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Vegan in Edinburgh

I lived in Edinburgh for 4 years, but the vegan offerings have ramped up in the 2 years I've been away since. On my last two visits, in September for my viva and December for my graduation, I visited old favourites, as well as crammed in as many new places as I could.

The classics

The Auld Hoose

I went to the Hoose almost every Monday evening for 4 years. They have a 20% discount on food on Mondays. They also have a ton of vegan options in a laid-back grungy pub atmosphere. They had vegan cheese on their GIANT nachos before it was cool.

Thin fries and a panino on a plate

The menu changed while I was away, and these days along with their vegan chilli, vegan burrito and vegan burger they also have a fried tofu sandwich and raspberry sorbet sundae. I miss the veggie haggis and mushroom pie of ye olde days though, gotta say.

But you really come for the nachos.

An enormous pile of nachos indispersed with vegan cheese, bean chilli, jalapenos and guacamole The tower of nachos, but closer A couple of white plates with leftover tortilla chips and the odd jalapeno. Some beans on the table.


I practically lived in Anteaques when I ran SocieTea. They were our best sponsor, and I am as unfailingly loyal as you can be to a tea shop. They also have at least one homemade vegan tart at weekends, usually chocolate and raspberry. Rhubarb apparently briefly put in a seasonal appearance last month, but I missed it. Anyway I'm happy to eat the chocolate and raspberry tart with a pot of tea every single time I go, it's fantastic.

Chocolate and raspberry tarts on a stacked plate A red fabric menu with 'Anteaques' in gold inlay A choclate and raspberry tart on a plate, with a glass teapot half full in the background The interior of Anteaques is filled with antique furniture

The tea is also good.


I used to eat at Rigatoni's a lot. It's a lovely family-run pizza and pasta joint. It's not the cheapest, but the quality is outstanding. Over the years I developed my perfect topping combo: spicy kidney beans, artichoke, and mushrooms or olives (depending on what I was in the mood for). I went so regularly they'd remind me to remove cheese from my order if I forgot to mention it. They don't have vegan cheese, but the pizza sauce is so good it holds up a pizza all on its own. The XL is best value for money, and would usually last me one and a half to two meals. It's great cold the next day, smothered in hot sauce.

A pizza with tomato sauce, kidney beans, artichoke and mushrooms (but no cheese)


An Edinburgh veggie institution, there are now about three or four branches of Henderson's in different forms. Felicity and I went to the vegan deli version, and tried a whole bunch of stuff. It was all great. It is not particularly cheap.

A table covered in plates of cake and two big cups of coffee Just the cakes from the top Two plates, the one in the foreground has purple balls covered in coconut and the background has yellow

I've been to the main restaurant (vegetarian not vegan) for full meals a couple of times too on special occasions, and it was always really good.

David Bann

This is an upscale vegetarian restaurant, also generally reserved for special occasions. I've tried every vegan option on their menu at this point, and they're all good.

A black fabric menu with 'David Bann' in silver A foamy coffee with two coffee beans on top A creamy dessert in a glass alongside a chocolate on a plate A pink dessert on a plate

Last time I had a late bus out of Edinburgh, Jane and I were killing time beforehand. Despite having just demolished Hoose nachos (see above), we hauled ourselves to David Bann for fancy pants dessert and coffee. We really had no space for it, but enjoyed it nonetheless. If you wanna go for a full meal you probably need a reservation, but they were good enough squeeze us in unannounced at 2130.

Forrest Cafe

This is somewhere between a classic and a new for me. Forrest has been around in various forms for a loooong time. The cafe is all vegetarian, with lots of vegan options or amendments. I think it's run by volunteers, and/or extremely low-paid do-gooders. I only visited a couple of times when I lived in Edinburgh, and only for coffee and cake. Recently I stopped for a meal and a few hours of laptopping. The burrito was incredible, huge, cheap, delicious, and they now have vegan cheese. There's not loads of space, but there is power and wifi if you go at none busy times. There's usually also a box of free bread by the door.

A burrito on a plate smothered in sauce with side salad; a black coffee to the right, and the corner of a laptop keyboard

New and exciting


In the newly refurbished Appleton Tower, a cafe has sprung. They have a bunch of vegan options on their small menu, including a pizza flatbread with vegan cheese. Suddenly hungry in the 15 minutes before my graduation ceremony started, I stuffed this into my face. It was about £3 and quite delicious.

The front window of ATFresh A flatbread covered with tomato sauce and vegan cheese with various vegetables in the middle rhiaro in graduation robes sneaks up on unsuspecting flatbread rhiaro in graduation robes pounces on the flatbread

Herbivore Kitchen

This place is great on a number of levels. Clerk St is a very handy location. It is all vegetarian and mostly vegan, and everything is well labelled. They have a good selection of cakes and drinks, and both large and small mains. They have loads of seating downstairs, so I would feel no guilt whatsoever taking my laptop there for several hours (there's wifi and power).

A cafe interior with a wooden floor, yellow chairs, and two people at a table Two people sitting at a cafe table taking photos of their food with phones

It opened in late 2017, and I went several times over my last two visits to Edinburgh, feeling a need to try as much of the menu as possible. It has all been really good, although a turmeric latte was a bit bland. The milkshakes are elaborate and luxurious though, and the flavours have been different each time I went.

A wrap stuffed with filling on a plate with salad in the background A milkshake with a swirl of cream on top, a red and green straw, and a gingerbread man A dark chocolate square cake on a red plate

The pancake stacks are pretty epic. I wanted to try the kuku but they hadn't had a delivery yet when I was there.

A fat pancake stack with beans in red sauce A fat pancake stack covered in coconut yoghurt and yellow fruits

My biggest life regret may be not staying in Edinburgh long enough to try their christmas menu.

Nova Pizza

An all-vegetarian pizza place in New Town. The vegan menu is so extensive it could stand alone and you wouldn't know anything was missing, over starters mains and desserts. Jane and I shared two pizzas, as well as a 4-'cheese' bruscetta to start. We were too stuffed for dessert, but a hazelnut latte went down very well. This was £40 between us.

A pizza with green peppers among the toppings A pizza with black olives among the toppings A chunky piece of bread on a plate smothered in a creamy sauce A white cup and saucer filled with foamy coffee

Holy Cow

This place is all vegan, and hidden away behind the bus station. It's small, but the cake selection is huge. They have a bunch of different kinds of burgers. I didn't even look at the juice and smoothie menu. The chips were fantastic. It was all good. I wanted to eat everything.

A towering burger in the foreground on a white plate, accompanied by chips. A similiar one in the background Chocolate cake with white cream in the middle and strawberries and blueberries on top Carrot cake slice from the side on a plate

I took photos of all of the cakes so I could think about them more whilst eating my burger.

Chocolate coffee cake behind glass Red velvet cake behind glass Custart tart behind glass Chocolate summer fruits cake behind glass Carrot cake behind glass A selection of cakes on the counter


These folks used to sell handmade vegan chocolates at markets, and now opened a shop across the road from Summerhall. The Summerhall guest wifi reaches, and there's power, and a reasonable amount of space, though it's not super comfy (yet - I think it's being developed).

Anyway it's a VEGAN DONUT SHOP so who cares about the seating.

Many doughnuts in a counter

Felicity and I tried four between us, along with oat milk mochas. We took chocolates to go as gifts.

A white cup and saucer with chocolate sprinkled foamy coffee Four square white plates with doughnuts, and one cup of coffee, from above Three doughnuts on white plates; pistachio and cranberry in the foreground

Yeah this was good.

Soul Sushi

A new (to me) sushi place on Nicholson St seemed worth checking out, and they have a lot of vegan options. The veggie 'garden platter' can be veganised upon request. When I went in to pick up our order, the guy behind the counter told me they're working on introducing a lot more vegan options, including fixing their breading so it doesn't use egg. Keep an eye on this one!

A round plastic tray filled with sushi pieces and edamame in the middle

Bread Meats Bread

Uuuugh it's a burger bar, but the vegan menu is extensive, so I guess it's good to show demand. They have branches in Glasgow, but the one on Lothian Road is the first in Edinburgh.

A seitan burger in a bun on a white plate, with salad and blue cheese sauce poking out; chips in the background

I had an Angry Vegan, which was seitan based, with not-cheese and good salad. The spicy buffalo sauce was good too, and Felicity and I shared chips with blue not-cheese dip.

Pakora Bar

Exactly what the name says, this place is mostly but not all vegetarian. When we were there ordering all of the vegan things, we were told they're introducing more veggie and vegan options in the near future too. They have a haggis pakora, which you can't really say no to. We shared a variety of pakoras, and also the red bean soup which was really good. What looks like a small amount of food is surprisingly filling, and the prices are good too. It's in New Town.

A bowl of red soup with flatbread on a plate A plate full of various pakoras and spring rolls and stuff

This doesn't cover all of the places to eat vegan in Edinburgh, and there are many that I frequented when I lived there which aren't listed. This is just a roundup of my two trips this year. Here's the HappyCow link for your convenience, and the Edinburgh University Vegetarian Society.

🏷 travel food vegan edinburgh