Vegan Restaurants & Cafes in Bristol (UK)

As a city, Bristol is relatively welcoming to veggies & vegans! Here is my (incomplete) guide to the Bristol’s vegan-friendly restaurants and cafes. I will update it as I try out new places! 🙂

Cafes & Pubs

Cafe Kino
108 Stokes Croft, Bristol
0117 924 9200
Totally vegan cafe, except for the fact that they do offer dairy milk in coffees. Quite a good selection of food and none of it tastes vegan. They always have a couple of freshly baked cakes on offer which are always delicious, and their coffee isn’t bad either. They do a vegan ‘full English’ style breakfast too. This is a community cafe run by volunteers and I enjoy supporting them out of principle.

Boston Tea Party
Locations on Park Street, Whiteladies Road, in Clifton Village and in Stokes Croft
Small chain in the South-West. Vegan-friendly options available. Breakfast: they do a vegan ‘full English’ kind of breakfast as well as mushrooms in toast. I haven’t tried their lunch options yet but honestly I trust their food, I’ve never really had any complains. However I would definitely recommend the Stokes Croft location above the others- it’s the most spacious and staff are always so friendly! Drinks-wise I recommend the filter coffee (Columbian at the moment is yummy), and the chai tea with steamed soy milk and cinnamon. They also have a coconut chocolate flapjack that is vegan and yummy.

Coffee 1
Locations all over Bristol: Westbury, Gloucester Rd, Thornbury etc
Probably some of the best coffee in Bristol, but I resent that they charge 35p for extra soy milk even in an americano/filter coffee. Not really anything vegan food-wise, so don’t come hungry!

Grupo Lounge
Wesbury village.
Part of a nationwide chain. They have a vegan menu but you have to ask for it. I haven’t had a great experience there, they always seem to put dairy on my plate even when I order off the vegan menu. But at least they have a few vegan options! Food is ok, I wouldn’t go there on purpose to eat, but it’s a good choice if you are with people who aren’t vegan- they have something for everyone. Be warned, the terrace shuts at 7!

Cupp
Cabot Circus.
Bubble Tea in Bristol! Apparently the only place that makes bubble tea without all those sketchy powders: only loose leaf tea and fresh fruit. Plenty of vegan options- either get the fruit tea, or milk tea with soy milk. They also do a cold noodle salad which is yummy, and it’s £6 for a tea and salad.

Middle Eastern

Falafel King
Van on the waterfront & Cotham Hill.
Really nice falafel!

Eat a Pitta
St Nicholas Market
I think I prefer this place to Falafel King, they offer more salad.. plus they always have free samples of the falafel. Yum! Have falafel + salad in a box or in a pitta.

Indian

Thali Cafe
Locations in Southville, Clifton Village, Totterdown, Easton, Montpelier.
Plenty of vegan-friendly options. They do a dairy-free thali (dhal, rice, veg curry, tomato salsa, raw salad). Plenty of starters/sides are vegan and delicious too: the red pepper pakoras, potato bondas, aloo paratha, samosas… The dhaal is really nice too. I found the service in the Clifton branch a bit lacking, and much preferred the service and atmosphere of the Southville one.

Japanese

Yo Sushi
Obviously a nationwide chain but still there are plenty of vegan options if you find yourself there with friends. Veg firecracker rice, Inari pocket (no tamago), avocado maki (no mayo), cucumber maki, veg futomaki (no tamago), kaiso salad, tofu salad, tofu katsu curry (no panko/no egg), mochi. They have a special dietary requirements folder.

Wagamama
On the Triangle and the mall (Cribbs). New one opening in Cabot Circus.
Tell your waiter/waitress- they have a special list of vegan-friendly dishes. My recommendations would be: bean and glass noodle salad, saien soba, yasai itame. Unfortunately the only vegan dessert is the fruit ice lolly. They do have nice fresh juices though.

Korean

Surakhan
52 Park Row
I had the vegetable bibimbap without the egg. Simple but quite tasty. Quite a convenient location so I’d definitely go back and try something else. Waitress was nice and patient!

Jakorean/Bobjo
Southmead Road
At the moment they only have a really small menu- they recently opened and are still developing it. I’m not even really sure what they’re called.. But their bibimbap without an egg is really yummy and super cheap at £3.50. Expect to feel like you’re walking into someone’s house- eclectic furniture, random trophies on the side, but they really care about you enjoying the food!

Vietnamese

Baowow
Baldwin Street
Vietnamese/Thai food. Everything is delicious. Service is a bit awkward, but it feels like they put love into their food. The buns are a must-have! The veggie one can be vegan without the mayo. I also tried the tofu/yellow bean sauce + rice and it was yummy. Go for lunch on a weekday for the £5 meal deal they do!

Tampopo
Cabot Circus
Ok so Tampopo does a bit of every type of Asian cuisine, I know.. but hey ho. It’s in the Vietnamese category for now haha. They do a vegan sign on the menu so you can clearly see what is vegan-friendly! The Korean noodle dish I got was nice and I’d get it again.

Fine Dining

Harvey Nichols
Cabot Circus
You can request a vegan menu by letting them know when you book. The meal I had was a tomato consomme to start, then aubergine, chilli, coriander, garlic salad, and (sadly) a fruit platter + elderflower sorbet for dessert. The starter and main were delicious, but unfortunately the dessert was disappointing and I have to admit I left not really feeling that full. They haven’t understood that vegans don’t just eat vegetables. They could have thrown a bit of quinoa/another grain in the salad, even a tiny bit would have made it feel more filling! But anyway, on the whole it was a nice meal and it was nice to go somewhere posh and actually be able to eat something!

Mexican

Mission Burrito
Park St
My initial impressions were good, plenty of room inside to sit down, Subway/chipotle-esque ordering, plenty of choice… I got a veggie burrito without the sour cream/cheese and it was ok. I wouldn’t rush back but I wouldn’t rule it out forever. Maybe I should give it another go… I just feel I could make something nicer myself. My burrito was cold and needed some more seasoning.bit was gigantic though, definitely a place you could share at. Plenty of choice of Jarritos at £2.50 a pop.

Italian

Pepe Nero
Bond St
Good lunch deal: pizza and drink £6.99. They have. Good choice of vegan toppings. The base was good, but I didn’t like the cheese they used- it tasted too fake. Personally I’d rather just have a pizza without cheese than that 😦 I’d go again but if have a regular pizza without the cheese!

Places to try next:
Al Bab Mansour
Mezze at the Royal George
Schnafel
Simply Thai
Maitreya Social
Thai Pepper
Roll for the soul

Reviews to come as soon as I try them out!

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5 Tips: how to eat out as a vegan

Becoming vegan and eating in a way that is so different to conventional diets is bound to be a challenge sometimes. Eating out in restaurants is something that can be a bit tricky if you’re not used to eating in this way, but I promise it gets easier with time 🙂

1. Firstly, if you are planning a meal out, certain cuisines are a lot easier than others. I find French and often Italian food more challenging, as there is usually cheese/butter/creamy sauces on most options, with the exception of pizzas- just ask for no cheese and get veggie toppings. Thai, Indian and Mexican are some of my favourite cuisines as a vegan. Thai/Japanese/Vietnamese etc food often has plenty of tofu as an option instead of meat, and there’s pretty much no dairy used. Since Mexican food relies heavily on beans/rice, you can still have a satisfying meal that doesn’t include dairy/meat!

2. Avoid places like typical English pubs, and places that don’t cook much of their own food. This means you will have less chance of adapting dishes to what you like. Pubs often base every dish around meat, and their veggie options aren’t great. Even if they have veggie dishes, you will be unlikely to be able to get them without cheese.

3. Plan ahead: check out the menu of the place you’re going to. If they haven’t got a website, call up in advance and find out what their veggie options are and if you can get them without cheese/cream/whatever.

4. If no main courses that can be adapted to being vegan are available, check out the sides. You can still have a decent meal if there’s hummus, veg, sweet potato fries, rice, beans, etc. Get 2/3/4 sides and POW, you’ve got a nice meal made up of stuff you actually like!

5. If there’s really no chance of adapting anything whatsoever on the menu, relax. Eat something at home beforehand and if necessary, bring snacks with you even if you don’t think you’ll get hungry- you never know! At the end of the day, eating out is a social thing- go and have fun with your friends!

Finally: watch out for animal products in sneaky places: shrimp paste and fish sauce in Asian food, yoghurt/cream in Indian curries, gelatine in desserts.

What are your tips for eating out as a vegan? What types of restaurants do you tend to go to?