Vegan in Athens, Greece

June 23, 2016 in Travel

Food is a huge part of travelling for me; it is one of many people’s favourite ways of getting to know another culture. I typically like to try traditional dishes from the countries I visit but many of the vegan restaurants I went to on my 4-night trip in Athens did not serve traditional Greek cuisine. Although the food and restaurants I will be sharing with you in this post were delicious and good experiences, if you would like to see what traditional food you can eat in Greece then check out my post Vegan in Santorini.

Avocado

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My boyfriend and I visited this restaurant 3 times during our trip; I guess that tells you we really liked it. BUT make sure to continue reading because at the end of our stay we found a place we liked just as much or even more. Our first visit was our favourite, the staff that night were SO friendly and made us want to come back. This restaurant is vegetarian and vegan and their entire menu is posted on their website. Lots of vegan options like pizza, burgers, tempeh, noodles, curries, soups, salads and quinoa bowls. Overall everything was delicious and I recommend trying their cold avocado soup if you visit during spring. My boyfriend loved their Zen Tempeh noodle dish, but when he ordered it a second time it wasn’t as good. Maybe it was different staff in the kitchen that day, but when they offered him something else instead it also didn’t taste as good as the other dishes we had enjoyed. We were a little disappointed by the inconsistency but the staff was very good about it and dropped the charge for his meal. If you go, make sure you ask for a table upstairs where you can dine sitting on floor cushions with low tables, it was so comfortable and such a cool intimate vibe.

Rosebud

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This is a vegetarian and vegan restaurant with a unique variety of dishes; I tried their vegan souvlaki and my boyfriend had their artichoke dumplings, while both were good my boyfriend was still hungry afterwards. For the price compared to other restaurants and quality the portions should have been larger. My souvlaki in a pita with fries was definitely enough for me, but wasn’t something I would eat again. It was quite sweet rather than savory and tasted nothing like the real thing. I liked my boyfriend’s dumplings more, but the portion was small for a main dish. I’m not sure if I would have even been full after eating that. We were planning to check out the vegan grocery store nearby after lunch anyway and didn’t love our meals enough to want to try anything else. If you don’t mind spending a bit more money to be satisfied, check out this place. They had some cool sounding dishes like vegan fish n’ chips and they even serve breakfast (their whole menu is also online). I would recommend they update their décor though; the atmosphere didn’t match the price tag.

Bamboo Vegan

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This is the only vegan grocery store in Athens, and it is a lot smaller than I expected. They sold products I could get back in Munich but they also had sandwiches, cake, and pies (sausage, spinach, cheese, custard etc.) to-go and the owner was so nice and gave us large portions of the baked goods to try for free and didn’t even seem to expect us to buy anything. We tried a bunch of the pies and bought the custard and cheese to go, but our favourite was the custard pie topped with cinnamon and icing sugar. I believe it was supposed to be the vegan version of a traditional Greek custard pie, which my family loves and I used to eat back in Toronto, it was sadly not as good but still a yummy inexpensive snack. We asked the owner what restaurants he recommends and he mentioned the next place I’m about to share; which I might say was my favourite.

Mama Tierra

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This is a Mediterranean restaurant and we only ate here once, but I think it might have been my favourite place. I say think because I only got to try one meal on the menu! Again this is a vegetarian and vegan restaurant, so although my boyfriends meal looked delicious; it wasn’t vegan so I didn’t try it. The menu for this place is online here and everything is very reasonably priced. I had a chocolate avocado smoothie to drink and veggie patties made of quinoa, vegetables and potatoes with sweet and sour dressing, rice, and slaw. It was such a simple satisfying meal and it made me want to come back, but we were sadly leaving the next day. My boyfriend had ginger kombucha to drink (SO good, we are obsessed with kombucha right now but I’m not sure if theirs is house made or bought), baked melitzanokeftedes (eggplant balls) and a mushroom burger. Not a fancy place and they do take-out, but definitely check it out if you want a delicious yet inexpensive meal.

Ice Queen Gelato

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May turned out to be a great month to visit Athens, not as busy as the summer months but still hot and sunny (25-30 degrees Celsius) in other words it was perfect ice cream weather. This place is in the Plaka and near the Acropolis, they serve regular dairy gelato but as well as a few vegan sorbets like chocolate, coffee, lemon and coconut. The cones are not vegan (and they told me without even having to ask, which was so nice as I forgot to) so I got chocolate and coconut sorbet in a cup and my god I don’t know how they were sorbets. They were so rich and creamy, especially the chocolate that I couldn’t finish and had to give the rest to Tim. I really enjoyed it and if you love chocolate you should try it.

Overall, there are many options in Athens for anyone on a vegetarian or vegan diet. With my experience in Santorini I’m sure many traditional restaurants would also be able to accommodate you. I hope that this information was helpful and all of the places mentioned are linked in the post (just click the restaurants name)!

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