Kuala Lumpur is a relatively easy city to be vegan in, though given its size, there aren’t as many vegan eateries as you might expect. While Malay food is not usually very vegan friendly, there is a lot of South Indian and Chinese food in Malaysia, and these are much safer options for vegans.
More or less any Chinese restaurant that calls itself vegetarian will serve vegan food (unless there is egg) and South Indian food that is vegetarian will likely be vegan (unless there is ghee). Below are our picks of the best of vegan Kuala Lumpur from our time there.
This is the key used in this guide, which appears directly under the name of each establishment mentioned:
Which meals are catered for
- breakfast: typically 08:00-11:00
- lunch: typically 11:00-14:00
- dinner: typically 18:00-21:00
The type of food served
- serves meat / vegetarian / vegan / raw vegan
A rough price range (based on prices of mains)
- cheap: up to RM10 (up to €2.10)
- moderate: RM10-20 (€2.10-€4.20)
- expensive: RM20+ (€4.20+)
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lunch & dinner / vegetarian, vegan, raw vegan / moderate
Serving an interesting array of pan-Asian vegetarian food, this chain may not have the most lovely locations (both of the ones we visited were in shopping centres) but it does offer some great vegan fare.
Items with egg are clearly marked on the menu, while ones using dairy products are not, of which there are just a few, so some questioning may be necessary to determine what is vegan. The fresh juices in an array of interesting combinations are highly recommendable.
breakfast, lunch & dinner / vegetarian, vegan / cheap
South Indian food is always a safe option for vegans in Malaysia, and this place does some of the best we tried there. Everything is vegetarian, and the only potentially problematic ingredient for vegans is ghee (clarified butter), but it is always included in the name if it is used.
The masala dosa is enormous, heavenly and extremely good value. We also enjoyed the deep fried cauliflower which were surprisingly meaty and satisfying. The location we visited was basic and untouristy and the staff were friendly and helpful despite their limited English.
breakfast, lunch & dinner / raw vegan / moderate
With several locations around the city, this take-away-only juice bar offers all raw, all vegan juices with no added sugar or preservatives. There are some nice, refreshing fruit and vegetable combinations, as well as several nut milk based drinks. They have a loyalty card on which you can collect points to redeem on future purchases which can make them quite good value for the level of quality.
- Address: we visited the one in the KLCC, but there are multiple locations around Kuala Lumpur; see here for a list
- Foursquare; Facebook; website
Water Lily Vegetarian Restaurant
lunch & dinner / vegan / cheap
A great option for a quick and cheap vegan lunch right opposite LOKL Coffee, this basic Chinese eatery serves a couple of set lunch menus consisting of rice, vegetable dishes, mock meat and a drink. The “chicken” satay was especially good. Note that the signs outside still say Fatt Yan, the restaurant’s former name.
- Address: 23, Jalan Tun HS Lee, 50000 Kuala Lumpur
breakfast (weekends only), lunch & dinner / serves meat, vegetarian, vegan, raw vegan / expensive
With everything from meat to raw vegan dishes, Ashley’s serves up a delightfully tasty dishes using all organic and locally sourced ingredients from independent producers rather than large companies. All vegan options (of which there are plenty) are clearly marked on the menu and for hot drinks they offer both homemade soy and almond milk.
The staff are extremely friendly and welcoming without being overbearing and patiently answered all our questions with knowledge and passion. Their sister restaurant, Living Food, has more or less an identical menu, though we didn’t have the chance to visit it ourselves.
De Health Paradise Organic
lunch & dinner / serves meat, vegetarian, vegan / moderate
A bit out of the way from most other things of interest in Kuala Lumpur, this place is nonetheless a good option for vegans. Everything is organic and no onion or garlic are used. There are some fish and chicken dishes on the menu, but most things are actually vegan and pretty easy to identify.
They do not use coconut milk but soy milk for their famous laksa, which was pretty good. The eatery is inside a small organic shop selling some unusual dried ingredients you may not be able to find elsewhere as well as a few bit of fresh produce.
RGB & The Bean Hive
breakfast & lunch / serves meat, vegetarian, vegan / expensive
As I mention in our guide to cafés for digital nomads, this place also has an extensive menu with multiple vegan options that are clearly marked. Everything we tried was delicious. Three of the six breakfast options (served until 2pm) are vegan and there is usually more than one vegan cake.
There are also burgers, sandwiches and vegan waffles with coconut ice cream. The location is a little hidden, but is a lovely escape on a residential street from the busy streets of Kuala Lumpur. Staff are super friendly and patient, but unfortunately, they’re not open for dinner.
lunch & dinner / vegetarian, vegan / cheap
Coconut ice cream is a relatively common dessert in Malaysia, and should always be vegan but can be hard to verify. This chain guarantees that the ice cream is, and offers it with a range of interesting (read: weird) toppings such as peanuts and sweetcorn. The ice cream itself is very coconutty (as the name promises) but is more like a sorbet than a real ice cream. Nonetheless, it’s a very refreshing dessert option.
- Address: we visited the one in the KLCC, but there are multiple locations around Kuala Lumpur; see their website for a list
- Foursquare; Facebook; website
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