+the scene

Best Vegan & Plant-Based Dining in L.A.!

Published: 2018-07-24
 
Veganism has seen a 600% increase over the last few years, producing a number of dining alternatives that eliminate the need for meat or animal products. Whether you’ve been vegan for a while or are looking to transition, or even if you're a non-vegan looking to broaded your culinary horizons, Los Angeles has a variety of options. Although this list could go on forever, here are a few places with menus that are either entirely vegan or with unbelievable vegan options.
 
1. Secret Lasagna (@secret_lasagna)
Originally set up in a hidden space at a plaza in Chinatown, Secret Lasagna is currently establishing a solid location. I’m half-Italian and grew up eating meat, but their vegan lasagna rivals any lasagna I’ve had before.
 
Recommended Order: The “Top Secret Lasagna” is filled with mushrooms, zucchini, carrots, red sauce, and cashew basil “ricotta”.
 
2. Au Lac (@aulacrestaurant)
Located in Downtown LA, this restaurant specializes in plant-based Vietnamese food with tons of raw options. They also have a space in the back that hosts events.
 
Recommended Order: You can never go wrong with their mai banh mi.
 
3. Veggie Grill (@veggiegrill)
This is a vegan chain that you can actually find in a few states other than California, so be sure to check their site even if you don’t live here.
 
Recommended Order: They have a menu that alternates according to the season, so check that before looking over the base menu. Otherwise, their “crab” cake sandwich with a side of crispy cauliflower is delicious. Plus, their "chicken" sandwich tastes exactly like Wendy's crispy chicken sandwich, no joke!
 
4. Mohawk Bend (@mohawkla)
Head here after taking a walk around nearby Echo Park Lake. They serve a variety of creative vegan pizzas.
 
Recommended Order: This is a tough decision, but the baked potato pizza is perfect. (Will I ever eat enough starch?)
 
5. Follow Your Heart (@followyourheart)
This is a vegan brand that you can buy in many grocery stores across the country, but they also have a market and café in Canoga Park.
 
Recommended Order: They offer holiday meals, and I suggest trying them out for Thanksgiving dinner. Aside from that, their nutburgers are unique.
 
6. Check Out Vegan Pop-Ups
There are also amazing vegan pop-ups in L.A. that can be found in areas like Highland Park or at large scale events where all the vendors come together to celebrate veganism. It’s always fun to check their Instagram accounts and find out where they’ll be setting up for the week, and many have regular spots as well. These are a few of my favorites:
 
Avocadamama (@avocadamama)
Serving creamy plant-based mac ‘n’ cheese in three flavors: the OG topped with breadcrumbs, taco jalapeno with pico de gallo and avocado, and curry with broccoli and peas.
 
Cena (@cenavegan)
Providing plant-based meats such as “carne asada”, “barbacoa”, “al pastor”, and more that you can add into tacos, burritos, and nachos.
 
Senoreata (@senoreata)
Offering a variety of Cuban dishes that include “meat” pies, jackfruit tamales, and guava strudels.
 
Hungry for more? Check out these other vegan spots we sampled in a special vegan episode of YH Food Feed!
 
Gather some friends and do a tour of these vegan spots!
 
(Image via REDA&CO/Getty Images)
 
- Melissa Breccia, YH Contributing Writer