Vegan Dining Guide

by Bianca Phillips & Staff

Memphis may have a reputation as home of the world’s best pulled-pork barbecue, but the Bluff City is also surprisingly vegan-friendly. From cauliflower hot wings and meat-free fried chicken to carrot hot dogs and—yes—vegan barbecue, Memphis menus are loaded with options free of meat, eggs, dairy, and other animal by-products. This list offers a sampling of favorites, but it’s by no means exhaustive. Have something to add? Check out the form at the bottom of the page.

Abyssinia Ethiopian Restaurant

Who needs a fork when you can use bread as your food-to-mouth delivery system? At Abyssinia, spongy injera—the sour fermented Ethiopian flatbread—stands in for silverware. Tear off bits of bread to sop up the colorful kaleidoscope of vegan dishes offered on the Yetsome Beyaynetu platter (aka Vegetarian Combo Platter). Spicy red lentil stew and yellow split pea stew are served alongside slow-simmered collards, stewed green beans and carrots, creamy potato salad, and earthy beet salad. When you get the combo to go, be sure to add a few extra pieces of injera to your order (each extra piece is $1) because they send you home with enough food to last for a couple days.

2600 Poplar, Suite 115

Bala’s Bistro

African fare, such as kebabs, stews, and saka saka, meets American standbys, like cheesesteaks and burgers, on the menu at Bala’s Bistro. While this airport-area, mom-and-pop storefront serves plenty of carnivorous options, they also offer a vegan menu with meatless spins on classic African and American dishes. There are vegan kimchi wraps and a chipotle veggie burger, as well as vegan fataya (vegetable hand pies). The hearty Vegetable Rout Curry Stew is loaded with root veggies (beets, sweet and white potatoes, carrots, and parsnips) simmered in a coconut curry base. All vegan items are served with your choice of rice (jasmine, jollof, or fried), plantains, or veggies of the day.

2160 East Raines Road

Brain Food Memphis

We sampled the Brain Food Memphis Honey Gold Cauliflower Wings and are here to sing their praises! Brain Food Memphis offers chef-inspired dishes for pick up at OtherFoods Kitchen in Midtown on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 11:30 a.m. to 6:45 p.m. (They also cater private events.) Chef Xavier and his cousin are the owners. Order online for pick up.

1249 Heistan Place

Brother Juniper’s

Brother Juniper’s may be best known for their fluffy pancakes, house-made artisan breads, and packed-to-the-brim waitlist, but they also offer a couple of vegan options that are worth the half-hour-or-so wait for a table. Fahim’s Special is back on the menu (after going off-menu for several years). This hearty tofu scramble is loaded with roasted red peppers and portabella mushroom slices, seasoned with a tangy balsamic blend, and served with Brother Juniper’s Memphis-famous crispy home fries and house-made artisan bread and jam. Or, if you’re in the mood for something on the fiery side, try the Spicy Tofu,a Southwestern-style scramble with black beans and jalapeños, served over home fries and topped with avocado spread.

3519 Walker Avenue

City Silo Table + Pantry

On City Silo’s menu, vegetables and whole grains are the stars of the show. While City Silo isn’t entirely vegetarian, their menu leans more toward vegan than omnivore. Sure, you can get a chicken sandwich or Greek yogurt bowl, but most options are plant-based. For example, all three burgers on the menu—a bean burger, a beet burger, and a portabella burger—are made without meat. The hearty grain bowls are loaded with veggies and plant-based protein. Try the Buffalo Tempeh + Sesame Cauliflower Bowl—your choice of a quinoa and brown rice blend or zoodles, topped with roasted sesame cauliflower, spicy tempeh, roasted sweet potatoes, sweet corn, leafy kale, and cashew ranch. This is also available in wrap form if you’re on the go. Wash it down with kombucha (on draft!) or fresh-pressed juice.

5101 Sanderlin Avenue, Suite 104
7605 West Farmington Boulevard, Suite 2

The Crazy Noodle

The Korean-style ramen bowls at The Crazy Noodle are like dressed-up versions of the packaged ramen of your college days. In the Vegetable Ramen Bowl, curly fried noodles are simmered in a rich veggie broth and flecked with tofu, cabbage, zucchini, carrots, shiitake mushrooms, and Korean radish (vegans: order without the egg). Other noodle bowls can be ordered vegan-style as well, such as the Mandu Guk, a rich and spicy soup with chewy, flat Korean rice cakes and veggie-stuffed gyoza. If rice noodles are your preference, try the vegetarian version of their signature Crazy Noodle bowl with mushrooms, bean sprouts, and tofu.

2015 Madison Avenue

The Doghouzz

Chunky, braised, and grilled carrots stand in for hot dogs when you order a meatless dog at The Doghouzz, a hot-dog bar across the street from Crosstown Concourse. The pickle-forward Crosstown Carrot Dog comes topped with relish, pickle chips, and Asian slaw, but you can also choose your own toppings from The Doghouzz’s lengthy list, which includes kraut, diced tomatoes, caramelized onions, avocado, and plenty more. Vegetarian sides include chips, Asian slaw, or Doghouzz owner Steve Murphy’s special-recipe, slow-simmered pinto beans (always a winner!).

1349 Autumn Avenue

Daguilty Vegan

We finally caught up with the Daguilty Vegan food truck! Owner/chef Derek Richardson wants people to stop thinking that being vegan isn’t fun. He bangs his gavel for all vegans who order. There are two menus – one innocent and one guilty. The innocent menu features two salads, including a Nashville hot and crispy chick’n salad. The guilty menu features an Impossible Burger, an Impossible Bacon Cheeseburger, lots of Chick’n, and a Beyond Brat. We tried the Buffalo Chick’n Sandwich with fries and felt zero guilt. We love this concept and hope you will too. Follow them on Facebook for weekly locations.

Evelyn & Olive

This Midtown Jamaican restaurant is vegan-famous for its Black Bean Tacos—two crispy-shell tacos stuffed with a mixture of seasoned black beans and pan-fried tofu and topped with kiwi salsa. It’s served with fluffy Jamaican rice and peas and a cooling, fresh cucumber-tomato salad. The Conscious Potato Chickpea Curry, a hearty coconut curry stew served with coconut rice, can’t be beat either. All menu items at Evelyn & Olive should be properly washed down with a tall glass of Jamaican rum punch, a powerful cocktail that features several kinds of rum and fruit juices. One (OK, maybe two) is all you’ll need.

630 Madison Avenue

Global Café

Global Café is both a restaurant and a social enterprise, providing immigrants and refugees with space to sell the dishes of their home countries without the hassle of running a business on their own. There are three countries represented—Syria, Sudan, and Venezuela—and all offer vegan options. Black bean and pico-stuffed vegan arepas are offered alongside hearty rice and bean platters with fried plantains at the Venezuelan stall. Or try the crisp, cooked-to-order falafel and creamy hummus from Sudan. At the Syrian stall, the generously stuffed dolmas (rice-stuffed grape leaves) make a perfect accompaniment to an order of tabbouleh and baba ganoush with pita.

1350 Concourse Avenue, Suite 157

Imagine Vegan Cafe

Order whatever you want from the menu at Imagine Vegan Cafe! Every dish is prepared without meat, eggs, dairy, or animal by-products. This family-run restaurant proudly specializes in vegan junk food, making it the ideal spot to treat yourself to vegan fried chicken drumsticks; meat-free, “Big Mac”-style burgers (with double patties and special sauce); deep-fried, dairy-free mozzarella sticks; or sweet and savory vegan chicken and waffles generously topped with vegan butter and maple syrup. In true Memphis fashion, there’s a messy barbecue sandwich piled high with seitan “meat” and creamy coleslaw, served with baked beans and seasoned fries. Save room for dessert, as no meal at Imagine is complete without a giant slice of three-layer cake with buttercream or a slice of rich, Biscoff-topped, dairy-free cheesecake.

2158 Young Avenue

The Liquor Store

This Instagram-ready cocktail bar is housed inside an old liquor store on Broad Avenue, hence the name. The old neon liquor store sign still beckons patrons inside, but the interior boasts a modern diner vibe. Plant-based options abound here, and many meaty dishes on the menu can easily be veganized. When you order the veggie burger, you’ll get a Before the Butcher plant-based patty pressed thin and fried on a griddle and served with shoestring fries. But that same patty and vegan cheese can be subbed on the Liquor Store’s patty melt. There’s a house-made vegan chorizo, which can be added to the street tacos or to the meat-free Cuban Platter of black beans, plantains, and rice.

2655 Broad Avenue


This all-vegan bakery co-op specializes in sourdough and sources as many ingredients as possible from local farmers. Their beloved sourdough starter is used to create fluffy sandwich buns, hearty country loaves, chewy bagels, and more. They’re set up at the Cooper Young Community Farmers Market on Saturdays, so stop by to see what they have. The Brekky Sandwich with tofu egg, creamy cashew cheese, and smoky beet-carrot bacon (made with locally sourced root veggies) served in the aforementioned buns is a special treat. In the mood for something sweeter? The moist-yet-crumbly cinnamon coffee cake is perfect alongside a mug of Vice & Virtue coffee (who also sets up at the market).

1000 S. Cooper

Pho Binh

Pho Binh may be best known for its Midtown-famous lunch buffet, where, in pre-pandemic times, you could load your plate with as much crispy fried tofu as your heart (or stomach) desired for less than $10. But, with COVID-19 still raging, this beloved, family-owned Vietamese restaurant is open only for takeout. No worries — Pho Binh’s dry-fried, tangy Lemongrass Tofu is on the carryout menu, and, when you order to go, they send you home with enough tofu for several meals. Buffet lovers who are looking to try something new should check out the Vermicelli Tofu — the perfect mix of hot and cold with warm, dry-fried tofu and cool rice noodles (vegans, request to substitute peanut sauce for fish sauce).

1615 Madison Avenue

Pizzeria Trasimeno

Pizzeria Trasimeno in Crosstown Concourse specializes in authentic Neapolitan pizza, made with simple, fresh ingredients and baked at high temperatures in two wood-fired ovens imported from Naples, Italy. They don’t carry vegan cheese, but the vegan Pizza del Giardino shines without it. This loaded pie is topped with a garden of veggies—arugula, asparagus, artichokes, tomatoes, red onions, mushrooms, kalamata olives, fresh spicy pepper blend, roasted garlic, capers, and a balsamic reduction. Pizzeria Trasimeno is currently open for carryout or delivery only, but you may enjoy your carryout pizza on their patio (if you do, order a refreshing aperol spritz from the bar). Ordering-in tip: Get the pizza delivered, and make your own seasoned olive oil for crust dipping.

1350 Concourse Avenue, Suite 181


Plant Based Heat

We stopped in for a vegan feast consisting of Agave Gold “Vings,” a Cheeseburger & Fries, Fried Buffalo Cauliflower (they definitely brought the heat!), and Mexican Street Corn. Everything was so freaking good it really did make us wonder if we could live the plant based life. Owner Ralph Johnson (better known as RJ Groove) says, “I’ve always enjoyed vegan options, but decided to go fully vegan 14 months ago. I think opening a restaurant is a great way to introduce healthier food options that taste familiar to our community.”

669 S. Highland

Raw Girls

If you’re looking to reset your diet and get back on track with healthy habits, the Raw Girls have you covered. Their whole-food, plant-based food trucks offer a daily menu of both raw and cooked vegan meals. The organic Taco Salad with tomato salsa, homemade guacamole, and spicy walnut meat over a bed of mixed greens is a best-seller, and the Hummus Toast (served with sprouted hummus and raw sun-dried tomato bread) is an uber-healthy spin on a classic. All entrees are best followed by an order of the guilt-free Raw Oatmeal Cookies, made with oats and coconut oil. The Raw Girls also offer medicinal mushroom broth, hot soups, and cold-pressed juices. Check out the Raw Girls brick-and-mortar location downtown.

242 South Cooper Street (Midtown)
5502 Poplar Avenue (East Memphis)
150 Peabody Place

RP Tracks

RP Tracks claims their BBQ Tofu Nachos are world-famous, and, while that cannot be verified, we’re certain they’re Memphis-famous. Crispy, saucy tofu chunks, black beans, tomatoes, lettuce, and salsa top seasoned cantina-style tortilla chips in a massive dish large enough to feed two adults. Pro tip: If dining alone, ask for the chips on the side so your leftovers don’t get soggy. Those famous nachos aren’t the only vegan option at Tracks. Diners can opt for a Beyond Burger with all the fixings or a Beyond Sausage topped with black bean chili. Every meal at Tracks should begin with the Buffalo Tofu Wings starter, served with Imagine Vegan Cafe’s house-made ranch dressing.

3547 Walker Avenue


Rumba Room

While Latin American food is not famous for its vegan options, the Rumba Room has found a way to bring the flavor without the dairy or meat. Their flight of vegan tacos has three totally unique options, including savory sautéed carrots, perfectly roasted garbanzos, and a fajita-like mushroom veggie mix. The sauces, salsas, and seasonings are so delicious, even a serious carnivore wouldn’t miss the meat. The cauliflower steak is a hearty and flavorful dinner selection and not to be missed are the savory fries, the sweet plantain, and the Tamarindo!

303 South Main Street

Slider Inn

As the name would suggest, Slider Inn specializes in tiny sandwiches, several of which are vegan (or easily ordered vegan). The Vegan Triple B is Slider’s take on the classic veggie burger with a patty made from black beans, beets, and brown rice (topped with avocado and sprouts). There’s also a falafel burger with house-made chickpea patties and black bean hummus (vegans, ask them to leave off the yogurt sauce). Or go old-school with the Nuts & Berries, featuring good old-fashioned peanut butter and strawberry jam. The real vegan star at Slider Inn, however, is the vegan wings — a combination of fried tofu and fried cauliflower, tossed in buffalo sauce and served with house-made vegan ranch. All items should be properly washed down with a frosty Jameson Slushie.

2117 Peabody Avenue, 363 Mulberry Street

Stick ’Em

The former Blue Nile Ethiopian Kitchen is now the brick-and-mortar location for the popular Stick ’Em food truck. Blue Nile/Stick ’Em owner Ermyias Shiberou merged his two restaurant concepts under the Stick ’Em name to streamline his business, so now you can find a selection of kabobs and Ethiopian favorites in one place. The Tofu Skewers are made with generous chunks of chewy fried tofu that may just be the best tofu in town. Those are served with your choice of fries, grilled veggies, or salad (or any combination of the three). Stick ’Em no longer serves the spongy injera bread that’s ubiquitous with Ethiopian fare, but the Tofu Tibs (a vegan spin on Ethiopian beef tibs) are still on the menu, as is the Veggie Platter with red lentil stew, collards, and cabbage (now served with rice in place of injera).

1788 Madison Avenue

Where do you like to get your vegan dishes? Tell us below.