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Guide to Eating Vegan in Lisbon

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The concept of veganism is well understood in Lisbon, especially in vegetarian restaurants. While the city only has three entirely vegan eateries, we found it very easy to eat vegan in the vegetarian and even the places that were not specifically vegetarian or vegan.

In the last couple of years there has been an explosion of vegan restaurants in the Portuguese capital but it’s still of course possible to find vegan options everywhere, even including some typically Portuguese dishes, especially soups such as caldo verde or sopa de pedra.

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This is the key to rough opening times and prices for the guide, which will appear below the name of each restaurant or café mentioned.

Which meals are catered for

  • lunch: typically 12:00-16:00
  • dinner: typically 19:00-23:00

The type of food served

  • vegetarian / vegan / serves meat

A rough price range (based on prices for mains or buffet)

  • cheap €5-€8
  • moderate €8-15
  • expensive €15+

In case you were curious, the order in which places are mentioned in the guide is the order in which we visited them. They are not ordered by preference or any other criteria. (Updated January 2018)

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vegan lisbon

Princesa do Castelo

lunch & dinner / vegan / moderate

This cozy little place, located right next to the castle (hence the name) serves 100% vegan food, with some gluten free and raw options. The menu changes daily, based on the whim of Nandan, the friendly owner, and is a mix of veganised European dishes and Indian influenced cuisine.

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For example, on our visit we tried the vegan lasagne with lentils and aubergine, and a really gorgeous mango and date curry in peanut sauce served with red onion polenta.

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Desserts are all freshly made, including such delights as carob cake with soy whipped cream and fresh fruit and raw coconut truffles.

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Princesa do Castelo is an excellent place for something a bit different from the other vegan offerings in Lisbon without breaking the bank.

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Primo Basilico

lunch & dinner / serves meat / cheap

Clearly a very popular place with locals and tourists alike, this tiny pizzeria serves up wonderfully fresh pizza and focaccia to take away or to eat perched on little plastic stools or benches. While they serve meat and cheese, there is always at least one vegan pizza and one vegan calzone each day and the focaccia is always vegan.

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As it was so close to our Airbnb apartment, we visited several times, and enjoyed the multitude of different vegan pizzas and calzones and highly recommend it for a quick but filling and cheap bite.

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Jardim dos Sentidos

lunch & dinner / vegetarian / moderate

This spacious but intimate vegetarian restaurant offers an all-you-can-eat buffet at lunch time and à la carte dining in the evenings. Several of the meals from the menu are vegan, and some can be made vegan. If eating from the menu in the evening, you will be brought an appetiser which may not be vegan, so do check first!

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The food is an interesting mix of vegan classics (seitan burger with parsnip chips), veganised meat dishes (mushroom and dried fruit stroganoff) as well as more innovative dishes (wild rice and quinoa salad with pumpkin, raw living greens and fresh tomatoes or a French-Japanese fusion tofu nori terrine).

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We particularly enjoyed the vegan, sugar-free apple and cinnamon pie, with its wonderfully subtle but distinctive flavours as well as the suggestion of pineapple and beetroot juice, a combination I would never have considered!

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Overall, a really nice place for a special meal in an intimate setting.

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Paladar Zen

lunch & dinner / vegetarian / expensive

This somewhat upmarket establishment offers both an à la carte menu and a vegetarian buffet at lunch and dinner, both with many vegan options.

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The buffet is almost completely vegan, with every item clearly labeled and comprising of an interesting mix of foods, from sushi and salad to veganised Brazilian bean stew, Chinese stir fry and carrot and coconut soup.

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There are a few vegan desserts and the juices are generous and fresh. Staff are friendly, attentive and helpful but not overbearing. A lovely place for a filling and varied meal.

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Espaço da Rosa

lunch & dinner / vegetarian / moderate

Another option for a good vegetarian buffet with plenty of vegan options, Espaço da Rosa is pretty far from downtown Lisbon, but if you’re in the area of Alvalade in the north of the city near the airport, then this is a great place to stop by.

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Again, almost everything is vegan, and is clearly labeled as such. Food is colourful and fresh, consisting of a variety of pasta dishes, salads and stews or curries.

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They also offer an interesting selection of combinations of fruit for their freshly made juices. I had pineapple and ginger, a marriage I’d never thought of before, but which was wonderfully refreshing.

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The Food Temple

dinner / vegan / expensive

Run by a Canadian expat, The Food Temple was Lisbon’s first completely vegan restaurant. It’s a small, homely space with some communal seating (reservations are advised most evenings) that feels bustling without being crowded. The food is freshly prepared right in front of you, with the kitchen area open to where you sit.

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Each day the menu changes, but there’s always a soup, three small dishes (tapas), one main and a couple of desserts.

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Dishes are innovative without simply being weird (for example, the edamame bean and apple salad with french garlic vegan mayonnaise pictured above was a surprising delight), and while some plates are relatively small, they clearly contain very high quality ingredients and are sufficiently filling.

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This is a great place for a special meal out. Come armed with a map, though, as the restaurant is well hidden down a small pedestrian only alley!

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Espiral

lunch & dinner / vegetarian / cheap

This canteen style restaurant serves almost entirely vegan food, just be sure to check what is vegan before ordering. The friendly staff will be happy to help, even with limited English.

Dishes are simple but wholesome and filling, including tofu, beans, seitan, vegetables and grains. Also, there is free tea.

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The canteen and seating area are downstairs and don’t have much natural light (hence no decent pictures of food) and next door to the restaurant area is an alternative therapy practice, bookshop and workspace.

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Oasis

lunch & dinner / vegetarian / moderate

This simple vegetarian lunch place offers four dishes a day, two of which are usually vegan, just ask which. A standard plate (one kind of dish accompanied by rice and salad) is very generous and filling.

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It can be very busy at peak lunchtime (1-3pm), but service is still quick and friendly. The apple, carrot, ginger and beetroot juice is a win in my book, but they unfortunately don’t offer any vegan desserts.

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Terra

lunch & dinner / vegetarian / expensive

Terra is probably one of the most famous vegetarian restaurants in Lisbon and for good reason. The buffet is fresh, plentiful, tasty and well attended by staff, but you’ll need to ask what is and isn’t vegan as nothing is labeled as such (but as with most vegetarian buffets in Lisbon, most dishes are in fact vegan).

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Buffet options include an interesting array of salads (kiwi and beetroot, spinach and strawberry), hot dishes (soups, stews, curries, falafel) as well as various rice, pasta and potato dishes.

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There are a couple of vegan desserts (not included in the buffet) and are in general large and filling. Staff are friendly and helpful, but it can be hard to get their attention when the restaurant gets busy.

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A Colmeia

lunch / vegetarian / moderate

This bright, tranquil open space is Portugal’s oldest vegetarian restaurant, which has been run by the same family since 1963. Food is mostly macrobiotic and vegan, and the staff are clearly passionate about what they do, and so are happy to point out what is and is not vegan.

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There is a strong emphasis on healthy and sustainable eating so they use almost entirely organic products plus many dishes are also gluten and sugar free.

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The location is excellent, and the views out over the river are worth the visit alone!

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Miss Saigon

lunch / vegetarian / moderate

The menu at Miss Saigon changes daily and offers vegetarian and vegan dishes from around the world. Each day there is a soup and three mains to choose from, of which at least one (though usually two and often all three) is always vegan.

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Organic and ethically sourced ingredients are used wherever possible and the kitchen cooks in such a way to try to minimise leftovers. With roughly 80% of the menu being vegan, most of the desserts are too.

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Interestingly, when it first opened, they had the idea of offering a vegetarian buffet, but after a few months realised that didn’t work with their idea of offering a constantly changing and carefully prepared few dishes a day, so they switched their current model. We were very grateful for this and enjoyed it a lot. The space itself is super modern and relatively small but inviting and service is fast and friendly.

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The location outside of downtown Lisbon might put you off visiting, but located in a modern area of town built for the 1998 World Expo, Miss Saigon is worth the trek if for nothing else than their food.

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Jardim das Cerejas

lunch & dinner / vegan / moderate

With a nice array of dishes including salad, stews, soups, rice dishes and many more, this all vegan buffet is a great place to come when you’re hungry and craving simple, satisfying food.

You can fill your plate as many times as you like, and there is a slight Indian flavour to many of the dishes, though it’s not specifically an Indian restaurant. Helpfully, items are marked for whether they contain gluten and soy.

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Ao26 Vegan Food Project

lunch & dinner / vegan / expensive

For something a little bit upscale, this is the place to come. Prices are high for Lisbon, but not unreasonable, and given the quality of the food, quite justified. Flavours are typically Portuguese, but with a modern flair, and presentation is on point!

Dishes include seitan and tofu creations, burgers, risottos, tempura and soups and there are several gluten free options which are clearly marked on the menu. Portions are generous but not enormous.

Desserts are phenomenal, and my only complaint is that when you’re finished, you could easily eat another right away! Overall a lovely place with attentive service and a very modern atmosphere.

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Foodprintz

lunch / vegan / moderate

This bright and welcoming all vegan café is a great place for lunch and also for working at from your laptop. The design is nice and modern and service is laid back and friendly. There are also regular yoga classes held downstairs.

The food is healthy fare, with a focus on local and organic ingredients. While I found some of the mains a little plain, they are well presented and the tasty desserts make up for this somewhat.

Though I didn’t get to try them, the breakfast dishes, including French toast, buckwheat pancake and scrambled tofu, look great. Conveniently, the menu very clearly marks all gluten free, nut free, soy free and raw options. Highly recommended is the heavenly macaccino, a hot drink made with maca powder and cocoa.

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Quintal

lunch / vegan / moderate

Run by two super friendly Brazilians, this tiny place with just two tables serves healthy and freshly made and lunch dishes. Presentation is gorgeous, with edible flowers adding a lovely touch, and the atmosphere is relaxed and intimate.

They mainly offer ‘lunch boxes’ of a mix of grains, beans salad and cooked food, but they occasionally have a hot dish available too. There are a few desserts and serve excellent coffee, making it also a nice place to stop by for an afternoon pick me up.

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Vegana Burger

lunch & dinner / vegan / moderate

With three locations around Lisbon, this bright and modern place is somewhere to come for your burger fix. We visited the Cais do Sodré location, which is very central but a little hard to find as you have to pass through a passage and into a courtyard to enter.

The burgers are big and flavourful with some interesting flavour combinations, though the sides were a little disappointing. Gluten free options are available and clearly marked in the menu. Service is friendly and low key, and it’s an easy place to relax away from the busy streets.

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TOO

lunch / serves meat / moderate

Found inside the same building as the Amália Rodrigues museum, this café serves ready prepared healthy lunch meals in various combinations. While not everything is vegan, the meat options (which are relatively few) are limited to a shelf at the bottom of the fridge, making it easy to find the animal-free products.

The food is tasty and filling, but the real reason to come is to sit in the lovely garden of the former house and eat your meal. Compared to the busy street outside, it’s a wonderfully tranquil environment to enjoy lunch. The only odd thing is that there is a parrot (formerly the pet of the fado singer the museum is dedicated to) chained up on a branch in the garden, and the irony of this in a mostly vegan café doesn’t seem to have been realised by the owners.

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Veganeats

lunch / vegan / cheap

Though it may not be the most cosy place (it’s a little dark and has only a few tables), the food here is absolutely worth making the trip for. The lunch options are limited, but clearly made with love and served with a smile and are perfect for a light midday meal.

The selection of cakes is quite impressive for such a small place, and they are all worth trying. Unfortunately it was too dark to take decent pictures of them, but trust me: try one of each if you can manage it!

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Special thanks to Nandan, Ana Paula, Nuno, Alice, Paulo, Sarah and Joana for welcoming us to their establishments and for their further recommendations to make this guide complete.

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