Where I Ate: Vegan in Edinburgh

Having dabbled with the idea of veganism for the good part of a year, I finally found my feet in November 2017. The very same month, Edinburgh would be my first trip away as a fully fledged vegan, and I was both nervous and excited.

To make life as easy as possible, I consulted the good ol’ internet prior to my visit and found myself immersed in an ocean of useful information. My most valued resource was Vegan Edinburgh, a comprehensive collection of vegan-friendly recommendations revolving around restaurants, cafes and everything in between (thank you Emma)!

So without further ado and in no particular order, here’s where I ate as a vegan in Edinburgh, over three days:

The Caffeine Drip

Edinburgh in November was cold. One hell of a lot colder than I had anticipated; and I was craving a cooked breakfast to warm my bones and fill me with the kind of energy you need for hours of traipsing around a new city. My gut (and my stomach) knew that The Caffeine Drip should be first on the agenda.

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The basement cafe has a South African twist, though I opted for a brekkie much closer to home; scrambled tofu, mushrooms, avocado and haggis. Vegan haggis. The stuff dreams are made of.

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I really loved the shabby decor and warm, cosy feel to the place, a welcomed pitstop from the bitter winter air. The coffee went down well too.

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Non-vegan Yasmin was blown away by the vegan haggis!
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Plenty of vegan options

Holy Cow

I love cake. I don’t think I could go a week without a little bit of cake, so we dropped in here for a hot drink and a slice of the good stuff.

This 100% vegan joint is another basement cafe, yet it has a wonderfully light and airy feel about it. The decor is charming, the staff are lovely and it serves a range of lunch foods, including burgers, soups, sandwiches and salads.

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Illegal Jack’s

Mexican food is my weakness. When I’m craving something particularly junk-like, I usually turn to this comfort-inducing cuisine. Illegal Jack’s caught my eye for two reasons; it had vegan cheese available and something I’d been wanting to try for a while, pulled jackfruit.

I ordered an enormous bowl of nachos, complete with the sweet, sticky BBQ jackfruit, guacamole and oozy melted cheese and was left in a glorious food coma for the rest of the evening.

Menu
Photo: Vegan Edinburgh

David Bann

We reserved a table at this vegetarian restaurant for my birthday meal, as I fancied getting a little dressed up and experiencing the snazzier side of vegan cuisine. We both opted for the aubergine, chickpea and cashew koftas, which came with roasted sweet potato in a coconut, courgette and tomato sauce, green beans and toasted almond flakes. Beautiful.

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The Herbivore Kitchen

I loved this vegetarian cafe, so much so, that I went there twice! Most dishes on the menu are, or can be made vegan friendly.

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I fancied a sweet breakfast one morning, so ordered the pumpkin pancakes. They came topped with Sgaia streaky bacon (life changing), banana, maple syrup, walnuts and pecans.

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The counter was full of tempting brownies, though I was too full to sample them on this occasion.

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On our last day in the city, we headed back for a roast dinner; a mountain of nut loaf, hassleback potatoes, roast veggies and a vegan yorkshire pudding.

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I found Edinburgh to be exceptionally vegan-friendly. Not once did I feel awkward or struggle to find decent food; from the healthy snack to a cheeky wedge of cake, a causal cafe brunch or a bit of posh nosh. To see what activities I got up to (between stuffing my face), check out my last blog post, How to Spend 3 Days in Edinburgh.

Have you been to Edinburgh? Do you have any vegan foodie recommendations?

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