Aberdeen // 10 Places to Find Great Vegan Food

23.7.20

After approximately three billion days in lock-down (it really feels like it some days, doesn't it?), the country is slowly settling into its new state of normality, with shops, pubs and restaurants beginning to reopen their doors. It's been a rough few months for the economy as a whole, but small businesses have been hit particularly hard and now, more than ever, it feels important to show our support and appreciation to those making, creating and serving good-quality products and experiences in the local area. 

With that in mind, I've put together a list of some of the best places to find vegan-friendly food in Aberdeen. I'd recommend checking out their websites or Facebook pages (linked below) prior to visiting, as this strange transition period sees businesses adjusting their opening times and adapting their style of service. That said, and without further ado..

Where to find Aberdeen's best vegan food:  



Roots 

Currently operating from the kitchen at Bar 99 on Back Wynd, as well as their beach-side food truck, Roots Catering are absolute bosses when it comes to plant-based junk food. If mountainous burgers, fried "chicken", milkshakes and loaded fries are your scene (how could they not be?!) then Roots are definitely for you. My personal favourites are the Chickn' Katsu burger and loaded fries, washed down with one of Bar 99's vegan cocktails. 

1 Back Wynd, Aberdeen

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Bonobo

A workers' cooperative and cosy, fully-vegan cafe, Skene Street's Bonobo serve a delicious daytime menu of breakfasts, lunches, drinks and snacks. The Bonobo Fry-Up is my personal menu highlight, with its tofu scramble, veggie haggis and homemade baked beans, but the Bonobo Mac - their version of macaroni cheese - definitely deserves a mention too. Their rooftop terrace is the perfect spot for brunch in the late morning sun, but a quick stop for a take-away coffee is almost as good.

73-75 Skene Street, Aberdeen

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Yatai Izakaya

Located on the city centre's Langstane Place, Yatai is a Japanese restaurant passionate about using the best locally-sourced ingredients in their food. Their menu changes regularly, but clearly-marked dishes often include a maki set, vegan ramen of the day and a range of vegetable-based side dishes, such as deep fried dumplings and katsu steamed buns. Their lunchtime bento boxes are an absolute delight.

53 Langstane Place, Aberdeen

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Foodstory

Feel-good food, artisan coffee and joyful community vibes are at the heart of Thistle Street's Foodstory - a veggie cafe, shop and events space. Open from breakfast 'til dinner every day, Foodstory's menu includes porridge bowls, filled wraps, vibrant salads, warming soups, a daily hot pot dish, and an incredible sharing platter that's my personal fave. Whether it's a healthy, nutritious meal or a dirty chai latte and a slice of cake, Foodstory have got you covered. 

13-15 Thistle Street, Aberdeen

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The Braided Fig

If it's fine dining you're after, the Braided Fig might be the place for you. A modern restaurant and bar boasting an extensive wine and gin selection, the kitchen offers a separate menu of vegan food, with a good selection of dishes over three courses. We ate here for a friend's hen party and found the atmosphere and the food to be ideal for a celebratory meal. 

39 Summer Street, Aberdeen

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Brewdog (Castlegate or Union Square)

Perhaps Aberdeenshire's most famous export, Brewdog not only excels at well-marketed beers, but does a damn good job at vegan food too. Aberdeen's Castlegate and Union Square branches offer up a weekend brunch menu (The Veggie Haystack, please and thank you) as well as an all-week menu of burgers, fries, salads and wings - the latter made of cauliflower or seitan for the vegans. They even operate a weekly 'Vegan Mondays' deal, when all veggie options are 2-for-1, and their vegan "wings" are included in an all-you-can-eat offer every Wednesday. I'm a big fan of the 'Temple of Seitan' burger and the buffalo cauliflower wings, washed down with a nice cold beer which, thanks to Brewdog's Vegan Society certification, is guaranteed to be vegan-friendly too.

5-8 Union Street, Aberdeen | Union Square, Guild Street, Aberdeen

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Picture source: Biocafe on Facebook

Biocafe 

Specialising in free-from food and drink, inspired by global cuisine, Biocafe serves up a range of healthy breakfasts, lunches, desserts and drinks that are void of refined sugar and gluten, as well as being suitable for those on a plant-based diet. I must confess that this is the only place on the list I have yet to visit, but I've heard such good things that it felt impossible to overlook. Whether it's a brilliantly-coloured smoothie bowl, an overflowing frappe, a bursting buddha bowl, or a mouthwatering piece of cheesecake, their food looks incredible and I really need to get myself down to Rosemount Viaduct instead of drooling over their social media feeds.

39 Rosemount Viaduct, Aberdeen

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Howies

One of my favourite restaurants in Aberdeen, Howies is the perfect venue if you want to feel a little bit 'fancy' without completely breaking the bank. Focusing on seasonal, locally-sourced food with a traditional Scottish twist, Howies' carefully thought-out menus are sure to include a small selection of vegan dishes throughout every course. The food is delicious, beautifully presented and very reasonably priced, with the lunchtime set menu a particular steal at £15.75 for three courses.  

(Edit: Since publishing this post, I've read that Howies have taken the decision to keep their Aberdeen branch closed for the foreseeable future, focusing attention on their Edinburgh restaurants. This is disappointing to read, but I'm keeping them listed here in the hope that they'll be back serving up their amazing meals sometime soon.)

50 Chapel Street, Aberdeen

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Melt 

A cheese-based restaurant and toastie shop might not seem the most obvious choice for a vegan meal, but Belmont Street's Melt are full of cheesy surprises. Whether it's a sit-down breakfast, fondue or poutine, or a take-away toastie, brownie or milkshake, there's a vegan alternative for pretty much everything! I highly recommend their mammoth toasties, made with their own vegan cheese sauce, washed down with an oaty Biscoff milkshake.
(*Melt are offering a very limited menu as they phase into reopening, so I'd definitely be sure to check if vegan options are available at this particular time, before showing up.)

13 Belmont Street, Aberdeen

(Edit: Melt very sadly announced closure of their restaurant on August 10th, but I can't bring myself to delete them just yet.)

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The Cult of Coffee

Arguably one of the best places for a caffeine fix in Aberdeen, the Cult of Coffee already catered well to vegans with an excellent range of plant-based milks, but they've recently upped their game by stocking a selection of Vegan Bay Baker goods. If it's top-quality coffee you're after, with a side of apple bridies or yum-yums, then the Cult of Coffee is 100% the place for you. 

28 Esslemont Avenue, Aberdeen

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There we have it - some of Aberdeen's very best vegan food. If you think I've missed anywhere off the list, drop it in a comment down below!

xo

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