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From street vendors and food trucks to markets and restaurants, getting a delicious meal is easy in Philly. But with cheesesteaks and roasted pork sandwiches reigning supreme, it can be difficult for vegans to find a place in Philadelphia. If you prefer to skip the meat, here are the best vegan restaurants in Philly to try.
Once a strip club, this vegan bar/restaurant has been repurposed as a meatless, fine dining destination. Even their 1920s-style cocktails can be enjoyed without animal products. Try the White Russian, made with coconut cream, or the Silver Fox, a cocktail created with imitation egg whites. Try a wheatgrass shot, or the East of Eden, a drink made with fig, lillet, bulleit, and tea-infused dolin blanc. Order a zucchini “crabcake” slider, sunchoke soup, a roasted cauliflower steak, and a milkshake for dessert. Instead of marketing itself as a vegan restaurant, Charlie Was a Sinner offers a tasty dining experience that happens to be free of meat and dairy.
A classic, American diner visit is an experience everyone should get to have. Traditionally, diner foods are loaded with meat and dairy, making it difficult for vegans to enjoy a diner meal. The Tasty, located in south Philly, is an old-school-themed diner. It has the exposed kitchen, countertop with rotating chairs, and lots of aluminum. They have everything a normal diner would offer, except that it’s all vegan. Get a tofu, egg, and “cheez” breakfast sandwich, French toast, tofu omelettes, biscuits and gravy, “cheezsteaks,” burgers, sandwiches, and salads.
A visit to Philly wouldn’t be complete without sampling a cheesesteak. With Wiz Kid, visitors won’t have to miss out on Philly favorites just because they’re plant-based. Its menu offers a classic cheesesteak, Rueben steak, hoagie, Cobb salad, and cheese fries (all vegan.) The dining style is casual, and the restaurant is connected to V-Street, a high-end vegan tapas bar. So, grab a cheesesteak before heading next door for a cocktail.
At Hip City Veg, the menu is inspired by fast food, but the ingredients are vegan and sustainable. The owner believed that burgers, milkshakes, and fries didn’t necessarily have to be unhealthy. The menu includes a Philly cheesesteak, chicken nuggets, a chipotle fajita chicken wrap, a Jerk caesar salad, milkshakes, banana whip, bagel with cream cheese, and coconut yogurt parfaits. Vegans who need to grab a quick lunch before heading to the office can pop into Hip City Veg for an easy and delicious experience.
With a simple menu of falafel, fries, and Tahini shakes, this all-vegan restaurant is a hot spot in Philly. It has locations in Center City, the Whole Foods dining court, and Penn Food Hall. Guests can order falafel sandwiches or salads with their choice of dressing. And, most people add a side of Shawarma spice fries. The Tahini shakes are known around the city and come in flavors like banana, Turkish coffee, and mint chocolate. For a quick and cheap bite with no meat or dairy, Goldie is the spot.
Grindcore House is an all-vegan coffee shop that plays some seriously hardcore music. They have pastries, sandwiches, and desserts that are all sans-animal products. All of the coffee drinks use non-dairy milk so there’s no need to pay extra for almond milk. There is seating by the window so visitors can people watch while drinking a cold brew. The café extends to the back where there is more seating among an eclectic decor of books, and concert posters. People often come here to work on their laptops while eating a tempeh sandwich.
For vegan cake, cookies, cupcakes, and bread, Sweet Freedom is the place. Visitors can get their hands on Blondies, coconut clusters, chocolate donuts, blueberry muffins, Thumbprint cookies, and cinnamon rolls, all vegan. Their menu is extensive and has all of the classic bake goods that you could ask for. Vegans no longer have to give up their favorite sweet treats with Sweet Freedom around.