With over seven million adults across Britain now following a vegan diet, plant-based eating has never been so popular. As the seventh largest city in the UK, Liverpool has been at the forefront of the vegan food scene for some time now thanks to a wave of forward-thinking hospitality owners who have come together to create a sort of mini collective of some of the best vegan restaurants in the country.
A common gripe of vegans is that many plant-based speciality restaurants focus on two ends of the scale – either it’s ‘dirty’ vegan fast food or it’s super clean healthy cooking. While both of these styles of course have their place on the scene, there are also times you just want to go out for a regular dinner, or even a fine-dining experience and enjoy three courses of great food without a theme. To ensure we’re bringing balance to our round up of the best vegan restaurants in Liverpool, we’ve tried to create a list with far-reaching options for every occasion. Yes, there are burgers (and pretty damn good ones at that) but there are also places that are perfect for birthday meals, romantic evenings or celebrations too.
Another factor which we find often comes up around the topic of veganism is dining in a mixed group. If you’re plant-based but your pals aren’t it can cause a little bit of friction as to where the best spot is. Thankfully, as well as being home to plenty of purely vegan restaurants, Liverpool also happens to play host to a number of incredible bars, cafes and restaurants that do a great side-line in vegan food. So, while the menus might not be strictly plant-based, they do have a good few solid choices each for vegans, meaning that both meat eaters and vegans can dine alongside each other happily (if that’s your bag). We’ve split our top vegan restaurants in Liverpool into two categories below so you can choose whether you go purist or egalitarian.
The best vegan restaurants in Liverpool
100% plant-based burger restaurant Frost Burgers has proven so popular that it now has two outlets – one in Manchester and one in Liverpool. With a whole slew of awards under its belt it could be Liverpool’s most popular vegan restaurant, and with a line-up of loaded burgers and skin-on fries it’s not hard to see why. Go classic with double ‘beef free’ patties topped with vegan cheese, mustard, ketchup, gherkins, Sriracha mayo, red onion and tomato or plump for a crispy ‘chicken free’ patty which is given a punch from rich garlic mayo.
The Vibe Café
Not only does The Vibe Café specialise in plant-based food, but it also has some solid ethical credentials, including serving only fair-trade coffee. With a passion for sourcing local produce, the family team behind The Vibe Café use the best of British ingredients to create their menus. In the morning you’ll find favourites like pancakes, and ‘veggs’ Benedict, while later in the day you’ll be able to enjoy a selection of toasties and salad bowls as well as a handful of heartier sides. Favourites of ours include the nacho bowl and the meat-free lasagne, as well as sides like potato bites and greens topped with ‘feta’.
Down the Hatch
Specialising in both vegan and vegetarian cooking, you won’t find any meat on the menu at Down the Hatch in Liverpool. Catering for lots of dietaries, they also do a cracking line in gluten-free food should need some coeliac-friendly grub. This is the kind of food that is guaranteed to cure a hangover, coming in huge portions with all kinds of tried and tested favourites on offer. From loaded fries and po boys through to burgers and a whole dedicated mac ‘n’ cheese section, it can be hard to pick just one dish. Loaded fries include a poutine style serve that comes topped with fried mushrooms, crispy shallots and gravy.
Claiming the title of Liverpool’s first central 100% plant-based coffee shop, the team at Potts Coffee is committed to minimising their impact on the environment through sourcing ingredients locally where possible. Pop in for an almond milk latte in the morning or stop off during the day for a hearty lunch. Options include a ridiculously rich carbonara with mock crispy bacon and portobello mushroom pieces and a range of crowd-pleasing burgers. Famous for their brunches, this is also a guaranteed winner come the weekend. Don’t miss the dedicated pancake menu with XL sizes and a whole plethora of topping options.
The Old Hardware Shop
Perfect for a cuppa and a cake, The Old Hardware Shop has earned a name for itself on the Liverpool vegan scene thanks to its incredible selection of plant-based baking. Treats include a Bounty brownie, fruit scones and chocolate and caramel cake. There’s a generous gluten-free selection on the menu which is helpful for groups with mixed dietary requirements, and with both breakfast and lunch offerings this is an all-day stop-off perfect for refuelling at. Sandwiches, toasties, hot dogs and salads are the big-ticket items for lunch, which range from familiar (‘tuna’ mayo and a BLT) to the slightly more experimental (a pizza dog topped with ‘pepperoni’ pizza sauce and melted ‘cheese).
With a far-reaching international menu, Veggie Republic proves the perfect place to dine when you can’t make up your mind what you fancy for tea. Tuck into hoi sin ‘duck’ bao buns with spring onion and cucumber before enjoying a Greek gyro kebab stuffed with salad, ‘slaw and garlic tahini dressing. A raw salad section adds a healthy spin if you’re after a bit of feel-good food, while there are enough desserts to tempt you back to the dark side should you fancy a bit of a sugar kick. Here you’ll find crowd-pleasers like vegan chocolate brownies and New York cheesecake.
The best vegan friendly restaurants in Liverpool
Offering up panoramic views of Liverpool’s skyline, Panoramic 34 is one of the UK’s highest restaurants and makes the perfect spot for an impressive celebratory meal (even if the occasion is just getting through Wednesday). Specialising in tasting menus, there’s a dedicated vegan one which includes nine courses of beautifully presented food. Canapes kick things off before breads and oils and an amuse bouche. Larger dishes include things like Isle of Wight tomatoes with verbena, celery, lovage and vanilla and confit potatoes with ‘burger van’ onions and seaweed. The high-end menu is matched by exemplary service and a carefully curated wine list.
Like so many of Liverpool’s best restaurants, VietNom started out as a street food offering and then transitioned into a bricks and morter site in 2020. Open for both lunch and dinner, VietNom is a fun, relaxed spot that’s perfect for group dining. While the food isn’t entirely vegan, there is a good range of options in every section of the menu and the friendly team will happily advise if dishes can be altered to suit a plant-based diet. Top picks from the vegan line-up include bao buns stuffed with oyster mushrooms and a panko aubergine bun chay noodle bowl.
Trendy gastro pub Papillon was made for a photo opportunity, with its eclectic interiors and pale pink façade. While the menu mainly caters to meat eaters, there are a few good choices for vegans too. From the starters spiced courgette fritters with a smoky garlic ‘yogurt’ is popular, while tacos filled with roasted sweet potato, black beans, avocado, coriander and charred lime are ideal for sharing. Vegan pasta plates and juicy plant-based burgers are both options for mains, as well as a vegan pie of the day. Sweets haven’t been forgotten either – with a vegan blueberry and custard pie on offer come dessert time.
The Elephant Pub & Bakehouse
Nothing beats a big old plate of comfort food at a Great British pub and doing a solid line in both those things is The Elephant Pub & Bakehouse in Liverpool. While – again – the menu isn’t strictly vegan, there are a couple of choices in each section for plant-based eaters. We’d have to warn you that this isn’t the largest meat-free offering we’ve seen, but it could just be a helpful name to have to hand when arranging a dinner for a mixed group of diners. For starters you might find a plate of hummus flatbread or a falafel dish, while mains being vegan artisan pizza or a moreish tofu katsu curry.
Jimmy’s is somewhat of a big name on the music scene, with joints in York, Manchester and Liverpool. The Liverpudlian outpost has three floors and specialises in all-day brunches, BBQ dinners and roasts come Sundays. There’s also live music in the basement if you fancy making it dinner and a show. On each section of the menu you’ll find vegan options with the likes of cauliflower candy (cauliflower tossed in the house BBQ sauce) for starters with vegan burgers and Korean BBQ tofu skewers for mains. Don’t skip pudding, the Mississippi mud pie has won itself legions of fans for a reason and comes topped with a whipped coconut cream.
With a dedicated vegan menu, Maray takes its plant-based offering seriously and is happily one of the more upmarket choices in Liverpool – perfect for date night or a special celebration. Thanks to its popularity there are also three branches across the city which means grabbing a table near you should be pretty straightforward. Middle eastern flavours are king here with top picks including wild mushrooms with cannellini beans, a herb crust and garlicy toum sauce and confit carrots with hazelnut butter, tamarind, pickled celeriac and parsley.
The Brunch Club
As the name suggests, The Brunch Club specialises in everyone’s favourite meal time: Brunch. Come the weekend they offer party bottomless brunches which are ideal for kickstarting a Saturday or putting off the Sunday blues for a little while longer. There’s a dedicated vegan section on each menu with everything from vegan omelettes through to pancake stacks on offer. Fresh juices and smoothies complete the line-up and help you hit your five a day for a virtuous start to the day.
The bold, bright flavours of the Middle East are what Hafla Hafla is all about, and happily it’s a cuisine which lends itself well to vegan dining. Much more than half of the mezze section is vegan-friendly, while there are options when it comes to the kebabs section too. From the latter our favourite is the house falafel with hummus and tahini served with salad, salsa and slaw. Come the weekend there are also vegan brunch dishes available – think a classic shakshuka (hold the eggs) or a full Middle Eastern breakfast. If you fancy taking things up a notch there’s a bottomless add-on option for brunch too - £30 gets you the dish of your choice plus endless prosecco, beer or Bloody Marys for 90 minutes.
Offering authentic Indian meat-free food, Sanskruti is a firm favourite of many plant-based eaters in Liverpool thanks to its far-reaching menu. The most popular dish award has to go to the thali plate which gives you little tastes of starters, mains, a dal, rice, roti, salad, poppadoms and dessert all for just £14. The catch is that it’s only available Tuesday and Wednesday though. On other nights of the week you can take full advantage of the a la carte offering which includes favourites like dosas, bhajis and fragrant curries.
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