Vegan in Estonia

Tallinn

There are a small number of veg*n places in Tallinn, and many places are vegan friendly. Loads of regular coffee shops and cafes clearly mark vegan options on their menu; varying quality though, if the reviews on happycow are anything to go by. Also many homemade ice cream shops have vegan flavours. Despite staying there for a few weeks I didn't actually try them all (I was having a budgetarily-challenged month, for a start). Food in Tallinn is fairly cheap overall, but the vegan places are a bit pricier, and cafes and coffeeshops in the old town certainly are. I mostly cooked for myself.

Groceries

Biomarket seemed like a good candidate for vegan supplies, but actually there was very little specialist stuff there, and it was pretty expensive. They have bulk grains and organic food. But many of the same things can be found for much cheaper in regular supermarkets.

Plant milks are common in all supermarkets, but not particularly cheap. Rimi is the cheapest for everything. You'd be hard pressed to find a litre for less than €2, but you might if you shop around for special offers.

The food shop in the basement of Solaris has a good selection of not-meats and not-cheeses, and other vegan goodies. They're in their own dedicated display near the front of the store. Everything else here is more expensive than Rimi though.

Vegan mayo in a squashy packet can be found in Solaris for 79c and Rimi for 65c. This is the cheapest vegan mayo I've ever seen. The sachet is not as big as a jar but one lasted me for 3 weeks.

Tofu seems to be expensive everywhere. I never found it, but apparently if you look hard enough it's cheap in Rimi.

Veg Machine

Behind Balti Jaam train station, through the market and into the main hall on the left. It's a small stand with a few seats and healthy all-vegan junk food. The pulled sweet potato burger looks fantastic. But for €4 I had a cheesy tofu melt sandwich.

A paper menu for Veg Machine with one item crossed out Two triangular toasted sandwiches in brown paper with brown and red goo poking out

Toormoor

Also in Balti Jaam, right behind the fruit market in the entrance, this is a place specialising in raw food. They have a few seats downstairs and on the roof (which is still under the cover of the market building). I had a breakfast here, and tried a creamy fruit coconut milk porridge, and a raw wrap with sprouts and veggies and really good sauce. The coffee was nice too. Two dishes and two coffees came to a reasonable €12.60.

A yellow wooden panelled hut with a handpainted 'Toormoor' sign, large windows and some seats outside In the foreground corner a black table and chairs in front of a slanted yellow fence; the background is red and brown beams sloping to form a roof A cup of black coffee on the left and a bowl of creamy fruity porridge to the right A bowl of porridge, with red and black berries, caramely sauce and cinnamon On a black table is a raw wrap full of sprouts and tomato

Vegan Inspiratioon

A nice restaurant in the old town with a variety of dishes, all vegan, and many raw options. Somewhere to go for a casual lunch or a fancy evening meal equally. I tried a burger with black bread and an incredible stack of fillings. Including tofu 'egg' salad, and a great coleslaw on the side.

There was a dessert on the menu called 'Estonian spotted cake' so I ordered it. Turned out to be a chocolatey block with fruit, biscuit chunks and candies throughout. Pretty rad.

Side view of a towering burger on a black tray, with a fat patty and bright coloured salad A brick wall to the right leads to the interior of a cafe with lots of lights and bright colours A white cake with a smear of red jam around a triangle of cake, with coconut sprinkles and green candy on top, and a fork stuck upwards

Vigri

Pirita is just north of Tallinn around the coast, and with the botanical gardens, TV tower, gorgeous stretches of beach and peaceful forests, it's a great place to go fro a day out. Stopping at Vigri is the icing on the cake.

Seriously. The cakes at that place.

I showed up ravenous, having been walking for hours and badly mistimed my meals. I restrained myself bravely on the buffet - which was a selection of hearty vegetable based dishes (one with tofu). Bread is unlimited for free outside of the pay-by-weight buffet.

Then I induced a food coma with a giant sticky caramel-y nutty cinnamon bun. And rolled to the beach to sleep it off.

Two plates on a table with a glass of water, one with vegetables and sauce and the other with a sticky cake A white plate with a round fat sticky caramely bun with nuts on A side view of a food kiosk with the red and white Wall's logo, pictures of ice creams, and a separate vegan menu

Also in the vicinity were a branch of New York Pizza (with vegan cheese) and a beach foodstand with a 'vegan' menu on the side!

Vegan Italy

An Italian restaurant near Ulemiste, south of the old town. At lunch there's a buffet, as well as a la carte. They make their own vegan salami on premises, as well as bread. The buffet had a selection of pasta dishes, lasagnas, vegetables and salads; all good, I tried a bit of everything. It's €9 for all you can eat, and includes a portion of the dessert of the day. It was good food, and very friendly stratosphere. The dessert when I went was plums in white wine sauce.

An all you can eat buffet against a wall, several dishes in white trays with red lighting and for some reason straw hanging from above A white plate on a red checkered table with bread, vegetables and lasagne piled up A white printed menu on a red checkered table cloth A blue tray with fat slices of ciabatta garlic bread and a silver bowl behind A red checkered table with a wooden paddle carrying a tiny espresso glass, alongside a white plate with two bowls of sliced plums

Green Bakery

This small cafe has narrow opening hours and isn't central, so I dropped by when I was in the neighbourhood hoping for cake or pastries. Despite the name, they had none. Maybe I was just late. It was pretty busy, and serving a buffet. I didn't get anything, with lunch scheduled at Vegan Italy nearby.

Karu Talu

An all vegan chocolate shop in the dead center of old town. Abso-fucking-lutely fantastic. Most chunks of chocolate are €2 and they're all dark and rich, fresh handmade. A cascade of different flavours. I tried mint, cherry, almond, snickers, chilli, sugar-free peanut and chocolate-covered kama.

Kama is a local cereal, and for coating in chocolate it was puffed into crispy balls. The piece they gave me was as big as my head, and so easy to eat too much of.

A display of fancy chocolate with chalkboard signs stretches into the distance Three slabs of chocolate with different coloured toppings on a brown paper bag A giant slab of chocolate bubbles on a brown paper bag

Adjoined with the main chocolate shop is a section which also supplies teas, coffees, ice creams and savoury and sweet pastries at very low prices. There's not really any seating though.

Tea and Coffee Shop

A small cafe in the old town. They mostly wholesale loose leaf tea and coffee beans (a massive selection of both) and related equipment. There are a few tables though, plus power and wifi. They offer every plant milk you can think of for drinks, and have several homemade vegan cakes. I had a spectacular banana bread and spent a quiet afternoon there.

Two china plates on a table, one with a cup of green tea, the other with a slice of iced cake and a fork A green and red cafe interior, with some sacks of coffee, seen from behind a glass and wooden door

Bliss

After getting locked in Tallinn City library for a few hours, I went to Bliss. The buffet is extensive, all vegetarian (and well labelled) and pay-by-weight. It's in the Solaris mall, and you have to go through a book shop to get there - look for arrows on the floor. Loads of seats. Desserts and smoothies too. The food was good, and a big variety.

A white plate with various piles of veggies and sauce A concretey canteen with some colourful pictures and pillars, and a sign with an arrow to buffet

Sushi Plaza

A regular sushi place, but with a large vegan menu and most of the desserts are vegan too. The sushi is excellent and a good price. Nice atmosphere, too.

Desserts menu with pictures Vegan sushi rolls menu Vegan tempura menu A black tray with three lines of sushi rolls drizzled with sauce with seaweed, ginger and wasabi on the side A black asymmetrical bowl with bananas and ice cream A black tray with strawberries and a caramel pudding and a fork sprinkled with powdered sugar

New York Pizza

A regular pizza place with vegan cheese and loads of good veggie toppings. It's above average price, but hits the spot. There are several branches around Tallinn, including one in Pirita right by the beach.

A pizza in a cardboard takeout box with vegetables and vegan cheese A guy with short hair eats pizza from a box looking out of water and sunset

NOP

Neighbourhood Organic Place was around the corner from where I was staying. It sells groceries, as well as meals and bread. I dropped by, but they had nothing I wanted, and the groceries were really expensive. I never got around to going back for a meal.

Pop-ups

On a day of wandering I happened upon a flea market type thing in Telliskivi. There were vegan food trucks of course, but I was already full from lunch at home with friends (whom I'd met earlier in the month at a vegan potluck picnic in the park..). Nonetheless, we forced some doughnuts upon ourselves..

A white and green truck with 'vegan foodtruck' on the side A row of foodtrucks and people in a square Hands holding two cardboard trays of donut holes covered in chocolate and nuts

Tartu

Pahupidi Kohvik

A very cute cafe with lots of space and a really nice menu. Good quality healthy food at great prices, and friendly service to boot. I ate courgette ravioli with cashew cheese and it was delicious. I was angling after churros but they were out, and no ice cream either.. the waiter strongly recommended to me the last of the daily cake, which was a truly spectacular salted caramel cheesecake and clearly fate decided I had to have it.

A white and brick cafe interior with chairs, tables and a glass fridge by the counter A green swirly plate with cheesey courgette rolls A leaf shaped white plate with a large chunk of cheesecake with chocolate and nuts and a fork

Ruunipizza

A pizza and pancake restaurant with several vegan options for both. I ate a pizza and a massive plate of fries. They have vegan pastries and cakes too, plus good smoothies. If I'm ever back in Tartu I'm definitely returning for a not-cheesey mushroom bean pancake!

A wooden table with a purple smoothie in a glass, and two plates with fries and a pizza A close up of a pizza in the foreground with beans, jalapenos and tomatoes, and a plate of fries in the background

Mahemarket

A cafe inside a bio/health food shop. There's a small pay by weight buffet and some cakes and salad. And you can take anything from the shop to accompany your meal. It's a nice space in a block of hip shops with a courtyard. When I was there, next door was a popup ice cream shop with vegan flavours. Not sure if that's a permanent fixture though.

A glass table with a bowl of red soup on a plate and something fried on the side A cafe and shop interior with metal chairs and tables, wooden shelves and a counter in the distance A yellow striped sofa in a corner with brick and white walls

Parnu

It's a small place. I found one vegetarian cafe and went there twice, for dinner then breakfast.

Piccadilly Wine and Chocolate

More than half of the menu is vegan, and really delicious. The Greek soup was hearty and filling, packed full of veggies accompanied by crunch black bread and only €4 (which after Tallinn felt great). They have a few vegan cakes, mostly raw cheesecake style. I tried chocolate and blackberry and approve.

For breakfast I had an unusual savoury porridge with vegetables, mushrooms and green salad. It was incredible actually.

A purple and chocolate cake on a white plate with pink sauce drizzled A white bowl of porridge covered ina  pile of greens against a red table cloth A white bowl with red soup and green garnish, with black bread on the side A cafe interior with wooden chairs and barrels, red armchairs and a counter in teh background with shelves filled with delcious things A red and gold tablecloth underneath a bowl of porridge with greens and tomatos, and a blue cup and saucer with coffee

Helsinki

I'm going to throw Helsinki in here because it intersected with my Estonia time, and was just a couple of day visit. Main point: it's expensive. Everything is expensive. Best bet is just.. don't eat here. In two days I spent all of my food budget for Lithuania. Well, it felt like that. There are plenty of vegan places, and many of them are co-ops. There were two I tried to go to which mysteriously weren't open during the signposted hours. Frustrating, but.. there are plenty of alternatives.

Soi Soi

Finest vegetarian junk food; most items are vegan but there is some cheese flying around. I enjoyed a seitan burger with vegan cheese, deep fried cauliflower, and sampled sweet potato fries. €10.50 for the burger and side. Very satisfying.

A burger bun in brown paper with salad and not-cheese overflowing out, beside a black tray containing deep fried cauliflower (and a slice of lime) and a cup of orange sauce

Roots

A healthy cafe that's part of a yoga studio; good food, but on the pricier side (relatively!). A burger packed with root vegetables, amazing melty vegan cheese and cracking salad, plus a flat white set me back €17.

There's lots of space, it's a nice place.

A cafe interior with wooden tables and metal chairs, slate floor and chalkboard behind the corner A green cup and saucer with a foamy coffee drink beside a blue plate with a pile of salad beside a burger bun and a pot of orange sauce Close up of root vegetable burger, with parsnips and kale poking out from the bread A close up of root vegetable burger with leaves, radish and cheesey sweet potato poking out

Jänö

A junk food stand very handily right by the Finnish National Museum and open until midnight most days. I believe it doesn't operate in the winter. They offer various not-meats on a bed of fries, ice cream, candies and fancy juices. Cheap (relatively) and filling; I had not meatballs and sampled soya sausage. They come with several blobs of different sauces.

A wooden table outside holds a cardboard tray containing thin fries and not-meatballs; a pink and white carton of juice beside it

Kippo

An all vegan outlet on the 3rd floor of the Forum mall. Obviously a mall environment, but nice food. A sandwich and a smoothie combo will be around €14. They make their own cashew cheese and there's a choice between that and mozzarella (which my educated tastebuds suggest is Violife).

A food kiosk inside a mall with a neon sign (Kippo), wooden counter and boxes of fruit around A plastic smoothie cup filled with green beside a plastic tray with a wrapped toasted sandwich

🏷 tartu helsinki travel food vegan estonia Tallinn, Estonia