As one of Barcelona’s most vibrant and multicultural neighbourhoods, El Raval is also home to an impressive concentration of vegetarian restaurants. From cheap and cheerful vegetarian thali meals, to more sophisticated dining and healthy-eating options, these are the best vegetarian restaurants in El Raval.
One of the most well-known vegetarian eateries in Barcelona, Sésamo is a creative vegetarian tapas restaurant with a buzzing atmosphere. The tasting menu is one of the best ways to get to know Sésamo, with seven sharing dishes and two drinks costing just €25 (USD$29) a head. Expect things like melted provolone cheese with pan con tomate, or blue cheese gnocchi with beetroot and hazelnut sauce. If you like you gins then be sure to ask about the epic selection on offer behind the bar and stay for a night cap.
This is the first restaurant of Catalan chef Teresa Carles who has for decades now championed the virtues of a healthy diet rich in vegetables and grains. A popular lunchtime choice for those working in the offices around Plaça Catalunya, the restaurant offers a weekly changing menu. Mains are clearly marked either as vegetable-, legume-, cereal- or pasta-based, with the latter either coming simple or stuffed.
Veggie Garden is a budget-friendly vegetarian restaurant with a strong Indian influence. There are a number of different curries to choose from, as well as popular sides such as vegetable pakora, but also fresh mixed salads. During the week you can grab a vegetable thali with a drink and a dessert for just €8.50 (USD$9.90) at lunchtime.
A second project by chef Teresa Carles, Flax & Kale is the first openly ‘flexitarian‘ restaurant in the city. This means that while most of the dishes on offer are strictly vegetarian, about 20% of dishes contain fish. The stylish dining room, elegant presentation and wide choice of dishes have made this a favourite with those looking for a more sophisticated vegetarian choice in the city.
Located on a small square on the corner with Joaquin Costa street – known for its vibrant nightlife – Vegetalia is an unpretentious vegetarian restaurant appreciated for its wide choice of dishes and reasonable prices. Main courses include dishes such as goat’s cheese and spinach fajitas, vegetable paella or seitanlasagna, but there’s also a choice of vegetarian and vegan burgers and pizzas.
L’Hortet – meaning ‘the small garden’ in Catalan – was founded in 1990 by the daughter of professor Nicolás Capo, a prominent activist and advocate of a vegetarian diet. The restaurant’s founding aim is to facilitate a healthy diet based on a balance of vegetable, cereal and dairy products. The menu offers a rather eclectic choice of dishes, some inspired by Spanish cuisine such as the mushroom croquetas, while others have more of an exotic origin, such as the marinated seitan with a seaweed tartare.
Laying claim to being the oldest vegetarian restaurant in Barcelona, Biocenter is another proud advocate of the health benefits of a vegetarian diet – hence the somewhat scientific sounding name. If you like a good veggie burger then you’re in luck, as there are four different kinds to choose from at night-time, as well as some Asian inspired dishes and plenty of salads including a rather on-trend poké bowl.