummy food. BUT please stop calling it “chicken” and “steak” it simply endorses that as a legitimate meal. I made tempeh sandwiches and veggie links in a bun and veggie patty on a bun and veggie loaf.