Gone are the days where vegans have limited options when going out to eat. Richmond has evolved with the times and offers many vegan restaurants. That means that a vegan can walk into any of these amazing restaurants and order literally anything off the menu. That is a great feeling. Think about how many times you have gone out with friends only to find nothing vegan on the menu except a pitiful side salad. Creative appetizers, entrées, and desserts are not only 100% vegan at these restaurants, but the quality is so high you’d never feel you were missing out on anything. Check out the best vegan restaurants in Richmond VA and sample your way through the city’s vegan scene.
#1 Ipanema Cafe
One of the first vegan restaurants in Richmond VA, Ipanema opened in 1998. Restaurant entrepreneur Kendra Feather placed her first restaurant on Grace Street. Ipanema helped created the local vegan scene with their flavorful menu that includes delectable items such as green curry with quinoa, jack fruit BBQ sandwich, and “Chicken Fried” tempeh.
#2 Fresca on Addison
A father and daughter teamed to open a restaurant that combined both of their passions. Fresh, local, and organic ingredients are the core of Fresca’s menu. Their goal is to make food so good that you don’t miss the meat. They have easily accomplished their goal with brick oven pizzas covered in creative topping combinations, tacos that will make you salivate, and sandwiches that do not disappoint.
#3 The Daily Kitchen and Bar
Social responsibility and sustainability place a huge role in how The Daily runs its business and creates their menu. Most of their ingredients are locally sourced from nearby farms. This supports the community and ensures the freshest food possible. They offer gourmet meals with animal protein with vegan options. Vegan calamari, Tempeh TLT sandwich, and pizza options are available. The Daily Kitchen serves breakfast on the weekends.
#4 Phoenix Garden
Vietnamese vegetarian food restaurant has been open since 2011. Phoenix Trinh and her late husband Vi created this hidden gem that is beloved by the local community. They have gained a positive reputation among locals for their vegetarian pho that rivals the traditional version. They offer flavorful Asian options like Pho, vegan curry chicken, Bahn Mi, along with eggplant and marinated tofu. A changing array of scratch-made desserts complete their lineup.
#5 Hang Space
The restaurant name perfectly describes this comfortable eatery. The restaurant is the brainchild of two food trucks, GoGoVeganGo and Yummvees, that combined their vegan powers to create this wonder child. Comfortable and casual seating await guests at one of the best vegan restaurants in Richmond VA. They offer ample dining and dessert options that change regularly with the promise of enticing variety. Try their Fishless tacos, Chk’n parmesan sammie, or the messily delicious Bam burger with a side of tots for a meal that won’t disappoint.
#6 Mean Bird
There’s something for meat-eaters and vegans alike at Mean Bird. They have a brick-and-mortar takeout location and a food truck. They are famous for vegan and traditional fried chicken. They don’t use a soy-based processed meat substitute instead, the make their own Veggie Bird made from vegetables, rice, herbs, and seasonings. The Veggie Bird is then dipped in coconut milk, breaded, and fried to perfection. Vegan sandwiches, sides, and sauces complete their menu.
Seasonally changing ingredient ensure freshness year-round. Goatocado also cares deeply about sustainability. They use compostable materials to lessen their environmental impact. Goatocado began as a food truck and has recently expanded into a traditional restaurant. Their menu features Asian inspired items like fresh Arepas, bowls, fresh ramen, and wraps. Everything is customizable with a variety of add-ons and unique sauces. A trip to Goatocado is not complete without their signature guac.
#8 821 Cafe
Located within walking distance to Virginia Commonwealth University, 821 Cafe has made a name for itself in the local vegan community since they opened in 1996. They take part in in vegan festivals and other events. As one of the oldest vegan restaurants in Richmond VA they cater to the college crowd with breakfast served daily. Vegans and carnivores can dine in harmony at the 821 Cafe. Tasty vegan options include the vegan curried chicken sandwich, vegan chili with chips, vegan chicken satay kabobs, and buffalo tofu sandwich. 821 Cafe features a daily special board and weekly events like Taco Wednesday along with Vegan Friday.
#9 NuVegan Cafe
Casual and comfortable, NuVegan Cafe serves a wide variety of purely vegan dishes cafeteria-style. Simply get in line, glimpse through the glass to see the offerings of the day, and order. Vegan fried fish, mac n’ cheese, vegan steak sandwich, carrot souflé, and tacos are just a small sampling of their many options. There are many delicious sides. Try a few each visit with their combo plate. Delicious and healthy cold-pressed juices, smoothies, and shakes round out their unique drink selection. NuVegan seasonally has a food truck.
#10 Lemon Cuisine of India
Ethnic food offers much more plant-based meal options than typical American food. Lemon Cuisine provides a lineup of flavor-packed Indian meals. Their extensive menu is not strictly vegan, but there is a multitude of options. Vegetable Biryani, Aloo Ghobi, Baingan Bahaar, Vegetable Vin d’Alho, many naan varieties, and Kachumber. They offer delivery, dine-in, and takeout.
The food scene has changed for the better in Richmond. There are many vegan restaurants in Richmond VA with a wide variety of offerings. Many cuisines are available from classic American, Vietnamese, to Indian. Burgers, salad, pizza, ramen, vegan chicken, tacos, and Aloo Ghobi are just a small sampling of what the best vegan restaurants in Richmond VA have to offer. These restaurants as so delicious that meat isn’t even missed, and so flavorful that your taste buds will experience a new boom of flavors. Step outside the ordinary and experience new vegan food like never before right here in Richmond.