Over the past five years, vegan food has taken the world by storm – but restaurants in Bahrain have been a little slower to catch up.
Whether you’re worried about the environmental impact of beef and dairy, or just concerned about animal wealthfare, going plant-based is now a mainstream option.
From Middle Eastern food to Thai, there are plenty of dishes that are either accidentally vegan or easily adapted.
Read on to find out where to get vegan food across the Kingdom.
Anais cafe It’s a popular misconception that all vegans are super healthy (how could they be when Oreos exist?) but, for once, Anais Cafe lives up to the stereotype. Head here for healthy foods including salads, sandwiches and wraps. They also offer up raw cakes in a huge number of flavours such as papaya, cherry and chocolate. Daily, 10am-10pm. Hala Plaza, Bu Ghazal, Manama (1766 3068).
Ananda Bhavan Unfortunately, like most restaurants on this list, Ananda Bhavan isn’t entirely vegan. But as everything on offer is meat-free, and staff are happy to remove ghee, milk and cream from dishes, those on a plant-based diet will be absolutely spoilt for choice. This Indian restaurants has 58 varieties of dosas to be devoured with a coconut chutney, and more vegetable dishes than you can count. It’s also extremely cheap to boot! Daily 7am-3pm, 5-11pm. Road 338, Umm Al Hassam (7750 6070).
Banana leaf Tofu is often a staple of a vegan’s diet, and Thai food certainly has an abundance of delicious bean curd. Traditional dishes including pad Thai and green curry can be found at this cheap, but phenomenal, restaurant. Don’t forget to check if a dish has fish sauce in it, as this is typically used in many Thai curry dishes. Daily, 12.30pm-11.30pm. Hassan Bin Thabit Ave, Manama (1774 4171).
Blaze Pizza If there’s one thing vegans miss the most, it has to be cheese – and what’s a pizza without it? Luckily for you, Blaze Pizza has vegan cheese on offer alongside its regular options. Toppings include vegan chorizo as well as all the vegetables that a pizza wouldn’t be complete without. Sat-Wed 10.30am-11pm; Thu-Fri 10.30am-midnight. The Avenues, Manama (1711 0516).
Bay View Lounge Fine dining is often associated with expensive steaks and the finest cuts of meats money can buy, but the Bay View Lounge is turning this idea on its head with its vegan offerings. Since March 2019 vegans visiting the restaurant have their own menu, dubbed Folia, which has dishes including watermelon poke and hearts of palm ceviche. Sat-Wed 11am-midnight; Thu-Fri 11am-1am. Four Seasons Hotel Bahrain Bay (1711 5500).
Emmawash Traditional Restaurant Accidental plant-based food is a vegan’s bread and (dairy-free) butter, and there are plenty of options in any Middle Eastern menu. Emmawash Traditional, which opened in 2012, serves up affordable Bahraini food including hummus and falafel. Head here for a traditional meat-free meal. Daily 6am-1pm. Road 6905, Abu Saiba (1730 9030).
NOMAD Naturally a restaurant that advertises itself as being bold and curious is going to have vegan options, and this place has plenty. Try out the vegan poke or the BBQ pulled jackfruit bao for a real treat, but make sure you save enough room for the vegan cheesecake or chocolate mousse. Daily, 8am-11pm. The Courtyard, Seef (1700 0330).
Plant Cafe Eating out while vegan can be a minefield, with animal products like butter or gelatine seemingly hidden in the depths of even the healthiest looking option. Luckily, Plant Café, which is the first 100 percent vegan restaurant in the Kingdom, has you covered for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Start your day right with pancakes and end it with a Thai coconut curry. For those of you worried about missing your meaty favourites, this cafe even has three different vegan cheeses and plenty of burgers to pick from. Sun-Wed 10am-5pm; Thu-Sat 10am-10pm. Hamala Hills, Janabiya www.plantcafe.co (1700 1677).
Raw Candy The main draw to Raw Candy is undoubtedly the vegan chocolate, which looks so good on Instagram you almost want to lick your screen. But don’t neglect the other offerings, which include smoothie and veggie bowls. This store is also focused on going plastic free, having recently transitioned to cornstarch straws, and any customer with a reusable coffee cup can get 10 percent off their order. Sun-Thu 8am-5pm; Sat 9am-5pm. Al Moayyed Tower, Road 2832, Seef (3211 1062).
Vrindavan Restaurant Here at Time Out we can’t get enough of south Indian food, particularly because so many restaurants serving up this cuisine are also vegetarian. Head here for the huge menu and cheap prices, and make sure you don’t forget to tell the server you don’t eat dairy products. Try out the pav bhaji and be transported to India without the four-hour flight. Daily 7am-3.30pm, 4.30pm-11pm. Isa Al Kabeer Avenue, Manama (1723 4454).