London is now catering to the meat and dairy-free masses with an amazing array of vegan restaurants; here’s our pick of the best
Words Helen Brown and Miriam Carey
11 of the best vegan restaurants in London
Based in London’s Notting Hill, Farmacy is one of the best vegan restaurants for those who fancy indulgent menu choices. Menus contain globally inspired food and support vegetarian, dairy free, and diets free from refined sugars, additives and chemicals. The signature Farmacy burger is a must, but for those really wanting to get their January health kick on, try the macro bowl. This contains your five-a-day in one lunch with generous servings of avocado, seaweed, sauerkraut, seamed greens, and sweet potato.
Renowned health foodie Deliciously Ella has introduced new options to her delis in Herne Hill, Weighhouse Street, and Seymour Place to celebrate the New Year. Deliciously Ella’s food philosophy is to eat mainly plant-based foods, without deprivation, which started as a response to her illness. The vegan restaurants serve a hearty breakfast with new menu choices including acai and green smoothie bowls. Lunch and dinner options include a five bean chilli served with rustic cornbread and for dessert a vegan fudge brownie.
Coming close to 20 years in the foodie scene, Mildreds is definitely deserving of a place in London’s top vegan restaurants. Its fresh and colourful food takes inspiration from Asian and Middle Eastern cuisines. Mildreds uses organic ingredients where possible and endeavours to source small businesses for their supplies. There are four lively and atmospheric sites around London, the newest being the Dalston branch. Each has its own unique style and personality. Mildreds don’t take bookings so you might be caught in a queue during busy times, in which case, be sure to try one of their delicious cocktails at the bar.
Flavour Bastard on Frith Street offers a variety of global vegan dishes. The restaurant’s menu contains small sharing plates and larger plates. All options are packed full of vegetables and nutrient-rich ingredients and include a miso and mango glazed aubergine with peanut crumble; chickpea salad with rose harissa, parsley and date syrup; and roast sweet potato, soy yoghurt, pomegranate and chilli popcorn.
Wild Food Cafe
Thriving amongst alternative enterprises since the 1970s in a secret courtyard of Covent Garden, Wild Food Cafe is a must for those on the hunt for delicious and nutritious plant-based dishes. With a playful approach and a communal vibe, Wild Food offers raw-centric food that is rooted in a colourful, global and eclectic edge. Flavours are inspired from all four corners of the world and are finished with a signature ‘wild’ twist.
This self-service vegetarian buffet lets you pay for food by weight. On any given day the menu might take influence from Japan, Southeast Asia, Italy, Korea, India, Mexico and Lebanon and ranges across breakfasts, light bites, canapes, hot and cold dishes. Be as restricted or indulgent as you like in building a bespoke plate.
The raw food trend is one that continues to snowball which is why Nama’s gourmet dishes hold their own amongst foodie favourites. All dishes are gluten-free, vegan and raw – a form of cooking that takes no ingredient above 46°C. The dessert menu alone is worth checking out – make a beeline for the not-so-devilishly-indulgent salted chocolate caramel cake. It’s sticky date caramel is sure to satiate even the sweetest tooth.
Veg Bar Brixton
London’s first 100% vegan restaurant, bar and late night vegan speakeasy, Veg Bar in Brixton offers up meat and dairy-free masterclasses to Brixton and the wider London crowd. The menu includes Vietnamese raw salads, polenta vegetable stacks and spicy seitan wings. The vibe is friendly and welcomes guests from noon to night.
Redemption serves up delicious-yet-nutritious sugar-free, wheat-free vegan dishes and non-alcoholic cocktails. It was established two years ago as a pop-up and has since attracted a cult following and celebrity clientele. Redemption’s guilt-free cocktails are enough of a crowd-draw, but seeing as you’re there it would be rude not to go for a dessert or three. Highlights include an acai berry and vanilla cheesecake and the ruby forest gateau.
Temple of Seitan, London’s Vegan Fried-Chicken Shop
Temple of Seitan has been inundated with a horde of hungry vegans since it opened in January. Billed the world’s vegan “fried chicken” shop, the venue serves Seitan, a wheat, gluten and meat-free substitute, served up in fried chicken style wraps, tubs and burgers. The concept is the brainchild of Melbourne couple Rebecca McGuinness and her husband Pat O’Shea. Having worked in KFC before becoming vegan, Rebecca missed fried chicken and so the concept was born. The restaurant has been widely applauded and has a permi-queue of vegans, vegetarians and carnivores alike clamouring for this vegan chicken.