October 1, 2019, is World Vegetarian Day! Check out these Dublin-local spots for delicious vegetarian dining
Ireland is famous for its wonderful wholesome produce, so it's little wonder that being a vegetarian in Ireland is really not as difficult these days as you may think.
I get asked all the time “Is it hard to be a vegetarian in Ireland?”
- There are more vegetarian restaurants around than people assume,
- Every restaurant and pub has a Soup of the Day every day, and it is a very unusual day when that soup is not vegetable, and
- Chips (fries) are my favorite food.
My only negative observance when it comes to vegetarian dining in Dublin is that the fancier the place, the fewer the veggie options.
Off the top of my head, and in no particular order, here are some of my favorite places to go out to eat as a vegetarian:
With locations across central Dublin, Govindas is a great place to stop into for lunch. You walk up to the counter and ask for a regular or large plate, and the kind soul serving you proceeds to pile it high with homemade Indian-ish tasty glop. Their food isn’t as intensely flavorful as traditional Indian, but it’s so cheap and satisfying (and the soft Hare Krishna chanting playing in the background is so soothing) that I’m never disappointed.
Without doubt, my favourite place to eat in Dublin. €10 & you get to try at least 6 different dishes on one plate and all taste brilliant. The music & atmosphere also very chilled #Govindas #Veggie #Vegetarian #HariKrishna #Krishna #GreatFood #LoveDublin pic.twitter.com/lwxvgpdgfo— Doc O Connor (@dococ10) December 6, 2018
The Happy Pear isn’t actually in Dublin (Greystones, Co. Wicklow), but if you’re a vegetarian, or someone who likes fresh food that tastes really good, it is so worth the trip. (Update: The Happy Pear now has several outlets in Ireland, as well as online recipe courses. Yum!)
Super excited to have opened in @DublinAirport It’s one of the first #plantbased food outlet in an airport in the world all served on compostable packaging. We’re in terminal 1 air side between Marquette and Starbucks. #vegan pic.twitter.com/ZLHiwPlodj— The Happy Pear (@thehappypear) September 9, 2019
Maybe Dublin’s best-known vegetarian restaurant is Cornucopia, on Wicklow Street. I ate a lot of their food this year because Kev’s mom often cooks for me out of their cookbook – so I can attest that they have some truly delicious recipes.
Vegan feast at Cornucopia in Dublin pic.twitter.com/qPQrx0I7Rj— deonandan (@deonandan) August 16, 2019
I wish I’d begun frequenting Blazing Salads earlier into my Dublin life! Not far from Cornucopia, getting food there couldn’t be a more different experience. You serve yourself from a buffet of all different kinds of delicious cold salads (lentil salads, chickpea salads, potato salads, all kinds of dressings, every kind of veggie) or a couple of hot options. The staff is full-on peppy as they weigh your bowl and take you through the transaction. You can also choose something sumptuous and pre-made from behind the counter like a burger or a dessert. It ain’t that cheap, but the food is fantastic and the service is wonderful. They also have two kick-ass cookbooks.
Located in Rathmines’s Swan Centre, The Hopsack is a health food store that also has a juice/smoothie/coffee bar. It has bread, soups, and salads from The Happy Pear and, I think, Blazing Salads to take away, and every grain and creative ingredient you could desire to cook healthy vegetarian food at home. Cheaper and just as - if not more - fun to shop in are the Chinese and Indian grocery stores that are all over the place.
And finally, you can find tofu in the bigger Tescos!
* Originally published in December 2013, updated in September 2019
What's your favorite vegetarian restaurant in Ireland? Let us know in the comments!