As the popularity of plant-based diets rises, so does the availability of meat-free meals. Better for the environment, a vegetarian or vegan diet cuts down on the greenhouse gases produced by animal products. Sticking to herbivorous eating can be tricky while traveling, but these are some of the best plant-based restaurants in Europe that offer delicious and accessible vegan options that are good for the planet.
Le Botaniste (Ghent, Belgium)
Le Botaniste is a plant-based restaurant adheres to the slogan “Let Food Be Thy Medicine.” An organic vegetable kitchen and natural wine bar, this health conscious spot features an entirely vegan and gluten-free menu. Referred to as a ‘beauty salon for your insides,’ it offers a clean and minimalist look. The dishes are all simple, yet beautiful as well. Le Botaniste is picture-perfect for a healthy and delicious meal when traveling through Ghent.
Maitrea (Prague, Czech Republic)
A restaurant and tea room in Prague’s Old Town, Maitrea is a cozy spot. All dishes are vegetarian and most can be made vegan. Their menu includes Czech specials such as goulash, as well as a variety of global dishes. There is a rotating menu of daily specials as well. The atmosphere of the restaurant is relaxed, with an emphasis on ‘feng shui.’ Snag a spot by the fireplace and indulge in a cup of their raw hot chocolate.
Ao 26 Vegan Food Project (Lisbon, Portugal)
The Ao 26 Vegan Food Project displays Portuguese flavors through a plant-based lens. The restaurant utilizes mushrooms to imitate seafood and makes several traditional Portuguese dishes alongside casual sandwiches and “burgers.” Daily specials rotate to showcase seasonal ingredients and customers can peruse a selection of natural juices or wines. Desserts include decadent vegan cheesecakes or mousses. The interior design of the restaurant is chic and modern, just like its menu.
42 Degres (Paris, France)
When in France, eat fromage. 42 Degres is a raw vegan bistro with a variety of plant-based French cheeses (‘Frawmage’) and toasts. Located in Paris’ 9th arrondissement, their name comes from the fact that none of their food is cooked above 42 degrees Celsius.
The menu includes ‘Faux-Gras,’ parsnip parmentier and local pear desserts. Visitors can experience a fixed meal, choose tasting items off the menu or come for brunch. 42 Degres is organic, vegan, gluten-free and raw, a rare find in the city of lights.
Soul Kitchen (Turin, Italy)
In Turin, Italy, Soul Kitchen takes risks to create original and decadent dishes. Fully vegan with raw options, the restaurant is Italian fine dining at its best. Presentation is a priority for chef Luca André and he certainly delivers. The ‘Gentlemen’s Club’ dessert features a 10-year-old peat whiskey parfait, hazelnut dark chocolate cover and cocoa beans, all served in a cloud of cherry wood smoke.
Of all the plant-based restaurants in Europe, Soul Kitchen is unconventional with unique and creative plating that combines fantasy with pure plant creativity.
La Encomienda (Madrid, Spain)
La Encomienda is a Spanish gem that is forging a new path in a country that is famous for their love of jamón. Located in the heard of Madrid, the restaurant prides themselves on homemade cooking that is vegan, organic and locally sourced.
Offering both a traditional menu as well as tapas, La Encomienda’s raw salads include a variety of ingredients, some unexpected, that come together in a delicious way. The plant-filled space reflects their goal to design a sustainable future in harmony with gastronomic pleasure.
Sova Vegan Butcher (Dublin, Ireland)
A BYOB vegan “butcher,” Sova Vegan Butcher has a unique array of brunch or dinner options in Dublin’s Portobello neighborhood. Once you wrap your head around the cheeky name, venture out and try vegan doner kababs, wellington “steak” and the traditional Irish breakfast, which all hold a coveted spot on the menu. Each dish is plant-based, although a glance at the menu would make you think otherwise. Sova Vegan Butcher creates the unique opportunity to experience an eclectic array of foods, meat-free.
Lokal Vegan Bistro (Warsaw, Poland)
Offering authentic Polish cuisine, veganized, Lokal Vegan Bistro creates everything from tofu skewers to schabowy with salad potatoes. The bistro is known for its generous portions and cozy location. Due to limited seating, it gets crowded during lunch hours so try to eat there earlier or later in the day.
Frea (Berlin, Germany)
Frea is one of the only plant-based restaurants in Europe that is also zero-waste. This means that all of their food is local, organic and all leftovers are used or composted. Their composting machine processes all of their waste into a soil substitute within 24 hours. Then, they deliver the composted material to their supplier farms. How’s that for a circular economy?
With favorites like homemade sourdough bread, handmade pasta and hazelnut milk, the menu has veggie focused foodies rejoicing. The Frea team even offers workshops on zero waste and sustainability so they can educate guests and fulfill their commitment to leaving the world better than they found it. The cozy space is also eco-chic, creating a warm ambience that feels like home.
Tarantoúla (Thessaloniki, Greece)
In Thessaloniki, Greece, Tarantoúla is a fully plant-based, locally owned Greek tavern. The menu includes baba ganoush (eggplant dip), fava, various sandwiches and more. The tavern is small, but located in the heart of Thessaloniki with indoor and outdoor seating. Cheap, simple and traditional, this is the perfect cafe to enjoy a casual bite and enjoy local music in the evenings.