- Written By 10Melanin Team
10 Black-Owned Vegan Restaurants In London
What do Black British celebrities JME, Lewis Hamilton and Michaela Coel all have in common? That's right, they're all vegan! But why is it that when we think of vegans, we have a very different image of what they look like in our heads? We've been lead to believe that Black culture is and has always been heavily meat oriented, but actually veganism has a prevalent but hidden Black history. According to surveys, Black Americans are almost 3 times more likely to be Vegan, and are in fact the fastest growing community to take up this lifestyle. At the same time in London from 2015 to 2019 the number of vegan restaurants has quadrupled. So, it's not actually that surprising that some of the best are Black owned!
10. All Nations Vegan House
All Nations Vegan House, located in Dalston, celebrates Caribbean flavours while offering a home cooking style plant-based menu in a relaxed and welcoming restaurant. Head Chef Atreka Cameron runs the restaurant promoting ‘livity’ and advocates that Caribbean food doesn't need meat to taste good and hopes that more people will vegan dishes a go. Cameron was inspired by her own experience with veganism, which she says has drastically improved her health, and by mixing natural Caribbean spices she realised healthy food doesn't need to be bland.
9. Eat Of Eden
Eat of Eden menus are inspired by Caribbean Ital, which is a type of food celebrated by rastafarians and comes from the word vital, this has been paired with European recipes to blend both cultures perfectly. With more of us concerned as to where how our food is sourced, Eat of Eden is a go to place where you can find quality and affordable food that is suitable for vegetarians, vegans but also somewhere your non-vegans will enjoy too. The restaurant has become so popular that it now is available at 4 locations around London - Clapham, Brixton, Lewisham and Shepard's Bush.
8. The Guava Kitchen
The Guava Kitchen is a plant-based cafe/ restaurant that offers tropical vegan and vegetarian cuisine in a warm and contemporary setting. Located in Forest Hill, South East London, the restaurant has a range of menu items opening for breakfasts, brunches and dinner but also if available for small sweet treats, fresh juices and coffees. It all started for owner Jenny Campbell when she began experimenting with recipes in her kitchen at home, this then lead to selling plant-based street food at markets and now she has a permanent location to sell her food, that has a very bright future ahead of it.
7. Coffee Shotter
While the main attraction at Coffee Shotter is the insanely delicious vegan and vegetarian donuts and coffee, theres a lot more here on offer - including breakfast pots, noodles, salads and sandwiches. Founded by Mark Sarfo-Kantanka, who also founded CellarDoor and Lost Format Society, he works alongside Horsham Coffee Roaster which provides coffee that has ethically sourced coffee from Rwanda. The cafe is based in Croydon and aims to provide a wider variety of food that is available currently on the high street. This is more than a coffee shop as it also runs an online community called Plant Based South London, where you can find plant based supper clubs and recipes.
6. 222 Vegan Cuisine
222 Vegan Cuisine first opened its doors all the way back in 2004 and since it's become one of London’s favourite vegan restaurant. Founded by Chef Ben Asamani, who is internationally renowned as a vegan chef, he's been running his own kitchen at different locations since 1990. All orders are prepared by Ben Asamani and his team at 222, using fresh and natural ingredients with unique techniques that help preserve taste and nutritional value. Located in West Kensington, the restaurant is well known for its healthy cooking, which is perfect if you want a health kick as you won't find a fried piece of food on the menu.
5. Neat Burger
Neat Burger is the most commercial of restaurants on this list, as from the get go it didn't shy of from what it wanted to be - a fast food chain, the difference is that its ethical, sustainable and plant based. Formula 1 driver Lewis Hamilton is well known for his plant based diet so it made sense when he partnered with Beyond Meat and Unicef ambassador Tommaso Chiabra to create Neat Burger. The first restaurant opened on Regent Street with hopes to expand globally with 14 franchises over the next two years, so if you're craving fast food that is plant based, be sure to give it a try.
4. Young Vegans
Young Vegans is an independent food manufacturer based in Camden Town, that specialises in manufacturing vegan food such as pies and pizza. Since the company has expanded, and opened two restaurants in London - Young Vegans Pie Shop and Young Vegans Pizza Shop. Founded by Carla Monsora and her partner Marco Casadei, they have managed to modernise pies with unusual flavours to try such as "Mac and Cheese" and "Katsu Curry".
3. Deserted Cactus
Deserted Cactus is a hidden gem, located in the Holdrons Arcade in Peckham, this popular but small restaurant works a little bit different than most, with just one chef and no menu. However this doesn't effect the restaurants popularity which means you might have to queue and theres no guarantee you'll get a seat, but there's always a take out option. Esme Carr, the founder, is well known in the Black vegan community as she also runs two popular instagram pages @London_Afro_Vegan and @UKVegansofcolour, so be sure to give those pages a follow if you're interested in keeping up to date with the Black British vegan community.
2. Rogue Vegan
Founded in 2017, as the need for culturally diverse food was wanted and needed. Rogue Vegan, located in Dalston, offers clean eating and healthy plant food but doesn't forget the taste, meaning you can get your favourite Mauritian and Caribbean flavours without worrying about your waistline. The restaurant prides itself on incorporate whole foods, ancient grains, fruits and nutritionally dense vegetables into all of the dishes on their menu.
Beza is an Ethiopian Vegan restaurant, located in South London near Elephant and Castle. The restaurant boasts a colourful and contemporary interior that reflects the food that's served there. It's both tasty and healthy, so if you're sick of eating vegan junk food or bland healthy vegan food, this is the place for you. Originally a food stall in Camden Market, Beza has since moved to it's new location in Elephant Park, following a £2.3 billion development there.