The Ultimate Guide to Being Vegan in London

Look on any list of “best cities to be vegan”, and chances are that London will be listed – and quite close to the top spot, too. The UK capital has rightfully gained its reputation as a vegan haven by offering an endless variety of food options, from decadent junk food to fine dining – but also by providing an array of fashion boutiques for conscious shoppers. In all corners of London, being vegan is now easier than it's ever been – whatever your tastes.

By Sascha Camilli: writer, speaker, activist, and vegan fashion expert. 

Lunch and Dinner (and in some cases, breakfast!)

Mildred's

One of London's best-known plant-based eateries, Mildred's will delight even the pickiest of palates. This restaurant, which has been around for over 30 years, is a must-stop for any plant-based food fan. Whatever your favourite cuisine, you will be won over by Mildred's – and so will your carnivore friends.
What to have: the burgers. Don't miss them!
Location: Mildred's has several locations: Camden, Soho, Dalston, and King's Cross

Farmacy

Do you love healthy food, but have had enough of settling for salads? Then this organic, seasonal eatery may be just the right place for you. From brunch that boasts classics such as French toast and pancakes, to mouth-watering tacos and colourful bowls, Farmacy brings a whole new, exciting meaning to the concept of healthy food.
What to have: pretty much the entire brunch menu.
Location: 74-76 Westbourne Grove, London W2 5SH

Gauthier Soho

For a really special occasion – or just because you fancy something, well, fancy – this fine-dining venue takes vegan cuisine to a whole new level. Michelin-starred chef Alexis Gauthier comes from the tradition of French cooking, which is very much non-vegan. But after animal rights group PETA targeted his restaurant for selling foie gras, not only did the cruelly produced duck and goose liver come off the menu, but Gauthier also turned his entire restaurant plant-based.
What to have: the exquisite plant-centric dinner menu, which boasts creative fruit and vegetable flavour concoctions.
Location: 21 Romilly St, London W1D 5AF

Unity Diner

You might know this one as the creation of vegan activist Earthling Ed. Not content with just enjoying enormous YouTube success, Ed started Unity Diner as a means of fundraising for animal advocacy. And what a delicious way to advocate: from sashimi to fried 'chicken', this is a deluxe lunch or dinner option for when you're tired after a day of walking around town and want to indulge.
What to have: the surf n'turf hot dog – accessorised with vegan prawns. Who knew this could even be plant-based, not to mention taste amazing?
Location: 60 Wentworth St, Spitalfields, London E1 7AL

Purezza

The UK's very first entirely vegan pizzeria opened in Brighton first – but Purezza's London location was quick to follow. Specialising in Neapolitan-style dough and toppings that range from truffle to faux tuna, Purezza has become a country-wide favourite in no time.
What to have: The Parmigiana Party has been awarded best pizza in the UK (no, not best vegan pizza. Just best pizza) and with good reason!
Location: 45-47 Parkway, London NW1 7PN

Temple of Seitan

Secretly missing KFC ever since you went vegan? Well, despair no more. Temple of Seitan is the premier place for all things vegan fried chicken (or chik'n, as it's spelled here), along with decadent burgers. This is about as junky as junk food can get – and it will satisfy any longing lingering from non-vegan days.
What to have: the chik'n wings, of course!
Location: Temple of Seitan can be found in Camden, Brixton, Hackney and Hammersmith.

What the Pitta

For a quick lunch on the go, few things beat a doner or gyros wrap. These Turkish dishes have been on the menu for non-vegans for ages – and now, thanks to What the Pitta, they are available to vegan consumers as well. Using GMO-free spiced vegan meat made from soya chunks, What the Pitta goes beyond the traditional vegan option – the falafel – although that, of course, is on the menu as well. But so are “meatier” choices, for those who want them. And vegan 'chik'n' makes an appearance here as well.
What to have: the Mezze box, a generous portion of couscous topped with salads, olives, hummus, and your choice of falafel or vegan doner.
Location: 89-91 Bayham St, London NW1 0AG

Dessert

Ruby's of London

Pretty much undefeated as the best vegan cupcakes of London, Ruby's also offers donuts, brownies and all sorts of cakes. Founder Ruby Amarteifio crafts her masterpieces free from gluten, dairy, eggs or refined sugar – and somehow, her creations are tastier than traditional cakes. No visit to Greenwich Market is complete without a Ruby's treat.
What to have: a Triple Chocolate. An indulgence you won't forget.
Location: Greenwich Market, 11 Durnford St, London SE10 9BF

Cookies N'Scream

This is one of London's most most iconic locations for anyone with a sweet tooth. Think chocolate chip cookies, puffy donuts, gooey brownies – and of course, the famous thick, indulgent  milkshakes loaded with cookies and brownies. Our mouths are watering just writing about it.
What to have: Don't leave without a brownie – and a milkshake.
Location: 130 Holloway Road, London N7 8JE

Crosstown

Okay, so not a strictly 100% vegan place – but bear with us. Crosstown's vegan range offers flavours as unique as lime/coconut or peanut butter/blackcurrant compote. If your sweet tooth still isn't satisfied, they also carry cookies and ice cream, along with specialty coffee
What to have: For your next picnic, get a vegan sharing box. You won't regret it!
Location: Crosstown is available across London.

Shopping

Greenbay

Something as rare as a fully vegan supermarket. Greenbay offers fresh food, household products, and all the necessities for your companion animals – all vegan. No need to label-read here, every product stocked in the shop is completely free from animal exploitation.
Location: Bramber Court, 228 North End Rd, London W14 9NU
 

Fashion

The Third Estate

The Third Estate is mainly a shoe shop, stocking brands such as Ecoalf, Veja, and Ethletic – but this 100% vegan fashion paradise also carries apparel and handbags by labels like Matt and Nat and Lefrik. If you're into casual, everyday ethical and vegan fashion, this is the place for you.
Location: 27 Brecknock Rd, London N7 0BT
 

By Sascha Camilli

About Sascha

Sascha Camilli is the founder of the world's first digital vegan fashion magazine, Vilda Magazine and the host of fashion podcast Catwalk Rebel. She was selected as one of Glamour UK's Most Empowering Nu-Gen Activists and is a frequent public speaker on the topic of vegan fashion and material innovation. Her book Vegan Style is out now on Murdoch Books. For more about Sascha, read our interview with her.

Cover image by Mildreds

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