Food & Drink

13 of our favorite vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free restaurants in the Triangle

Updated Oct. 17, 4 p.m.

This month’s Share Plates column is inspired by a request from reader Serena B.: the timely issue of vegan options and other special dietary needs.

This list includes a few of my personal favorites, and only represents the tip of the iceberg lettuce (sorry, couldn’t resist!).

Menus with vegan, vegetarian and/or gluten-free dishes clearly marked have become a common sight, and a growing number of chefs and restaurant owners will cater to special dietary needs on request (Better still, advance notice).

And of course there are the old standbys for vegetarians and vegans: Indian and Middle Eastern restaurants.

I’d like to thank my vegan colleague, photographer extraordinaire Juli Leonard, for her contributions to the list.

Bida Manda

222 S. Blount St., Raleigh

919-829-9999 or

Entire menu is dairy-free (thanks to Serena B. for this one)

Cape Fear Seafood Co.

832 Springfield Commons Drive, Raleigh

984-242-4600 or

Gluten-free menu available

Fiction Kitchen
Fiction Kitchen serves 65 hand-patted and grilled “Impossible” burgers with a different theme every Thursday at the Raleigh restaurant. This version is on a Night Kitchen sesame bun topped with a housemade Green Man I.P.A. mustard, fried pickle onion rings, Hormel style chili, lettuce, tomato and housemade vegan cheddar served with hand-cut BBQ chips. Juli Leonard

Earth to Us

1720 Guess Road, Suite 18, Durham

919-908-1000 or

Entirely vegan menu

The Fiction Kitchen

428 S. Dawson St., Raleigh

919-831-4177 or

Menu is entirely vegetarian, mostly vegan

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The veggie combo is a colorful rainbow of spices for the eye as well as the palate at Goorhsa. 2018 News & Observer File Photo - Juli Leonard

Fresh Levant Bistro

8450 Honeycutt Road, Suite 106 Raleigh

984-200-3999 or

Entire menu is gluten-free


910 W. Main St., Durham

919-588-4660 or

Ethiopian restaurant with a separate section dedicated to vegan dishes

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Soul Good Vegan Cafe in Durham cooks up a mean mess of collards served here on the curry chickpea platter alongside a pickle-punctuated potato salad, a mound of white rice and a square of sweet cornbread. Juli Leonard


2200 W. Main St., Durham


Vegan and gluten-free dishes marked on Mediterranean-inspired menu

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Sosta Cafe

130 E. Davie St., Raleigh

919-833-1006 or

Sandwiches and salads, more than half of which are (or can be made) vegan or vegetarian

Soul Cocina

306 W Franklin St., in Blue Dogwood Public Market, Chapel Hill

919-559-0255 or

Latin-inspired menu, entirely vegetarian and gluten-free

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Soul Good Vegan Cafe

4125 Durham Chapel Hill Blvd., Durham


Entirely vegan menu

Vegan Community Kitchen

803 E. Williams St., Apex

919-372-5027 or

Entirely vegan menu

Vegan Flava Cafe

306 W Franklin St., in Blue Dogwood Public Market, Chapel Hill

919-960-1832 or

Entirely vegan menu


4600 Durham-Chapel Hill Blvd., Suite 26, Durham

984-219-7555 or

Zimbabwean cuisine, vegan and gluten-free dishes marked on menu.

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Got an idea?

In the spirit of share plates, email your ideas, questions, pet peeve, or any other restaurant-related topic to

A previous version of this story listed the Chapel Hill location of Living Kitchen. Living Kitchen announced Oct. 15 it is now closed.

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