Make your #MeatFreeMonday a 24/7 thing with The Resident’s pick of the best vegetarian restaurants in north, south, east, west and central London
Lead image: Maple and Fitz, Fitzrovia
1 Mildreds, Soho
All the rave at the moment is Mildreds vegetarian and vegan restaurant. Where fresh and colourful food full of flavour is cooked daily, Mildreds is the current place to be! Located at three sites in London, each with their own style and personality, offer informal and friendly service in a lively atmosphere. Often having a surprising and seducing effect on hardened carnivores, with many of their dishes begin vegan-friendly and gluten free, Mildreds can offer a warm welcome to all. Recognised for it’s excellent service and cosy atmosphere, it’s no surprise that there are often queues! Mildred’s also has branches in Camden, Dalston & Kings Cross.
45 Lexington Street, Soho W1F 9AN; mildreds.co.uk
2 Tibits, Mayfair
Titbits is all about fresh, delicious and easy salads. At this cosy self-service vegetarian and vegan restaurant, you’ll find all day dining. For spring, menu items include a nourishing leek and sage risotto, and every Tuesday the dishes are completely vegan. To top it all off, you pay by weight, so you can take as much or as little as you want! There’s a second branch on Southwark Street, Bankside, too.
12-14 Heddon Street, Mayfair W1B 4DA; tibits.ch
3 Vanilla Black, Holborn
Vanilla Black is one of London’s best vegetarian restaurants and it’s little wonder when you see starters like crisp rye, grapes and puffed wheat on the menu, along with wholesome mains, such as the lemon dumplings with crispy buckwheat crumbs. Its menu is worlds away from the ubiquitous mushroom risotto or roast butternut squash, instead, Vanilla Black’s vegetarian dishes have a creative flare, while still being healthy.
6 Laystall Street, Holborn EC1R 4PA; vanillablack.co.uk
4 ETHOS, Fitzrovia
ETHOS serves delicious meat-free cuisine with broad appeal. The pay-by-weight concept specialises in dishes from around the world, all bursting with flavour and colour, from the Spring Green Scotch Egg to Creamy Seitan Stroganoff, Veggie Thai Green Curry, Zucchini & Feta Patties and Quorn Lasagna. The menu also has plenty of options for those with special dietary requirements, such as vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free and refined sugar-free.
48 Eastcastle Street, Fitzrovia W1W 8DX; ethosfoods.com
5 Veggie Pret, Soho
Yes, it’s a mainstream chain, but if you’re in town and need to grab and go, Veggie Pret in Soho (there are branches in Shoreditch and Exmouth Market too) is hard to beat. In the mornings try a dairy-free vegan Acai Breakfast Bowl (acai berries mixed with banana and layered with gluten-free granola, banana slices, grated apple and pomegranate, £2.49). For lunch, the vegan Mushroom & Avo Sushi Salad (a salad based on the popular Hawaiian poke bowls; Pret’s version includes marinated mushrooms, avocado, rice, pickled cabbage and poke dressing,£4.50), is hard to beat.
35 Broadwick Street, Soho W1F 0DH; pret.co.uk
6 Maple and Fitz, Fitzrovia
Fitzrovia’s healthy restaurant, Maple & Fitz, offers diners healthy but delicious and largely vegetarian food. Having trained at Le Cordon Bleu and studied nutrition, Canadian chef Adria Wu serves up salads, grain bowls, cold-pressed juices, and guilt-free sweets, such as the salted caramel brownies made from medjool dates, almonds, raw cocoa powder and chia seeds. All the salads are meat-free but come with an option to add protein.
36A Berners Street, Entrance on Mortimer Street W1T 3LY; mapleandfitz.com
7 Sagar, Hammersmith
Despite its almost Scandinavian interiors, Hammersmith vegetarian restaurant Sagar has its roots firmly planted in South India, it’s chefs coming from the state of Karnataka. The menu takes its lead from there, more specifically Udupi a small coastal town although it lists many of the vegetarian South Indian food you’re likely to be familiar with – dodas, idli, samba and coconut chutneys. There are also thalis, including the Udupi thali, a tray of half a dozen dishes, with two puffy poori, popadoms and chutneys.
157 King Street, Hammersmith W6 9JT; sagarveg.co.uk
8 Nama, Notting Hill
As any health expert will tell you, eating raw food is the best way to retain the vitamins lost from cooking and over processing food. Nama’s menu is packed with mouth watering food, like Italian Pizza with seed cheese, caramelised onions and marinated mushrooms with a courgette and walnut base. Nama also offers a day-by-day raw foods cleanse of juices, smoothies and foods including wraps, salads and pastas to have at home.
110 Talbot Road, Notting Hill W11 1JR; namafoods.com
9 Farmacy, Notting Hill
Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, Farmacy is all about eating well. But with plenty of choice comfort food on the menu, it’s more about counting chemicals than calories. Supporting both a vegan and vegetarian diet that’s free from dairy, refined sugars and additives, the menu is inspired by dishes from around the globe and features healthy versions of comfort foods such as the signature Farmacy Burger and plant-based Ice Cream Sundaes, as well as the latest in healthy eating such as Earth Bowls (try the gluten-free vegan Mexican Bowl with sprouted coriander rice, romaine, guacamole, frijoles, tomatoes, chipotle ‘sour cream’, purple potato, corn chips and jalapeño dressing).
74 Westbourne Grove, Notting Hill W2 5SH; farmacylondon.com
10 Redemption, Notting Hill
Brainchild of health aficionado Catherine Salway, Redemption started life as a pop-up dry bar in the Trellick Tower, before launching this, their first permanent branch in Chepstow Road, serving alcohol-free mocktails and a selection of meat, dairy and sugar-free dishes. A Shoreditch outpost soon followed and, with the restaurant packed to the rafters even on a drizzly Tuesday night, it seems clean eating is firmly on the menu for Londoners.
6 Chepstow Road W2 5BH & 320 Old Street EC1V 9DR; redemptionbar.co.uk
Chelsea & Kensington
11 Ottolenghi, Belgravia
Ottolenghi is an obvious inclusion in any veggie-friendly recommendation. Chef and founder Yotam has been at the forefront of London’s vegetable revolution since opening his first restaurant in Notting Hill in 2002. Now he has four eponymous London venues (Islington, Notting Hill, Belgravia and Spitalfields) and the wonderful Nopi. The deli-come-restaurants offer colourful, vibrant salads and delicious pastries, laden with spice, nuts and fruits, hailing from Yotam’s native Jerusalem. Though meat options are available, they take a firm back seat, overshadowed by the vegetarian ingredients.
12 Good Life Eatery, Chelsea
From cold-pressed juices to go to build-your-own avo on toast, acai bowls and superfood salads, this healthy eating cafe/restaurant serves all the good stuff, all day. Best-selling dishes include ‘Clean and Lean’ a bowl of quinoa, kale, roasted sweet potato, two poached eggs and almond pesto, while spelt scones and vegan muffins go down just as well. These guys can cater for vegetarians. vegans and all the free froms! Good Life Eatery also has branches in Belgravia, Marylebone & St John’s Wood.
59 Sloane Avenue, Chelsea SW3 3DH; goodlifeeatery.com
13 L’ETO Caffe, Belgravia
L’Eto’s best-selling honey cakes – six layers of honey-dipped cake, filled with sweetened sour cream – are legendary and worth the visit alone. If you’re opting for a savoury menu, the colourful salads are hugely varied and they focus largely on vegetables and spices. Both the Belgravia and King’s Road branches run an-all day menu: for breakfast try one of the delicious apple pancakes with fresh berries, vanilla cream & fruit compote, and Granny Smith apple sorbet. Look out for their superfood veggie lunch boxes, too, which you can have delivered to your office! L’ETO also has branches in Chelsea, Soho and Mayfair.
10 West Halkin Street SW1X 8JL; letocaffe.co.uk
14 Tanya’s at My Chelsea
Intent on spreading the message of living a healthy lifestyle, Tanya’s café in Chelsea is the place to go for a completely organic menu, which by chance also happens to be vegetarian. Tanya, who has been hailed as one of the UK’s top holistic coaches, first opened the café when she found that there were very few options for a fully raw or fully organic meal in London. The menu at Tanya’s is all natural and gluten free. It includes cold pressed juices and nut milk coffees for the mornings and superfood cocktails for later in the evening.
35 Ixworth Place, Chelsea SW3 3QX; tanyascafe.com
15 222 Veggie Vegan, West Kensington
222 Veggie Vegan in West Kensington sits opposite an imposing blocks of flats and a rather unappealing Holiday Inn, but don’t let that put you off. This vegetarian restaurant is often listed in round-ups of London’s best vegetarian restaurants, and rightly so. Bean and tofu pancakes, avocado soup and oyster mushroom and spinach raclette are the types of dishes that have been grabbing vegetarians’ attention since it opened in 2004.
222 North End Road, West Kensington W14 9NU; 222veggievegan.com
16 The Gate, Islington
Tom Parker Bowles rates it and so do we. When a restaurant has been serving happy Hammersmith locals (and many from further afield too) for 25 years, it must be doing something right. If you’re searching for an innovative vegetarian restaurant, serving unusual combinations of Indian, Arab and Jewish cuisines with French and Italian influences, The Gate is just what you need. There’s are branches in Hammersmith and Marylebone, too.
370 St John Street EC1V 4NN; thegaterestaurants.com
17 Grain Store, King’s Cross
Grain Store takes over a vast Victorian warehouse in Granary Square, in which French chef Bruno Loubet and his partner Tony Conigliaro cook up vegetable-focused dishes and herb-infused drinks. The menu is filled with poetic sounding offerings like Charentais melon ‘Gaspacho’ with flowers and a touch of ginger; salted watermelon, with borage flowers, pink grapefruit, crab mayonnaise and curry oil, and mango, fresh herbs and rice vermicelli Indochine salad with seared beef (Grain Store isn’t completely meat-free, but supports initiatives like Meat Free Week and Loubet has hinted at taking meat off the menu).
Granary Square, 1-3 Stable Street, King’s Cross N1C 4AB; grainstore.com
18 Itadaki Den, King’s Cross
Itadaki Zen is a very rare establishment – vegan, organic and Japanese. Gone are the slithers of delicate sashimi and skewers of chicken yakitori, and in their place are grilled spring rolls with soft mashed tofu fillings, light vegetable tempuras and noodles made from sweet potato starch. Even dessert takes on a healthy theme, with sugar-free options like pumpkin cake and the tadaki-Zen cake, a light and soft cake, made with Kabocha (Japanese pumpkin), jujube and chestnusts and topped with tofu and vanilla cream.
139 King’s Cross Road WC1X 9BJ; itadakizen-uk.com
19 Manna, Primrose Hill
The menu at this Primrose Hill restaurant is entirely vegan and largely organic, with a bit of raw food popping up too. Basic cashew cheese croquettes sit alongside a raw lasagne made from layers of courgette noodles, cashew cheese, rocket pesto and Manna’s special raw marinara sauce. There are also salads and sharing plates, making this a pretty versatile venue, pop in for a quick bit post-work out or take a gang and make an evening of it – there are organic and vegan wines too.
4 Erskine Road, Primrose Hill NW3 3AJ; mannav.com
20 The Hive, Bethnal Green
The Hive in Bethnal Green serves organic vegetarian and vegan food for breakfast, lunch and light evening bites, as well as cold pressed juices and speciality wines. They work with partners who share their philosophy on sustainable agriculture and holistic dining, including local biodynamic farmers. Try the likes of smoked salmon on toast with avocado, a sunny side up egg and buffalo mozzarella, a Hive burger with mushroom, courgette and pumpkin seed patty, chutney, coleslaw and rocket on slow-fermented sourdough bun, or a cheese board as an aperitivo. Vegan and gluten-free options are available.
286-290 Cambridge Heath Road, Bethnal Green E2 9DA; thehivewellbeing.com
21 Rasa, Stoke Newington
The firstborn of the Rasa babies (the second, Rasa W1 in Mayfair, is a swankier version), Rasa N16 remains an old favourite for many. Small and cosy yet unmissable (its exterior is bright pink), it is one of the best known vegetarian restaurants in London, specialising in South Indian food. Rasa N16 is a reliable favourite with plenty of repeat visitors to vouch for it, as well as two Best Vegetarian Restaurant awards from Time Out.
55 Stoke Newington Church Street N16 OAR; rasarestaurants.com
22 Palm Vaults, Hackney
Palm Vaults in Hackney is all pastels, pot plants and pretty lavender lattes, making it a very sweet spot for a selfie. But it’s not all style over substance, they also serve breakfast, lunch and brunch from a vegetarian menu with free-from options. Try the avocado on toast with chilli, seeds and vegan bacon made out of coconut, or go for something more substantial like a spinach dhal. Treat yourself to a slice of courgette, matcha and lemon cake, too. Dogs are welcome, laptops are not.
411 Mare Street, Hackney E8 1HY; palmvaults.com
SOUTH EAST LONDON
23 Wildflower, Peckham
Wildflower is an informal vegetarian and vegan canteen at Peckham Levels. Alongside a morning cafe service, the innovative vegetarian and vegan cafe serves affordable, ethical and healthy brunch and lunch options, plus a more refined evening menu with impeccably presented plates inspired by Mediterranean, Middle Eastern and European cuisines. You can also enjoy a carefully curated programme of live music and DJs courtesy of Wildflower’s sister business, music venue Ghost Notes.
Peckham Levels, 95A Rye Lane SE15 4ST; wildflowerpeckham.uk
24 Ganapati, Peckham
Owner and chef Claire Fisher set up Ganapati after a trip to south India – a largely vegetarian region – left an indelible impression. An array of flavours and textures served up on a banana leaf and communal eating are just two of the experiential elements that Claire wanted to share with south Londoners. The huge masala dosas are a must (lentil pancakes stuffed with spiced mashed potato), as is the vegetarian banana leaf thali, which comes with various curries, pickles and accompaniments.
38 Holly Grove, Peckham SE15 5DF; ganapatirestaurant.com
25 The Waiting Room, Deptford
The Waiting Room in Deptford is a seriously cool coffee bar and veggie and vegan friendly café that opened in 2011. A vibrant hub just across from Deptford station, the food on offer is amazing for such a small set up (the veggie burgers are particularly good). The cafe even makes its own hot sauce with habanero peppers. It’s especially spicy and is loaded onto their hot dogs and the Spicy Maiden bagel (veggie sausage, mustard, Polish pickles, cheese and crispy onions). Sadly though, their lease is up. so The Waiting Room is currently crowdfunding for new premises on Deptford High Street.
142 Deptford High Street SE8 3PQ; @WaitingRoomSE8
26 Persepolis, Peckham
Persepolis, Peckham’s Persian deli, has a cute little cafe called Snackistan, serving Iranian and Levantine food. At the moment everything is vegetarian, with lots of wraps and soups and meze platters to share, as well as the likes of baked sweet potato filled with Persian baked beans and halloumi, and eggs scrambled with plantain and harissa. Save room for the Turkish delight sundae…
28-30 Peckham High Street SE15 5DT; foratasteofpersia.co.uk
27 Domali Bar & Kitchen, Crystal Palace
Domali Bar & Kitchen was once exclusively vegetarian and pescetarian, but it is no more… This is no bad thing, however, because if your non-veggie mate wants a pork chop, they’re just going to drag you to a restaurant where they can get it. You can still enjoy a mean vegan curry, or bubble and squeak with poached eggs and Portobello mushrooms. The mushroom pate did disappear from the menu, but after complaints from regulars, it has now been reinstated!
38 Westrow Street, Crystal Palace SE19 1RX; domalicafe.co.uk
28 Blue Brick Café, East Dulwich
Renovated from a Victorian dairy and formerly a greasy spoon, East Dulwich’s Blue Brick Café opened as a veggie establishment in 2010 with the ethos of locally sourced seasonal produce. The concise and ever-changing menu contains daily delights such as feta, walnut and butternut squash salad, and spring risotto with courgettes, leeks and peas, as well as a very tempting dessert offering.
14 Felbrigg Road, East Dulwich SE22 9HH; bluebrickcafe.com
SOUTH WEST LONDON
29 Little H, Parsons Green
Parsons Green’s Little H is the little sister café to Hallys, also in Parsons Green. As with the first venue, Little H takes its lead from sunnier climes, including California and Cape Town – two places where healthy eating is top of the agenda. Serving breakfast, lunch and snacks, all with a wholesome theme, Little H sells the likes of vegan bircher breakfast pots and smoothies and daily changing salads. It’s not entirely meat-free, but enough to make it on this list. The café has space for 12 to eat in surrounded by flowing fauna and funky décor, and also offers takeway.
267 New King’s Road, Parsons Green SW6 4RB; littlehlondon.com
30 Lu-Ma, Wimbledon
This lovely spot is perfect for a guilt-free meal, specialising in vegetarian and vegan options like the BBQ Jackfruit burger, sweetcorn and courgette frittas and superfood salad bowl. The philosophy of good food education is spread throughout the business, from sustainable coffee to compostable product packaging. They serve great brunches at weekends too, with everything from indulgent pancakes with strawberries, maple syrup and soya yoghurt to their Golden Glow Omelette.
143 Worple Road, Wimbledon SW19 4JZ; lu-ma.co.uk
31 Foxlow, Balham
While not a vegetarian restaurant per se, Foxlow always strives to make its veggie firends welcome, with a special vegetarian and vegan section on the menu (they always support National Vegetarian Week, too). As well as a pretty darn good kale, avocado and fresh herb salad on the starter menu, they also offer mains like spice-roasted cauliflower with chickpeas, wilted spinach and curried aubergine sauce; sweet potato dumplings with broccoli, samphire and wild garlic pesto, plus the Anglum fattoush with London ‘halloumi’, spelt, parsley and mint.
15-19 Bedford Hill, Balham SW12 9EX; foxlow.co.uk
32 Rosa’s Thai Cafe, Tooting
Rosa’s Thai Cafe, which has several branches in London, recently launched a new site in Tooting. While not a vegetarian restaurant, they are very vegetarian friendly. Many of the dishes on their veggie-friendly menu can even be made vegan. A rare treat when it comes to Thai cuisine, where fish sauce is king of the kitchen! Dishes include Rosa’s butternut red curry, stir fried aubergine, butternut and cashew stir-fry and papaya salad.
70 Tooting High Street, Tooting SW17 0RN; rosasthaicafe.com
33 Bonnington Café, Vauxhall
Vauxhall’s Bonnington Café started life as a squat – but you’d never know that now. The south London cafe and restaurant is set in the peaceful community gardens of Bonnington Square, Vauxhall – one of London’s best kept secrets. The comfortable, homely venue serves excellent value vegetarian and vegan food, prepared by an active collective of member cooks who also contribute to the overall running of the venue. Prices start from £3.50 for starters and desserts, while mains are £9.
11 Vauxhall Grove, Vauxhall SW8 1TD, bonningtoncafe.co.uk
34 Wholemeal Café, Streatham
Wholemeal Café brings vegetarian and homemade together in a delicious array of fresh flavours and a homey atmosphere, with a focus on mindfully sourced ingredients from New Covent Garden market. Choose from the likes of vegetarian chilli Mexicana casserole, Hungarian vegetable goulash stew and veggie nut burgers with salad and salsa and roasted potatoes.
1 Shrubbery Road, Streatham SW16 2AS; wholemealcafe.com
35 Tide Tables Café, Richmond
Nestled under the arches of Richmond Bridge, Tide Tables is the go-to café for TW9’s hungry vegetarians. With riverside views and an entirely veggie menu – as well as vegan and gluten-free options, it is open for breakfast, lunch and early supper.
2 The Arches, Richmond TW9 1TH; tidetablescafe.com