Vegan Guide to Saigon

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Updated January 2020

If you’re heading to Vietnam then it’s likely that you’ll end up in Saigon (AKA Ho Chi Minh City) which is great if you’re a vegan because there’s some awesome vegan eating to be done. It’s easy to be vegan in Saigon because of the number of ‘Quan Chay’ (vegetarian restaurants) which serve either all vegan food, or a large selection of vegan food. You will also find vegan burgers, a vegan roast dinner and some of the best vegan cheese you’ve ever eaten if you know where to look. There is generally a good level of English spoken so language isn’t a huge barrier either (but do check out our Vegan Guide to Vietnam for a brief vegan language guide to be extra prepared). We hope you enjoy our Vegan Guide to Saigon with our favourite places to eat vegan food in Saigon.

Vegan Restaurants in Saigon

Filthy Vegan

Filthy Vegan
86 Cô Bắc
District 1
Hồ Chí Minh

Opening Times: 11am-10pm every day (closed Monday)

Vegan Fish & Chips with Heinz baked beans? Check. Vegan roast dinner? Check. Vegan full English breakfast? Check. Vegan donuts? Check. We could go on but you get the picture. Filthy Vegan is the place to go when you’ve had your fill of kale salads, Buddha bowls and detox smoothies. They are conveniently located in District 1 meaning you have no excuse not to visit and enjoy some fantastically filthy vegan food. Filthy Vegan are now the recipients of an ‘Excellent reviews’ sticker from HappyCow and rightly so…

Filthy Vegan Saigon Fish and Chips
Filthy Vegan Saigon English Breakfast
Filthy Vegan Saigon Roast Dinner
Filthy Vegan Saigon Donuts

Kashew Cheese Deli

Kashew Cheese Deli
14 Trần Ngọc Diện
District 2
Hồ Chí Minh

Opening Times: 10am-8.30pm every day (closed Tuesday)

Having persuaded friends who were visiting Saigon to become international Kashew Cheese smugglers and hand deliver packages to us in Siem Reap (on more than one occasion) we were fully aware how mighty damn fine the product was. Therefore we were excited to finally visit the source and enjoy dining at their deli in district 2. We were not disappointed and enjoyed some of the best sandwiches we’ve ever eaten, an ice cold Kombucha and whilst there were happy to present a ‘Excellent Reviews’ sticker from HappyCow to Lena, the owner and creator of Kashew Cheese.

Kashew Cheese Deli Sandwich 1
Kashew Cheese Deli Kombucha
Kashew Cheese Deli Sandwich 2
Kashew Cheese Deli and Happy Cow

Au Lac Healthy World

Au Lac Healthy World
120 Nguyen Trai
District 1
Saigon

Opening Times: 7am-10pm every day

This place is ridiculous in a kind of good way. It’s a food court, buffet and supermarket all in one building, a very big building at that. We were on a mission to check out a few places to add to our guide so didn’t order much, just chicken sticky rice and a vegan boiled egg, yes, a vegan boiled egg. The chicken sticky rice was average and the egg was weird. For research purposes we also had a vegan ice cream and that was very tasty. They have a huge menu and you’ve never eaten Au Lac mock meat products it’s well worth looking at the huge variety in the supermarket and we’re sure the buffet would be pretty extensive.

Au Lac Healthy World vegan egg
Au Lac Healthy World vegan ice cream

The Organik House

The Organik House
7F Nguyen Thi Minh Khai
District 1
Ho Chi Minh City

Opening Times: 9am-9pm every day (closes at 5pm on Sunday)

Upon arrival we were presented with a couple of blackboards showing what was on offer. We started with a golden ale from Dong Son which was very good. We selected 3 dishes: sour dough bread with nut cheese, radicchio, pickles and pesto, tortilla chips with spicy nut cheese and stirfried tempeh with veggies and rice. The bread, cheese and pickles were very good as we’re the cheese with tortillas which were made with tofu skin. Unusual and innovative for sure. Both of these dishes made great appetisers and the stir fried tempeh offered the excellent main course. Lots of flavour, not oily and delicious although would have loved a little more sauce! All in all this is a great option for anyone craving ‘non Vietnamese’ food that is organic and creative. Plus they have a delicious selection of vegan cheese within their dishes and also as a takeaway option from their small deli. Check it out.

The Organik House vegan food 2
The Organik House vegan food 1

Passengers

Passengers
46/9 Tran Quang Dieu
District 3
Ho Chi Minh City

Opening Times: 9am-10pm every day

We are happy we jumped in a cab and checked out this cool spot in district 3. It was a little tricky to find as tucked away down an alley but provided an oasis from the crazy streets outside. Our almond milk cappuccino and matcha green latte were excellent and this would be the perfect spot to hide for a few hours with a couple of nice drinks and catch up with some work or read a book. We were able to meet the owner Du, and present him with an ‘Excellent Reviews’ sticker from HappyCow during our visit.

Passengers Saigon Vegan Coffee
Passengers and Happy Cow

Nha Hang Chay Sen

Nha Hang Chay Sen
171 Nguyen Thai Hoc
District 1
Saigon

Opening Times: 10am-2pm and 4pm-10pm every day

Nha Hang Chay Sen has a room where you sit on the floor on low tables and a table and chairs section upstairs. Downstairs there is a cabinet with foodstuff on sale including vegan stock, noodles, sauces and the intriguingly labelled ‘meat fluff’. The portions were small (and therefore a bit pricey for this kind of restaurant) but they have the not-to-be-missed-must-try-if-you’re-in-Saigon vegan egg on the menu, it’s worth a visit just to marvel at this vegan egg which actually tastes way better than an animal egg and has great novelty factor. No beer here and be careful for hidden extras that you will be charged for like the wet tissue they will add to your bill after leaving it on the table. We laughed when we saw ’tissue’ on the menu with all the mock meat, thinking it was a bad menu description for something, only to find that it did actually mean ‘serviette’ and was chargeable. Weird.

Vegan egg braised in a soy gravy with mock belly pork
vegan egg at Sen in Saigon

Vegetarian Restaurants in Saigon

Pi Vegetarian Bistro

Pi Vegetarian Bistro
19 Vo Van Tan
District 3
Ho Chi Minh City

Opening Times: 11am-3pm and 5pm-9.30pm every day

This was a great recommendation from the people behind Filthy Vegan, “way cheaper than Hum which is opposite and just as good for upscale local food”. Our meal comprised of Turmeric & Creamy Coconut Rice Balls, Fried Tofu with homemade Black Garlic Sauce and Vietnamese Mini Pancakes. Each and every dish was outstanding and served with tasty sauces, cooked perfectly, full of flavour and delicious. The menu was daunting however, more than 100 items and we therefore consider ourselves lucky that we chose 3 excellent dishes, maybe they’re all that good? We’ll be back for sure.

Pi Vegetarian Bistro vegan rice balls
Pi Vegetarian Bistro vegan mini pancakes

4an Authentic Vietnamese Vegetarian

4an Authentic Vietnamese Vegetarian
26 Cao Thang
District 3
Saigon

Opening Times: 7.30am-10pm every day

This cool and modern environmentally friendly restaurant with a green concept is well worth a visit. Bright and vibrant interior and delicious, well presented food. We were just passing and not hungry to be honest but we were drawn in and managed to find space for mushroom bao and tofu leaf rolls with house made sauce. Both were excellent and we will return for sure.

4an Vegetarian Vegan Bao
4an Vegetarian Vegan Tofu Rolls

Sala Quan Chay

Sala Quan Chay
71C Nguyen Thi Minh Khai
District 1
Ho Chi Minh City

Opening Times: 7am-9pm every day

We were welcomed by relaxing jazz music and strong AC which was the perfect antidote to the hot streets of Saigon. We ordered bun cha and coconut soy ribs to share. The bun cha was superb and reminded us that we used to eat this dish all the time in Siem Reap but had forgotten just how good it was! The coconut soy ribs were cold, oily and tasteless so we didn’t eat them. Nice relaxed vibe and friendly staff, shame we chose 1 bad dish!

Sala Quan Chay vegan bun cha
Sala Quan Chay vegan ribs

Hum Vegetarian Cafe & Restaurant

Hum Vegetarian Cafe & Restaurant
32 Vo Van Tan
District 3
Saigon

Opening Times: 10am-10pm every day

We’re really only including this restaurant because it’s the place that everyone suggests you go and every says is the best restaurant for vegetarians in town. It isn’t. In fact it’s awful (or at least it was on our visit). Overpriced under flavoured food that’s as stingy on ingredients as it is on flavour. We had a curry that was served with cold noodles which you’re supposed to add to the soup. Doing this makes an already not hot enough bland curry into a decidedly lukewarm bland curry. “Are the noodles supposed to be cold?” we ask our waitress, “Oh yes” she says with a smile, followed by “Are you enjoying your food?” to which we reply “Not really as it’s cold and doesn’t taste of anything”. “OK that’s great” she says with a smile and walks off. That kind of sums up the service at Hum for us and we leave with a feeling that they have been trading on their reputation as opposed to producing really good vegan and vegetarian food. Since our visit in 2016 they now have 2 more locations and we still hear good things about the food, so possibly we will return one day…

Cold noodles and bland curry at Hum in Saigon
Average pineapple fried rice and a small portion too at Hum in Saigon

Bong Sung Vegetarian

Bong Sung Vegetarian
86 Nguyen Du
District 1
Saigon

Opening Times: 7am-10pm every day, closed Monday

If you want exceptionally friendly service and tasty Vietnamese food, then head to Bong Sung. The pate with baguette is full of flavour and has a great texture, it’s one of our favourite dishes there. Other things to sample include the ‘Mushrooms in Tamarind’ and the ‘Vegetable Curry’ (but be sure to ask for it to be made vegan as this dish normally has milk in it). The ‘Stuffed Tofu’ is also great. The staff speak excellent English and were really helpful recommending dishes and checking out ingredients.  They serve beer here and excellent soft drinks including a wonderful sweet and salted lemon juice (highly recommended).

Delicious mushrom pate at Bong Sung in Saigon
Tasty stuffed tofu in Saigon at Bong Sung

Vegan Friendly Restaurants in Saigon

Ben Thanh Street Food Market

Ben Thanh Street Food Market
26-30 Thủ Khoa Huân
Phường Bến Thành
District 1
Hồ Chí Minh City

Opening Times: 5am-2am every day

Did somebody say bao? We couldn’t resist heading here for vegan tofu bao that we had heard about from our friend, The Hungry Gecko. She warned us that the place was packed with flesh smoking on the BBQ but as bao lovers we made it happen. We think the chef had a bad day, the bao wasn’t cooked properly and the tofu was so oily it went in the bin. Gutted. Also, the BBQ meat surrounding us at all times was a little off putting…

Street Food Market Saigon
Street Food Market Saigon vegan bao

Ngoc Tho

Ngoc Tho
75/9 Pha Ngu Lao Street
District 1
Saigon

Opening Times: 8am-10.30pm every day

Simple restaurant with a menu including many vegan mock meat Vietnamese dishes. The noodle soups are great but it’s the fake stuff here that really blows our mind. Try their roast pork that had different textures in layers and tastes as real as either of us can remember but it’s just made from plants. The mock chicken dishes don’t taste like chicken as such but they do taste good and offer an opportunity to eat something with a different texture (normally a bit chewy and something you can get your teeth into). There’s wifi, beer and ladies trying to sell you tissues, a fan, some nail clippers or chewing gum at any opportunity which can be a good or bad thing depending on what you need during your meal.

incredible mock meat in Saigon
Mock chicken with cashews and vegetables

Vegan Fine Dining in Saigon

Bamboo Chic

Bamboo Chic
Le Meridien Saigon
3C Đường Tôn Đức Thắng
District 1
Saigon

Opening Times: 11.30am-2pm for lunch (closed Saturday) and 6pm-10pm for dinner every day

This upscale restaurant on the 9th floor of Le Meridien Saigon offers the perfect escape from the bustling streets below. At lunch there is a ‘Discovery’ set menu which is vegan and the a la carte menu which is available during lunch and dinner includes a variety of vegan options. Unfortunately they are not labelled but the staff were excellent in helping us order. The vegan side dishes that we chose were huge and not really side dishes at all but full sized portions. We loved the green beans with garlic and the mushroom clay pot and the Thien Ly salad that was served as part of the set menu was excellent.

fried tofu
vegan Vietnamese tofu curry

Li Bai

Li Bai
Sheraton Saigon Hotel & Towers
88 Dong Khoi
District 1
Saigon

Opening Times: 11am-2.30pm and 6.30pm-10pm every day

We had a meal at Li Bai when we were staying at the Sheraton Hotel and Towers and were really impressed with the Chinese food there, they have a regular vegetarian menu with a lot of vegan dishes and there’s a huge choice of tofu, mock meat or just vegetable dishes to choose from. Here is the full review of our meal at Li Bai Saigon, but one of our favourite dishes was the ‘sweet and sour vegetarian chicken’ made with braised tofu skin and wrapped around a crunchy lotus root before being deep fried and covered in a sticky sweet and sour sauce.

vegan lotus root salad at Li Bai in Saigon
Supremely tasty deep fried bean curd skin with sweet & sour sauce at Li Bai

R&J Italian Lounge & Restaurant

R&J Italian Lounge & Restaurant
The Reverie Saigon
22-36 Nguyen Hue Boulevard
District 1
Saigon

Opening Times: 5pm-midnight every day

For a world class, authentic Italian meal (and maybe the best bread you’ve ever tasted) it’s well worth visiting R&J, the Italian restaurant from über luxury hotel The Reverie. For best results, call ahead and tell them you are vegan so they can create something special for you. Sure, they can cater for you without advance notice but your options will be limited. Expect glitz, glamour and a bit of theatre with your food (and expect to be amazed). We loved everything we ate there but the Minestrone Soup and the Smoked Eggplant Spaghetti were particular stand out dishes for us. Here is our review of R&J but be prepared for a lot of gushing about how good the food is.

delicous vegan bread at R&J in Saigon
delicious vegan Italian fine dining at The Reverie Saigon

Bistro Song Vie

Bistro Song Vie
Villa Song
197/2 Nguyen Van Huong Street
District 2
Saigon

Opening Times: 6am-10pm every day

All the way out in District 2 but well worth a visit, is the restaurant attached to the lovely riverside retreat Villa Song. We were staying at Villa Song and were so impressed with the chef and his team that we decided to have dinner there too… it totally exceeded our expectations and we were blown away with a few of the dishes. Delicious soups, homemade fresh gnocchi and a vegetable platter that was like eating art.

vegan Vietnamese Pho at Villa Song for breakfast
A symphony of plant-based ingredients on our plate for our final vegan meal at Villa Song

Vegan Friendly Luxury Hotels in Saigon

Check out these ‘tried and tested’ vegan friendly luxury hotels and resorts in Saigon that one of our team has stayed at. Each of them understood our request for plant based food and ensured that our experience as vegan guests was very enjoyable. We would always recommend contacting your hotel or resort in advance to advise them of your dietary choice, and then to follow this up upon check in by asking to speak with either the restaurant manager or member of the F&B team.

HappyCow in Saigon

Of course, no vegan travel adventure would be complete without using the excellent HappyCow website or app, their Vegan Ho Chi Minh City page currently lists 97 all vegan and 104 all vegetarian restaurants for you to choose from, wow, that’s an impressive list! Here are the top 10 options in Ho Chi Minh City according to recent reviews on HappyCow, including these 3 which we would love to check out next time:

Phuc Quang Chay
Shambala
Mani

Vegan Coffee in Saigon

As you may or may not know, finding vegan coffee in Vietnam is harder than you might imagine. Coffee beans are often roasted in butter and sometimes even fish sauce to add flavour. We talk about this more in one of our most popular blog posts ‘Is Vietnamese Coffee Vegan‘. Our friend Adelle from Ardor SEO who is based in Vietnam has helped us to help you find vegan coffee in Saigon. She has visited each of the locations listed below and spoken with the owners to confirm that their coffee beans are vegan friendly.

Khom Coffee in District 1
Coffee Hut in District 1
Cokernut Cafe in District 1
Talk Barista in District 3

There are of course many more vegan coffee options in Saigon but these will give you a good starting point to find your caffeine fix without a knob of butter or dash of fish sauce for added flavour…!

Other Vegan Guides to Saigon

It is well worth joining both Vegan Vietnam and Vegetarians & Vegans in Saigon groups on Facebook and also check out the below vegan guides that we found online which helped us with our research prior to the recent trip:

The Best Vegan Food in Saigon from Miss Filatelista
Ho Chi Minh Vegan Food from A Billion Veg
Vegan Ho Chi Minh Guide from Uprooted  Traveller

Vegan Food Quest in Vietnam

2020-04-29T13:16:39+00:00

4 Comments

  1. Diana Marie Pablo May 28, 2019 at 9:57 pm - Reply

    Thank you so much for this. Being Vegan is really such a struggle but having people like you who gives these kinds of yips and guidance makes me appreciate my decision a lot more. Thank you again.

    • Vegan Food Quest May 29, 2019 at 1:35 am - Reply

      Thank you so much for your comment Diana! It is very nice to receive messages or comments from our readers that have found our guides and reviews helpful. Enjoy your vegan travel adventure wherever you are heading next…

  2. Karin March 15, 2020 at 2:57 pm - Reply

    Hey!
    We just created a Youtube vlog about Vegan Food in Ho Chi Minh City and thought it might be helpful for all the other Vegan people out there! 🙂
    LINK: https://youtu.be/Wm2dbwnPwCU
    Greetings,
    Karin and Patrick

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