A Brief Vegan Guide to Lisbon, Portugal

Before the coronavirus scared me into returning home and becoming a hermit, I spent six weeks in Lisbon and three days in Porto, trying out as many of these two amazing cities’ vegan offerings as I could possibly afford. I’m so glad I did. Here are my top 10 restaurant and café tips for Lisbon:

1. Moko Veggie Café: This tiny, inexpensive vegan bakery has way more stuff on offer than you would expect. They have delicious sweet and savoury breakfast options (definitely try the delicious croissants and chocolate chip muffins), fresh juices, breakfast bowls, and various hot drinks (I loved the ginger milk tea), as well as lunch options such as burgers, dumplings and soups. I went there lots of times and was never disappointed.

moko veggie cafe

2. Sama Sama Crepe and Juice Bar: A very cool vegan restaurant which also happens to be a craft beer bar, I went to this place several times and still drool at the thought of their Mexican-style crepe and their crepe with apple pie and chocolate sauce. Fantastic food, friendly service, and a chill atmosphere. What more do you need?

3. Kong – Vegan Modern Food: Not one of the cheapest options, but definitely the restaurant with the best service and loveliest staff. I really enjoyed the Beyond Burger (I think on the menu it was listed as the “Kong Burger”) with vegan cheese and bacon, the Seitan Steak with Pepper Sauce, and the Oreo Mousse.

4. Vizza – New Age Pizzabar: A very stylish vegan restaurant with amazing pizza options – the dough and tomato sauce are simply incredible! – and the dessert pizza (with a vegan ‘nutella’ and hazelnut filling) was also fantastic. The first time I went, I mistakenly ordered a pizza with mushrooms and truffle oil which I wasn’t crazy about, but that’s only because I’m not a fan of truffle oil. The Pizza Margherita I had the next time was fantastic, and their pizza bread served with three dips was also delicious.


5. Eight – The Health Lounge: This spacious, friendly vegan restaurant offers healthy bowls, burgers, toasts, and tacos. I really enjoyed the tacos, the avocado toast, the tempeh burger and their `Vanilla Sky’ latte. I was less crazy about the bowl I had because it lacked flavour and sauce.

6. The Food Temple: I only had dinner from here once, and I had to take it to go because it was very busy, but I didn’t have to wait long and I enjoyed two of the three tapas for dinner and then also lunch the next day. Their jackfruit steak/schnitzel was so yummy that I devoured it within two minutes. It was probably the best schnitzel I’ve ever had. Please note that they have a changing tapas menu, which means I’m not sure when they are going to offer this incredible dish again.

7. Organi Chiado: Try to get a table outside if it’s warm enough, you’ll enjoy the view. This restaurant is a little pricy, but the portions are really big. I enjoyed their Caesar’s Salad and vegan cheese.

8. Bala (Saldanha Residence): Located in the food court at Saldanha Residence, thus place has decent vegan burrito and taco options.

9. Zarzuela Bakery: This (non-vegan) bakery offers the best vegan pastel da nata I tried in Lisbon. I had vegan pastel da nata at three other places, most of which were pretty good, but the ones from Zarzuela were, in my view, not only the yummiest, but also had the best consistency. Unfortunately, they were also more expensive than most of the other places (they cost 2,30 euros each), but they were worth it!

10. Fabrica Lisboa: A very nice cafe which sadly does not offer any vegan food options, but it’s worth going just to enjoy the decor, the cosy atmosphere, and a — good and very cheap — soy latte or a freshly squeezed orange juice.

fabrica lisboa

There are a lot more vegan and vegetarian restaurants in Lisbon that I didn’t get to try. And I would definitely suggest you go to daTerra Bairro Alto, because daTerra is a chain and I went to daTerra Baixa in Porto four times (!) in the three days I spent there. I tried their breakfast, lunch and dinner options and all of them were amazing. It was honestly the best vegan/vegetarian buffet restaurant I’ve ever been to, and I have been to quite a few!

daterra porto

One last tip: If you make it to Lisbon, make sure to visit Sintra as well, and allow for a whole day, ideally two days, to go and explore this truly magical place.


A Brief Vegan Guide to Dublin


I lived in Dublin from 2015 to 2016 (and a few years earlier, in Cork), and have been back a few times since. Ireland is a great place to visit as long as you are not a beach person. Don’t get me wrong, trips to the ocean are actually really lovely in Ireland – just don’t count on the sun! Despite (or because of?) the unpredictable Irish weather and damp houses, Irish people are warm and relaxed, and have a great sense of humour.

While I was living in Ireland, I got the impression that many Irish people still didn’t know what veganism was, but I’m happy to tell you that a lot of new vegan food options have popped up in Dublin and Cork in recent years. I attended Ireland’s very first vegan festival (the ‘Dublin Vegfest’) in 2015, and it was a huge success. The venue turned out to be too small for the large number of visitors. I didn’t mind the crowds because the atmosphere was fantastic. I got to stuff my face and everything I tried was delicious. The ‘Dublin Vegfest’ takes place once a year over two days in the fall. From 2017, Cork followed suit with the ‘Cork VegFest’. Make sure to check out one or both of the festivals next year, and let me know what vegan treats you find there. 🙂

Below is my list of top 5 best eateries in Dublin and surroundings. (Please note that I haven’t yet had the chance to check out Veginity. It looks fantastic and I can’t wait to try it during my next visit to Ireland.)

1. Cornucopia: The best, coziest place for a healthy, hearty breakfast or lunch. A plate with one serving of a warm dish (changing menu) and a choice of two salads (make sure to try the creamy potato salad with roasted garlic!) costs approximately €14.

2. Pablo Picante: The best burrito place in town (I’d even say in Europe), and they now have four different Dublin locations! I’ve always ordered the ‘Victoria Verde’ without cheese to make it vegan, but they just introduced a burrito called the ‘Mega Vegano’, with citrus-marinated tofu, fresh avocado, different types of beans, as well as rice and salsa, which I can’t wait to try.

3. Sova Vegan Butcher: Amazing vegan brunch and dinner place. Make sure to try the ‘Apple and Cinnamon Pancakes’ and the ‘Seitan Doner Kebab’ for brunch, and the ‘Seitan Steak with Pepper Sauce’ for dinner.

4. Happy Food @ The Yoga Hub: Another great vegan place for a healthy breakfast or lunch. Try the ‘Happy Vibe Full Breakfast’ and one of their delicious smoothies.

5. The Happy Pear: The amazing vegan options at this vegetarian café and organic supermarket in Greystones are well worth the one-hour drive/train ride from Dublin City, and you could embark on the Bray Head Cliff Walk (see pictures below). Check out the Happy Pear cookbooks, as well.

I also want to mention that, if you get hungry after a night out in Temple Bar, I can recommend Hanley’s Pasties. They have several good vegan options.

Last, but not least, I urge you to take a day trip to Howth. The train takes about 25 minutes from Connolly Station. While I have yet to find a place for a good vegan lunch or dinner in Howth, I recommend visiting this beautiful peninsula and setting off on the lovely cliff walk. If you need a snack, check out the delicious little vegan treats at Bodega, and churros at Howth Market (only open on weekends!). Afterwards, take some time to relax at The Doghouse, a beautiful café with a fantastic selection of tea.