The Best Vegetarian Restaurants in Shanghai
Vegan deep fried Seitan burger with tomatoes and onions | © AAC / Alamy Stock Photo
From seitan comfort food to fill-your-boots buffets and naturally meat-free choices such as hummus and falafel, Shanghai won’t disappoint veggies and vegans. Read on for Culture Trip’s guide to the best vegan and vegetarian restaurants in Shanghai.
Restaurant, Healthy, Soul Food, Vegan, Vegetarian, $$$
This cool and hip meat-alternative seitan restaurant is located inside an old swimming pool-turned food court, and is the perfect place to take a date or go with a group of friends. While comfort food and vegan are not words you often hear in conjunction, Happy Buddha nails the combination with its greasy and delicious vegan and vegetarian American dishes: think BBQ sandwiches, cheese steak, and double-layer nachos. Vegetarian desserts are even on offer, including oatmeal cream pie and vegan ice cream.
Restaurant, Mediterranean, Vegetarian
Located in the commercial side of the downtown area of Nanjing, as the name might suggest, the Organic Kitchen doesn’t hide its desire to be a healthy restaurant. Using only fresh ingredients, the restaurant offers vegetarian alternatives to classic international favourites such as pastas, sandwiches and soups, but its speciality is Mediterranean staples like hummus and falafel. Every Wednesday night from 6pm to 10pm, Organic Kitchen hosts a vegan buffet, and on Sunday they offer an all-you-can-eat healthy brunch.
Restaurant, Asian, Gluten-free, Vegetarian
Located on Shanghai’s tourist-friendly Bund
, Wujie is Shanghai’s best upscale vegetarian restaurant on our list. Taking great pains to ensure their ingredients are ethically sourced, owners work with small Yunanese cooperatives and Heilongjant farmers to source wild southern mushrooms and obtain rice that’s specially cultivated in rare seven-foot deep ‘black gold’ soil. All dishes are modern vegetarian twists of Asian flavours like yellow Thai curry and 18-spices tofu. Full meals tend to be on the pricier side, so bear this in mind before reserving your spot.
Restaurant, Healthy, Vegetarian
Founded by famed Shanghai
restauranteur Kelly Lee, Sproutworks is a healthy vegetarian buffet chain found in many prime locations around the city. Offering a rotating daily menu, with flavours ranging from Asian to Mediterranean, you can get four side dishes of your choice. In addition, the restaurant also offers plenty of grain salads and unique takes on vegetables, as well as soups, salads and proteins. You’ll also find a refrigerator full of green juices and coconut waters.
Pure and Whole
Restaurant, Healthy, Vegetarian
Winner of ‘Best Healthy Food’ at local expat magazine That’s Shanghai’s 2015 food and drink awards, Pure and Whole has always been popular with vegetarians and carnivores alike. While not exclusively vegetarian, many of the menu items cater to a meat-free diet, such as the veggie burger and jungle salad. Offerings here also cover a wide range of flavours, so there’s almost certainly something that will delight your palate. Try Pure and Whole’s line of detox drinks and salads for an extra boost.