It can be hard to find good vegetarian Vietnamese cuisine, but look no further. The most common ingredients in Vietnamese cuisine are fish sauce, shrimp paste, soy sauce, rice, fresh herbs, fruits, vegetables and meat. The focus is on fresh ingredients and minimal oil. You can see how it might be a little difficult for a veggie.
Here are the spots to get the best vegetarian Vietnamese in the Vancouver area:
Chau Veggie is a cute, little eatery on Victoria Drive that serves up mostly vegan Vietnamese cuisine using traditional flavours and techniques paired with local produce. They love to support local farmers and communities. Some of their products are also sold at Karmavore. They are open Sunday to Thursday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Friday and Saturday at 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Dish to order: Golden Temple Prayers – a light yellow coconut curry broth, seasonal vegetables, assorted tofu, greens, kale with a choice of rice, baked bread or noodles.
Also make sure to get the Coconut Shake – fresh coconut, coconut water and crème. It’s to die for.
This spot has been around since 2003 in Burnaby serving up family recipes that they veganized. This is a great spot for that home-cooked meal. Paradise Noodle is operated by two friends that have experimented with recipes to make sure that their dishes are sure to satisfy any diner. They are open 12 p.m. to 9 p.m., Monday through Saturday with a small closure from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. before dinner. They are closed on Sundays and holidays.
Dish to order: Vietnamese Hot and Sour Soup.
Three Jewels is an all vegan Vietnamese restaurant (except for the regular milk option) that is lacking in atmosphere, but not in service. The dishes are served with a smile and are more than delicious. It’s also very new, only opening up at the end of July 2013. They also have a bottle of veggie fish sauce on every table! They are open 10:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.
Dish to order: Spicy lemongrass tofu on rice, steamed rice, lemongrass tofu, served with veggie fish sauce.
Veggiebowl is another new spot that opened in May 2013 with a very small menu. It’s a cute shop on Kingsway where you can get a good bowl of soup for a good price. Not all items are vegan, so make sure to ask, but they are clearly marked. They are open 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily.
Dish to order: Phnom Penh Vegetarian Noodle Bowl
Give these spots a try! Get your veggie on.
Image: By Krystle Charlton of Golden Temple Prayers from Chau Veggie Express
Krystle Charlton is an Accountant by day and blogger extraordinaire by night. Getting vegucated since 2010, she’s been blogging her culinary adventures over at Vegucated in Vancouver. She creates her own delicious recipes, reviews restaurants and products, tests cookbook recipes and offers some general fitness advice. Connect with Krystle on Twitter and Facebook.