Conscious Dining

Courtesy of Carole Baral*

This is a guide to restaurants in the Santa Barbara vicinity that I have found to be “accommodating” to Vegans as far as their menu choices and service. Please note that you should call or check the restaurants website for frequent menu changes and hours of operations. Note: Savoy Café , Whole Foods , Lazy Acres and Gelson’s stock very complete salad bars and occasionally Vegan soups for convenient take-out or eat in! The following dish suggestions are only a few choices of available Vegan items that we have personally sampled and enjoyed!


  • Mesa Verde: most dishes are vegan, tasty flatbread with humus, rather exotic Mediterranean combinations, fine brunch on weekends

  • Olivers: a new 5 Star all Vegan luxury restaurant, fine service, excellent variety of gourmet dishes, pricey but nice for a special occasion! Outdoor patio welcomes dogs! Inside seating as well. Try it!



  • Beachside Bar-Cafe: the vegetable Paella is Vegan and features grilled portobello mushroom on saffron rice and veggies

  • Goodland’s Café: Grab and Go! Prepared foods good for a quick take out or eat al fresco at the picnic tables outside, sesame noodle salad, humus, occ. Vegan soups


  • The Club at UCSB: formerly the Faculty dining Hall. Magnificent setting near the lagoon. Several gourmet Vegan options changing with seasonal menu.

  • Ike’s Love and Sandwich Shop: several Vegan options for sandwiches, un-meatball, Vegan cheeses, even fried un-chicken.

  • Hana Kitchen: offers bowls and tacos with white rice and soy chicken with interesting sauces (mango, teriyaki)

  • Aladdin Cafe: good Vegan falafel sandwich and veggie platter, filling and delicious, tasty tahini sauce


  • Blaze Pizza: Vegan crust with soy cheese, tofu (chicken) and many veggie options. Unlimited toppings for less than $10 dollars each pie

  • Pizza Guru: makes pizza with gluten-free crusts and Vegan cheese, fine salads with Vegan ranch dressing, some soups are Vegan

  • Saigon (Vietnamese): has a full vegetarian menu many of which can be made Vegan, noodle soups, mock analogs includes Vegan shrimp, fresh rolls (one other location in SB: State St. downtown)

  • Natural Cafe: Many Vegan choices, great salads, dressings, a Vegan soup everyday, the burger buns are Vegan. (also 2 other location on State St. downtown and in Goleta)

  • Tap Thai: Thai fresh rolls are vegan, fried tofu in green salad dish, noodle dishes and Spicy Tofu basil

  • Taste of India: A separate full Vegan menu: delicious vegetable soup, excellent variety of breads without ghee and at least one tofu dish among many choices


  • Sachi Ramen/noodle house: miso noodle soups, tempura without egg batter, salads, yummy grilled shishito peppers

  • OAT Bakery: 5 W. Haley St. 803-335-1628, Call for times. Best in town for fresh daily bread, delicious healthy, hearty Vegan breads with gluten-free options

  • Sushi Thyme: a casual Japanese Restaurant in the Paseo Nuevo Mall. Has Vegan miso soup (no fish flakes) and sushi rolls. Tempura batter has no egg.

  • Little Kitchen: Offers the delicious “Impossible Burger”, ask for rye bread as their bun is not Vegan. Good homemade cole slaw and salads.

  • Le Petite Valentien: (Ethiopian food served at lunch, on Sat./ Sun.) Interesting choices of 6 tasty Vegan vegetable dishes with Injeri (Teff) bread

  • Hana Kitchen: see Isla Vista listing for menu options

  • Savoy Café: Extensive salad bar, filling breakfast Vegan burrito with quinoa and sweet potatoes, tofu scramble, excellent Vegan chocolate cupcakes, will make yummy vegan birthday cakes if pre-ordered

  • Lilac Patisserie: All gluten-free sweet baked goods but no all Vegan breads, salads and red velvet cupcake option

  • Zaytoon: one of the only Mid-Eastern choices in town. Vegan lentil soup, thick with lemony flavor, also excellent veggie plate with the usual falafel, humus, baba ghanoush

  • Himalayan Kitchen: Nepalese style thali dinners, exotic Vegan dishes denoted with a “v” including soup and bread

  • Viva: Mexican food, beans and rice are both Vegan! guacamole and salads.

  • Honey B’s: They serve 90% Vegan breakfast and luncheon dishes. Especially delicious are the green waffle sandwiches and scrambled tofu added to any dish. Soft serve coconut nice cream. Located upstairs at Antioch U. they feature indoor or outdoor terrace seating

  • Green Table: Serves a variety of healthful drinks as well as hearty main dishes prepared with clean ingredients. Most dishes are Vegan. Examples are stuffed peppers, pulled mushroom sandwich and raw desserts

  • Hoffman Brathaus: Would you believe? 3 vegan options for brats, no vegan rolls, best thick French fries ever, ask for no salt and they prepare it fresh, assorted fancy condiments

  • Pizza Rev: In Paseo Nuevo Mall, Has some organic vegetables, vegan cheese and sausage, gluten-free crust


  • Meun Fan: (Thai): Tofu soup, Pad Woo Sen (ask for no egg), Drunken Noodles with tofu, curries, fresh rolls with peanut sauce. (Second location in Goleta on Calle Real (same name)


  • Shang Hai: (Chinese): the longest existing Chinese rest in SB. Many good Vegan soups including veggie wonton soup and many analog products, reasonable and filling lunch specials


  • Farm Cart: buy organic vegetables and fruits from a colorful cart which sits at 5103 Carpinteria Ave. Most selections come from their 2 acre farm nearby or from other local organic farmers.


  • China Palace: Buddha’s Delight includes black mushrooms, veggies and tofu skin, plus soy chicken dishes


  • New Frontiers Natural Marketplace: A well stocked health food store/supermarket with many prepared options. Check closely for the Vegan selections of the day. Some Vegan baked goods, large salad bar. Scenic outdoor eating deck


  • Basil and Mint: Vietnamese fare with seaweed rolls, Pho soups, and an excellent specialty: Vegan fish served in a hot clay pot