Auckland’s Top Vegan Finds
Auckland’s vegan visitors are now spoilt for choice for plant-based eating in New Zealand’s largest city. Vegan’s don’t eat any products sourced from animals including honey. Basically anything that uses an animal’s time, flesh or energy is off the table. Not just meat, chicken or fish but eggs and diary too. Which means you'll need to milk an almond to get a latte coffee!
This years' Google Trends analysis of New Zealand-based queries for ‘vegan’ were double those for ‘vegetarian’ or ‘gluten-free’. Vegan eating is riding a wave.
Fortunately supermarket’s like Countdown Grey Lynn have clicked onto supplying vegan customers. They stock a wide range of vegan products like meatless-meat made from pea protein, vegan ice cream, coconut yoghurt, almond milk and diary-free cheese.
Luckily plant-based cafes and restaurants have spouted in central Auckland. Here's the top vegan cafes and bakeries we've sampled in the city.
Sunflower Thai Vegan Restaurant - High Street, Central Auckland
Offering healthy Asian style food, this self-proclaimed pioneer of vegetarian and vegan Thai food truly knows the secret to a tasty dish. Serving up a range of food from Pad Thai to Chinese herbal soups, the menu also includes some takes on classic western food such as vegetarian fish and chips or the tofu burger. Serving up the hungry individuals of Auckland for the past 8 years, the restaurant prides itself in having no MSG in its cooking and all foods being 100% vegetarian (95% vegan!). So, it is time for a veggie get-to-together and taste one (or more) of their delicious foods on offer at either lunch or dinner.
Tart Bakery - St Kevin’s Arcade, Karangahape Rd
Try Tart’s plant-based brilliance in the shape of a warm almond croissant with its flaky almond-crusted outer and gooey centre. Or select from vegan-made danishes, cronuts, ‘meat’ pies, ‘sausage’ rolls, sandwiches and their famed (coconut) cream doughnuts. All of this and a freshly brewed coffee (frothed with your choice of nut milk) and you’ll understand why Tart was named New Zealand bakery of the year by NZ Herald readers.
The Butcher’s Son - Jervois Rd, Herne Bay
New v-kid on the block, this ironically named cafe opened recently with a daytime vegan menu which includes bowls and burgers. Not a butcher’s steak or sausage in sight, we love their arancini mushroom balls and pakora bites. The dessert cabinet features chocolate cheesecake and a Kiwi-classic, the jellytip slice.
Misters - Wyndham St, Central Auckland
City worker bees head to Misters for plenty of vegan, vegetarian and grain free choices. Smoothies, juices, coffee, breakfast and lunch options made from the best local, seasonal organic produce, Everything from their kitchen is 100% gluten free and dairy free. We also like their takeaway packaging too which is entirely compostable.
Hector’s at the Heritage, Hobson St, Central Auckland
This major hotel has jumped into vegan dining with a plant-based menu offering items like pumpkin nut ravioli toasted hazelnuts, cashew nut ricotta, with sage “butter”. The restaurant sources most of their produce within a 50-kilometre radius from local growers and suppliers and a section of the kitchen is entirely animal-product free, right through to the coffee machine using only non-dairy milks.
Unbakery Cafe - Little Bird Organics - Ponsonby
Everything in their cabinet is vegan,gluten-free, dairy-free, refined cane sugar-free, soy free and tastes amazing. We can’t go past their raspberry cacao brownie, ferrero ‘rawcha’ or famous green-hued matcha cheesecake. If you’re visiting Auckland, check it out and take a flick through the pages of their recipe books too.
This whole foods eatery offers an inner-city sanctuary with a courtyard of lush greenery taking you away from the hustle and bustle of Kingsland. Monday’s, although not fully vegan, offers a full range of plant-based options available for breakfast and lunch. Pop in and indulge in all things wellness, whether it be a matcha latte, citrus waffles or BBQ jackfruit sliders, this little gem truly has something for everyone - including YOGA!
We happily recommend these eateries and more to vegan visitors on our Hello Auckland walking tours because everyone deserves a great meal out!