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The Ultimate Guide to vegan food in Tokyo

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A globally celebrated food city, the Japanese capital has an impressive array of plant-based food on offer. Here’s our Ultimate Guide to vegan eateries in Tokyo.

At first thought, eating vegan in Tokyo seems almost impossible, as the city is world-renowned for its seafood and animal-based cuisine. Although veganism may still be a fairly foreign concept in Japan, Tokyo is home to some of the best vegan eateries in Asia, featuring local favourites, cleverly-cooked vegetables and a diverse range of international flavours. From traditional Japanese meals to greasy comfort food, there is always something to satiate every craving.

Here are some of Tokyo’s best vegan restaurants:

T’s Tantan

 

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There are three locations, with two in Narita airport and one in Tokyo JR station, making this an ideal stop for travellers. T’s Tantan is known for its range of sesame Tantan noodles, which are based on Chinese Dan Dan noodles, featuring the hallmark nutty broth and vegan minced meat topping.

There are three staple Tantan bowls: white, black, and gold. In addition, it has tonkotsu and shoyu ramen. Here, vegan noodle lovers can still have their fill, as these are just as rich — if not more so — than their meaty counterparts.

Its extensive menu offers a range of Japanese favourites, such as gyoza, meat skewers, curry and katsu sandwiches. To round off the savoury selection, there are a couple of options for dessert, such as ice cream and pudding.

In short, T’s Tantan is ideal for those looking for veggie versions of quintessential Japanese dishes, with no shortage of dishes to choose from.

Ain Soph Ripple

 

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Tucked away on a side street in Shinjuku, this shop — although small — is hard to miss, with its rustic cosy decor and crowd of friendly patrons. Ripple is popular and fully vegan, and with its limited seating, it can be difficult to snag a place. However, the food is worth the wait, and can be ordered to go.

Ripple is best known for its devilishly good vegan takes on classic American fast foods. It offers a range of burgers, including the essential cheeseburger, as well as a crispy chicken burger that comes with a generous helping of tartar sauce. Available accompaniments include regular fries, cheese sauce smothered fries, and macaroni and cheese.

For those who aren’t in the mood for burgers, it also offers burritos and burrito bowls, as well as salads. The desserts are just as indulgent: a coconut maple french toast served with a side of sour cream, chocolate-drizzled waffles, and ice cream. It serves beer too, for those interested in having a drink with their meal.

Ain Soph Journey

 

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Journey is another all-vegan restaurant under the Ain Soph brand, which has four locations in Tokyo. Just like its more casual counterpart, Journey is a cosy, trendy restaurant with a friendly ambience, also located in Shinjuku. It might be a little tricky to find, owing to the fact that its entrance is below street level.

Its bestseller is the vegan Japanese souffle pancakes. These fluffy creations — aptly named Heavenly Pancakes — are perfectly soft and sky-high, served with a scoop of rum ice cream and a dollop of whipped cream. Depending on the season, other flavours of pancakes may be available. The other desserts are just as good, including a vegan cheesecake, fudgy chocolate cake, and crème brûlée.

Its main meals come with an array of fresh, vibrant vegetables; with vegan Spanish omelettes (made from tofu), wraps, curries, and salads.

For every Ain Soph location, be sure to check its food displays, which have a variety of treats and confections on rotation depending on the time of year. Don’t miss the tiramisus and puddings.

Wired BonBon

 

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This charming little cafe features a vegan dessert menu, with some of the most whimsical and beautiful desserts that are almost too pretty to eat. It serves towering parfaits in a host of unique flavours, including azuki matcha tapioca and chocolate mocha banana, amongst other indulgent options. For something that’s more out of the box, try its signature cotton candy parfaits, which are mounds of fruits and ice cream scoops nestled in a cloud of cotton candy.

The dessert menu seems neverending, with page after page of brûléed crepes and French toast, all with their own flavour options as well. In addition to that, Wired BonBon serves treats like raw chocolate cake, soft-serve ice cream, crème brûlée, mont blanc, and tiramisu. Fret not, for there are a couple (although admittedly limited) vegan options on its savoury menu too.

It’s located in Lumine 1, a mall that’s a conveniently short walk from Shinjuku station.

Nagi Shokudo

 

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For something a touch more health-conscious, Nagi Shokudo is a natural eatery serving teishoku, focusing on fresh, simple and clean meals in the form of a perfectly portioned Japanese set. This eclectic, homestyle diner is hidden away in the midst of Shibuya City, and, again, can be a bit hard to find. It’s fitted with the usual modern seating as well as a tatami platform.

It has set meals at great prices, as well as deli-style sets, where the sides can be selected from a number of available dishes, each one inspired by various Asian cuisines. Some of the dishes include soy karaage, coconut curry, falafel, and a variety of potato and vegetable dishes. Each set comes with miso soup and brown rice.

Good Town Doughnuts

 

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For a naughty breakfast option, or simply to indulge a sweet tooth, grab a box of doughnuts from this retro-inspired cafe. These adorable, Instagram-worthy doughnuts can be taken to-go, or eaten in-store with a cup of coffee or a matcha latte. Not everything on the menu is vegan, so keep that in mind, although everything is labelled clearly.

Good Town has a satisfying mix of doughnut types, with a good mix of both classic and more adventurous flavours. The availability of each flavour depends on the time of day. Some of the flavours include vanilla-glazed, chocolate, Kyoto Uji matcha, smile mango, cinnamon sugar, strawberry lemonade, and hibiscus.

The cafe is located a bit out of ways in Shibuya, near Harajuku. As a bonus, the bakery right next door sells vegan cinnamon rolls.

Lok Yi
Lok Yi Siu
Lok Yi is a student born and raised in Hong Kong, with a strong passion for animal welfare and the environment. She believes in making veganism accessible to everyone. With a love for cooking, baking, and eating, she hopes to introduce the world of veganism to others through the power of irresistible food.