The 10 Best Vegan Restaurants In New York City
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New York City is one of the best places for vegans to enjoy rich, surprising, and delicious food. Since Veganism is on the rise, so does the vegan scenery of New York. Fully vegan restaurants keep popping up (not sure that even Happy Cow keeps track), and you see more and more standard restaurants adding vegan options to their menu. The amazing culinary variety that New York offers to food lovers is available for vegan food lovers as well. From fast food to chef restaurants, from Chinese through Middle Eastern to American cuisines, from snacks to full meals – New York city has it all. Here are the best vegan restaurants in New York City:
One of the recent additions to the local vegan scene, Planta Queen easily competes for the title of the best vegan restaurant in New York City. They sever South East Asia food, all made at a top-level quality and it is so delicious. The sushi menu is interesting and combines unique flavors (don’t miss out on the Ahi watermelon that tastes like tuna) and the rest of the menu will surprise you for sure. My favorite dishes here are the Torched and Pressed Sushi, the Wonton Soup, and the Udon Noodles.
15 W 27th St, New York, NY 10001
Willow is a new addition to the vegan culinary scene of New York City and it immediately took its place in this list. Chef Guy Vaknin, who also owns the excellent chain Beyond Sushi, opened his bistro in Chelsea, offering American-style dishes with a twist. The restaurant has a minimalist design, yet it feels pretty upscale. All the dishes I tried were delicious, but my recommendation would be three starters: The Truffle Mac and “Cheese”, The Caeser Salad, and the Fried Calamari.
Chelsea: 199 8th Avenue, New York, NY, 10011
From the same owner and Chef of Willow, Coletta is their Italian version of deliciousness. Between the amazing pizzas and plates of pasta, you can also find unique dishes like the “Tuna” Crudo and the Sunchoke and “Scallop” Risotto. The design of the place is fun, I love the huge wine fridge in the middle of the restaurant, and I am sure you will like this place too.
365 3rd Ave, New York, NY 10016
The food of Avant Garden is so special, with flavors that are so sophisticated, that you might not even notice that it is all vegetable-based. They don’t use any meat/chicken substitutes here, and after you taste the food you realize you don’t necessarily need them. The place is fancy, romantic, classic, delicious, and in my opinion, it is THE BEST out of the vegan restaurants in New York City. The menu updates occasionally, but my favorites are the Hen on the woods and the House-made Spaghetti (carbonara).
East Village: 130 E 7th St, New York, NY 10009
Modern Love Brooklyn
Modern Love Brooklyn makes comfort food with a twist. The dishes are a mixture of Italian, Southern, Caribbean, and even Jewish cuisines, all very edgy and with Brooklyn vibes. Everything is served beautifully, and the flavors are strong and delicious. Yes, it is all vegan! My favorites of Modern Love are the Mac and Shew’s and Hen of the Woods Piccata.
Williamsburg: 317 Union Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211
Franchia Vegan Café
Korean-style vegan food can’t go wrong. Even though the name, this place is not a café. It’s a full restaurant, with classical Korean vibes and decoration. The Menu is wide and offers a variety of Korean and other Asian dishes, like noodles and sushi. My favorites here are the Cauliflower and Lotus Bibimbap, the Roll combination (California roll, crispy tofu skin roll & spicy ‘chicken’ roll), and the cheesecake.
Midtown East: 12 Park Ave, New York, NY 10016
Delice & Sarrasin
A small French restaurant in the heart of Greenwich Village makes traditional French dishes that are 100% plant based and easily fits in the list of the best vegan restaurants in New York City. From French toast and crepes to Beef bourguignon and coq au vin – every dish here is authentic and modern at the same time. My favorites here are the Verrine De Saumon, Avocat & Boursin, the Steak Tartare Végétale et Frites Maison, and the Bœuf (beef) Bourguignon.
Greenwich Village: 20 Christopher St, New York, NY 10014
The best vegan Chinese food in New York is not even in Chinatown. The cuisine of Spicy Moon is Szechuan, and the food tastes like classic Chinese food, just without animal products. The menu is on a piece of paper and you need to mark your selected dishes with a pencil. The names of the dishes are simple, but the food is high-class with great flavors. My favorites here are the Steamed Eggplant with Pepper Sauce (served cold), General Tso’s Mushroom, and Dan Dan Noodles. They have two locations, but my favorite spot is the one in East Village.
East Village: 328 E 6th St, New York, NY 10003
West Village: 68 W 3rd St, New York, NY 10012
Terms of Endearment
Terms of Endearment is an absolute wonder in the vegan scene of New York City. I can’t remember how my life has been before eating here. This is a small café, currently serving brunch-style food all day and all week. They have pastries for a grub and go, both savory and sweet, or else you can take a seat and order from their full menu. My favorites here are the Bacon Egg and Cheese on a croissant (must!), the Artichoke Caprese sandwich, and the Holiday Cheese plate.
Williamsburg: 135 Metropolitan Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11249
Chef Matthew Kenny has 3 great restaurants in the East Village, and Double zero is my number one. The menu is based on the food that we all love – Pizza, but it leverages the classic pizza ten levels up. It’s really hard to choose between all the options, so the best would be to come as a group of 6, order 6 pizzas, and enjoy a slice of each. If I must choose my two favorites, they will be the Breakfast Pizza (with Polenta and Shitake bacon) and the Potato pizza (potatoes and cashew cream).
East Village: 65 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003
Van leuween ice cream has branches all over New York City, and their ice cream is also available in some supermarkets. They offer vegan and non-vegan ice creams, so be sure to order the vegan flavors, and there are a lot!
Bareburger has a few locations in the city and they are amazing with a big portion of their menu being vegan. The vegan menu includes starters, burgers, sides, milkshakes, and desserts. Check their website to find the address closest to you.
ABCV is one of the fine dining restaurants in the city, owned by famous Jean Goerge. The restaurant falls under the category of vegetarian restaurants, as they serve a few dairy options. However, most of the menu is vegan and the dairy products can be replaced with a vegan substitute. If you go here, prepare yourself for a pricy dinner, however, it is indeed very special!
Catch NYC is a famous restaurant in the Meatpacking district of the city. While they specialize in seafood, they are very vegan friendly and have a great variety of vegan dishes. the waiters are well-informed on what can or cannot be served vega. This place is great for an upscale dinner date or hanging out with friends that are not necessarily into vegan food.
Restaurants that were previously on the list
As new restaurants keep opening up in New York, I want to keep this list as updated as possible. And yes, some of the new places are so good that they beat up the old ones. Not saying that the old ones are not good anymore, but they just face tougher competition. This is why I decided to keep those old favorites in this article, but in short:
Jajaja Plantas Mexicana – with locations in the Lower East Side, West Village, Williamsburg, and Hudson Yards, they offer delicious Mexican food and drinks. My favorites here are the Beet & Pumpkin empanada, the Chorizo Burrito, and the Pineapple y Mezcal cocktail.
Champs Diner – An all-American diner with breakfast dishes, sandwiches, and milkshakes, located in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Champs might get super busy on weekends brunch, so I would plan to come mid-week to avoid the waitlists. My favorites here are the Mac n Cheese and the Vodka Chicken Parm sandwich.
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