Dayton native follows passion, opens vegan booth at 2nd Street Market

A new vendor specializing in vegan eats has found its home at 2nd Street Market, 600 E. Second St., in downtown Dayton.

Vegan It IZ Eats, owned by Dayton native Rhea Adkins, provides a rotating menu of homemade breakfast and lunch items.

Adkins said she will introduce a variety of vegan eats that will stretch customers’ palates. Offerings include jack fruit tacos, coconut bacon grilled cheese, chai french toast and much more.

Credit: Submitted Photo

Credit: Submitted Photo

“I’m all about layering, seasoning and flavors,” Adkins said. “You’re not just getting food with one flavor. You’re really getting an experience.”

Adkins explained she started experimenting with plant-based recipes after a spiritual fast. She said she became more conscious of what she was eating and realized she started to feel a lot better. During that time, her mother, Rosalind, also had a cancer scare. That’s when she started helping her mom cook healthier meals at home.

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At that point, Adkins, who started cooking at 4 years old, said she wasn’t thinking about starting a business. Her focus was being a social service supervisor and providing for her family. It wasn’t until her mother’s co-workers and friends starting tasting and requesting food that she decided to take her passion and love of cooking and turn it into a career.

“I just felt the pull and the push to do something different and to do something greater and more meaningful than where I was,” Adkins said. “I’m excited to see where this new chapter goes.”

Credit: Submitted Photo

Credit: Submitted Photo

Vegan It IZ Eats previously attempted to get a spot at 2nd Street Market, but there was no open space. Adkins said she stuck with it and patiently waited for a spot to open up.

Adkins said she wanted to have a spot at 2nd Street Market because it’s a place that represents community. She said anybody and everybody can come and try different items from a variety of vendors.

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2nd Street Market was a part of Adkins’ childhood. She said she remembers going to 2nd Street Market with her mother to get fresh flowers and coffees on a frequent basis.

Adkins said her children are her greatest inspiration in this new chapter. She feels opening up her business and having a spot at the market will show her children they can find something they absolutely love doing and follow that passion into a career.

Credit: Submitted Photo

Credit: Submitted Photo

“May your passion push you into purpose,” Adkins said.

She said she is looking forward to serving people and watching people enjoy delicious food.

Vegan It IZ Eats will also have meal prep options, granola, seasoning blends, bottles nut milks, dressings, sauces and a cookbook.

Adkins said she will be open 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday.

For more information, visit or the business’s Facebook page.

Credit: Submitted Photo

Credit: Submitted Photo

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