Best local vegetarian and vegan restaurants
It's National Vegetarian Week (16-22 May) so we've rounded up the local restaurants and cafés that really deliver on colourful and flavour-packed veggie food that could convert even the most devoted meat eater.
Muddy-approved cafe based around sustainable, plant-based food and the brainchild of a group of friends who bravely launched it at the end of the first lockdown in July 2020. It has a garden terrace, venue for occasional live music/yoga/workshops and a terrific little menu, think roasted sweet potato and quinoa salad or creamy garlic mushroom pie and beetroot slaw, plus a great range of cakes.
Sticks ‘n’ Sushi, Cambridge
This Japanese/Danish restaurant might have the word sushi in the title, but they have tasty vegetarian options on the menu. Try the Greenkeeper platter, with Edamame beans with salt & lemon, grilled broccoli with spicy goma, seaweed salad with daikon, snow peas, cucumber and sesame dressing and Maki garden rolls with sweet potato, sugar snaps, avocado, chilli and pickled red onion, all exquisitely presented.
Stem + Glory, Station Road, Cambridge
Stem + Glory really knows what it’s doing when it comes to plant-based food and is ideal for veggies and vegans who don’t want to eat somewhere where meat and fish is prepared alongside their meal. The entire menu is vegan and is made fresh on site by the chefs. The Cambridge branch has been included in lists of the best vegan restaurants in the UK, while the London branch has been voted best vegan restaurant in the capital. Aside from the gorgeous cakes, brunch options and fine dining, our favourite part has to be the vegan bar serving cocktails, mocktails, craft beer and vegan wine.
DoppleGanger, Regent Street, Cambridge
This modern restaurant (think neon lights and American diner-style touches) serves vegan burgers that are so good even staunch meat eaters will be converted. My favourite? The BBK, a Dopplepatti topped with pulled jackfruit in a sticky Korean BBQ sauce, cucumber and pear in chilli, garlic and lime dressed slaw with a side of miso and lime mayo. Delish. Oh and there’s vegan milkshake too!
The Olive Grove, Cambridge
You’re in for a Mediterranean treat at this award-winning restaurant. The food isn’t exclusively vegetarian, but they do serve an amazing array of of veggie and vegan dishes like melitzanosalata, anatolitiki, gemista, risotto, and fava.
Bohemia, St Neots
Winner of best cafe at the 2021 Muddy Stilettos Awards Suffolk & Cambs, Bohemia has always been great for catering for all diets including vegetarians. Their chalkboards are full to the brim with delicious veggie and plant-based options, like curried lentil dhal dip.
The Gog Farmshop, Cambridge
Not a restaurant as such, but if you’re getting bored of blitzing up nuts at home and want to broaden your dinner repertoire head to The Gog Farmshop who now stock amazing award-winning dishes from The Brook restaurant in London. They’ve got everything from vegan Mac ‘n’ Cheese to Harissa Sausage Stew. Delicious!
The team behind award-winning cocktail bar NOVI have opened KOTA at the new Hyatt Centric Cambridge complex at Eddington and we’re here for it. As well as botanical cocktails, all-day brunches and wood-fired pizzas, there are also inventive plant-based choices to enjoy on the roof terrace which don’t feel like a token veggie dish; think chargrilled cauliflower steak, roasted beetroot, roscoff onion, golden raisins and hazelnuts.
Tuddenham Mill, near Newmarket
This fine dining restaurant and hotel prides instead in reducing food miles to food metres as much of what it serves comes directly from the Mill’s gardens, picked fresh every day. If you’re veggie and you’ve got a celebration, you can still eat like a king here thanks to a fab choice of non-meat options. They have an entire vegetarian menu with choices such as truffle and kale arancini, Ramson spelt barley, coastal herbs, agretti, and Morello cherry sorbet with macadamia to finish.
Edmundo Lounge, Bury St Edmunds
Eclectic Edmundo Lounge just off the Market Square in Bury has an impressive vegan menu to enjoy in the comfy and quirky surroundings. There’s a vegan full breakfast (falafels, hash browns, baked beans, slow-roasted tomato, sautéed mushrooms, spinach, wood-roasted peppers and toast), vegan falafel and hummus ciabatta for lunch and loads of cakes like dark chocolate and ginger torte – you didn’t think going plant-based meant you were going to lose weight did you?!
Allison’s Eatery, Bury St Edmunds
Vegetarians and plant-based food lovers should make a beeline for this cosy cafe, where you can dine from morning to evening on everything from breakfast, lunch and cakes. You might recognise all the vegan fare from the market as Allison ran a stall there for many years. You’ll also find a small shop on site selling vegan snacks, soaps and pottery (err can pottery be anything other than vegan?!).
The Weeping Willow, Barrow
This pub is part of The Chestnut Group and has the most delightful meadow setting and stylish interiors where you can make the most of the seasonal, locally sourced menus. It also has an impressive choice for vegetarian with some heavenly dishes like local grey oyster cluster mushroom, charred, smoked and served with garlic and thyme polenta chips. I’m salivating just thinking about it!
Cosy Club, Ipswich
You’ll find this veggie favourite in Ipwich’s Buttermarket Shopping Centre, so it’s ideal for a bit of mid sale shopping lunch. It’s part of a wider chain, all inspired by the twenties when it comes to interiors. The food is very 21st century though, with a dedicated vegan and gluten-free breakfast, lunch and dinner menu (the avocado sunshine bowl is as good as it sounds), as well as veggie options on the main menu.
Probably the most-loved of all Suffolk’s vegan cafés and bakeries, you have to be quick to get a table at Sudbury’s Cradle. The restaurant uses locally sourced organic vegetables, their own milled flour and their own blend of vegan butter, so plant-based is serious business here. Try their French pastries with a turmeric latte for a mid morning pick me up or their tartine for lunch.
The Walnut Tree, Thwaite
A pub only serving vegetarian and vegan fare sounds radical, but this cosy inn has turned its back on tradition and is doing a roaring trade in gorgeous meat- and fish-free food. The flavour combinations are cleverly thought out and there’s so much to choose from including broccoli, kale & edamame Penang curry and sweet potato & roasted red pepper burrito.
Hullabaloo vegan cafe, Ipswich
This award-winning café on St Peter’s Street Ipswich is well known locally for its amazing vegan fare. We’re talking vegan fry ups, Chanteray carrot and ginger soup, sweetcorn fritters, and vegan waffles.
The Greenhouse Café, Felixstowe
The power of the plant has made it all the way to the Suffolk Coast with the opening of this green cafe by a local family. The drinks menu supports ethical growers and there are plenty of tasty homemade vegan cakes, pastries and delicious lunch options like a tofish finger sandwich, and greenhouse burger to choose from.