I moved back to Nashville in 2011 and since then I’ve seen a lot of veggie restaurants come and go (RIP Khan’s). We are now in a golden age of Nashville vegan restaurants, and it’s just the beginning. At Nashville VegFest earlier this month, there was a line around the parking lot. It’s grown every year, and just shows how much Nashville loves good vegan food. We don’t have nearly as many vegan restaurants as New York or LA, but our best could hold their own against their best. Here are my all-time favorite Nashville vegan restaurants.
The BE-Hive makes seitan for a lot of restaurants and grocery stores in the region, but on the weekends they open up their deli for lunch. They have a deli case full of fake meats, cheeses and salad dressings. And a menu featuring deli sandwiches, wings, fancy tater tots, and a crunchwrap. I recommend trying whatever their weekly special is. They have a lot of fun playing with flavors, and rotate through traditionally meaty classics each week. Even people who eat real meat appreciate their surprising flavor combinations and fresh ingredients. It’s the most constantly creative vegan restaurant in Nashville. Not much seating, grab some things to go and have a picnic at Shelby Park.
The Southern V
The Southern V cooks up crave-worthy vegan comfort food. For breakfast I recommend their seitan Chick’n Biscuit or hot chick’n if you’re feeling brave (it’s almost painfully hot, but so good). If you go on a Saturday morning their glazed donuts and apple fritters are the best vegan donuts in Nashville, but they’re only available a few hours each week. For lunch or dinner, I like the Chick’n Sandwich or the TVP Patty Melt. All the sides are delicious and offer a real taste of Nashville meat and three cooking done vegan. The only place in town to experience vegan soul food, and the best option if you want to try vegan Nashville hot chicken.
Falcon Coffee Bar
I’m biased towards Falcon because I can walk there from my house, and I absolutely take full advantage of that. Try the French Dip sandwich or the Chop Chop salad. If you’re there on a day when they have fresh pastries from Rose Gold Vegan Bakery, try one of her pop tarts (or anything, you can’t go wrong!) If you get a coffee drink, make sure you specify non-dairy milk.
The Wild Cow and Graze
The Wild Cow and Graze are located in the same building in east Nashville, and share owners, but offer different dining experiences. The Wild Cow is a classic. The place to go for really satisfying salads, bowls and veggie burgers. I love their Caesar Salad and their Chipotle and Black Bean Burrito. Graze has a bar with fun cocktails and great happy hour deals. They also have the best dessert chef in town. It’s still casual, but also appropriate for a special occasion. Try their lava cake. (Update Feb 2020: Wild Cow has moved to a new and even better location nearby)
Ava is the vegan restaurant with the best bar and best patio. Grab an ice cold Avo Margherita and soak up the sun. They’re also the go-to place for raw food in Nashville. Try their Kale Caesar. After, walk next door to Koko’s for a scoop of coconut ice cream. It’s all made locally and their flavors change depending on what’s in season. You definitely don’t want to miss peach season!
Other faves (and their best dish):
RBQ (Curry Chicken Nachos), Woodlands (Gobi Manchurian), Grins at Vanderbilt (Nashville Hot Tofu), Sunflower Cafe (BBQ)
Am I missing any of your favorites?