Best Vegan Food in Reykjavik!
Are you planning your trip to Iceland and are worried about your choices when it comes to food? I don't blame you; many vegans find it hard to get good quality, tasty vegan food while traveling. After all, your favorite local vegan place can't come to your rescue when you are abroad! That is why I have made this guide on the best vegan food in Iceland!
Luckily for you, Iceland is very good at being inclusive in every way; yes, even in food. Reykjavik has an abundance of vegan restaurants and cafes, as well as restaurants that offer plenty of vegan options!
So, keep reading to find out where to get the best vegan food in Iceland, and make your trip planning a little less stressful!
Before we dive deep into our guide on the best vegan food in Iceland, let's first take a look at what you can find in this blog:
- what are the best vegan restaurants in Iceland?
- what are the best vegan-friendly restaurants in Iceland?
- does Iceland have any traditional vegan-friendly food?
- some tips from a local!
don't miss out!
Our tours are often booked weeks or even months in advance, especially during peak season! Make sure you book a spot in your favorite tour ahead!
best vegan restaurants in iceland
Gone are the days when vegans and vegetarians had to order the Caesar Salad without the chicken or, in the worst cases, a bland, lazy mix of lettuce and tomato. The vegan restaurant scene has established itself in Iceland, especially in Reykjavik, for quite a while now, and vegans can enjoy a proper meal...well, pretty much anywhere.
So, are you ready to find out what are the best vegan restaurants in Iceland?
All vegan? Check. Delicious? Check. Wide variety? Check! Veganæs ticks every box, and that is why it deserves the top spot in our list!
Housed inside the legendary Gaukurinn, Veganæs is here to show your meat-loving friends that eating vegan doesn't mean you have to eat a salad for every meal. Instead, Linnea Hellström, the head chef of the establishment, likes to focus on hangover-friendly comfort food! Vegan burgers, steaks, and sauces are guaranteed to satisfy even the pickiest carnivores in your group. And if your whole group is vegan, then it might just become your favorite restaurant!
Since its opening during the first Reykjavik Fringe Festival, Veganæs has enjoyed extreme popularity, even being accused of being the cause of Icelandic social media being flooded with the vegan hashtag! A favorite among vegan locals for their all-vegan food, Veganæs is definitely worth a visit.
Where: inside Gaukurinn, Tryggvagata 22
A veteran of the Icelandic vegetarian and vegan scene, Garðurinn is the OG go-to for locals who prefer to not eat meat.
A charming little cafe with a menu that rotates every month, Garðurinn is the perfect place to grab a light meal or something sweet! Their international cuisine is bound to capture your interest, with dishes such as a mouthwatering Lebanese ratatouille and a delightful Arabic coconut soup. Your meal will be perfectly complemented by their fresh bread and hummus (you can also ask for butter if you are vegetarian or you have someone who eats animal products with you)!
Make sure you try one of their cakes, as well! Locals adore the vegan and raw options of desserts that Garðurinn offers, all at very affordable prices!
Where: Klapparstígur 37
3. Reykjavik Chips
Who doesn't love fries (or, as this restaurant calls them, chips)! Warm, fluffy on the inside, crispy on the outside, savory all around...fries don't need any fuss, they are always perfect.
Reykjavik Chips, a relative newcomer in the Icelandic food scene, took the Belgian tradition of eating fries as a meal and elevated it to art. They pair their incredible fries with a vast range of sauces that include several vegan options!
Don't forget to douse your fries in kartöflukrydd, or potato spice, a blend of spices that every local loves! I am guilty of often using a truck's worth of spice on my fries!
A plus? Their happy hour every night at 9pm, with a selection of Icelandic and Belgian beers!
Where: Vitastígur 10
Supubarinn used to be the best place for a hearty bowl of soup with absolutely no meat in their menu. However, they have changed their menu since then to include meat and fish.
Half of their menu is still vegan, though, and that is why Supubarinn has a spot on our list. That, and the fact that their soups are so delicious! The Tex Mex (vegan) soup is a favorite among the patrons, and the menu includes daily specials that will keep you coming back for more!
Once again, your meal will be accompanied by fresh bread and hummus, or butter for your non-vegan friends.
Where: Borgartún 26
best vegan friendly restaurants in iceland
Sometimes you can't commit to an all-vegan restaurant. Sometimes you just need something quick or something that will satisfy the entire group.
Thankfully, most restaurants in Iceland, and especially in Reykjavik, have vegan-friendly options. Which one should you go to? Let's take a look!
A family-run Indian restaurant with the most delicious vegan chapati you can find outside of India. Hraðlestin is very vegan-friendly, even dedicating Wednesdays to vegan dishes! However, they also have several vegan options on their standard menu, with the vegan Thali being the star of the show.
Also try their onion pakodas and vegan samosas, and don't be surprised if you leave the store with a very full belly...or if you go back for more!
Where: Hverfisgata 64a, Lækjargata 8, Kringlunni 103, Hlíðasmári 8
Mandi's specialty is not vegan food...it's being a warm hug of flavor for your taste buds. The staff at Mandi will make you feel like home, and they will also make sure your food is vegan! Get the falafel without the yogurt sauce for some serious flavor, savory with a hint of spice.
Mandi is also open at all hours, so if you find yourself partying in downtown Reykjavik, Mandi is the place to go for some drunk vegan munchies, including a delectable hummus.
Where: Veltusund 3b
Looking for something quick to eat on the go? Serrano is the best place for that, especially for a vegan. While their vegan food selection is not that great, Serrano is perfect for taking something with you while you travel.
A fast food chain similar to Subway, Serrano has a vegan burrito in its menu, but you can also make your own burrito. With several plant options and sauces, you can make your burrito the way you like it!
Where: in most N1 gas stations, malls, and several locations downtown.
is there traditional vegan icelandic food?
So, are there any local vegan delicacies you can try in Iceland? Well...not really.
You can always try the boiled turnips, sometimes mixed with other vegetables, but needless to say they are bland. Icelandic cuisine heavily relies on meat and animal products, as the rough weather conditions didn't allow Icelandic people to cultivate most plants.
Therefore, you will find butter in everything, as well as milk and, more often than not, meat or fish. If you visit a fancier restaurant with a focus on local cuisine, you might find some modernized dishes created for vegans, but traditional Icelandic cuisine will not be your friend.
some tips from a local
Don't be afraid to try restaurants in Iceland! Most of them, if not all, especially in Reykjavik, have plenty of delicious vegan options! Many cafes also offer vegan selections of desserts, especially cakes!
One thing that you should be weary of? When you go to a gas station and you see a cookie labelled as "veganesti", it is not vegan! While it contains the word "vegan" it is actually an Icelandic compound word that means "road snack", a snack that is perfect to take with you on the go!
some final words
I hope you enjoyed my guide on the best vegan food and restaurants in Reykjavik! Have you tried any other places that you think deserve to make the list? Let me know in the comments!
And, as always, don't forget to share with more fellow vegan travelers!
Are you planning your trip to Iceland and are worried about your choices when it comes to food? I don’t blame you; many vegans find it hard to get good quality, tasty vegan food while traveling. After all, your favorite local vegan place can’t come to your rescue when you are abroad! That is why I have made this guide on the best vegan food in Iceland!