Top Vegan and GF Places to Eat in Edinburgh

“I’m a foodie”, “I just looove food” blah blah... well who doesn’t love good tasting food?! So here’s a blog post by someone who doesn’t call herself a foodie but well, just loves food as much as you do. Ok, vegan, gluten-free food to be precise.

Currently I am the only vegan at the office so if you’re a vegan - you’re hired! Haha, ok, dry jokes aside, here are a few words on why this blog is about my favourite vegan and gf foods in Edinburgh. I am a vegan because I have chosen to be, around two years ago. I eat gluten free because no one wants an itchy colleague do they (super sensitive to gluten basically).

So let’s start with my list and mouth watering descriptions.

Current favourite, The Herbivore Kitchen on 65 Clerk St. 

I used to work at Starbucks as a student and was able to feast on their brownies quite often. They were the best brownies in the world in my opinion. Since I went vegan, I have tried quite a few great-but-not-as-great brownies. But then I had a bite of a rich, moist, bomb delicious peanut butter brownie from Herbivore Kitchen and was blown away. How. Do. They. Make. It. So. Good? It’s quite a generous slice too!

They also serve kuku made by Grumpy Food, which comes in various different flavours. My favourite is a cauliflower kuku with beetroot side salad.

I have also tried their gluten free pancakes, but they still left me awful jealous of my boyfriend who was devouring his fluffier than clouds pumpkin pancakes with Sgaia vegan bacon. So I’m still in search of fluffy vegan and gluten free pancakes. Nevertheless, I think it is safe to say that everything The Herbivore Kitchen serves is likely to satisfy most people, vegan or not.

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Another favourite is a 100% vegan cafe called Holy Cow - a place known for its plentiful dishes and friendly staff. As far as I know, the owner is Polish, which explains the generous portions. I usually choose a gluten free portobello mushroom burger in a buckwheat bun, with melted vegan cheese, side salad and potato wedges. There’s rarely space left for a cake but it’s always worth to take it away and have later, because the cakes are superb too.

There is a place in Edinburgh, which looks like some eclectic phantasy world. Stuffed toys on the ceiling, plants everywhere, neon. Do you know the place? It’s Lucky Pig of course! Another place to go if you’re feeling famished. My favourite dish is their V. Lucky Nachos. They come with chilli, guacamole and vegan cheese. Lucky Pig also serves some amazing desserts and when my raspberry dark chocolate brownie arrived, I was convinced that they have a Michelin star chef hiding in their kitchen. It was beautifully presented and oozing with flavour.

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The best place to go for vegan cheesiness and pizza is Nova Pizza - a tiny little Italian restaurant on Howe Street. They also serve vegetarian food, but the vegan menu has a wide selection of starters, mains and desserts, including cheesecakes that are just out of this world (cheesecake base, however, is not gluten free). My favourite is their Four Cheese and Mushroom pizza which has a generous amount of vegan hard cheese, vegan mozzarella, vegan blue cheese, soy cream and one of my favourite foods - mushrooms.

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This blog post is making me real hungry, and hurray it’s almost lunchtime! So here’s the last but not least of the favourites.

A few weeks ago, my sister was visiting from Spain. The weather was dreadful that evening and we were starting to get hangry, so the situation was critical. We were at The Royal Mile and I struggled to come up with ideas of where to go for good vegan food. I then saw Zizzi’s sign leading to Roxburgh Ct and remembered Facebook’s vegan community raving about their superb vegan options.

Not only they had vegan options but they had a whole separate menu containing: vegan, gluten free, dairy free and 600 calories or less sections. Since it is a chain, I wasn’t expecting anything amazing but the flavours of Italy where dancing in my mouth it was that good. Zizzi’s is a great place to go to when not everyone in your group is vegan, everybody can enjoy what they like. The interior was great as well, which was especially appreciated by my sister who is an interior designer. We had a lovely, cosy, delicious evening!

So there you have it, just a few of my current favourites that I highly recommend you visit, whether you’re a vegan or not.

Zozo xx

Author Ugne Zoe Photograph

Ugne Zoe

Graphic Designer