Everywhere You Should Be Eating Vegan and Vegetarian Food in NYC
17 go-to spots for meatless eats.
New York City is on the cutting edge of all things culinary, so it's no surprise that plant-based eateries have been a fixture in the city for decades. In fact, restaurants like Candle Cafe, Dojo, Angelica Kitchen (RIP) and many more transformed meatless diets into a lifestyle to aspire to as early as the 1970s. While vegetarian and vegan eateries have continued to proliferate since then, one exciting newish trend is the introduction of plant-based options within the fast-casual space (e.g., Taim, by CHLOE, et al.) offering affordable and quickly prepared items that make it that much easier for New Yorkers to go meat-free.
In more recent years, the tech world has gotten in on the plant-based action, innovating with startups like Beyond Meat, Impossible, Miyoko’s, Eclipse Foods, and many others (largely within grocery and retail). You’ll now find Impossible items on fast-food menus from Burger King to White Castle. On the local level, the integration of these scientifically engineered meat alternatives have made their way onto NYC menus as well.
Today, New Yorkers have unprecedented access to plant-based kitchens, but of course, we have a few favorites to share. Plenty of almost vegan and vegetarian restaurants are worthy of honorable mention, but for now, we're focusing on the 100% meatless restaurants in NYC that deserve a slot in your restaurant regimen. Whether for takeout or delivery, here are the 17 best vegan and vegetarian restaurants for plant-based eating in NYC.
This new Mexican spot from the team behind Michelin-starred Oxomoco aims to show new audiences that vegan and vegetarian food can be accessible—and just as tasty. The menu is 75% vegan, 25% vegetarian, featuring dishes like the braised carrot tostada with navy beans, carrot top salsa verde, and spiced maple; and the masa tempura broccoli taco with salsa cruda, red cabbage, and chili mayo. Xilonen opened its doors just before New Year's with breakfast and lunch options, and will add a full dinner and beverage program in early 2021.
How to order: Order for pickup via storefront; by mid-January, delivery will be available via Caviar, DoorDash.
The duo behind local favorite Beyond Sushi is bringing a new vegan bistro to the scene on January 15. Executive chef and owner Guy Vaknin crafted a diverse menu of plant-based comfort items that includes salads, sandwiches, entrees, and an array of finger foods like coconut ceviche, jackfruit crab cakes, and spicy Impossible meat taquitos. Four fresh juices and four chilled desserts are also on offer to round out the experience. Willow will begin with takeout and delivery services till 10 pm every day of the week.
How to order: Opening January 15, order via website and check for updates on delivery service apps.
It's brand-new, but old-school; an Italian deli, but entirely plant-based; a "family business," but founded by a successful restaurant company. Galioto's entire existence is an oxymoron, and we're so happy it exists. New York's first plant-based delicatessen and pantry market rests on Mulberry Street, in the heart of Little Italy, offering a vintage experience with grab-and-go deli items and shoppable goods. Galioto's isn't technically a family business—it was opened by the JaJaJa Group—but it's stocked by an honorary family of local vegan vendors with a unified mission to bring something special to the neighborhood.
How to order: Onsite or call 212-518-7046; food delivery apps scheduled to launch by mid-January, check website for updates.
Blossom on Columbus
Blossom was founded in 2005 by two entrepreneurs whose love for animals pushed them to adopt an animal-free diet. Today, it's considered a pioneer of the plant-based movement, and its two Manhattan locations include a now-established Upper West Side hub with a full-service bar and a newly opened Greenwich Village eatery. The menus span several categories of cuisine, the atmospheres lean toward classy, and, although its price point may be higher than others, you’ll find yourself craving a return visit dangerously soon after leaving.
How to order:
UWS: Call 212-875-2600 or via website, Caviar, Delivery.com, Grubhub, Postmates, Seamless
Greenwich Village: Call 212-627-1144 or via website, Grubhub, Postmates, Seamless
Gone are the days when vegans begrudgingly followed their friends to a diner only to order a sad Sprite and a side of tots for supper. And in a restaurant landscape where diners are becoming especially harder to come by, Champs fills a major gap in the herbivore community, offering meatless takes on traditional American comfort fare. From mac ‘n’ cheese with a housemade cauliflower-based cheese to a Nashville hot chick’n sandwich or gyro made with seitan, Champs has got you covered on all your plant-based diner needs.
How to order: Via website, DoorDash, Grubhub, Seamless
Delice & Sarrasin
Traditional French cuisine relies heavily on animal products, making Délice & Sarrasin such an important player in the city’s culinary scene. The entirely vegan restaurant serves all sorts of dishes out of a charming Christopher Street space that could very well pass for a Parisian cafe. They’ve mastered brunch—crepes, waffles, French toast, salads—but their vegan renditions of steak tartare, escargot, scallops, coq au vin, and the like give animal-averse eaters a rare chance to truly experience French cooking.
How to order: Via Grubhub, Postmates, Seamless, Uber Eats
The Picnic Basket, stuffed with fried chik'n and seitan bacon, is a best-seller, but Hartbreakers' fast-casual menu doesn’t end there: Dressed-up waffle fries, striking salads, breakfast burritos, and other sandwiches share the spotlight. The menu is entirely vegan, and just about everything’s made in-house. The colorful dining room mimics a 1970s-era cafe, so be sure to sneak a peek of it when picking up your takeout order.
How to order: Order pickup via website, or delivery via Grubhub, Postmates, Seamless
JaJaJa Plantas Mexicana
This plant-based venture is anything but funny. In fact, it's cute as hell, known for its beautifully arranged Mexican street food—think tacos, nachos, empanadas, tortas, and a smorgasbord of lighter eats that vary by location. Most locations also Latin-inspired craft cocktails, like the Oaxacan old fashioned, spicy watermelon mezcal, cucumber y aloe, and frozen agave margarita. And the tequila and mezcal options? Extensive.
How to order:
LES: Via Caviar, DoorDash, Grubhub, Postmates, Seamless, Uber Eats
West Village: Via Caviar, DoorDash, Grubhub, Postmates, Seamless, Uber Eats
Hudson Yards: Via Caviar, Grubhub, Postmates, Seamless, Uber Eats
Williamsburg: Via Caviar, DoorDash, Grubhub, Postmates, Seamless, Uber Eats
Le Botaniste champions the cause to save Planet Earth with responsible dishes that cater to nearly every dietary restriction. The menu is safe for celiacs, options are plentiful for vegans, and for those who refuse to eat anything that’s not organic, 99% of the menu is on-limits. In addition to the entirely botanical bowls, Le Botaniste’s four Manhattan locations offer healthy dessert options and detox juice, and with a collection of natural wines available in some as well.
How to order:
UES: Via website, Caviar, Grubhub, Postmates, Seamless, Uber Eats
UWS: Via website, Caviar, DoorDash, Grubhub, Seamless, Uber Eats
SoHo: Via website, Caviar, DoorDash, Grubhub, Postmates, Seamless, Uber Eats
Midtown East: Via website, Caviar, DoorDash, Grubhub, Postmates, Seamless, Uber Eats
Little Choc Apothecary
Back in the day when indoor dining was still allowed, you'd bring your date to the upper floor of this charming, two-story creperie where healthy ingredients morph into indulgent creations both savory and sweet, vegan, and gluten-free. However, even with the dolled-up dining area closed, Little Choc continues to serve up charm in the form of coffees, teas, smoothies, juices, wines, beers, crepes, and desserts. Variety is key here, with a menu boasting items like a vegan burrito crepe, pb&j acai bowl, and red wine hot chocolate.
How to order: Call 718-963-0420 for pickup or order delivery via website, DoorDash, Grubhub, Postmates, Seamless, Uber Eats
After Louie Catizone switched to a plant-based diet years ago, he started to miss the classic Italian sandwiches he grew up on. Naturally, he reacted by developing his own recipe for vegan cold cuts that he finally feels is ready for mass consumption. Launched last summer, Louie's Deli Counter is an online faux-meat delivery service, and Louie's Luncheonette is the brand's new Brooklyn deli window serving vegan sandwiches with Louie's "meats" and She Wolf Bakery bread. For now, the window is only open a few days a week during lunchtime hours and products sell out fast, but exclusivity is part of the appeal.
How to order: Order for pickup via storefront
Modern Love Brooklyn
The finer things in life involve fried "mozzarella" Buffalo "wings," and nacho macaroni. Oh, and jerk tofu bowls, seitan & waffles, and oyster mushroom calamari. Plus maybe a sundae for dessert and a cocktail for good measure? Long story short, Modern Love knows a thing or two about the finer things, and even better, they know how to translate the finer things into vegan-friendly dishes that brighten the table. You asked the universe for romance, and here it is—your modern love affair.
How to order: Via website, Caviar, DoorDash, Grubhub, Seamless
Renegades of Sunset
Posted up in the food hall of Brooklyn creative hub Industry City, Renegades of Sunset is a vegan kitchen serving made-from-scratch meals Wednesdays to Sundays. The restaurant's seasonal menu doesn't always stick to a cuisine (banh mis, cheesesteaks, Italian subs, and veggie burgers live on the menu in perfect harmony); the only consistent culture is one of rebellion against our meat-oriented society. There are certainly worse types of renegades.
How to order: Via website, Grubhub, Postmates, Seamless
Vegan pizza is too often synonymous with disappointment: While everyone else grabs thick, gooey slices of their favorite pies, vegans are left with a sad sauce-and-mushroom option, or worse, nothing at all. Thankfully, the people behind Screamer’s Pizzeria understand the dilemma and save the day with “cheesy” creations vegans can devour (whether a full pie for your apartment movie night or a quick slice to satisfy a case of the drunchies!).
How to order:
Greenpoint: Via DoorDash, Grubhub, Seamless
Crown Heights: Via DoorDash, Grubhub, Postmates, Seamless
Spicy Moon works with all the same vegetables and seasonings found in traditional Chinese restaurants, simply excluding the animal protein. Vegetable dumplings, wontons, and spring rolls cover the basics, while more inventive bites like General Tso’s mushrooms and "honey" walnut edamame nuggets show off Spicy Moon’s individuality. Still, the spicy spring roll dipping sauce is the true seductress—taste for yourself and see.
How to order:
East Village: Via Caviar, Delivery.com, DoorDash, Grubhub, Postmates, Seamless, Uber Eats
West Village: Via Caviar, Delivery.com, DoorDash, Grubhub, Seamless
New York City’s superior veggie burger destination attracts people from all around town to nosh on creative meatless sandwiches. For carrying such a big name, the shop itself is tiny, yet it still manages to cook up A1 animal-free meals that are often "accidentally vegan" and always just as good as the real thing. Hours are limited from Tuesdays through Saturdays, but stopping by to place an order after a meticulously timed afternoon walk around Tompkins Square Park is part of the experience. Superiority Burger is one of those spots where people are willing to wait in a long line just to scarf everything down on the curb.
How to order: Order for pickup via storefront
The V Spot
Next time you’re craving a Latin treat, make it easy on yourself and go where you can approximate cheese and sour cream, and incorporate solid protein into your restricted diet. Vegan empanadas bring the heat at VSpot, a Colombian outpost from Brooklyn so gratifying that it opened a second location, the VSpot Express, on St. Marks. On the topic of vegan eateries, VSpot has earned a place in the canon.
How to order:
Park Slope: Via website, Caviar, DoorDash, Grubhub, Seamless, Uber Eats
East Village: Via website, Caviar, Grubhub, Seamless, Uber Eats