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As someone who has to skip Dutch cheese due to my IBS, I eat vegan quite often, however I’ve somehow never written about my favorite vegan places to eat in Amsterdam. I was recently in touch with Desmond and Karim, two Amsterdammers passionate about vegan food, and we’ve put together a helpful guide to the best vegan restaurants in Amsterdam.
This week, Desmond and Karim, who run a website about vegan food will be sharing their tips for their favorite places to eat in Amsterdam! (I include my favorite vegan breakfast, lunch, and dinner options at the end of each section.)
Vegan breakfast and lunch in Amsterdam
Beter & Leuk
In this cozy shop in Amsterdam Oost, you can go for the most delicious gluten-free and vegan dishes, such as buckwheat pancakes or a sweet potato filled with lentil curry. The interior will give you a reminiscent of a large living room full of vintage furniture.
You can also browse their shop for fair trade presents, clothing, and beautiful illustrations. There are often events, including Tarot readers. If you plan ahead, head there for the vegan high tea!
Crazy about pancakes? Head to Mook Pancakes in Amsterdam West for a beautifully served pancake, richly topped with your favorite toppings. On the menu, there are vegan options as well as gluten-free pancakes. Besides pancakes, you can go here for stuffed avocados, delicious juices and even a nice wine. Mook is open all day, so dining with a pancake is possible too!
What does your vegan paradise look like? If you dream of a cozy lunchroom offering sublime all-vegan food combined with a grocery store equipped with everything you need to prepare delicious vegan dishes, Vegabond is without a doubt the right place for you! Enjoying breakfast with one of their homemade hummus wraps will make you come back for more!
CT Coffee and Coconuts
*Editor’s note: One of the most instagrammable food places in terms of decor as well as food is hands down CT Coffee and Coconuts. This popular brunch spot has fantastic vegan options and their homemade coconut yogurt is sublime. I can also recommend their smoothies and pancakes, but the menu is always full of healthy surprises! Arrive early on weekends with larger groups as there are often long lines.
*Editor’s note: SLA is an Amsterdam chain of organic restaurants that is open for lunch and dinner with delicious salads (that are easily made vegan) at a reasonable price. (I also love their vegan desserts if you have any room left). It’s a great place for casual dining if you’re looking for a quick vegan lunch although there are also seats available if you prefer to eat in. My dad always requests to come to Sla whenever he visits Amsterdam. (Sla has branches all around Amsterdam.)
*Editor’s note: If I’m stuck in Amsterdam Centrum, I typically end up at Maoz for a quick vegan lunch. This vegan fast food take-out place had a steal of a menu that is available all day (and fairly late if you end up going out in Centrum). The thing to order is the falafel although I recommend loading up your sandwich with the unlimited salad bar and sauces.
*Editor’s note: Le Sud used to be right around the corner from my work. This cozy Middle Eastern restaurant near Amsterdam Centrum has great vegan sandwich, especially around lunch. (Bring cash if you’re a tourist.)
I recommend the delicious Aubergine sandwich, which is surprisingly filling! There’s very limited seating, but you can enjoy sitting out along the canals or along the dock nearby. It’s a short walk from here to Westerpark and on a nice day, I’ll bring a bag to enjoy it in the park.
Dophert is a great vegan cafe near Westerpark, so if you’re looking for a cozy place with some creative food options, stop off here for something different. Seating is limited, so arrive early on a weekend to try their delicious pancakes!
Vegan dinner in Amsterdam
De culinaire werkplaats
*Editor’s note: de culinaire werkplaats is a vegetarian restaurant with a small dining room in Amsterdam West run by a husband and wife team that cooks up incredible, inventive food. Coming here is always an experience that is not just for the tastebuds, but also for the other senses. The menu routinely changes and they’re quite flexible about dietary requirements.
You must book ahead and I recommend clearing your night as a dinner at this vegan hotspot is likely to last three hours with each course explained to you. It’s truly an intimate experience that will nourish the brain as well as the stomach.
*Editor’s note: If you’re heading to the Foodhallen, you’ll find multiple stands with vegan food. My personal favorite is Mazza, which serves up delicious Middle Eastern dip platters with delicious bread. You’ll also find vegan bitterballen at the bitterballen stand as well as a tasty vegan wrap at Viet View.
Golden Temple is not a one-day-fly; they have been here for over 40 years serving up delicious power bowls for vegans and vegetarians. The interior will make you wonder if you’ve landed in Kathmandu.
On the menu: Colorful, healthy dishes without meat or fish such as Indian dahl, Iranian quinoa, Indonesian tempeh salads and light Vietnamese rice paper rolls. The vegetarian oasis in the Utrechtsestraat is named after an Indian temple where thousands of people can get a vegetarian meal every day for free.
Vegan Junk Foodbar (VJFB)
There are no cruel scenes to the food that you get on your plate at Vegan Junk Food Bar or VJFB. As you might expect, everything is vegan, however the menu is full of fast food dishes that are typically with meat. The hamburger, the shawarma and the cesar salad with chicken are all made with meat substitutes here.
Everything is delicious and tasty. The wait can be sizable, however it’s certainly worth the wait. We recommend their fries and vegan bitterballen, which have a unique taste.
*Editor’s note: Sir Hummus is a great stop off in De Pijp for vegan hummus lovers. This Israeli-run shop serves up some of the best hummus that I’ve found in the Netherlands with perfectly baked bread. You can get your meail to-go during lunch/dinner or you can find a seat (if you’re lucky). Avoid the dinner rush if you can.
At Meatless District, they have sweet potato fries that will make your mouth water and gluten-free buns to get excited about. Another highlight on the menu: the mason jar salad, which is filled with lots of vegetables. The building in Amsterdam Oud-West offers plenty of space, so you do not have to wait for hours to get a spot.
*Editor’s note: De peper is a vegetarian restaurant run out of OT301, a former squat that houses artists. This cafe is non-commercial and vegan-friendly. On weekends as well as evenings, you need to call in advance for a reservation as it can get quite crowded and you might be turned away at the door if they’re full. After dinner, there’s often live music as well as DJs, which makes it a great vegan hotspot after-dark.
*Editor’s note: Instock is a concept restaurant in Amsterdam that works with the Dutch supermarket, Albert Heijn, to recycle food waste. Although some of the food on the menu contains meat, there are always numerous vegan options available. Their creativity always amazes me, so be sure to make a reservation if you intend to come here for dinner! (Lunch is a bit less crowded.)
Vegan dessert in Amsterdam
*Editor’s note: One of my favorite places in Amsterdam for vegan desserts is Massimo Gelato in De Pijp. Although vegan sorbet is easily found in Amsterdam, it’s not easy finding good vegan ice cream by the scoop in Amsterdam yet! I was really impressed by how rich the Nutella flavor was and how much it tasted like the real thing. Expect a line in summer!
For more tips about vegan food in Amsterdam, check Desmond and Karim’s vegan guides for Amsterdam. Click for their guide to the best vegan food in Centrum. They update their blog weekly with new restaurants and tips!