The San Francisco Bay Area is one of the best places in the US to be a vegan. The variety of vegan restaurants, cafes, bakeries, and eateries is stunning. Many non-vegan places also have vegan options on their menus. Where are the best vegan restaurants? San Jose has some of them.
1. Happiness Cafe
Happiness Cafe is one fine eatery that ranks among the best vegan restaurants San Jose has to offer. It is located on Hostetter Road and is open every day of the week. This place is exclusively vegan and offers a wide range of delicious dishes.
The drinks on the menu include a wide range of smoothies, freshly pressed juices, cold drinks, coffees, teas, and more. The food menu is made up of vegan sandwiches, snacks, rice and noodle meals, pasta, and salads. House specials include the waffle nugget and Phish and Fries—a vegan take on the classic fish and chips recipe.
2. Curry Up Now
If you’re up for Indian and Mexican street food, be sure to drop by Curry Up Now. The place is located on Zanker Road and opens up at 11:30 AM. They also take catering and online orders. Though primarily vegan/vegetarian, Curry Up Now also serves meat.
A fusion of two seemingly distant cuisines, Curry Up Now’s menu offers meals like the tikka masala burrito. Another customer favorite is the samosa with beans and rice. Also make sure to try some of their signature dishes.
3. Veggie Grill
Veggie Grill currently has over 30 restaurants across the country, two of them in San Jose. Both are great places that rank among the city’s best vegan restaurants. The San Jose restaurants are located on Olin Avenue and Saratoga Avenue.
Whichever of the two locations you decide to visit, try Kevin’s “Chicken” Cobb salad, the LUXE burger, or the All Day breakfast burrito. For dessert, you can’t go wrong with the pumpkin spice cake. Wash it all down with one of their original fountain beverages.
4. Sogo Tofu
For the lovers of Chinese and Taiwanese cuisine, Sogo Tofu might be one of the best places in town. The restaurant serves vegetarian and vegan-friendly food based on traditional recipes. The place is located on De Anza Boulevard.
Some of the patrons’ favorites include the Taiwanese hamburger, seaweed with tofu, and rice rolls. You might also want to try their radish pastry, tofu and peppers, and curry pastry.
5. Zeni Ethiopian Restaurant
The next exotic destination on the menu is Ethiopia. Zeni Ethiopian Restaurant offers a wide variety of vegetarian and vegan-friendly options. The restaurant is located on the corner of Saratoga and Payne Avenues.
Some of the favorites from the vegan/vegetarian menu include the vegetarian platter (the dish is 100% vegan and is made for 2 people), the doro tibs, and the kik alicha split pea stew. The restaurant also serves a variety of meat-based dishes, which makes it a great place to take your meat-eating friends.
6. Luna Mexican Kitchen
Although not a vegan/vegetarian place, Luna Mexican Kitchen does have a number of vegetarian and vegan-friendly items on the menu. The restaurant is located on The Alameda, and they also offer online ordering and catering.
Some of the vegetarian options can be modified to vegan. The most popular items on the vegetarian/vegan menu include the elote (corn with chili and lime), los tacos dorados de papa, and fruta con chile.
7. The Happy Hooligans
Their exceptional palette of delicious vegan meals, great service, and casual atmosphere rank The Happy Hooligans among the best vegan restaurants San Jose has to offer. The restaurant is located on Branham Lane and is open Tuesday to Sunday. They also provide online ordering and catering services.
The menu is focused on healthy renditions of classic comfort foods, such as burgers, fish and chips, and pasta. The restaurant also offers a wide range of fruit juices and vegan desserts.
8. Ike’s Love and Sandwiches
Ike’s Love and Sandwiches is a sandwich chain that currently consists of over 40 shops. You can find Ike’s in San Jose on Olsen Suite Drive, Prospect Road, Curtner Avenue, Skyport Drive, West Santa Clara Street, East Santa Clara Street, and Hillsdale Avenue. They also offer online ordering and catering services.
While not a dedicated vegan place, Ike’s does offer a wide range of vegetarian and vegan-friendly options. The Dutch crunch and the Menage A Trois are among the most popular vegan sandwiches. Additionally, most of the non-vegan sandwiches can be made vegan.
9. Vegetarian House
Vegetarian House has been in business since 1994. A staple on lists of best vegan restaurants, San Jose has very few vegan eateries as renowned as this one. The restaurant is open seven days a week and also provides takeout and catering.
The menu consists of international appetizers and salads, noodle dishes and soups, raw dishes, and western-style foods. It also has a dedicated allergy-friendly section. If you decide to pay them a visit, make sure to try their quinoa sushi, Bun Hue noodle soup, Rainbow (a house specialty), and spring roll noodles. The magnificent coffee crumb cake with ice cream is the perfect way to end your vegan meal.
10. Good Karma Artisan Ales and Cafe
A little bit different than the rest of the places on this list, Good Karma Artisan Ales and Cafe centers on quality brews. It is located on 1st Street and combines the look of a Belgian tavern with a pleasant atmosphere.
Aside from the stunning range of craft beers, Good Karma also offers an extensive food menu. All items are vegetarian and vegan-friendly. So, while you’re enjoying your favorite IPA, you could also order some vegan pork buns or vegan chicken wings. Their chana masala is great as well.
11. Adelita’s Taqueria
A place does not have to be 100% vegan for vegans to enjoy a good bite. Sometimes, all it takes is a good restaurant with quality vegan options on the menu. Adelita’s Taqueria is one such place. The restaurant is located on Curtner Avenue, and they also cater.
The menu is based on Mexican cuisine, but it also offers vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options. The plantain burrito is the absolute highlight of the vegan side of the menu, but you should also try their veggie fajitas and potato enchiladas.
If you are in the Bay Area and are looking for the best vegan restaurants, San Jose is one of your best bets. Though we didn't include every quality vegan and vegan-friendly spot in town, this list is a good place to start.