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a tray of vegan queso with vegan taco meat and chips from Local Foods.
It doesn’t get much more Texas than vegan queso.
Local Foods

16 Stellar Houston Vegetarian Restaurants

With restaurants like Cascabel and Houston Sauce Pit, loaded vegan queso and meatless barbecue are now within reach

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It doesn’t get much more Texas than vegan queso.
| Local Foods

If Houston vegetarianism proves anything, it’s that a modern-day vegetarian or vegan diet ventures far beyond salads and veggie burgers. Rather, chefs are bringing in ideas from all over the world, from traditional dishes like cheeseburgers, enchiladas, and dosas, to specific local reinventions, like vegan barbecue, toppings-laden Tex-Mex hot dogs, and flavorful, yet completely meatless queso.

While Verdine, Flower Child, Onion Creek Coffee House, sweetgreen, Pondicheri, Kiran’s, HS Green Fresh Food Kitchen, Loving Hut, Kiran’s, and Maharaja Bhog have all been rotated out, this list is now featuring newer additions, like Houstonatlantavegan; mantra; Soul Food Vegan; Crumbville, TX; Houston Sauce Pit; Chowpatty Chat; San San Tofu; and Cascabel.

Whether you are in search of something spicy and exotic sans meat, a casual neighborhood joint to satisfy soup, salad, and sandwich cravings, or a decadent dive into Houston cuisine, check out this map of essential vegetarian restaurants around the city.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.
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Govinda's Vegetarian Cuisine

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Visit the ISKON Hare Krishna Temple and stay for the all-vegetarian lunch and dinner buffet (available for dine-in and to-go) at Govinda’s on the property. Dishes like saag paneer, daal makhani, and chana masala revolve throughout the week, but visit on a Sunday, Wednesday, or Friday and find a completely vegan menu.

Cascabel

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The answer to vegan Mexican cuisine, this Spring Branch locale offers comforting staples, like barbacoa burritos, platters of tacos, poblano quesadillas, and vegan bistec chimichangas, made with hand-made flour tortillas, refried beans, and pico de gallo. Start with the vegan chorizo empanadas and spicy chile con queso with melty potato-based cheese and gluten-free chips, then cool down on the patio with a cold glass of Rumchata or a watermelon margarita on the rocks while you wait for your entrees.

Good Dog Houston

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While not a vegetarian restaurant per-say, it’s been an open secret for years that this Heights mainstay’s tofu dogs outshine their actual meats. Diners can celebrate the start of patio season with a playful Texanization of a Chicago dog centered on house-pickled Fresno peppers with a side of two-bean, Beyond Meat vegan chili, or cool down with a cajeta and cold-brew milkshake.

Houstatlantavegan

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This Midtown food truck has fun with its vegan creations, which include stacked Nawfside Nachos, vegan burgers like the double patty, double cheese “WAP”-er, and mock hot chicken sandwiches that draw in lines from across the city. Crowd favorites include the Rodeo Burger, which comes topped with onion rings and a signature house sauce, and the loaded fries, which mirror a Philly cheesesteak in a bowl.

Local Foods Upper Kirby

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For years, one of the worst parts of being a vegan in the Lone Star State was missing out on a good bowl of chunky queso. Thankfully, this fast-casual eatery recognizes the importance of this cheesy staple. Local Foods uses cashew cheese to get the same smoothness Texans know and love and adds in vegan “taco meat” for an extra punch of richness. Add vegan chili and chips and you’ve got yourself a vegan frito pie. Still hungry? Try the quinoa burger or the power bowl, a combination of navy beans, brown rice, quinoa mix, curry tofu, roasted squash, red watercress, and sunflower seeds with a harissa vinaigrette.

bellagreen

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There is pasta… and there is Bellagreen’s paleo spaghetti squash Bolognese. In lieu of the top-notch veggie burger, opt for a plate of the saucy Bolognese, tossed together in a fiery chipotle-pepper infused marinara with roasted vegetables, or the veggie pizza, which is topped with roast cauliflower, broccoli, peppers, and mango ranch.

Soul Food Vegan

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Just a short walk from Emancipation Park, this Third Ward vegan spot harnesses the soul food flavors so many have come to love. Smothered in a vinegary sauce, the BBQ Mushrooms are fried until they are golden brown and served with a side of greens — proving that ham hock was optional all along. If the handful of tables is full, take your food to go and trek across the street for a picnic in the park.

One of the best-soundtracked restaurants in the city, Mantra brings vegan and gluten-free eats scored by relaxed neo-soul and R&B. Dishes like coconut calamari, fried portobello with chimichurri, and a collection of vegan pizzas provide fine dining flourishes in relaxed environment. The restaurant’s vegan strawberry cheesecake, made with dairy-free milks, is a surefire way to end your meal satisfied.

Crumbville, TX

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Bring your sweet tooth to this all-star Third Ward bakery, which specializes in brownies, cookies, and stuffed cupcakes in classic Southern flavors like red velvet, banana pudding, and vanilla-peach. More inventive takes include the beloved “Cookie Minaj,” a moist strawberry oatmeal cookie with white chocolate morsels. Head baker Ella Russell is sure to go the extra mile, offering gluten-free options, and special touches, including personalized bags to ensure every customer feels like family.

green seed vegan

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A Third Ward institution, this sandwich shop and juice bar was established as one of the first vegan shops in the area in 2012. Here, you’ll find freshly pressed paninis, like the “pb&p” — a sweet combination of carmelized plantains and peanut butter; raw food options like its nori rolls stuffed with almond pate; and meatless takes on popular sandwiches, like the illy cheesesteak, a combination of grilled portabella mushrooms, caramelized red onions with vegan cheese on a French baguette. Order a side of its signature fried cauliflower nuggets with a tangy dipping sauce, and top the experience off with a juice or fruit smoothie.

Houston Sauce Pit (Food Truck)

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One of the key players in making the Third Ward Texas’ vegan capital, this barbecue food trailer boasts caramelized onion-covered burgers, chopped “veef” sandwiches and stuffed potatoes, and juicy, grilled sausage links with generous side portions of mac and cheese, baked beans, potato salad and more. Everything comes with a healthy serving of its namesake barbecue sauces, which make this place a favorite for carnivores and vegans alike.

Shri Balaji Bhavan

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This all-vegetarian counter service restaurant — its only branch outside of India — specializes in South Indian cuisine, with expertly fermented and crispy dosas that combine the dough’s light tartness with rich, cumin-based fillings, and a richly complex chole bhature, which mixes silky chickpeas in an earthy sauce with a fried sourdough.

Chowpatty Chat

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Houstonians flock to this sleek Little India fast-food joint for exactly one thing — fried food excellence. Bask in the freshness of the mint chutney on the panipuri, which quite literally burst with flavor, and be sure to try the samosa chaat, a mouthwatering Indian street food snack that combines a sweet chickpea curry with a coriander-heavy samosa. Diners who can’t decide how to satisfy their cravings can always order the chaat platter, which serves up four great bites on one tray.

Chef Kenny's Vegan Asian Cuisine

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This all-vegan restaurant is a one-stop shop for Asian food cravings of all types. Begin with vegan cream cheese wontons and fried dumplings and continue the journey with an assortment of vegan sushi rolls, coconut shrimp, and spicy Mongolian beef. End with the egg custard, a chef specialty.

San San Tofu

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With cafeteria-style dining and a market sourcing rice varieties and vegan sauces from across Asia, this Chinatown gem is known for its Buddhist cuisine. Particular highlights include a bamboo and shiitake dish, braised in a rich soy broth, and its nutty homemade soy milk. Get its combo meal, which includes three dishes, a side of noodles, tomato soup, and tea for $10 for one of Houston’s best bargains.

Sunshine's Vegetarian Deli & Health Food Store

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Score some of the best vegetarian eats in Houston at Sunshine’s Health Food Store where comforting plates like vegan spaghetti, vegan enchiladas, BBQ mushrooms, and the spicy black bean Tex-Mex burger with chipotle veganaise are worth stopping for after you shop.

Govinda's Vegetarian Cuisine

Visit the ISKON Hare Krishna Temple and stay for the all-vegetarian lunch and dinner buffet (available for dine-in and to-go) at Govinda’s on the property. Dishes like saag paneer, daal makhani, and chana masala revolve throughout the week, but visit on a Sunday, Wednesday, or Friday and find a completely vegan menu.

Cascabel

The answer to vegan Mexican cuisine, this Spring Branch locale offers comforting staples, like barbacoa burritos, platters of tacos, poblano quesadillas, and vegan bistec chimichangas, made with hand-made flour tortillas, refried beans, and pico de gallo. Start with the vegan chorizo empanadas and spicy chile con queso with melty potato-based cheese and gluten-free chips, then cool down on the patio with a cold glass of Rumchata or a watermelon margarita on the rocks while you wait for your entrees.

Good Dog Houston

While not a vegetarian restaurant per-say, it’s been an open secret for years that this Heights mainstay’s tofu dogs outshine their actual meats. Diners can celebrate the start of patio season with a playful Texanization of a Chicago dog centered on house-pickled Fresno peppers with a side of two-bean, Beyond Meat vegan chili, or cool down with a cajeta and cold-brew milkshake.

Houstatlantavegan

This Midtown food truck has fun with its vegan creations, which include stacked Nawfside Nachos, vegan burgers like the double patty, double cheese “WAP”-er, and mock hot chicken sandwiches that draw in lines from across the city. Crowd favorites include the Rodeo Burger, which comes topped with onion rings and a signature house sauce, and the loaded fries, which mirror a Philly cheesesteak in a bowl.

Local Foods Upper Kirby

For years, one of the worst parts of being a vegan in the Lone Star State was missing out on a good bowl of chunky queso. Thankfully, this fast-casual eatery recognizes the importance of this cheesy staple. Local Foods uses cashew cheese to get the same smoothness Texans know and love and adds in vegan “taco meat” for an extra punch of richness. Add vegan chili and chips and you’ve got yourself a vegan frito pie. Still hungry? Try the quinoa burger or the power bowl, a combination of navy beans, brown rice, quinoa mix, curry tofu, roasted squash, red watercress, and sunflower seeds with a harissa vinaigrette.

bellagreen

There is pasta… and there is Bellagreen’s paleo spaghetti squash Bolognese. In lieu of the top-notch veggie burger, opt for a plate of the saucy Bolognese, tossed together in a fiery chipotle-pepper infused marinara with roasted vegetables, or the veggie pizza, which is topped with roast cauliflower, broccoli, peppers, and mango ranch.

Soul Food Vegan

Just a short walk from Emancipation Park, this Third Ward vegan spot harnesses the soul food flavors so many have come to love. Smothered in a vinegary sauce, the BBQ Mushrooms are fried until they are golden brown and served with a side of greens — proving that ham hock was optional all along. If the handful of tables is full, take your food to go and trek across the street for a picnic in the park.

mantra

One of the best-soundtracked restaurants in the city, Mantra brings vegan and gluten-free eats scored by relaxed neo-soul and R&B. Dishes like coconut calamari, fried portobello with chimichurri, and a collection of vegan pizzas provide fine dining flourishes in relaxed environment. The restaurant’s vegan strawberry cheesecake, made with dairy-free milks, is a surefire way to end your meal satisfied.

Crumbville, TX

Bring your sweet tooth to this all-star Third Ward bakery, which specializes in brownies, cookies, and stuffed cupcakes in classic Southern flavors like red velvet, banana pudding, and vanilla-peach. More inventive takes include the beloved “Cookie Minaj,” a moist strawberry oatmeal cookie with white chocolate morsels. Head baker Ella Russell is sure to go the extra mile, offering gluten-free options, and special touches, including personalized bags to ensure every customer feels like family.

green seed vegan

A Third Ward institution, this sandwich shop and juice bar was established as one of the first vegan shops in the area in 2012. Here, you’ll find freshly pressed paninis, like the “pb&p” — a sweet combination of carmelized plantains and peanut butter; raw food options like its nori rolls stuffed with almond pate; and meatless takes on popular sandwiches, like the illy cheesesteak, a combination of grilled portabella mushrooms, caramelized red onions with vegan cheese on a French baguette. Order a side of its signature fried cauliflower nuggets with a tangy dipping sauce, and top the experience off with a juice or fruit smoothie.

Houston Sauce Pit (Food Truck)

One of the key players in making the Third Ward Texas’ vegan capital, this barbecue food trailer boasts caramelized onion-covered burgers, chopped “veef” sandwiches and stuffed potatoes, and juicy, grilled sausage links with generous side portions of mac and cheese, baked beans, potato salad and more. Everything comes with a healthy serving of its namesake barbecue sauces, which make this place a favorite for carnivores and vegans alike.

Shri Balaji Bhavan

This all-vegetarian counter service restaurant — its only branch outside of India — specializes in South Indian cuisine, with expertly fermented and crispy dosas that combine the dough’s light tartness with rich, cumin-based fillings, and a richly complex chole bhature, which mixes silky chickpeas in an earthy sauce with a fried sourdough.

Chowpatty Chat

Houstonians flock to this sleek Little India fast-food joint for exactly one thing — fried food excellence. Bask in the freshness of the mint chutney on the panipuri, which quite literally burst with flavor, and be sure to try the samosa chaat, a mouthwatering Indian street food snack that combines a sweet chickpea curry with a coriander-heavy samosa. Diners who can’t decide how to satisfy their cravings can always order the chaat platter, which serves up four great bites on one tray.

Chef Kenny's Vegan Asian Cuisine

This all-vegan restaurant is a one-stop shop for Asian food cravings of all types. Begin with vegan cream cheese wontons and fried dumplings and continue the journey with an assortment of vegan sushi rolls, coconut shrimp, and spicy Mongolian beef. End with the egg custard, a chef specialty.

San San Tofu

With cafeteria-style dining and a market sourcing rice varieties and vegan sauces from across Asia, this Chinatown gem is known for its Buddhist cuisine. Particular highlights include a bamboo and shiitake dish, braised in a rich soy broth, and its nutty homemade soy milk. Get its combo meal, which includes three dishes, a side of noodles, tomato soup, and tea for $10 for one of Houston’s best bargains.

Related Maps

Sunshine's Vegetarian Deli & Health Food Store

Score some of the best vegetarian eats in Houston at Sunshine’s Health Food Store where comforting plates like vegan spaghetti, vegan enchiladas, BBQ mushrooms, and the spicy black bean Tex-Mex burger with chipotle veganaise are worth stopping for after you shop.

Related Maps