Roots - UCSD

  • Vegan Vegan
    ( 9 reviews )

9500 Gilman Dr 0120 (at UCSD Muir College), La Jolla, California, USA, 92093-0120

Open during school semesters only. UCSD's all-veg eatery and lounge, located on the Muir College campus below Pines Restaurant. Diners choose from a variety of hearty entrees, sides, snacks, and smoothies. Open Mon-Sat 10:30am-9:30pm, Sun 11:30am-9:00pm.

Categories: Vegan, American, Take-out

9 Reviews

First Review by katroshka

vegan on campus? really? - Edit

Wandering through my alma mater and just past my old dorm room I spied Roots. Considering I used to live on Peanut Butter Sandwiches and Ramen noodles when I was last here, This is a huge step up. Had the Root Burger which was your standard burger like veggie patty but it was topped with portobello mushrooms and onions with some lettuce and avocado on the side. You can also get soy cheese and veganaise on it but I’m not into that. I got a piping hot side of sweet potato friend and ate it all outside in the quad of Muir College. Lots of choices and desserts too.

Pros: on campus, great sweet potato fries

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great surprise - Edit

I wanted to try it for long and eventually did it. I went with the root burger and it was delicious. Try to come early before student get out of class because it turn super crowded fast!
Really cheap for a non student folk! ($8 for the burger with a little side salad and piece of avocado)

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Tough Parking, Difficult Directions, Good Food - Edit

Parking was a challenge (best in the "lower lot" $3 for 2 hours).
Lots of options, but some were spicier than one in our party wanted.
Another person in our party actually vomited while at the restaurant... unclear whether the food was at fault... but a number of us had rumbly tummies afterwards.

***Finally, the address above and on the website (…) is incorrect ... it should be "Stewart Commons, UCSD"

Anyhow, aside from these two points, the food was good and filling. no issues with the service, though it is cafeteria-style and bus-your-own.

Pros: Good Food, Good Variety, Cheap

Cons: Tough Parking, Hard to Find, Possible food illness issues

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Good Option for the Campus - Edit

One of the fancier places to eat on campus but just a little bit pricy. Their Root burger is my standard go to meal because it has all the right ingredients (veggie chicken, avocado, other good stuff). Occasionally the buns aren't heated well but overall this place has been awesome. The desserts and sweet potato fries are always a hit. Overall, a nice clean place therapeutic food. It can be busy at times though, especially during mealtimes or after classes.

Pros: Friendly Staff, Nice Vibe

Cons: Slightly expensive

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Great for vegetarian/vegan - Edit

I wish they had Roots when I was a student at UCSD. Back then the student co-op (which was in the old student center) and Che Cafe had what passed for vegetarian food. It was bland and boring. There was no Price Center with ethnic vegetarian, let alone vegan, fast food places.

Times change, and now there is Roots! I have been there a handful of times, and I must say that it is a good deal for what you pay. The portions are big, and the offerings change with the season. Their menu changes from week to week. You can check it out online:
I usually get one of their Field and Farm salads, which are full of fresh vegetables. Each salad is quite filling, but if I crave more, I get a cup of soup or an order of sweet potato fries along with the salad.

I live near campus so I can easily walk or bike to Roots. I suppose it is a little more challenging if you are a visitor and try to find parking. The Muir parking lot has visitor spots and a self-pay booth, but actually finding a space may be more difficult.

Roots is closed during the weekend and during school breaks as I found out when I made a special trip to Roots over the summer. Go during the school year and enjoy their wonderful food!

Pros: healthy and fresh , airy and light seating areas, reasonable prices

Cons: closed on weekends and breaks, visitor parking is scarce

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Unusual school run vegetarian cafe - Edit

Roots is a university operated vegetarian dining spot that has mostly vegan food. It is highly unusual among school cafeterias in that respect, and something that should be copied by other schools. The food is great - there were plentiful choices. We had a Hetch Hetchy(Potato Gnocchi) bowl,Sweet Passage (Polenta, Marinara & Veggies), and a bowl of black bean soup. All the dishes were tasty and filling. This place is a great option if you are in the neighborhood. I don't know what the parking situation is though. I thought prices were reasonable.

Pros: Almost entirely vegan, relaxed atmosphere, very helpful staff

Cons: Closed Sat & Sun, closes 4 PM Fri

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Perfect - Edit

Roots is awesome. The food is fresh, healthy and delicious, pricing is affordable, staff are friendly, the dining area is spotless and artful, and the tables have plenty of breathing space between one another. And it's amazing that a university runs a vegan resto on campus. But I hear that the meat resto above Roots is busier, so please patronize Roots and boost their benevolent business!

Pros: Taste, Price, Ambience

Cons: None

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Roots - UCSD - Edit

[edit by staff] The Valley View and the Curry Down the Mountain are my fav salads and the Sweet passage which is yummy grilled veggies in tomato sauce is my favorite entree! GO VEGAN!!! ps- don't get the smoothie with cayenne pepper and dont let the smoothie with silken soy base sit too long! Also this restaurant is basically the only dining hall with vegan food. The small stores on campus have vegan food but its more expensive than eating at a dining hall. Always ask the dining staff if something is vegan.. they usually don't know but it will make them be more aware that there is a demand for vegan food on campus.

Pros: only vegan food at UCSD, yumm

Cons: not open weekends and closes at 4 on fri, expensive for dining dollars, far if you don't live in muir

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Pretty good, a little pricey - Edit

I ate here the first day of classes and it was OK, but not great. The serving size was small and not all that filling for $7. That being said, comparing it to the other dining services on campus it was pretty good, but the Indian place in Price has better bang for your buck, and the co-op seems healthier and WAY cheaper, I will most likely continue to eat at the co-op. I hope Roots gets better, I love the idea and would like to support it.

Pros: decent on-campus food, interesting menu, good atmosphere

Cons: expensive, small portions, a little bland

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