With many of us adopting a more plant-based lifestyle, particularly those in the 18-25 age bracket, there is now an influx of options for us all to enjoy. So whether you’re a vegan, a ‘vague-an’, or simply someone who is looking to cut down on their meat or dairy, there will be plenty of choices for you.
Considering the sheer volume of vegan options in Leeds right now, I have split the post into 3 categories: cafes, bars, and chain restaurants. Within those categories, I’ve chosen 1 excellent option, and another that is definitely worth a visit.
- Temple Coffee and Donuts
No vegan food list would be complete without mentioning this place! This not-so-hidden gem on Kirkstall road has really taken Leeds by storm, with their vegan donuts and speciality plant-based drinks making the company ‘Insta-famous’ already. Even though Temple is a little on the pricey side, with 2 drinks and 2 donuts costing upwards of a tenner, it is good to support local businesses (and the fact that the donuts are the size of your hand doesn’t hurt!)
- Worth a visit – North Star Coffee
Located near the Royal Armouries museum in Leeds Dock, this trendy café serves students and young professionals alike. They work in partnership with many local bakeries and serve up some incredibly indulgent cakes and brownies, all of which can be taken away to scoff in the library. For those of you who are conscious about the locality of their coffee beans, North Star roast their own coffee beans right next door. Locally produced, and with a great depth of flavour that you won’t get elsewhere, what’s not to like?
- Dough in the City
Dough in the City are known for many things, one of which is their extensive and tasty cocktail menu. Employing some of the best mixologists in the city, they can rustle up just about anything if you ask nicely. They have even recommended some of my now-favourite cocktails, so this place is definitely high on my list. Their vegan offerings are also excellent, with their vegan Sunday roast being particularly tasty. Dough cater for all dietary requirements and eating habits, from small plates to sharing platters to gluten free samosas, they have everything.
- Worth a visit – The Mustard Pot
The Mustard Pot, a 10-minute bus ride out of Leeds into Chapel Allerton, is a suburban pub with a cosy, countryside feel. They serve plenty of vegan wines and a good choice of vegan dishes (not just your typical salad or bean burger!) so it’s an excellent place for both you and your meat-eating friends. They also host vegan food festivals during the summer months and put up tipis over the festive period, so there’s something fun to do no matter the time of year.
This chain restaurant has always been excellent at amending dishes for those with dietary requirements, but now there’s a dedicated vegan menu with lots of new elements for you to try. They’ve recently created a vegan version of one of their most famous meals, chicken katsu, by replicating the meaty taste and texture with spiced seitan. Not only that, but they’ve even created vegan-friendly versions of bao buns, small fluffy Asian buns that are incredibly popular on the street-food scene. Their food is (moderately) healthy, full of incredible flavours and you get free unlimited green tea!
- Worth a visit - Handmade Burger Company
Even though there’s only one branch in Leeds, it is well worth going! They have six burgers that are vegan or can easily be made vegan, with the Thai Vegetable option being an absolute winner. It consists of a thai vegetable patty, grilled peppers, sweet chilli sauce, red onion and rocket, which combined create a sweet and spicy delight. With so many burgers to choose from, and a delicious milkshake menu, it is definitely a must visit.