As I mentioned in this post, one of the main reasons that I wanted to visit Taiwan so much was the food. I knew that on this trip the culinary experience would be a big deal. Most of the places we wanted to visit were located in Taipei, which was a good enough reason to spend a few days in this city.
I think Taipei’s vegan scene is special because it combines local Chinese food, which you can find at the local night markets and restaurants, with high standard Western vegan food. It was just perfect for us because we could experience the local cuisine as well as the Taiwanese version of vegan Western food. When we didn’t feel like a heavy meal we just grabbed some local fruits or a fresh fruit-shake at a nearby stand. It was really like being in a vegan paradise.
We did use Happy Cow when planning and during our trip, but as it is impossible to do so in the night markets, we used the magic note I uploaded in this post. This note is your entrance ticket to the local culinary world of vegan food in Taipei – so don’t forget to print it out!
In this post, I have combined a list of my best recommendations for vegan restaurants in Taipei according to our experience. I also mentioned what we ate at Shilin Night Market. Here we go!
The visit to Hoshina was quite funny. It was our first day in the city, and we thought it would be nice to try out a local vegan restaurant. We were a little surprised to find out that we came all the way from Japan just to eat at a vegan Japanese restaurant in Taipei. But honestly, the food was so good that we really didn’t mind.
I had the kabayaki rice set meal while my partner had noodles. They were really delicious and the portions were very large! The taste and texture of the kabayaki was really like fried fish, it almost looked like fried eels!
If you’re hungry around the area – this place will surely fill your stomach!
Blossom Rena Vegan Café
This restaurant’s menu is blissful! Soups, salads, sandwiches, waffles, Taiwanese meals, Japanese meals, Italian meals, many kinds of coffee, teas, and a big variety of amazing desserts. Seriously – do you need another reason to go?
We had the vegan ciabatta sandwich and the vegan Formosan quinoa tempeh salad, and enjoyed every bite! After finishing, we had a vegan crème brûlée
and a vegan chocolate cake which were both awesome. I really need a place like this back at home!
If you’re one of those people that has a hard time choosing what to eat when at a vegan restaurant – don’t go here.
Just kidding! You should definitely go here, but prepare the people joining you in advance, because it’s going to take you some time to decide what to eat. This is only because it seems like they have EVERYTHING!
Their endless menu includes Indian food, Italian food, pizzas, Mexican food, paninis, milk-shakes, and an assortment of vegan cakes. We ordered a panini and two lasagnas and it was great!
I liked the casual atmosphere in the place, and I would definitely recommend for you to try it out if you’re around.
I could write one post just about this vegan place in Taipei.
It’s a 15 minute walk from Taipei 101, in a high-class fashion mall, that sells the most expensive brands. It’s the first time that I’ve seen a vegan restaurant in such a location. And yet, the restaurant seems to fit this mall perfectly! It has a chic modern design, and a menu rich with the best Western food, made from the highest quality ingredients. It totally fits the label “high-class vegan”. I can’t think of a better description.
Since we wanted to try out their desserts, we ordered “only” a hamburger and the quinoa salad. To tell the truth – I don’t think the quinoa salad would be enough if I didn’t order a dessert, but together they were a perfect match!
This is definitely a place for a fancier feast.
This is actually a chain you can find around Taipei. The concept is combine-your-own-noodles soup. You select your favorite vegetables, tofu, and noodle type (among other ingredients) and they make you a nice big-sized noodle dish.
The taste depends on the ingredients you chose – so it might differ a lot!
My recommendation is – because there’s a lot of water in the dish and it might feel heavy – choose some light noodles with it. You can also choose not to have noodles at all.
Anyway, it’s a really great concept.
Sorry, I don’t think they have an English name. This is not a restaurant but a small shop where you can find pan-fried vegetable dumplings.
They have a few kinds, all vegan, so it’s a great option if you want to grab something on your way.
Shilin Night Market
Besides the fact that night markets in Taiwan are awesome, as I wrote in this post, they have a huge variety of local food for vegans and non-vegans alike.
Shilin Night Market is the biggest in Taipei, so obviously, we couldn’t try all the vegan options there. Still, we stretched our stomachs as much as we could and tried out various different options.
Please note that food stands could change, so there’s a chance that the stands I write about might not exist anymore by the time you visit. Still, if you have the magic note I prepared, you should be able to find some local vegan food.
So, what did we find there?
Fruits– obviously! Whatever tropical fruits that you can think of. Mango, watermelon, pineapple, starfruit, bananas, dragon fruit, and – well, durian.
Ban (steamed bread)– the shop we happened to visit had two vegan options and we tried both. Unfortunately, we ate it all way before we even thought about taking a photo.
Flaky pastry– it really reminded us of a melawach (Yemenite pastry). But even if it didn’t – what could possibly go wrong with fried pastry? It was delicious!
Green onion little cake– although that’s the ‘official’ name the food stand chose for this, it’s more of a bread filled with fried onion. It was really good!
Again, I’m sure you can find all sorts of things, but these are the things we personally tried and I recommend them all. Except for the durian. When you smell a durian you’ll know why!
Taipei is one of the most vegan-friendly cities in the world. I definitely would love to visit again. Next time, I will dedicate even more time to exploring just the culinary scene. Who’s coming with me? 😃