Vegetarian cuisine has increased in popularity over the last few decades, opening up a whole new world of food to much of the public. From trendy bistros and cafes to elegant restaurants and lively bars, vegetarian cooking has flourished in the UK owing to the variety of international dishes, bringing delicious fruits, vegetables and wholesome superfoods to meat-eaters and non-meat-eaters alike.
Take a look at our guide to the best vegetarian restaurants in the UK and find the perfect spot to enjoy a healthy, nutritious, and incredibly tasty meal.
The Gate is one of London’s most successful vegetarian restaurants, so much so that it recently opened a second branch in Islington alongside its original Hammersmith premise. Providing a unique blend of Iraqi, Indian, and Jewish cuisines, The Gate’s owners serve up food inspired by their grandmother’s traditional cooking.
With a selection of spicy and flavourful starters, a diverse assortment of main dishes with imaginative seasoning, and a rich and fruity dessert menu, as well as a modern and open interior, The Gate promises diners a one-of-a-kind eating experience. We recommend the mezze platter to start, the spicy and fragrant Thai green curry and the refreshing summer fruit trifle.
The Michelin recommended Vanilla Black restaurant has been making innovative and inspired vegetarian eats for Londoners since 2004. Their artistic approach to cuisine has won many plaudits, earning the restaurant a reputation for quality food.
The menu offers a creative and contemporary range of dishes, bringing customers new and exciting flavour combinations in an elegantly decorated setting that lends a touch of class to the atmosphere, making Vanilla Black a pioneer in modern vegetarian cookery. Imaginative menu selections such as dried yeast ice cream, a fried mushroom, sweetcorn, and tarragon sponge, and smoked paprika fudge make for an unbeatable dining experience.
Food for Friends
Brighton’s award-winning restaurant Food for Friends has been touted by many locals as the best vegetarian restaurant in the city. Its warm and relaxed atmosphere allows for casual dining as well as a special celebration, serving delicious food for all occasions, and the attentive and friendly staff leave you feeling very much at home.
The menu choices are varied and exciting, with standout dishes including a flavourful vegetarian haggis, a halloumi and Portobello mushroom burger and a sumptuous molten chocolate pudding. Food for Friends is making a name for vegetarian cuisine and itself in Brighton, and is a must-visit for a delicious and gratifying meal.
Gourmet Girls Pop Up
Gourmet Girls’ Pop Up Restaurant Nights are a weekly dining event in Fanny’s of Hanover in Brighton, serving a selection of appetizing vegan food to many eager customers every Friday. The restaurant’s popularity can be credited partly to its lively atmosphere and engaging staff, as well as its hallmark ever-changing menu that takes on a different theme each week.
October brings the Brighton public a choice of Mexican, Italian and Moroccan cuisine as well as days dedicated to the art of ‘pie ‘n’ mash’, and ‘fish ‘n’ chips’. Keep an eye on the Gourmet Girls Pop Up Restaurant website for a full menu and further scheduling.
Glasgow’s Mono offers its enticing selection of entirely vegan cuisine alongside a variety of drinks and a dedication to live music. Not only does the establishment house a café and bar, but it also has an independent record store called Monorail Music, as well as the Good Press visual art space. This trendy combination gives Mono a unique and classy feel, attracting plenty of food fans and art fans alike.
The menu itself provides a wide choice of delicious food that caters vegan food for all pallets. The falafel wrap is a flavourful starter that goes well with the Lamachan, a Turkish style pizza with minced aubergine. Finish with the delectable hot fudge ice cream sundae for a fulfilling meal before enjoying one of the in-house brewed ginger beers or lemonades.
The 78 in Glasgow’s West End gives you an eating experience steeped in comfort. The floor’s roasting coal fireplace, plush armchairs and sofas, and vintage HMV 78 record player give the restaurant an atmosphere unmatched for homeliness, and the live entertainment adds a cool elegance to the establishment.
The exclusively meat-free menu offers vegetarians and vegans a scrumptious array of dishes, from a rich and savoury coconut and bean chilli to a refreshingly cool vegan ice creams served with toasted walnuts and maple syrup. The lunch menu also offers a selection of delicious snacks and wraps available until 5pm. The 78 in Glasgow is the place to go for a cosy evening of fantastic entertainment and even better food.
The 1847 restaurant chain earned itself the award of The Best Vegetarian Restaurant Outside London for its selection of delicious, vegetarian-friendly, British food. Named after the year the Vegetarian Society was formed, it opened in Manchester in 2010 and has continued to impress ever since. The stylish and brightly lit, bistro style décor make for a comfortable and pleasant atmosphere, coupled with its excellent menu to make it a vegetarian and vegan hotspot of Manchester.
The cucumber gazpacho is tangy, sweet, and a perfect starter for the next course, a rich mac and cheese served with blue cheese sauce, baked turnips, and breadcrumbs. Finish with a serving of fantastically rich, triple chocolate brownies that come with sweet poached pears and a popcorn cremaux.
The Earth Cafe
Manchester’s Earth Café combined a flawless ethos with heavenly and healthy food and drink, all completely organic and meat-free. The simple and friendly feel to the café lets you get comfortable and focus on the flavourful, well-seasoned food and refreshing, ice cold beverages.
The variety of dishes on the menu leaves your mouth watering almost as much as the food itself – the coconut curry is especially tasty, and complimented well by the cool side salad. From the juice bar that serves organic, freshly made juices and smoothies, the Ginger Jolt is sweet and snappy, and completes the experience of a healthy and nutritious vegan meal.
Boojum’s menu caters for meat and non-meat eaters alike, and the vegetarian options are well worth the visit. The Mexican restaurant offers a sumptuous and satisfying selection of tacos, burritos and burrito bowls, fajitas, and salads, with a variety of fillings.
For carnivores, the usual suspects of Mexican cuisine are accounted for, but the vegetarian filling is what has been stealing the show, as well as the hearts of Belfast. Try the vegetarian burrito with salsa verde and a side of tortilla chips for a fast and filling meal, rich with spice and flavour. The long queues will testify to how tasty the food is, so be sure to get there early.
Belfast’s Archana is popular for its incredibly tasty food and intimate, comfortable atmosphere. The mood is set instantly as you enter the restaurant, with subtle and spicy scents drifting from the kitchen and a warm smile from the staff. There are two menus combined into one with a section specifically for vegans, offering a huge array of dishes.
The bhindi masala (okra) is stunning and bursting with aromatic flavours, and goes perfectly with the mushroom pulao rice. The saag alu, or the potato and spinach curry, is equally as scrumptious with a warm garlic naan bread. Wash it down with a beer or a sweet tea to finish a tasty, guilt-free meal.
Whether you’re heading off to London, Brighton, Manchester, Glasgow, or Belfast to try out one of these specialist vegetarian menus, if you’re staying overnight then check in at one of our city centre hotels… enjoy your meal!
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