As most people know by now, I am quite a fanatic reduceterian for both health and environmental reasons. Since moving to Singapore in 2016, I have done extensive research on vegan and vegetarian hotspots in my new hometown. Besides, as I do occasionally eat fish, I also looked out for restaurants that serve sustainably harvested food. While many restaurants in the city offer vegetarian options, other restaurants are real specialists. Hereby, a list of my favourite restaurants in Singapore that suit a meatless diet!
Having a meatless lunch in Singapore is not a big challenge as many food stands and restaurants serve at least one vegan dish and a few more vegetarian dishes. However, the restaurants below are specialists and that makes me coming back over and over again.
- The Living Cafe, Bukit Timah. The Living Cafe aims to serve genuinely healthy food and drinks that are tasty, affordable, and accessible to everyone. You can choose from a choice of salads, pizza’s, rice bowls and sandwiches, as well as a range of raw pastry. The pizza with vegan macadamia cheese is a personal favourite!
- Fill a Pita, China square central. A Middle Eastern vegetarian lunchspot that offers options like moussaka and lentil soup. But the dish they are famous for is their outstanding falafel pita that is delicious and affordable (10 SDG per pita). As a bonus, the staff is very friendly, which makes you want to come back more often!
- The Bakery by Woodlands Sourdough, Botanic Gardens MRT. The Bakery by Woodlands Sourdough serves the best (sourdough) bread in town, resulting often in a sold out shop at the end of the morning. For this reason it is recommended to visit in time and buy a few breads at once (easy to preserve in the freezer). In addition, the Bakery serves vegan and vegetarian sandwiches during the day and vegetarian pizza’s at Sunday nights.
- Plentyfull, Millenia Walk. Plentyfull offers a market table lunch buffet during weekday’s where vistors can mix and match there meals. Both the name and the many delicious (vegetable) dishes give a hint to the famous Israeli/British chef Yotam Ottolenghi’s. As a bonus, the organic supermarket Little Farms has a small instore shop within the restaurant where you can buy vegan snacks, coconut yoghurt and tapenades.
- Cedele bakery. Cedele is a bakery with over 30 outlets in Singapore that serve a good deal of bread, pastries, soups and salads. The fresh sandwiches, wraps and salads include a menu for vegans and vegetarians, but you could also opt to design your grill and greens salads.
Lunch and dinner
The restaurants below are perfect for either lunch or dinner. While some restaurants serve vegetarian and vegan food only, others offer extended options for every diet.
- Real food, located in Clarke Quay Central, Novena Square 2, Orchard, South Beach and another location opening soon in Far East. This is my most visited lunch spot in Singapore. Real Food is a vegetarian restaurant that offers an elaborated menu of both Asian and Western options. And what’s in the name, this place serves dishes that are tasteful, authentic and healthy.
- SuanThai, Somerset. When going to this Thai restaurant, you usually get the regular menu that includes meat, seafood and eggs. However, ask for the vegetarian menu et voilà, the same menu translated to vegan Thai dishes such as vegan Pad Thai and Pineapple fried rice.
- Herbivore, Rochor. This is the place to be for sushi fans! Herbivore serves pure vegetarian cuisine and that includes sashimi and teriyaki chicken. The sushi is vegetarian as the mayonaise being used contains eggs and the fish contains dairy. But all sushi can be prepared completely vegan at request.
- The Banana Leaf Apollo, Little India. As 1/3 of the Indian global population is vegetarian, all restaurants in Little India contain extended vegetarian options. So that is always a safe way to go. Banana Leaf Apollo is my favourite restaurant, especially for the Gobi Manchurian (fried cauliflower) or the Tandoori Veg Platter.
- Komala Vilas, Little India. Another fine eatery in Little India. Dating from 1947, Komala Vilas is a vegetarian restaurants with an established name. Both North and South Indian cuisine are on the menu and as there is a fair difference between the regions, you can always opt to ask to staff for recommendations.
- Afterglow by Angelow, Keong Said RD. Afterglow by Angelow aims to bring sexy back to vegetables, and without a doubt they succeed in that. The menu consists of both cooked and raw clean food, such as raw lasagne and a deconstructed sushi bowl.
- The Loving Hut, Geylang. Longing for traditional fried rice and satay? Can Lah! I am telling you, at this place it is really, really hard to taste a difference between real meat and the vegan version. This is a good place to introduce a meat lover to an environmentally friendly alternative.
- Whole Earth,76 Peck Seah St. Whole Earth is on a mission to elevate the standard of plant-based cooking and promote it to a wider audience. Although not the most affordable restaurant, they do very well succeed in this with tasty signature dishes like fried olive rice and Penang Rendang.
For a bit of a fancy dinner during the weekends, here are some restaurants that perfectly suit the occasion.
- Mezza 9, Grant Hyatt. The chef of Mezza 9, Lucas Glanville, has quite a progressive philosophy that focusses on environmentally sustainable and ethical food options. That includes seafood with the MSC and the ASC label, which makes it the place to go for me when I want to enjoy some sustainably sourced fish. If you wish to keep it vegetarian, you should definitely go for the vegetarian sushi.
- Open door Policy, Tiong Bahru. This restaurant in Tiong Bahru aims to serve sustainable dishes that are free of dairy and gluten, including some vegan dishes and desserts. ODP grows its own herbs and spices in a vertical garden, which happens to be at the walls of the restaurant.
- Blu Kouzina, Demsey Hill. Blu Kouzina is a Greek restaurant that offers a wide range of Mediterranean dishes. What I like about the menu is that the dishes are marked when vegetarian/vegan, so you can easily find the options that meet your diet. I like ordering several small dishes to make up my own Greek buffet.
- Artichoke, 161 Middle Road. To quote Artichoke’s own statement: MIDDLE EASTERN | DUDE FOOD | LOUD MUSIC | CHUMMY SERVICE | NO PRETENTIOUS BULLSHIT. Simply one of my favourite restaurants in town, both for dinner and weekend brunch. A bit challenging for vegans due to the cheese and yoghurt in most dishes, but vegetarians (and non-vegetarians) will without a doubt leave this place as happy human beings.
- Long Chim by David Thompson, Marina Bay Sands. The famous Bangkok restaurant Nahm of top chef David Thomson has been listed in the top-50 best restaurants of the world for ages; a succes that is extended to the (more affordable) Long Chim chain. A range of vegetarian dishes is on the menu, however in order to experience the real taste explosion it is highly recommended to choose the set menu of 8 small signature dishes.
Eating plant-based doesn’t necessarily mean that you are only allowed to eat salads and green smoothies. I mean, we all have our moments that we want nothing more than just craving fastfood. Luckily, there are some great spots in Singapore to serve this need!
- VeganBurg, Geylang. VeganBurg claims to be the world’s first 100% plant-based burger joint. They offer no less than eight different vegan burgers with GMO-free soy patties, as well as a range of side dishes and pastries.
- NomvNom, Clarke Key Central. Located in Central Singapore, NomvNom is within reach for many citizens that long for some responsible junk food. You can choose from a variety of burgers, pasta’s, soups and ice cream.
- Brownice, Upper Thomson Road and Geylang. Head to Brownice for vegan ice cream made with organic rice-milk and evaporated crane juice. In addition, Brownice serves pasta’s and pizza’s with signature vegan cheese.
- Husk Plaza Singapura. Husk is serves a unique blend of froco, meaning frozen coconut. As Husk states on there website that the froco is 99% diary-free, there is apparently still a challenge in adjusting the last 1% to a vegan alternative. Nonetheless, a welcome and delicious snack on a hot day!
Hawkers centres and take-away
- Thai Express. Although Thai Express is a big chain, I like going there every now and then as they provide quite some vegan options including Pad Thai, pineapple fried rice and mango salad.
- NamNam Noodle Bar. Another chain that is spread out over the city. NamNam serves vegetarian spring rolls with brown rice paper, a Bánh mì with lemongrass tofu and even a vegetarian pho. However if you want it to be vegan, note that the broth used for the pho comes from meat and the Bánh mì contains butter/mayonaise.
- Maki-San, Cathay Building. At Maki-San they allow you to design your own healthy sushi, offering you the chance to make it meat and fishless and with brown rice. Besides, they offer a Very Veggie sushi roll on the regular menu. Make sure to ask for the ingredients in the sauce if you want it to be completely vegan.
- Fortune Centre, 190 Middle Rd. Fortune centre that attracts many Chinese Buddhists, due to the large variety of vegan and vegetarian restaurants. The food is very affordable and includes many varieties of the authentic Chinese/Singaporean kitchen with mock meat.
- Hawker’s centres can be a challenge, but you just need to know where to find the right ones. Check out this list of vegetarian-friendly hawker centres and 7 vegan hawker stalls that even die-hard meat lovers will like.
As I will keep on looking out for restaurants that offer vegan and vegetarian options and that are fun to visit, this list can considered to be ‘work in progress’. So stay tuned for more awesome food spots! You can also read the previous blog about my hotspots in Singapore, all of the restaurants in my blog contain vegetarian options unless indicated otherwise and with exception of hawker centres.
If there are any restaurants in Singapore that you would like to tip, please feel free to leave a comment!