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Local Foodie’s Guide to the Best Vegan Restaurants in Colorado

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Are you wondering about the best vegan restaurants in Colorado? You’re in the right place!

Nowadays, it seems like most restaurants have grudgingly added at least one plant-based option to their menu. T

his is a good start, but unfortunately, it means vegans like me end up eating a lot of the same things over and over (Hello again, salad, my old friend).

But Colorado vegan food goes the extra mile, providing vegan breakfasts, desserts, and everything in between.

Whether you’re fully vegan, trying out Meatless Mondays, or a carnivore hoping to impress your vegan friends, here’s a roundup of the best vegan restaurants in Colorado.

Map of Colorado Vegan Restaurants

Are you in a rush? Here’s a map of Colorado’s best vegan restaurants.

Note: some of these places have multiple locations. To keep the map not overly-busy, just one location for each has been marked.

Best Vegan Restaurants in Colorado for Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner

Bang Up to the Elephant

Spicy buffalo cauliflower bites served with a side of creamy ranch dressing and fresh celery sticks, arranged on a dark slate surface with a parsley garnish.

Bang Up to the Elephant is a plant-based eatery in Denver’s Cap Hill. It is one of the most popular vegan restaurants in Colorado, with a diverse menu rooted in cuisines from all over the world.

Favorites include a rice and tofu bowl smothered in Guyanese cassareep sauce, a chana sandwich of curried chickpeas stuffed into fried flatbread, and a Cubano made with seitan-ham and jackfruit.

Their mixed drinks list, which is full of tropical flavors like guava and passionfruit, is enough to transport you to your favorite island.

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    City O’ City

    Grilled burritos on a wooden board with visible grill marks, accompanied by green bell peppers in the background, on a rustic wooden table.

    Another great Denver vegan restaurant, City O’ City is an all-vegetarian, mostly vegan spot that has plenty of options for every meal.

    For breakfast, try a veggie chorizo hash with scrambled tofu, bourbon-flavored chicken, and waffles, or a veganized Sardou (a Louisiana classic).

    If you’re short on time, stop by to grab one of their all-vegan “wake ‘n’ take” burritos, which are served hot, wrapped in foil, and ready to go.

    For lunch and dinner, City O City offers a long and eclectic menu. There’s the usual health-conscious vegan fare like salads and quinoa bowls, plus more unexpected dishes like poutine and ho-ho cupcakes.

    They also have a selection of veganizable pizzas. I usually order the BBQ Mac Wrap, a tortilla filled with vegan mac ‘n’ cheese, barbecue seitan, pickles, coleslaw, and crispy onions.

    Fire on the Mountain

    A plate of buffalo cauliflower bites.

    This hip spot in Denver’s Highlands and Wash Park neighborhoods is a must-try for Colorado vegan food because of its specialty: chicken wings.

    Besides actual wings for the carnivores, Fire on the Mountain offers both seitan wings and crispy cauliflower wings. You can choose from a long list of sauces to dunk your wings, but in my opinion, the herby vegan ranch is the true star of the show.

    If wings aren’t your thing, try the vegan gyro or vegan green chili.

    Wellness Sushi

    Bowl of Asian-style noodle soup with sections of grated carrots, broccoli, and garnished with parsley, served on a white marble background.

    If you’re vegan or vegetarian, your typical meal at a sushi restaurant probably looks like this: You chewing on a flavorless avocado roll while watching, a little sadly, as your friends dig into fancy, colorful rolls with somewhere around 50 ingredients.

    Not here! Wellness’s menu is 100% plant-based, and their rolls are packed with both veggies and vegan proteins, like teriyaki beef, shrimp, tuna, salmon, and crab.

    They also offer ramen, rice bowls, and a pisang goreng dessert made with fried bananas and vegan cheese.

    Watercourse Foods

    This is one of the best fully vegan restaurants in Colorado, serving up a variety of plant-based dishes for breakfast, lunch, and dinner in the heart of Denver.

    Their breakfast includes veganized classics like chicken-fried seitan steak, bagels with carrot lox, and an extra-thick souffle pancake, and they offer fresh-baked pastries like biscotti and pecan sticky buns. For lunch, my favorite is their turkey and brie sandwich.

    Watercourse also supports their community by decorating their walls with paintings by local artists—which you can purchase and take home with you.

    Busaba Thai

    A sliced mango on a wooden plate with rice.

    Most Thai places have some kind of vegan tofu option, but this upscale Louisville joint is my favorite because their menu has a ton of vegan or veganizable dishes, denoted with little leaf symbols. Busaba Thai offers the usual appetizers like edamame and potstickers, as well as my new obsession: corn fritters.

    After working your way through a noodle, curry, or fried rice dish, try one of their to-die-for vegan desserts like mango sticky rice, house-made coconut ice cream, or bua loy (pumpkin, yam, and taro balls).

    They also have a full bar, and their cocktails are on point. They get crowded at peak lunch and dinner times, so make a reservation if you can.

    Lulu’s BBQ

    You probably wouldn’t expect a barbecue joint to have many vegan options…and Lulu’s doesn’t. But they do make a mean barbecue tofu, which is why I put them on this list.

    You won’t have a full menu to choose from (though you will have a few options for sides, including fruit, salad, and sweet potato tots), but the barbecue tofu is worth the trip to Louisville!

    Best Colorado Vegan Restaurants for Fast Food

    Native Foods

    A plate of loaded nachos with melted cheddar cheese, slices of jalapeño, diced tomatoes, onions, and a generous scoop of guacamole on top.

    If you’re short on time, this 100% plant-based fast-casual chain is one of the best vegan restaurants in Colorado. Native Foods specializes in vegan comfort food—think nachos, burgers, chicken and waffles, and oatmeal crème pie for dessert.

    Flower Child

    This health-conscious chain caters to all lifestyles—from vegan to carnivorous, gluten-free to paleo. Flower Child offers a customizable menu of bowls, wraps, and salads with a variety of mix-and-match grains, veggies, and healthy proteins (including tofu).

    Meta Burger

    Hands holding a meatless burger.

    While many Colorado vegan restaurants lean toward the healthy, Meta Burger embraces the greasy, deep-fried deliciousness of classic American cuisine—vegan-style.

    Their menu is short and sweet, with plant-based burgers and sandwiches, snacks like mozzarella sticks and fried Oreos, and silky-smooth vegan milkshakes.

    MOD Pizza

    Nowadays, many pizza places offer some kind of vegan cheese or meat—but they often add a hefty upcharge per substitution (I’m looking at you, Beaujo’s, and Infinitus Pi).

    I love MOD because not only do they have vegan mozzarella and plant-based Italian sausage, but they’re also the most affordable pizza around.

    Instead of gouging you for every topping you add, they let you pile as many veggies, sauces, and other toppings on your personal 11” pizza for one flat price of around $12.

    Best Colorado Vegan Restaurants for Desserts

    Voodoo Doughnuts

    When it comes to desserts, Voodoo Doughnuts is one of the top vegan restaurants in Colorado. A few of their many vegan donuts include Dirt (iced with Oreos on top), Maple Cream (Bavarian cream and maple frosting), and School Daze (PB&J).

    Their signature Voodoo Dolls are decorated with fun faces, complete with a pretzel stick stake and oozing red raspberry “blood.”

    But my favorite is the one thing on the menu that’s not really a donut: the deep-fried apple fritters that are literally as big as your face.

    Since starting in Portland 20 years ago with the goal of “world doughnut domination,” Voodoo has spread its sugary magic across the country and now has three locations in Denver, with another set to open in Boulder.

    They also recently opened a shop inside the Denver airport. So now, whenever I book a flight, I make sure it leaves during Voodoo’s opening hours. Priorities, right?

    Boulder Baked

    This local shop used to be nestled in downtown Boulder, but it recently moved east to Arapahoe and 55th.

    Boulder Bakes makes all their cookies, cakes, and other comfort foods from scratch in-house daily, offering both vegan and gluten-free options. My favorite is the pumpkin spice cupcakes.

    Little Man

    The front of an ice cream shop that is shaped like an old school milk jug.

    You’ll recognize this iconic Denver ice creamery by its unusually shaped building: a 28-foot-tall milk can.

    Like many ice cream shops in Colorado, Little Man always has a couple of vegan flavors, but they rotate frequently. Stop by or call ahead to see what the day’s options are. I’ve had vegan strawberry, chocolate Oreo, and dulce de leche here before.

    Punch Buggy

    This cute little shave ice stand in Louisville combines the best of Colorado vegan food with the tropical flavors of Hawaii. Their shave ice is perfect for hot summer days—in fact, they’re only open from May to September.

    You can choose from exotic flavors like lilikoi, lychee, and li-berry, as well as old standbys like grape and lemon. More importantly, Punch Buggy offers a variety of tops and bottoms for their shave ice cups, including vegan coconut ice cream and haupia whip.

    Sweet Cow

    Another vegan-friendly ice cream shop, Sweet Cow, has storefronts in Denver, Boulder, Longmont, and more. They always have one or two vegan options, but these vary from day to day and store to store, so check the website.

    Spoiler alert: Their vegan ice cream usually involves Oreos (not that I’m complaining). I’ve sampled chocolate Oreo, peanut butter Oreo, and strawberry Oreo, as well as other flavors like Thai Iced Tea, Dutch chocolate, and chocolate chip.

    My local Sweet Cow in Louisville is always unbelievably packed (Even in winter—who eats ice cream in winter?), so I’d recommend ordering online and swinging by the window to pick it up.

    You’ll save yourself at least 15 minutes of standing in line with people who care way more than they should about ice cream. But hey, I make an extra trip to Terminal B for donuts every time I fly, so who am I to judge?

    Final Thoughts: Best Vegan Restaurants in Colorado

    I went vegan 15 years ago, back when dairy-free cheese didn’t exist and most people associated vegan food with the flavor of dirt.

    We’ve come a long way since then, and these vegan restaurants in Colorado prove that vegan food doesn’t have to be bland—it can be just as flavorful and filling as its carnivorous counterparts.

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