By Ali Magno
Vegetarians know eating a meat-free diet is anything but boring, though finding a restaurant that fits their dietary needs may be difficult. Luckily, vegetarian cuisine has come a long way, and many restaurants are now embracing their plant-based side.
Long Island is home to plenty of delicious vegetarian restaurants guaranteed to please both carnivores and herbivores alike. Below is a list-in-progress of some of the Vegetarian and Vegan restaurants on Long Island, including others that may serve meat but also feature substantial vegetarian, vegan and/or gluten-free menu options. It’s an incomplete roundup that we’ll be adding to all the time, so if you have a special place you’d like included to this guide, please write your suggestions in the comments section below.
Fresh, high-quality ingredients are not just healthy for you, they’re absolutely delicious, too! So grab a friend or family member (vegetarian or not) and head to these amazing Long Island Vegetarian Restaurants!
81B W. Fort Salonga Rd., Northport. 631-651-5002.
Located on the water in Northport, The Purple Elephant prepares simple and delicious vegetarian cuisine in a comfortable and relaxed environment. Their extensive menu covers a large range of flavors, including Southern, but you’ll always find a flare of Costa Rican, Honduran, El Salvadorian and Mexican present. Largely vegetarian and vegan, this purple pachyderm also serves non-vegetarian food, so it’s a perfect place to bring friends and family who aren’t vegetarian (always gluten-free options available), yet.
The Purple Elephant also serves a wide range of Organic Wines, and is the only restaurant on Long Island to have locally brewed Kombucha on tap, along with Organic MomoKawa Sake!
Try This: Far Out Chili Fries: vegan chili with choice of melted vegan cheddar or white cheddar over crisp yucca!
311 Hempstead Tpke., West Hempstead. 516-489-9482.
It’s Halloween year-round at this quirky café. Located in Hempstead in a century-old home, unique and cozy mismatched furniture and spooky décor greet customers seeking warm vibes and caffeine. The Witches Brew serves up a wide range of coffees, teas, vegetarian (and vegan) food that is to die for, and out-of-this-world vegan desserts. Serving up an eclectic smorgasbord of food, from Mediterranean to Thai, you can get small bites like a hummus and pita, or go big and try their butternut squash gnocchi.
Whatever you get, you’ll be raving about it for weeks to come! Be sure to grab cash before you go; this is a cash-only establishment (but there is an ATM)! The Witches Brew is closed on Mondays, and open late during the week. It gets packed, especially on the weekends, so dress warm in case you’ve got to chill out a lil while outside until a table opens up!
Try This: Vegan Rainbow Cookie Cake—enough said!
41 E. Main St., Bay Shore. 631-539-7183.
When Tula Kitchen’s chef/owner Jacqueline Sharlup discovered the Sanskrit word “tula”—which means “balance”—she knew she’d found the perfect name for her amazing restaurant. Tula Kitchen’s menu reflects balance, and is centered around vegetarian and vegan options (don’t worry meat eaters, there’s non-veg options as well!).
Tula Kitchen’s motto is “Live To Eat & Eat To Live,” and Sharlup has a simple approach to eating: using organic and natural ingredients whenever possible, your stomach will always be happy and healthy!
Try This: Lentil Mushroom Loaf: kale, onion, carrots, lentils, mushrooms, oats, side arugula & spinach salad, lemon vinaigrette!
1038 Montauk Highway, Copiague. 631-464-4328.
If there’s one thing us New Yorkers love, it’s our Italian food. 3 Brothers Vegan Café doesn’t just have vegan options; it is an all-vegan café that serves up Italian classics. Enjoy delicious vegan twists on classic Italian appetizers, pastas, entrees, and wood-fire pizzas. Among these, enjoy “Oyster Mushroom ‘Calamari’”—crispy fried oyster mushrooms with tartare and marinara sauce—and “Eggplant Rollantini”—breaded eggplant rolled with tofu-cashew ricotta, topped with fresh cashew milk mozzarella and tomato sauce!
What really sets this fantastic eatery apart from others is their in-house vegan cheese program. 3 Brothers Vegan Cafe makes all of their cheeses, ranging from fresh cashew mozzarella to cashew tofu ricotta. Praise the Italian gods, for 3 Brothers Vegan Café is a vegan-Italian food lover’s dream!
Try This: Buffalo Cauliflower: buttermilk-fried cauliflower with buffalo sauce and homemade blue cheese!
156 E. Main St., Port Jefferson. 631-476-7080.
This funky alternative vegetarian eatery is decorated with art from local artists and specializes in bringing vegetarian (and non-vegetarian) food to the next level with original and innovative recipes. Enjoy delicious wraps with fresh juice from Tiger Lily Café’s full Juice Bar—serving soy smoothies, protein shakes, wheatgrass shots, and of course, fresh juices—or complement that scrumptious feast with something from their Java Bar, known for its Black & Tan, Mocha Blanca, Tahitian Vanilla Chai and Red Bull Chai! This is the perfect place to relax and enjoy delicious, healthy food!
Try This: The Lily Veggie Burger: warmed veggie burger with Lily’s Salsa Fresca, house white honey mustard, mesclun greens and sprouts on whole wheat or Ciabatta roll!
416 S. Broadway, Hicksville. 516-938-7517.
If you enjoy the exotic flavors of Indian food, House of Dosas is the perfect vegetarian restaurant for you. This family oriented vegetarian restaurant opened in 1999 by current owner Jay Jeyasri serves up a variety of authentic cuisines from South India. House of Dosas prides itself on using only the freshest vegetables and authentic South Indian spices to ensure the best experience. At great prices, you can enjoy delicious authentic cuisine without breaking the bank (or your dietary restrictions!).
Try This: Spinach Masala Dosa: crepe topped with a special spinach mix, served with potato masala!
4 Bond St., Great Neck. 516-570-0915. / 24 Wall St., Huntington. 631-470-1924.
This family owned restaurant, juice bar and eco boutique strives to bring customers the freshest, healthiest and most delicious organic food, with plenty of vegan and gluten-free options. All of their dishes are made from scratch and incorporate recipes from around the world. With a rich and diverse menu and selection of freshly squeezed organic juices, there is something for everyone at Bee-Organic!
Besides the quality healthy eats, its eco-boutique offers a wide selection of organic skincare items, candles, scarves, crystals and so much more!
Try This: Buddha Bowl: choice of greens (baby mixed greens/spinach/arugula), carrot, red cabbage, sprouts, tomato, chickpeas, cucumber, avocado and raw walnuts! Yum!
15 E. Deer Park Rd., Dix Hills. 631-486-9222.
This 100-percent plant-based vegan eatery is the perfect spot for a hungry vegetarian. Plant Wise creates meals that are nutritious and delicious to keep you healthy, with the stated mission “for everyone to consume at least one fully plant-based meal per day.” Founders Alex and Pam are serious about spreading the joy and positive health benefits of such a goal.
Stop by this extraordinary café-style eatery for “Custom Juices” and “Super Smoothies” or to chow down on one of their many salads or bowls!
Try This: Masala Bowl: Chickpea Masala, tomatoes with two baked falafels atop a bed of fresh spinach with choice of brown rice or quinoa!
28 South Etna Ave., Ste. 9, Montauk. 631-668-3663.
In Montauk to hang out at the beautiful beaches? Joni’s Kitchen, a cute joint dishing out organic food that’s good for your body and soul, is a must-stop. Hungry customers can grab some take-out for the road, or, scoot onto a picnic table and enjoy the sun! Joni’s Kitchen channels the beach town vibe of Montauk through its seaside decor, and offers a medley of delicious options for vegetarians, vegans and gluten free-ers, too!
Enjoy breakfast all day or lighter fare like salads, sandwiches, wraps, and of course juices, smoothies, and coffee galore. Joni’s Kitchen is the perfect spot to grab a quick and healthy bite to power you through your day under the sun.
Try This: Homemade Organic Flax-Coconut Waffles: with fresh fruit or banana, served with maple syrup and strawberry butter (yes, you heard that correctly)!
75 Merritts Rd., Farmingdale. 516-755-1100.
This versatile pizzeria serves up vegan and gluten-free meals, as well as traditional options for meat-lovers! If you’re looking to get a taste of (vegetarian) Italy, this is the spot for you. Vegan dishes range from delicious appetizers, pasta, entrees and pizzas to an entire special vegan brunch menu served on weekends!
Try This: Vegan Penne Alla Vodka: slathered in a vodka-infused tomato cashew cream sauce!
78 Hillside Ave., Williston Park. 516-385-8833.
Looking to enjoy a sweet treat, tea, lunch, or some cake made for a special occasion? Sweet to Lick in Williston Park is a vegan bakery that serves up an array of delicious cupcakes, cookies, specialty cakes and more. Baked with no eggs, milk, butter, gelatin, honey or bone char sugar, everything is so delicious you won’t believe it’s vegan! Stop in to satisfy your sweet tooth!
Try This: Almond Oatmeal Cookie (oh-so good!) and Rocky Road Pie: chocolate shortbread crust with almond and marshmallow-speckled brownie tucked inside! Wow.
351 S. Broadway, Hicksville. 516-513-0939.
Rajbhog Café is a 100-percent vegetarian restaurant with plenty of vegan choices as well. Dine in or take out at this authentic Indian restaurant offering the flavor and deliciousness of the Far East, right here on Long Island. Known for the best Chaats (snacks) on Long Island, it is the go-to destination for all Indian food lovers!
Try This: Chaats & Mumbai Snacks: Aloo Kathi Roll—grilled roti wrap with spicy potatoes, onions and cilantro, with tamarind and coriander sauces provided as needed!
1551 Montauk Hwy., Oakdale. 631-791-1800.
This organic restaurant with unique décor serves up wholesome food for vegan and vegetarian foodies. With two owners—one a chef and the other a health coach—customers eat happily knowing that their food is not only delicious, but also “health coach approved.” The menu features flavors from around the world, and surely has something for everyone. Try their many vegetarian appetizers or wood-fired pizzas.
Besides the freshest quality ingredients, Wild Side Organic Bistro & Bar also add “care and love into the preparation.” Their passion for delicious healthy food surely shines through—you can taste it!
Try This: Cauliflower Balls: turmeric, tomatoes, ginger, garlic and sesame oil!
Roosevelt Field Mall, 630 Old Country Rd., Garden City. 516-747-7576.
Finding high-quality vegetarian food while out on a shopping spree isn’t always easy—that is, unless you’re at Roosevelt Field Mall, home to Maoz Vegetarian! Located in the mall’s “Dining District,” Maoz offers delicious, fresh, authentic, and of course, vegetarian falafels and salads galore. This fast-service restaurant is a great place for a vegetarian to stop for a healthy bite and continue shop-shop-shopping!
Try This: Maoz Falafel Sandwich: freshly baked white or whole wheat pita pocket filled to the brim with steaming hot falafel balls, topped with choice of salads and sauces from its famous salad bar!
135 Central Park Rd., Plainview. 516-349-0390.
Finding great Chinese food as a vegetarian can be difficult, as most of the dishes usually contain meat in them. Hunan Cottage is the perfect place for a hungry vegetarian to get some authentic Chinese food! This extraordinary restaurant offers an entire vegetarian section full of vegetarian dishes with vegetarian pork, chicken and beef—using 100-percent soybean protein as its main ingredients.
Try This: General Tso’s “Chicken”: chunks of chicken dipped in special batter sautéed in traditional Hunan sauce, a “superb chef’s masterpiece”!
514 Park Blvd., Massapequa Park. 516-543-4258.
Ephesus offers delicious Mediterranean cuisine and offers a ton of vegetarian options. Enjoy traditional Turkish food with a variety of vegetarian appetizers and entrees, from Stuffed Grape Leaves and Lentil Soup to Babagannus and Mausakka, and much more. Whatever you choose, you’ll be sure to leave with a happy belly!
Try This: Mausakka: baked sliced eggplant, potatoes, carrot, squash and onion with Romano sauce and mozzarella cheese!
104 W. Park Ave., Long Beach. 516-889-8955.
Bob’s Natural Foods in Long Beach has been serving up high-quality, delicious healthy food for more than 40 years! Friendly service in a relaxed atmosphere makes the perfect setting for some delicious smoothies, juices, wraps, salads and daily specials. Have a question about a particular menu item or seeking health advice? Just ask—Bob’s team is always glad to help!
Try This: Hummus & Avocado Wrap: whole wheat or gluten-free, you can even add mesclun greens, tomatoes, carrots, sprouts and dressing!
66 Newtown Lane, East Hampton. 631-329-5377.
Babette’s in East Hampton is an eclectic restaurant serving up an array of flavors from around the world. With a focus on clean food and sustainability, it offers a ton of vegetarian options, while also supporting local farmers. Whether stopping in for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, there are always plenty of vegetarian dishes on this menu!
Try This: Local Vegetable Tagine: harissa, curried carrot couscous, almonds and preserved meyer lemon yogurt!
1746 County Rd. 39, Southampton. 631-259-2222.
SAAZ in Southampton serves authentic Indian cuisine made with fresh, healthy ingredients. With the help of an incredibly friendly staff, SAAZ offers a smorgasbord of vegetarian (and non-vegetarian) options, and is well-known for their “symphony of spices” modern interpretations of classic dishes. Stop in for delicious and satisfying vegetarian Indian food!
Try This: Baingan Bhurta: baked and mashed eggplant cooked with onions and tomatoes!
7927 Jericho Tpke., Woodbury. 516-364-5041.
Featuring an eclectic menu replete with extraordinary dishes from Executive Chef Thomas Gloster aka “Chef Tom,” a Food Network Chopped Champion, Rustic Root specializes in high-quality, delicious “Snacks & Shareables,” salads, sides, desserts and “Mains,” prepared with “local ingredients, simple ideas, honest food, bold flavors.” Rustic Root offers daily specials, Saturday and Sunday Brunch, and plenty of gluten-free and vegetarian options.
Try This: Quinoa “Steak”—with celery root puree, spinach and sherry reduction!