Traveling as a vegetarian can be difficult depending on where your adventure takes you—and if you’re vegan, it can be almost impossible. But not if you’re going to Portland, Oregon, one of North America’s greenest cities in every sense of the word. If you’re looking for a beautiful, creative, and delicious plant-based meal, start planning a trip immediately. And be sure you come hungry.
For a low-key veggie meal, check out this Sunnyside neighborhood joint. Paradox Cafe, which is open for breakfast and lunch, serves tempeh, tofu, and a variety of vegan cheeses in delicious dishes that range from burgers and sandwiches to salads and wholesome bowls. Vegan French toast is a popular option, as is the rotating selection of daily specials.
You don’t have to be a yogi to order, but you might find yourself surrounded by them at this Pearl District vegan oasis-cum-yoga studio. The atmosphere is friendly and laid-back despite the scene, and the gluten-free, organic menu of rice bowls, greens, and other nutritious treats will have omnivores and veg-heads alike coming back for more.
Mother's Bistro & Bar | Courtesy Mother's Bistro & Bar
Blossoming Lotus is an all-vegan restaurant that serves up plant-based fusion world cuisine in a simple yet attractive space. Brunch is a must, but there’s a chance you’ll want to sample every meal they have. The chefs have created an innovative and extensive menu using all kinds of dairy and meat alternatives, including cashew sour cream, soy curls, tofu ricotta, and more. Make a reservation or be prepared for a bit of a wait.
Gluten-free, organic, and mostly vegan—Harlow does not disappoint. Patrons love the juices and smoothies and keep coming back for picturesque dishes and colorful cocktails. Unexpected additions like bourbon BBQ tempeh, sea vegetables, and cabbage-apple kimchi make for a delectable surprise, while the restaurant’s cute interior makes it a perfect spot for date night too.
Committed to using fresh, local, organic ingredients, Canteen offers a serious juice and smoothie selection as well as a small but satisfying vegan menu that even carnivores will enjoy. The space is bright and cozy, the bowls filling and healthful, and the drinks just hit the spot. Bring a meat-lover you want to impress.
You can’t go wrong with breakfast and lunch at A. N. D. Café, serving an inventive mix of tasty dishes like walnut meatloaf benedict, poutine hash, and jackfruit quesadillas. The menu also includes several sweet and savory waffle options that can all be made completely vegan—unless you’d prefer poached eggs and Tillamook cheddar.
Guests rave about unique and unforgettable experiences upon leaving Farm Spirit, which sources all of its ingredients from within 105 miles (169 kilometers) of its Buckman neighborhood location in Portland. The presentation is just as exquisite as what’s on the plate, which varies week to week as the team experiments with what’s available at local farms and markets. And that’s just the start of the fun—tasting menus are prepared and served directly in front of the evening’s customers along the restaurant’s 14-seat Chef’s Counter.
All vegan and mostly raw, Pixie Retreat is a low-key local favorite in Portland. People love the Spicy Millet and Bakn’ Cheez Burger Collard Wraps and custom-made guilt-free cakes, such as salted caramel. The space is small and simple, but the healthy dishes pack a delicious punch and leave diners feeling good—physically and spiritually.
Rad Fare serves meat but marks it “M for Murder.” Vegan and vegetarian options dominate the menu, from which you’ll likely want one of everything. With basics such as wraps, burgers, breakfast bowls, and burritos, Rad Fare goes above and beyond. Unusual favorites include the lentil-tempeh-peanut butter burger and vegan apple-sage sausage wiener burger.