Portland has a thriving vegetarian and vegan culture, so you will find plenty of places to eat in Portland that are all-vegan or all-vegetarian. I spent 3 days in Portland, and tried to hit up as many spots as I could. Every restaurant, café and bar served absolutely delicious food. To keep the list manageable, I’ve included only my absolute favorite vegan and vegetarian-friendly restaurants in Portland; most of them are in downtown Portland or the Pearl District. Almost all of these serve meat too, so if you’re traveling with non-vegetarians, it shouldn’t be a problem!
Best vegan and vegetarian food in downtown Portland
1. Petunia’s: Vegan and gluten-free breakfast, bakery and pastries | Downtown Portland
This cozy, pastel-colored bakery serves vegan and gluten-free fare that makes for excellent breakfast in Portland. Biscuits and jam, cakes, waffles, granola, and bagels. They also serve sandwiches, soups and salads for lunch.
2. Mediterranean Exploration Company: Excellent Middle Eastern food | Pearl District
This trendy and hip spot serves some really excellent Middle Eastern food, on a really fun and lively street. They are really popular, even late at night, so try and make a reservation! If you’re looking for some of the best vegetarian and vegan food in Portland, this should be your starting point.
3. Andina: Peruvian food | Pearl District
Right next door to MedEx Company is this slightly upscale Peruvian restaurant. We had to wait an hour because we didn’t make reservations, so definitely try and make them if you can. I’d never tried Peruvian food before, but it was fantastic! There are lots of vegetarian options at this Portland restaurant – such as the Peruvian dips and truffle risotto that we ordered.
4. Bamboo Sushi: World’s first sustainable sushi restaurant | Downtown Portland and Northwest District
As the world’s first sustainable sushi restaurant, Bamboo Sushi should definitely be on your list of places to eat vegan or vegetarian in Portland. What does a sustainable sushi restaurant mean? This means they use renewable resources, carefully consider the environmental impact of their fishing methods, ensure that they have a positive impact on the local communities, and work with like-minded partners. In fact, Bamboo Sushi became the world’s first restaurant to know their carbon footprint down to the menu item. They have lots of vegetarian and vegan options on the menu!
5. Oven and Shaker: Pizza and beer | Pearl District
With casual outdoor seating, and slightly nicer indoor seating, Oven and Shaker is perfect for any time of day. Their woodfire pizzas are excellent, their cocktail menu is extensive, and the spot is casual and lively.
6. Pine St. Market: Indoor Gourmet Food Hall | Downtown Portland
Portland’s first food hall is an eclectic mix of cuisine from nine different chefs. Burgers, ramen, Korean food, German fare, tapas, pizza, Latin American street food, and ice cream. If you’re looking for a vegetarian-friendly spot in Portland, you can’t go wrong here!
7. Blue Star Donuts: Donuts with vegan options | Downtown Portland and Northwest District
A popular donut spot serving delicious and classic flavors, Blue Star should definitely be on your list. I would recommend this over Voodoo Donuts, which is unnecessarily crowded and has awful flavors. Blue Star is one of the few donut shops with vegan options too! Make sure you go here early. They bake fresh donuts daily, so once they sell out, they shut for the day! Donuts for breakfast is definitely not a bad idea 🙂
8. Salt and Straw: Innovative ice cream with vegan options | Northwest District
You most definitely read about or heard of Salt and Straw when planning your Portland trip. They are synonymous! This local ice-cream shop has gained popularity across the West Coast, with outlets now in San Francisco, Seattle, Los Angeles and San Diego. They’ve got several vegan ice cream choices too, and their USP is their innovative and eclectic ingredients. Most of their ice creams are seasonal, and inspired by local products. So the flavors you find in Portland will be different from those in San Francisco. Olive oil, honey lavender, strawberry honey balsamic with black pepper, and pear and blue cheese are just some of the unique flavors you’ll find at Salt and Straw!
9. Grilled Cheese Grill: DIY grilled cheese sandwiches | SW Washington St. Cart Pod
In 2008, Portland had 150 food carts. By 2018, it had 700! After the 2008 recession, locals were forced to start their own businesses and many of them resorted to food carts. Food cart pods are simply city blocks which have a large number of food carts all parked together. It’s like a food market, where you can pick between many choices. The biggest one was the Alder Food Cart Pod, with 35 food carts. Unfortunately, it closed down in June 2019. But you can try some of the other food carts! You will find LOTS of Asian food, some Middle Eastern food, and a few interesting tid-bits. The best one I tried was the Grilled Cheese Grill – SO many delicious varieties of grilled cheese with the option of DIYs.
Those are my recommendations for the best vegan and vegetarian-friendly restaurants in Portland, Oregon. You can also check out my recommendations for offbeat experiences in Portland.