Las Vegas continues to become a hotspot for vegans. The city has 20 all-vegan restaurants and hundreds of vegan-friendly restaurants. Soon, Las Vegas will get its first vegan cooking school, The Vegas Vegan Culinary School and Eatery.
The journey for the new vegan cooking school in Las Vegas started six years ago when Mindy Poortinga launched Vegan Meals by Mindy, a meal prep service.
“After a pretty successful six year run of Vegan Meals by Mindy, I was ready for a new business venture,” she says.
The cook had taught some adult cooking classes at CCSD. She also considered opening a vegan deli, but nothing quite came together.
Until a year ago. A good friend of Poortinga’s runs a vegan culinary school in Greece. Inspired, she reached out to partner in Las Vegas.
While that didn’t work, her idea was out there.
Six weeks later, Heather Heath reached out to Poortinga. She wanted to discuss opening a culinary school in Las Vegas.
The first vegan culinary school in Las Vegas
Then, the Vegas Vegan Culinary School was born.
The two partnered and secured a space in Downtown Las Vegas and began to develop the vegan culinary school.
“Initially, we had planned for our vegan school to be just that — a non-accredited vegan culinary school where anyone could sign up online and take fun, educational classes in person or online,” says Poortinga.
Vegas Vegan Culinary School classes
Currently, the plan is to offer vegan cooking classes including:
– Quick Healthy Snacks … That You’ll Actually Eat
– Cooking with Trader Joe’s
– Making Tofu that Rocks
– Cooking with ‘Shrooms
– Let’s Talk Vegan Cookbooks
– Tools of the Trade
When Las Vegas returns to normal occupancy for venues, things start to heat up. The plan is to have international vegan chefs teach live classes at the vegan culinary school via Zoom.
Plus, the school will also offer week-long courses to make Las Vegas a vegan destination.
The Eatery at the Vegas Vegan Culinary School
On the eatery side, Poortinga’s greatest hits from her Vegan Meals by Mindy days are going to be served.
The deli also features vegan baked goods and an espresso machine. As of now, the plan is to include bike courier delivery to service downtown customers.
In addition, Poortinga is also bringing back her vegan meal prep business to offer two delivery days per week.
“It’s going to be a vegan hub,” she explains.
According to Poortinga, the venue will host monthly fundraising events as an extension of the work the two do outside of the business.
The two are involved in animal rescue and other local causes. Poortinga founded the Las Vegan Food Bank
to help those in need in Las Vegas. She also is involved in senior dog hospice and volunteers at local farm sanctuaries. Heath runs the nonprofit Willow’s Wish
that promotes change in the Asian dog and cat meat trade via legislation, education, adoption, conservation and sterilization.
“We’re a business that intends to get the community involved and bring them together for a good cause,” she says.
The Vegas Vegan Culinary School and Eatery opens April 2021. It’s located at 1310 S. 3rd Street, #130. For updates, follow their Facebook, Instagram