chicago vegan dining guide.

the past couple months, i've noticed an increase in messages from people coming to visit chicago & looking for recommendations for vegan restaurants. sooo ... i decided to put together a little dining guide of my favorite places in the city.

so after a day of this ...

& this ... 
& obviously this ...

here are my favorite places to grab grub ...

first & most importantly ... my top vegan/vegetarian only joints :
  • chicago diner : the true vegan chicago staple.
  • quesadilla la reina del sur : 100% vegan/vegetarian mexican food. "carne asada" on fleek.
  • kitchen 17 : the k burger & pizzas are legit. cons = sometimes they run out of menu items.
  • handlebar : my fave spot for vegan brunch + awesome buffalo wrap if you do lunch/din. 

for pizza :
  • lou malnati's : don't trust anyone who says giordano's is the best chicago deep dish. does not compare to lou's. 
  • forno rosso : my new fave for neapolitan 'za + in the ultra trendy west loop. 
  • the boiler room : two thumbs up for vegans & non-vegans alike. with great drink specials.

asian cuisine :
  • coast : bomb sushi + byob.
  • saigon sisters : one of my favorite spots for pho in the city.
  • wasabi : legit vegan ramen. 
  • slurping turtle : for frequent top chef master takashi spottings.
  • le colonial : go for the spring rolls ... stay for the spring rolls. (also, separate vegan menu!)

quick bites :
  • le pain quotidien : so much vegan stuff ... that is also 100% organic. 
  • left coast food + juice : again, so much vegan stuff (the tostadas are my jam) + juice!
  • lyfe kitchen : i know this is a "chain," but if you're coming from oklahoma, you may not have had it!
  • doc b's fresh kitchen : get the california salad, add tofu, sub carrot/ginger dressing, thank me later.
  • athenian room : my favorite hangover food ... a salad covered with fries & greek dressing. come on. 
nicer spots :
  • girl & the goat : high-end dining with a separate vegan menu! (best shishitos in the city.)
  • bad hunter : no words. just go.
  • lula cafe : vegan options for those looking for something a little more hipster. 
  • monteverde : give me all the pasta. 
  • leña brava : an impossible to get into rick bayless spot.
dessert :
  • sprinkles : again, i know there are lots of these. but you cannot beat the vegan red velv. i'm sorry, but you can't. 
  • pie pie my darling : can be found at handlbar & misc. other vegan shops in the city. SEEK THIS OUT.
  • stan's donuts : dessert, breakfast, whatever.

resident chicagoans ... what am i missing?! any glaring omissions?? other category suggestions?? maybe ... an "off the beaten path" list? feel free to weigh in! 

visitors ... enjoy!! 

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  1. Pizzeria Serio has vegan cheese. Also Paulie Gee's has a bunch of vegan pizzas plus Pie Pie My Darling cake for dessert.

    I'm adding a few new places to try to my list!

    1. ahhh i've got a paulie gee's post coming up!! stand by!! i had no idea about pizzeria serio. it's right by my house so i'll be there soon!! thanks for the tip!!!

  2. Oh, another fave of mine is Kāl'ish. They are amazing!

    1. i don't love kal'ish. :( i know, it's sad. i just didn't like it!! (besides the cinny bun!!)

  3. The Chicago House of 'Za sells nothing but vegan pizza. For those of us who are sadly vegan AND gluten free... they have a delicious gf crust (about 1.50 extra). It's not Lou's...but Lou's gf crust isn't vegan. Nice little family owned business. I would definitely go back, and I highly recommend it :-)

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  5. For Quick Bites, I’d add Brightwok - all vegan except for meat as a protein option! For Asian, I’d add Arami - great sushi and appetizers; they even use vegan mayo for rolls and sauces. For Nicer Spots, I’d add Alinea - definitely a once in a lifetime experience, but it was the best vegan meal I’ve ever had!

  6. I agree with the comment above – Arami is fantastic and they have a whole separate vegan menu. I've also heard great things about Longacre Pizza in Uptown, which is not entirely vegan, but has a handful of delicious looking options.

  7. Sushi Sunda has a whole vegan menu

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