5 of Ontario’s Top Vegan and Vegetarian Restaurants
In the last decade or so, there’s been a significant increase in the popularity of vegetarianism and veganism throughout the world. More and more people are choosing to change the way they eat for a variety of reasons: to help the environment, protect animals, and improve their health, in addition to religious convictions. This is happening all over, including in Canada where, as of 2020, a survey found that nearly 40% of Canadians said they were willing to cut back on their meat intake.
That’s a pretty big chunk of the population. And as that percentage increases, so do the number of vegan and vegetarian restaurants in the country. So if you’re in search of some places in Ontario where you can enjoy a delicious meal minus the meat, keep reading for several of our recommendations. (Note that they aren’t in any particular order.)
By its very nature as a cafe and artisan bakery, Pinchman’s in Sudbury has a lot to offer non-meat eaters: French toast (that can easily be made vegan if needed with flax egg and coconut milk), strawberry sweet crepes (that can be made gluten-free if needed with buckwheat flour), and so on. But the restaurant really goes out of its way to cater to this group of folks too, serving up vegan chia pudding, vegetarian chili, edamame salads, and other dishes tailored specifically to the needs of vegans and vegetarians.
Pinchman’s claim to fame is its almond croissant. Diners praise it repeatedly, saying that they’re “exquisite,” “delicious and buttery,” and that they “melt in your mouth.” It’s even a good idea to call the cafe at 8 A.M. to reserve one or else you might entirely miss out! So if you’re a croissant fan or just a vegan/vegetarian looking for your new breakfast haunt, stop by Pinchman’s one morning for a relaxing, enjoyable, and tasty dining experience.
Twisted Indian Lindsay
How about this for a cool restaurant concept? Fast-casual Indian food. You don’t hear about or see that very often, right? But it’s exactly what Twisted Indian Lindsay in Lindsay, ON offers its repeat customers. And even better for vegans and vegetarians: there are plenty of meat-free meal options that are easily marked on the menu.
Some examples include the meat alternative proteins that Twisted provides for its build-your-own signature bowls like saag (spinach with ginger and garlic), rajma (kidney beans cooked in a tangy tomato sauce), chana (chickpea stew), and potato curry (potatoes and peas cooked with tomatoes, ginger, and garlic), in addition to salad bowls, vegan burgers, and more. Customers absolutely love the huge menu selection and the blend of Indian and Canadian cuisines. Don’t miss out on this unique and well-loved Indian eatery – check out Twisted Indian Lindsay soon!
Foundry Kitchen & Bar
Port Perry, Ontario
Both locals and tourists alike rave about Foundry Kitchen & Bar in Port Perry. Why? The customer service is top-notch, the food and locally brewed beers are outstanding, and there are lots of vegan and vegetarian choices on the menu. The type of restaurant where the chef walks around to personally check on patrons, Foundry’s staffers receive glowing reviews for their friendly and attentive service and how willing they are to help customers with food allergies find their perfect meal. Non-meat favorites include the carrot dip, shishito peppers, kimchi grilled cheese, and beet salad. Seriously, add this restaurant to your to-do list and try it soon. An “11/10” and a “hidden gem that puts so much heart and soul into its food,” Foundry is definitely one of a kind – maybe I’ll see you there!
Pure Kitchen Elgin
Pure Kitchen Elgin in Ottawa bills itself as a vegetarian food and juice bar. Sound appealing? It definitely appeals to a lot of others. For one, they love how fresh everything is at Pure. “If you want to have fresh food, this place is the best,” says one reviewer. For another, the food just tastes amazing. The carrot cake is a fan favorite (“the best I’ve ever tasted”), and folks also love the buffalo cauliflower bites, falafel wraps, electrified juice, tofu bowls, and kale caesar salads, among others.
Pure Kitchen Elgin is a restaurant that both vegans and non-vegans can enjoy together. If the weather is nice, ask to sit outside on the patio and prepare to be amazed!
Port Dover, Ontario
If you’re searching for a restaurant that has a great atmosphere and excellent service, in addition to lots of amazing food for both vegans/vegetarians and meat-eaters, 211 Main in Port Dover is definitely the place for you. The food comes quickly, piping hot and consistently delicious. There’s frequently live music on the two-level outside patio, and diners enjoy the big selection of cocktails, draft beer, and other alcoholic beverages. When it comes to vegan and vegetarian fare, customer favorites include the grilled cheese, French onion soup, pizza, mac n’ cheese, and apple brie. Do yourself a favor and stop by 211 Main the next time you feel like a fun night out!