Naturaltown

Vegetarian and Vegan Spots in Austin

The Garden of Ethnic Delights

Tom's Tabooley, 479-7337

Tom's has been providing Austin with vegetarian Middle Eastern cuisine for more than 20 years, and doing so with aplomb. They have a full line of falafel, dolmas, tabouleh, babaganoush, and hummus products, available singly, as platters, or in wraps.

Thai Passion, 472-1244

Thai Passion serves upscale Thai food with understated elegance in its historic building featuring limestone walls, wood floors, and a beautiful sun-dappled atrium. Most of the dishes, with a large selection of different sauces, are available as vegan tofu versions, and for the non meat-eating piscatorial diners, there are many seafood items fresh from the sea. Medium prices and first-rate service.

Curra's Grill, 444-0012

Curra's serves first-rate interior Mexican cuisine in a comfortable, come-as-you-are ambience. They begin the day with some of the finest Mexican breakfasts in town, and continue the high quality at lunch and dinner. Granny's original recipes are used for a wide assortment of vegetarian and seafood items, including their famous veggie mole enchiladas, and the veggie tostados with goat cheese.

Little Bombay, 339-0808

Little Bombay is the small, wildly popular and inexpensive vegetarian restaurant specializing in the fast street vendor foods of South India. They have a 25-item menu, with excellent dosas, pooris, and specialty items like their "omelet" of chickpea patties with a filling of complexly spiced tomatoes and onions.

El Azteca, 477-4701

The Guerra family decided in the late Seventies to add an extensive vegetarian menu, and the Austin meatless scene has been thankful ever since. This is Tex-Mex cuisine of the first order, served by a family that knows what their customers want. El Azteca offers a full selection of menu items available without meat, from the appetizer course on up.

Swad Indian Vegetarian Restaurant, 997-7923

Swad specializes in South Indian vegetarian cuisine, and vegearian foods from the state of Gujarat in Western India. They make everything from scratch and share mutual ownership with the Taj Market a few doors down. Stop at the market a few doors down and grab a tub of Saffron-Pistachio ice cream before you leave!

Java Noodles, 443-5282

Java offers world-class Indonesian cuisine on a par with the best you could find anywhere in the States, for half the price. Not to be missed are the spicy eggplant, the tofu satay, and the veggie dumplings. Sweet, friendly, wonderful folks who are working their butts off to bring you incredible Indonesian chow. Delicious, and close to downtown.

Pho Công Ly Sixth Street, 236-8878

Công Ly has several locations around town, but the one on Sixth is open late on weekends. They are the downtown place to visit for a fix of pho (pronounced fuh) noodle soup, a bowl of bun (pronounced boon) vermicelli noodles, or any of the assorted platters of egg noodles on the menu. Strict vegans can opt for soy sauce instead of the fish sauce, and they can substitute tofu for any of the meats.

Kim Phung, 451-2464

Kim Phung was one of the original Viet restaurants in town, and they still command wide popularity. They are vegetarian-friendly, and can accommodate almost anything on the extensive menu with vegetarian substitutions. Fast and efficient service by a group of pros in a comfortable setting. Fine renditions of spring rolls, phos, buns, or anything else made with a noodle, be it rice or egg. Be specific when substituting. A perennial reader's poll winner.

Fortune Pho 75, 458-1792

Fortune is a small family-operated spot with a cozy interior serving top-notch Viet and Viet-influenced Chinese cuisine. Many vegetarian options are found on the menu, and they serve one of the best bowls of bun vermicelli noodles in town. They can substitute tofu for almost anything they have, but be specific when substituting.

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