Top Vegetarian-Friendly Restaurants in New York for Delicious Meat-Free Dining main photo
03.11.2023

Top Vegetarian-Friendly Restaurants in New York for Delicious Meat-Free Dining

Guides United States New York City, NY

New York City, a melting pot of culinary delights, offers an impressive array of vegetarian-friendly restaurants. These establishments cater not only to vegetarians but also to an increasing number of meat-eaters who are eager to explore plant-based cuisine. The city, known as the birthplace of fast food, has remarkably adapted to embrace a diverse range of dietary preferences, ensuring that vegetarian options are readily available and creatively crafted.


In New York, the concept of vegetarian dining transcends beyond specialized restaurants. You'll find that most eateries, from upscale dining establishments to casual cafés, proudly feature vegetarian dishes marked with a 'V' on their menus. This inclusivity extends even to coffee houses, where cow's milk is frequently substituted with plant-based alternatives like coconut milk, reflecting the city's respect for diverse tastes and dietary needs.


Whether you're a committed vegetarian or just curious to experience the richness of plant-based cuisine, New York's restaurants offer an array of surprisingly delicious options. From innovative vegetarian dishes that push culinary boundaries to classic favorites reimagined with meat-free ingredients, the city's dining scene is a paradise for those seeking vegetarian delights. Explore our curated list of New York's best vegetarian restaurants and discover the irresistible flavors of meat-free dining in the heart of the Big Apple.




1. Dirt Candy

Dirt Candy
86 Allen St, New York City, United States

If you're a vegetarian navigating the vibrant culinary landscape of New York, Dirt Candy should undoubtedly be on your radar. Since its inception in May 2008, this innovative restaurant has swiftly risen to fame, becoming a bustling hotspot frequented by students, international tourists, and health-conscious locals alike.

Dirt Candy, known for its lively atmosphere and creative approach to vegetarian cuisine, stands out not just among "restaurants near me" but also in the broader New York dining scene. The restaurant's acclaim includes a notable Michelin star earned in 2010, a testament to its culinary excellence. Further elevating its status, in 2012, the esteemed New York Times recognized Dirt Candy as one of the top 10 vegetarian establishments in the city, solidifying its place for those searching for "the best places to eat near me."

At Dirt Candy, the focus is on author's cuisine that goes beyond merely substituting meat with vegetables. The menu features inventive and tantalizing dishes that showcase the versatility of plant-based ingredients. Popular choices among diners include the unique tomato cake with smoked feta cheese and a delightful vegetarian rendition of pad thai. For anyone looking for "good restaurants near me" for a memorable vegetarian dining experience, Dirt Candy offers a refreshing and innovative take on meat-free cuisine in the heart of New York.




2. By CHLOE


by CHLOE.
630 Lexington Ave, New York City, United States

Chef Chloe Coscarelli, a dedicated vegetarian for over a decade, gained nationwide fame in the US following her triumph on a Food Network show. Her culinary expertise led to the release of three cookbooks, each quickly ascending to Amazon bestseller status. Capitalizing on this success, she launched her own restaurant in 2014, aptly named CHLOE.

At CHLOE, the menu is a testament to Chef Coscarelli's creative flair, featuring unique dishes such as mushroom and vegetable balls with pesto, sweet potato fries, and a quinoa hash brown. This organic cafe in the heart of West Village breaks the mold of traditional brunch spots. Notably absent are common staples like alcohol and eggs. Instead, visitors can indulge in oil-free French fries, an assortment of smoothies, and fresh coconut milk served straight from the coconut!

In many conventional dining places, meat and fish dishes dominate the menu, often leaving vegetarians with limited options like a basic vegetable salad. However, New York City is a haven for vegetarians, boasting an extensive list of top vegetarian restaurants that cater to diverse veggie tastes and preferences. Whether you're the sole vegetarian in your group or dining with fellow plant-based eaters, New York's culinary landscape offers a rich array of choices that go far beyond the ordinary, satisfying even the most discerning vegetarian palate.




3. Avant Garden


Avant Garden
95 Avenue A, 2nd floor, New York City, United States

Avant Garden: Where Playful Names Meet Elevated Plant-Based Dining

While its name may carry a hint of whimsy, Avant Garden's 28-seat space exudes an air of sophistication, with a petrified-wood counter and rustic tree branches adorning the open kitchen. Here, you'll discover a culinary haven dedicated to crafting remarkable plant-based dishes. Explore the menu by starting with a quartet of toasts, generously garnished with delectable toppings like crimini mushrooms. For the main course, indulge in their house-made spaghetti, expertly prepared to satisfy even the most discerning palate. Complement your meal with a carefully curated selection of beer, wine, and cider. Avant Garden bridges the gap between a playful name and a dining experience that's anything but ordinary.




4. Usha Foods


Usha Foods
25503 Hillside Ave, Floral Park, United States

Usha Foods, a cherished vegetarian gem nestled in the heart of the city, has been delighting patrons with its family-owned charm for over two decades. Renowned for its diverse array of vegetarian Indian delicacies, the menu at Usha Foods features crowd-pleasers like pani puri, vegetable hakka noodles, and an assortment of dosas. For those seeking variety, the combination plates offer a delightful mix of flavors, all affordably priced with options peaking at just $14. Adding to its appeal, this fast-service Indian spot caters to late-night cravings, staying open until 1am daily.

Located in Floral Park, Queens, Usha Foods is a haven for those in pursuit of authentic vegetarian Indian cuisine. This fast-casual eatery is a go-to destination for savory snacks, vibrant desserts, and hearty meals. It stands out as one of the city's premier vegetarian spots, known for its generous portions and combo platters that invite diners to sample a little bit of everything. The menu at Usha is a testament to the richness of meat-free dining, offering some of the most fulfilling and satisfying meals in the city. Conveniently situated near a Patel Brothers store, a favorite supermarket for rare Indian pantry items, Usha Foods is not just a restaurant but a key part of a larger local culinary ecosystem, making it a must-visit for anyone seeking the best in vegetarian dining.




5. ABCV


ABCV
38 E 19th Street, New York City, United States

ABCV, part of the renowned ABC restaurant family including ABC Kitchen and ABC Cocina, marks Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s first venture into vegetarian cuisine. Located in the ABC Carpet & Home complex in Flatiron, the restaurant boasts a chic, Goop-inspired décor with all-white furniture, artisanal ceramics, and bohemian touches. The menu, curated by chef de cuisine Neal Harden, formerly of Pure Food and Wine, offers an educational twist, detailing the health benefits of each vegetable used.

The restaurant shines with its creative vegetarian dishes that burst with global flavors. Highlights include Beluga lentils with black vinegar, thin-sliced roasted beets with Dijon, and rainbow carrots with nut butters. Small plates for sharing, such as an Indian dosa with yogurt and sprouts, and green chickpea hummus, add to the lively dining experience. ABCV is not just a meal but an exploration of vegetarianism's potential, both in taste and health benefits, in a stylish and inviting setting.




6. Bunna Cafe


Bunna Cafe
1084 Flushing Ave, Brooklyn, United States

In the heart of New York, this plant-based Ethiopian restaurant, established in 2014, has become a go-to destination for those seeking "restaurants near me" with a vegetarian twist. Offering a delightful array of dishes perfect for sharing, this eatery presents a unique culinary experience. Guests can enjoy an assortment of traditional Ethiopian flavors, including rich red lentils in a spicy berbere sauce, creamy ground split peas simmered with tomato, and savory sautéed crimini mushrooms.

For a comprehensive taste of Ethiopia, the restaurant's spread includes mashed split peas cooked with tomato, a chickpea stuffing intermingled with kale, and more, making it one of the "best places to eat near me" for vegetarian cuisine. The spicier dishes are perfectly balanced with strips of injera, Ethiopia's famous sourdough flatbread. This vegetarian Ethiopian spot is an ideal choice for anyone searching for "good food near me," offering a vibrant array of flavors that capture the essence of Ethiopian cooking in a plant-based format.




7. Spicy Moon


Spicy Moon
68 W 3rd St, New York City, United States

Located in the heart of Greenwich Village, Spicy Moon is a vibrant addition to the East Village's dining scene, offering a unique vegan twist on traditional Szechuan cuisine. This Chinese restaurant has quickly become a favorite for both vegans and non-vegans alike, thanks to its innovative use of plant-based ingredients in classic dishes.

At Spicy Moon, diners can indulge in an array of flavorful options. The dan dan noodles, prepared with Impossible meat, provide a vegan-friendly take on this beloved Szechuan dish, maintaining the authentic flavors and textures that fans expect. The mapo tofu is another highlight, offering a rich and spicy experience without the use of any animal products. Additionally, the restaurant boasts a variety of eggplant dishes, each prepared with a unique blend of spices and ingredients that showcase the versatility of this vegetable in Szechuan cooking.




8. Buddha Bodai


Buddha Bodai Kosher Vegetarian Restaurant
5 Mott St, New York City, United States

Buddha Bodai, a cornerstone of New York's vegetarian and vegan dining scene, has recently undergone renovations to rejuvenate its space. Despite these updates, it has retained its status as one of the city's most cherished destinations for meat-free cuisine. For over 45 years, Buddha Bodai has been mastering the art of plant-based cooking, offering patrons delightful vegan renditions of classic dishes like Peking duck, turnip cake, and vegetarian sesame chicken.

This enduring eatery not only stands out for its longevity but also for its commitment to reimagining traditional flavors in a vegan format. It's a culinary haven for those seeking a diverse range of vegetarian and vegan options, proving that plant-based dining can be both innovative and deeply satisfying. Whether you're a long-time vegan, a vegetarian, or simply curious about plant-based cuisine, Buddha Bodai offers a unique and memorable dining experience in the heart of New York.




9. Sol Sips


Sol Sips
203 Wilson Ave, Brooklyn, United States

Francesca "Sol" Chaney's casual vegan eatery, named after herself, stands out not just for its culinary offerings but also for its strong commitment to food security and community support. In response to the challenges posed by the pandemic, Sol Sips has implemented a commendable program to distribute free meal kits to those in the most affected communities. This initiative reflects the eatery's dedication to making healthy, plant-based food accessible to all.

At Sol Sips, the menu is a celebration of vegan cuisine, featuring innovative and delightful versions of popular dishes. Patrons can enjoy outstanding vegan interpretations of classic chopped cheese and BECs (bacon, egg, and cheese sandwiches), along with mouth-watering BBQ jackfruit quesadillas and perfectly crispy fried okra. Each dish is crafted with care, showcasing the versatility and richness of vegan ingredients.

Sol Sips is more than just a dining spot; it's a place where food meets purpose, offering delicious vegan meals while actively supporting the community. It's a must-visit for anyone in search of exceptional vegan cuisine with a side of social consciousness in New York.




10. Délice & Sarrasin


Delice & Sarrasin
178 West Houston Street, New York City, United States

Délice & Sarrasin Restaurant: Elevating the Art of Crêpes

Christophe Caron, a native of Toulouse, France, recognized that the pure essence of crêpes from his homeland often got lost in translation when reimagined abroad. With the support of his parents, Yvette (a former chef) and Patrick, Christophe, a first-time restaurateur in New York, redirected his focus from the world of fashion runways to create a 24-seat, elegantly adorned boutique café. This establishment is a heartfelt tribute to the cherished childhood memories associated with this beloved dish.

At Délice & Sarrasin, the Caron family expertly crafts paper-thin crêpes using premium white flour and buckwheat sourced from Brittany. These delicate creations are cooked to perfection on an imported Krampouz griddle, resulting in ethereal crêpes and their savory counterparts, the galettes. The menu features a range of vegan fillings, including housemade salted caramel and gingerbread, artfully nestled within the sweet, delicate folds of the crêpes. Meanwhile, galette enthusiasts can savor options like the "Mr. Petrossian," which boasts vegan smoked salmon and vegan shrimp enveloped in a luscious avocado puree.

Discover the Ultimate Vegetarian Dining: Top 10 Restaurants in New York City

When you visit the Big Apple, embark on a culinary adventure that caters to your vegetarian cravings. From delectable plant-based burgers to mouthwatering avocado toasts, these top 10 vegetarian-friendly restaurants in New York City will tantalize your taste buds and leave you craving for more. Whether you're a seasoned herbivore or just exploring the world of meatless cuisine, these dining spots will enchant your senses with their innovative and delicious offerings.

You might be interested

Top 7 Must-Try Pizza Places in New York City, USA image
Top 7 Must-Try Pizza Places in New York City, USA
Top 5 Festively Decorated Restaurants and Bars for Christmas in New York City image
Top 5 Festively Decorated Restaurants and Bars for Christmas in New York City
Top 5 Restaurants in New York for a Memorable Thanksgiving Dinner image
Top 5 Restaurants in New York for a Memorable Thanksgiving Dinner
Elevate Your Dining Experience: Top Michelin Star Restaurants in Chicago 2024 image
Elevate Your Dining Experience: Top Michelin Star Restaurants in Chicago 2024