• Top 5 Vegan Restaurants in Los Angeles 2010


    After four years of eating out on LA’s vegan restaurant scene, and in recognition of our “LA’s Top 5 Vegan Restaurants” post a year ago, we thought it would be good to update our “top list” of the establishments we, and the commenters on this esteemed blog, thought were really good. Do you agree with our list? Want to bump a mention off the list, or add your own? Please comment. Don’t be shy. We had to start somewhere.

    Cruzer Pizza “from veal to vegan”

    The story behind Cruzer Pizza is as amazing as the pizza itself. The popular Silverlake gourmet pizza delivery outlet one day threw all its mozarella, sausage, veal (yuk!) and pepperoni in the trash and began stocking Field Roast, Match Meats and Daiya cheese, becoming one of only three entirely vegan pizzerias in the United States. This was all thanks to awesome animal rights activist Michelle Sass who lobbied the owners, and personally took charge of the menu and food items creating pizza that vegans and onmivores alike would love.

    The Quarrygirl Pizza at Cruzer

    Cruzer even reached out to bloggers, magazines and the local community to create pizzas that they thought fellow vegans would like. And so, the quarrygirl.com pizza was born, because we love olive oil, shrooms and Field Roast. And so do you, right?

    Flore Vegan

    The fact that Flore was not on last year’s list is nothing short of a crime. Owner and chef Miranda Megill has been cooking up a vegan storm in the LA area for years from her Silverlake location on Sunset Blvd., and lately also through the ill-fated and now closed Vegan Spot, Flore Care and Meet Market (all the same location). The outlandishly creative Miranda is as picky with her ingredients as she is with the food preparation. She selects only the best organic produce, and is usually to be found supervising the kitchen hands-on to ensure that your meal is top-notch.

    Club Sandwich at Flore Vegan

    Also, everything is made from scratch including the succulent seitan and homemade desserts. Seriously, their flaky and “buttery” croissants are the best vegan pastries we’ve ever tried.

    Stuff I Eat

    We can’t keep away from this place, and we can’t keep raving about it. With an eclectic menu of options spanning the gamut from soul food through Mexican-inspired and down to earth, honest to goodness, American-style favorites, Stuff I Eat excels in every category. The staff are all so helpful, polite and caring that one feels grateful to be in their restaurant. The portions are HUGE, and the quality of every food item, from the way it looks to the way it tastes cannot be overstated.

    Kilamanjaro Quesadilla at Stuff I Eat

    Feeling hungry? The $18 “Organic Soul Food Platter” will fill you up, as well as one or two of your guests. The burritos are to die for (how many burritos have fresh, steamed broccoli topping them?), and any place that has a menu item called “Sumthin-Sumthin” as well as the intriguingly named “Kilimanjaro Quesadilla” (so called, because it’s about as big as its namesake mountain) is just great in my book.


    Situated on the top floor of a downtown shopping mall in Little Tokyo is Shojin, a must-visit vegan restaurant. Serving an inventive menu of veganized japanese staples, as well as some inventive signature dishes, Shojin really is at the peak of artful food preparation.

    Spicy Seitan BBQ Roll and Shiitake & Avocado Roll at Shojin

    Whether you go for the sushi (with seitan, tofu and other faux-fish accoutrements), the pan-fried seitan stir-fry or the incredibly tasty hand-made deserts you will know that such care has been put into preparing your food with prime, organic ingredients that you just can’t go wrong. Order as much stuff as you like — the portions are small, but the taste is big.

    Madeleine Bistro

    LA-resident vegans and omnivores are extremely fortunate to share a city with Madeleine Bistro, one of the world’s finest vegan restaurants. Chef Dave Anderson has spared no expense or time in thinking through and preparing the most minute details of every menu item. From a doughnut that is so light and fluffy it practically levitates, to a veganized carbon-copy emulation of a Big Mac (which I’m told by omnivores tastes way, way better than the real thing), through magical soufflés and German Mac ‘n’ Cheese (complete with Bacon bits!) you are certain to delight in the experience of fine vegan dining with a menu as inventive as it is familiar. Every dish at Madeleine’s has that “HOW DO THEY DO THIS?” question mark hanging over it. Dave Anderson is a culinary genius, and we should all be glad he decided to practice his art on us vegans.

    Lemon-rosemary seitan and cauliflower crepe at Madeleine Bistro

    I’d usually not hesitate to recommend a visit to Madeleine Bistro, but recently their opening hours and menu offerings have become erratic, and there have been rumors of both a closure and a second location opening up. My advice is to get yourself there pronto (in case the worst happens) but call ahead first to make sure they’re open when you want to visit.

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29 responses to “Top 5 Vegan Restaurants in Los Angeles 2010” RSS icon

  • “stuff i eat'” and “madeline bistro” are on my list of to-try’s. but what about “sunpower natural” in studio city?


  • Sunpower is delish! I don’t go there often enough. But I think as tough as it is narrowing it down to 5, QG did a really great job. I’ve been lucky enough to chow at all of these places except Stuff I Eat (but have been told of its awesomeness) and have to agree with her choices.

  • You nailed it for sure.

  • I think you nailed it, also. I’m glad Sunpower exists but it’s not top 5 or 10. I was worried you included Pure Luck in the top 5 and I was going to scream! 🙂

  • @ActorsDiet

    The difference between you and me is I’ve eaten at all the places, and am partially qualified to represent!

  • Gauri Radha गौरी राधा

    I’ve been to Stuff I Eat and I thought it was so good, I just wish it was closer. I don’t often have reason to drive over to Inglewood.

  • Cruzer’s is the worst, I have ordered from them 3 times and they got my order wrong every single time and i think Brittny had the same problem. Its the worst vegan pizza by far with zpizza being the best. Whatever you do, please do not order the Chicken BarB Q pizza because they will put one piece of Gardein per Slice. The bottom line this place is the shit on the bottom of my shoe.

  • Madeleine Bistro is amazing! I really wanted to have them cater my wedding but it didn’t work out. Probably will be stopping by soon to try their new menu items! They look YUMMY! 🙂

  • Good list… I, too, agree with all selections except Cruzer. I love the idea of Cruzer Pizza being vegan, but agree that it has a lot to be desired. One thing is that the Daiya cheese everyone raves about is too gummy sticks to my mouth. It also makes my boyfriend really sick every time he eats it. They need more selections and better vegan cheese.

  • i completely agree with the above comment about cruzer. i think it’s simply that they use way too much daiya. i’ve tried a bunch of stuff from there and all i can say is they have good cheese sticks. that’s all.

  • All the pizza places use too much Daiya.

    And if you think Z Pizza is the best, you haven’t tried Pizza Fusion. Brick oven, yo.

  • gregalor is on point! and yes, pizza fusion is the shit, yo!!!

  • this is completely off point, considering the post is supposed to be about vegan restaurants….but, masa has the best vegan pizza by far!

  • Cruzer Pizza is disgusting and Madeleine Bistro is closed. Flore is bleh and the people who work there are stupid. Dumb list.

  • So true Quarrygirl!!! Masa’s Deep Dish is amazing!!!! Order a large for yourself and eat the other half when you wake up!!! Love L.A.

  • Wow, Can’t wait to get to LA to try all these places and more. Hey, next time you are in NYC, you simply must go to Rockin’ Raw in Williamsburg, Brooklyn… they are hands down the best VEGAN restaurant in NY.
    They use very little nuts, completely gluten free, their in house bread rocks, and all their desserts have 5 ingredients or less.


  • Madeleine Bistro is not closed. They are open for dinner Friday, Saturday, Sunday and brunch on Sunday.
    They also are doing some sort of take-out “bistro boxes” but I’m not sure about the details on those. They are on facebook and post updates, but I always call before going to make sure they’re open. I reeeeeally hope they don’t close for good. They are the best vegan restaurant EVER.
    Native Foods has made a lot of changes lately, would love to see a review of their new stuff. I think they would definitely be in my top 5.

  • Don’t listen to ignorant haters like Leyla. First off, this list is great. Secondly, Madeleine Bistro isn’t closed! I ate there on Saturday! By far the best vegan food in town. If I could add one to this list though, it’d be Native Foods.

  • Where is Veggie Grill? ; ;

  • Glad to see this list isn’t full of places that use tired fake processed meats. I think you are right on with these places, but I’d delete Cruzer for something more fresh. Also glad to see that RFD isn’t on the list!

  • Cruzer is great. I love the guys that work there, they are very nice and always get my orders right. Must be because I speak Spanish with them! We always exchange jokes and stuff.
    I was disappointed with the service at Flore. The food was good but cold… And did I mention the service was terrible?
    Haven’t tried the others.
    There is a place in Thousand Oaks called Pizza Salad. They are all about being organic, so it’s not all vegan. But their soy free vegan cheese is amazing, love their crust, and love their service.
    Real Food Daily is my all time favorite. Love the food, drinks, desserts and location.

  • I have to agree, Cruzer has some good stuff but isn’t great. I got pizza on wheat and I mostly only tasted crust. They shoud add more toppings and or make a thinner crust. Loved the Caesar salad, though. Native Foods should be definitely be on this list.

  • i want to support cruzer, but come on, their pizza is just blah. lucifer’s down the street does a much better vegan pizza.

  • Lol @ the comment about no reason to go to Inglewood. I’m from Inglewood and yea..nothing much there but most good vegan friendly restaurants are out of the way. What happend to veggie grill? I’ve turned so many “omnis” to eat vegan foods by eating veggie grill. I love that place!

  • i have to go back “off point” to clarify (sorry!). on point as in slang like, he is on top of his game. not on topic of subject. or as in “point man” someone who is in the lead of what he’s doing. okay, i’ll let it go now. i promise! 🙂

  • SunPower Natural is my top place, like it’s in Actor’s Diet top. Kale shake! Raw Supreme Pizza! Raw curry vegetables over coconut rice! Nachos! Pesto kelp noodles! Tons of great dishes.

    Flore is in my bottom 5, horrible service, disgusting food, dirty. Two times there and I couldn’t eat more than 3 bites without literally gagging. I tried bites from the 3 other friends I was with and there dishes were at best dull, but mostly horrific. Why do people like this place?

  • you’re what i’ve been looking for. 🙂

  • Flore is hands down the worst vegan restaurant I’ve ever been to, and I’ve been to many!
    I’ve eaten there twice and both times my food was disgusting, and all my friends hated their food too. I took a few of my non vegan friends there to impress them with vegan food after hearing such good things about them, and I was so embarrassed that that’s what they experienced as a so called ‘great’ vegan place.
    The place is very dirty and everyone on their staff is so rude and too cool and pretentious to help you.

    I feel awful to hate on a vegan restaurant. At least if they were nice people I would refrain from complaining about their restaurant.

    If Flore wasn’t in a great location, no one would go there. It’s all hype.

  • On April 13, 2011, Cruzer Pizza and Pasta Los Angeles wrote:

    “New Owner and New HOURS!! Cruzer opens at 11 AM!!! Come in and try the new cheezy potato wedges!! YUMMY!!”


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