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best vegan dishes in london, bao fitzrovia
Credit: Andy Parsons

The ten best vegan dishes in London

Discover the ten tastiest animal-free dishes in the capital (with not a nut cutlet in sight)

By Emma Hughes
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Eating out as a vegan can be tough, but it can be done deliciously. From surprisingly rich risottos and indulgent puds to sprightly salads and steaming bowls of curry, you can have it all in London without a trace of animal. Read on for our selection of the best vegan dishes London restaurants have to offer.

 

The best vegan dishes in London

Queen vegan at Voodoo Ray's

Restaurants Pizza Dalston

£4 per slice

A pizza without cheese is like ‘Strictly’ without Ed Balls, right? Wrong. Dalston institution Voodoo Ray’s has a 22-inch behemoth that’s absolutely vegan and so tasty that you won’t miss the mozzarella. It’s lavishly bedecked with artichoke hearts, green olives, red onion, sunblush tomatoes and dairy-free pesto. You can get your hands on a slice in Ray’s Shoreditch and Camden parlours too.

Best vegan dishes in london, bao fitzrovia
Best vegan dishes in london, bao fitzrovia
Credit: Andy Parsons

Mapo aubergine rice bowl at Bao Fitzrovia

Restaurants Taiwanese Fitzrovia

£5

Vegans don’t have much of an incentive to join the queue at Bao’s Soho flagship: the menu is mostly meaty, and even those famous buns are out of bounds (they contain milk). But at the Fitzrovia outpost – which, brace yourself, actually takes bookings – it’s a different story. The star dish is caramelised aubergine in a sauce that hums with chilli and Sichuan pepper, ladled over perfectly cooked short-grained rice. The meat-eaters will be fighting you for it.

Venue says BAO now has a delivery brand, Rice Error! Find us on Deliveroo - we've got bases in Borough, Fitzrovia, Hackney, or order to Click & Collect

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Pearl barley risotto, woodland mushrooms and truffle at Pollen Street Social

Restaurants Haute cuisine Mayfair

£18

Michelin-starred restaurants are built on blocks of butter, and their kitchens can be très sniffy about dietary requirements. Good on Jason Atherton, then, for sticking his neck out at Pollen Street Social and pulling together a dedicated vegan menu. It isn’t just salads either. Our pick is the pearl barley risotto, which comes heaped with golden jerusalem artichokes and shaved black truffle.

Black rice with coconut milk, banana and mango at NOPI

Restaurants Contemporary Global Soho

£9

Nopi’s shakshuka must be London’s most photographed egg dish, but this breakfast menu standout is just as pretty and vegan-friendly to boot. The black rice somehow manages to be nutty, creamy and sweet all at the same time, while the fruit has been given as much TLC as you’d expect from an Ottolenghi outfit. Porridge? It’s over.

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Chilli con veggie with mixed rice at Grain Store

Restaurants Contemporary European King’s Cross

£13

Banish all thoughts of teeth-squeaking soy-protein ‘mince’ from your mind. Grain Store’s vegan chilli is a carnival of piquillo peppers, chestnut mushrooms, fennel, tomatoes and kidney beans, slow-cooked with freshly ground, dry-roasted spices. It comes with sour cream on the side, but the clued-up staff will happily bring it without.

best vegan dishes in london, Chin Chin Labs
best vegan dishes in london, Chin Chin Labs
Credit: Andy Parsons

Vegan hot chocolate with whipped coconut cream at Chin Chin Laboratorists

Restaurants Vegetarian Camden Market

£3.95

Picture the world’s poshest Bounty bar. Then picture drinking it. Well, Chin Chin Labs has made your fevered imaginings a reality. It’s best known for leftfield ice creams (flash-freezing anything that isn’t nailed down), but the vegan hot chocolate is just right for January. It’s made with Valrhona and a hint of raspberry, and topped with a cloud of soft whipped coconut cream.

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Yoga Fire curry bowl at Cook Daily

Restaurants Vegan Shoreditch

£9

Ignore the name. This mega-indulgent curry is anything but hair-shirted. Spiced chickpeas, lentils and sweet potato are simmered in turmeric-infused coconut milk and heaped on to a bed of brown rice and quinoa, proving that comfort food doesn’t begin and end with dairy. You can also pre-order for speedy collection. Weekday lunches are looking up.

Fresh mushroom Isaan salad at Kiln

Restaurants Thai Soho

£6.50

Its sister restaurant Smoking Goat is a meat-feast (the clue’s in the name), but vegans don’t miss out at Thai barbecue Kiln. Although a mushroom salad might not sound like anything to write home about, this one is a thing of deep, fragrant beauty: girolles and oyster mushrooms arranged just so in an intensely smoky broth. Add stir-fried greens and some brown jasmine rice, and you’re all set.

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Beer-battered ‘tofish’ tacos at Club Mexicana

Restaurants Street food Camden Market

£7

Tacos are everywhere right now, but if you’re dodging dairy, all that melted cheese means you have to stand on the sidelines. Boo. Luckily, everything Club Mexicana sells from its hot-pink stall at Kerb Camden is fully vegan, turning Mexi-can’ts into Mexi-cans. The signature taco comes with tofu in burnished beer batter, chimichurri, pickled chillis and hot sauce.

best vegan dishes in london, farmacy, blackberry and apple crumble
best vegan dishes in london, farmacy, blackberry and apple crumble
Credit: Andy Parsons

Blackberry and apple crumble at Farmacy

Restaurants Global Notting Hill

£9

If you’ve given up meat and cheese and all that jazz, you’re probably going to need to get some extra calories in, aren’t you? (Bear with me.) And the best way of doing that is with something sweet, yes? Well, then – hotfoot it to Farmacy. West London’s most hyped clean eatery is particularly strong on vegan desserts, and its warm blackberry and apple crumble with coconut ‘nice cream’ ticks all the boxes.

Find more vegan eats in London

The best vegan restaurants in London

Restaurants

When it comes to vegan-only restaurants, London has got herbivores covered. But what about when you're eating as a group, and only some of you are vegan? We've hand-picked mainstream restaurants, covering cuisines from Japanese right through to Peruvian, which 'cater for all'. Because the only thing better than eating out, is eating out with all your friends.

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