Dining out, especially with friends, can be one of the more stressful aspects of being a vegan or veg. First, you have to find a place that caters to your meat-free, dairy-free diet; then, you have to convince your meat-hungry friends to join you there. For anyone who’s tried, it can be a hard sell.
Eating and socializing should be pleasurable, not a hassle. Luckily in Vancouver, eating vegan is not so hard when you know where to go. The city is filled with a variety of restaurants offering vegan and meat dishes on the same menu. I suggest if your uncertain that a restaurant may not have what you need, call ahead. No one even has to know. I find that most are happy to accommodate.
Nuba – Lebanese food at its most scrumptious! Get the Najib’s Special!
Sha Lin Noodle House – Amazing hand-cut noodles and pan-fried dumplings. The curried-flavoured tofu and cutting noodles are a great vegan option, and the fried eggplant and tomatoes are addictive.
Joey’s – I know what you’re thinking (Joey’s?!), but yes, Joey’s allows diners to substitute the meat in several of its dishes with fake chicken; the ginger “beef” is particularly popular. A terrific option when dining out with a group of non-veg-heads!
Annapurna – Head to this West 4th vegetarian Indian restaurant for consistently delicious food.
Bandidas Taqueria – Expect vegetarian and vegan tacos, handmade tortillas; fresh ingredients; cold local brew and a good collection of current and nostalgic indie tunes. Plus, they culture their own vegan sour cream!
Grub – Word on the street is this Main Street favourite uses seasonally fresh ingredients to serve up two vegetarian entrees every day, one of which is always vegan. They even offer a daily vegan dessert.
Organic Lives – A little piece of raw, organic, vegan heaven, serving up nutrient-rich creative meals to hungry vegans and vegetarians, Near Cambie at Quebec and East 2nd Ave.
Saravana Bhavan – South Indian food on Broadway at Oak! Great service and plenty of space for a crowd. (This chain also has restaurants in India.)
Foundation Lounge – The creative menu makes this place a real treat, especially as the aprons behind the counter increasingly become more adept at their trade. Best bet: black beans and rice with banana.
The Truffle Cafe at Eternal Abundance – Menu consists of soups, rice dishes, raw food dishes, and more. Get a whiff of this place when your inside, Truffle Cafe? Need I say more.
Cafe deux Soleils – Come here for a yummy vegan breakfast on the weekend or for their awesome vegan cookies when you need an afternoon pick-me-up! Their focaccia sandwich with sunflower seed/sundried tomato pate is yummy too.
Slickety Jim’s – Speaking of breakfast, Slickety Jim’s has one vegan option on its brunch menu and, it is worth the trip!
Habit – Another Main St spot, this place is great for gathering with vegan and non-vegan friends who appreciate well-crafted food, excellent flavouring, local wine and feeling cool. Now with a new menu.
Cafe Kathmandu – For Nepalese food made with the freshest of ingredients and served with a smile, head to this Commercial Dr neighbourhood restaurant.
Radha Yoga & Eatery – Wednesday through Saturday, find incredible organic, local vegan (and often raw)
The Naam – Yes, yes, everyone knows The Naam. Open late, offering a wide range of vegan options (Mmmm, the Naam Bowl!), we keep coming back even though the service is epically slow!
Budgie’s Burritos – Near the intersection of Main and Kingsway (on Kingsway), these will knock your socks off! Try the potato – you won’t be sorry!
Gorilla Food – Organic, vegan, raw and downtown. I love the smell of hemp In the air at this place, I feel helathier just sitting there.
Dharma Kitchen – Curry spices, nuts and a bounty of fresh veggies. West Broadway.
Jamaican Pizza Jerk – Chef Bounty serves several vegan dishes, including vegan rotis. His vegan pizzas and Irie bowls are a particular treat.
Rebellious Tomato Gourmet Pizza – Good thin crust pizza made from organic and gluten free ingredients. Vegan Cheese will make a custom vegan-friendly pizza.
The Refinery - I seriously love this dish, you have to try it, it’s in the small plates section of the menu but it can easily be served as a main. stuffed portobello mushroom, stuffed with vegan cashew red pepper pate, arugula pesto.
Loving Hut – Simple and simply delicious, West Broadway
Red Door – Offering yummy noodles and dishes that can be made for vegan or veg, when I am in the mood for some yumy nodles this is the place I like to be. Try the Sichuan beans. Don’t forget to substitute the egg noodles.
Bistro Sakana – I love the sundried tomatoe rolls (mmmmmm so hearty)
Fresh Bowl – I love the online ordering! Makes take out even easier, located on Pacific Bvld . The name Fresh Bowl is exactly that, I recommend the Temple Salad with tahini dressing (Drool)
Snail House Bakery – Vegan cakes, cupcakes, biscuits and other goodies.
The Wallflower – The wallflower is a place for everyone to come together and enjoy a meal, Braekfast, lunch and dinner. Omnivores, vegan and vegetarians and gluten -freeaters are welcome.
Pho Central - A good ol’e bowl of fresh Pho on a rainy day, try theVeggie Rice Noodle Soup served with a slice of lime, bean sprouts, chilies and basil leaves.
The Eatery – Welcome to The Funkiest place for Japanese food. Take a peek at some of their veggie rolls, Buddah Roll, Popeye Roll, Spicey Veggie, The Sunshine Roll and so much more!
Splits Grill – With Locations in Vancouver and Whistler these burgers made to order are delightful! With a mixture or meat and veg it’s a great place for lunch for a mix of meat and veggie lover’s alike, try the spicy lentil burger.
The Perch – Catering to vegan, vegetarian and gluten free diets. Omnivore’s welcome.
Granville Magazine, Urban Spoon, Dine Here Vancouver