Madison / Wisconsin

15 Must-Try Restaurants for Vegan Food in Madison, Wi

Updated April 29, 2024

Madison is renowned for its progressive and inclusive atmosphere, which includes a vibrant vegan-filled culinary scene!

Whether you’re a vegan foodie or just looking to explore a healthier and more sustainable diet, Madison offers an array of options that cater to all taste buds. You’ll find everything from the spicy flavors of Southeast Asia to orders of golden French Fries covered in creamy cashew cheese!

So, what are you waiting for?

Start planning the most important part of your Madison adventure with the absolute best vegan restaurants and dessert spots.  

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Vegan & Vegetarian Restaurants in Madison

As you’re planning your eating adventure, you’ll also want to check out how to spend a weekend in Madison! It’s full of food and all of the best sights in the city.

#1 Green Owl Café

1970 Atwood Ave, Madison, WI 53704
No trip to Madison is complete without visiting the city’s longest-running vegetarian restaurant (they say vegetarian, but I couldn’t find anything non-vegan on the menu)! This sweet little spot has a mouthwatering lineup of comfort eats — it’s best to come here for lunch or dinner very hungry!

Start with an order of loaded Owl Fries covered in cashew cheese, caramelized onions, seitan (they have a GF option, too), and their house-made Owl sauce. They are so good it’s hard to stop eating them! But you need to save room for one of their sandwiches, burgers, mac-n-cheese, or veggie-packed bowls! No matter what you choose, you won’t be disappointed. 

#2 Just Veggiez

540 State St., Madison, WI 53704
This Black-owned vegan restaurant is showing its guests that you don’t have to give up anything by going vegan! Their Soulful menu is filled with a diverse mix of comfort eats, including an iconic Wisconsin snack — cheese curds! If you thought you’d have to miss out on these cheesy bites, think again! In addition to the cheese curds, you can’t skip their chick’n drumstixs covered in parmesan garlic sauce — these are seriously finger-lickin’ good.

There is one downside to visiting this spot (as of April 2023): They are closed, but it’s for a good reason! They are currently in the process of moving into their full-service restaurant on State Street — yay!

#3 Sookie’s Veggie Burgers 

502 State St, Madison, WI 53703
If you love breakfast sandwiches, come here! Every day you can roll in here for one of their savory or sweet breakfast sandwiches loaded with Impossible sausage, Just Egg, cheese, and avocado — but there is one thing that puts these sandwiches over the edge — hashbrowns! Instead of sandwiching everything between a ciabatta bun, sandwich it between two crispy hashbrowns! That’s a next-level breakfast sandwich that also happens to be gluten-free.

After breakfast, you’ll also want to return for one of their burgers with golden tater tots and a local treat. Sookie’s partners with many other local vegan and vegan-friendly businesses to offer creamy ice cream, cupcakes, raw desserts, and more. 

#4 Jardin

829 E Washington Ave, Madison, WI 53703
You might not believe it, but this Madison spot hasn’t always been vegan! The pandemic allowed the owners to re-evaluate the business and give them time for a veggie overhaul. And I, for one, am so glad for the overhaul.

If you’re looking for a sophisticated vegan spot in Madison, this is it! Their globally-inspired menu combines a diverse mix of flavors that will make your taste buds sing! Depending on the season, you’ll always find a different mix of dishes that celebrate local produce, from hearty Lobster Casarecce with a mix of Lions Mane and Lobster mushrooms to spicy Patatas Azules topped with local microgreens. 

#5 Pure Green

634 State St, Madison, WI 53703
While this smoothie shop isn’t technically a restaurant, it’s still a terrific place to go if you’re looking for something healthy, quick! You can’t go wrong in the morning with one of their Superfood Smoothies blended with greens, berries, cold brew, and more. A few smoothies do have whey protein, so just be sure to omit it. If you need something heartier, they also have a great selection of acai and pitaya bowls, along with warm steel-cut oatmeal bowls topped with fresh fruit and nuts.

In addition to the made-to-order breakfast delights, they also have a full lineup of cold-press juices and shots — perfect for an afternoon pick-me-up!

Vegan-Friendly Restaurants in Madison

The restaurant scene in Madison is very inclusive for vegans! Whether you’re looking for a giant, cheesy pizza or beautiful sushi, you’ll find it and more.

#6 Red Sushi

316 W Washington Ave #100, Madison, WI 53703
Forget about bland and boring veggie sushi rolls; this Japanese spot understands how to please vegans! Don’t miss their unique Nutty Vegan Roll, made with grilled zucchini and avocado, but what really sets it apart is the fried tofu topping with sweet chili sauce and toasted peanuts!

If you just can’t decide what sushi to get, leave it up to the chef! They offer a chef’s tasting menu, which includes eight maki rolls. You’ll also want to pair your sushi with one of their fresh salads and a creative cocktail! 

#7 Himal Chuli

318 State St, Madison, WI 53703
When you want to sample the flavors of Nepal, head to this vegan-friendly restaurant. The quaint spot prides itself on authentic Nepali cuisine that is mainly vegetarian and all house-made. All the veggie dishes are packed with nourishing ingredients; if you need a veggie boost, come here!

The menu is well-marked for vegan and gluten-free options. 

healthy vegan spinach and potato dish next to white rice at himal chuli in madison

#8 Short Stack Eatery

301 W Johnson St, Madison, WI 53703
Who doesn’t love starting their day with a giant stack of fluffy pancakes topped with coconut whipped cream? The smell of maple syrup dances all the way down State Street leading your noise to this charming vegan-friendly restaurant. It’s almost guaranteed that you’ll be met with a line (even in the rain and snow), but I promise, it’s worth the wait.

Their Vegan Hack breakfast menu is filled with a great mix of sweet and savory dishes. You can’t go wrong choosing the house-made granola with milk, giant loaded breakfast burrito, or pancakes — you might need to order all three! No judgment!

vegan pancakes covered in maple syrup next to granola at shortstack cafe in madison

#9 Ahan 

2262 Winnebago St, Madison, WI 53704
When you’re craving Southeast Asia’s spicy and refreshing flavors, there’s no better place to go than here! You’ll find this savory spot tucked inside The Bur Oak, an event and music venue — the perfect vegan-friendly weekend hangout.

The menu is absolutely stellar, not just because the options are top-notch but also because it is so well-marked. In addition to vegan options, they also mark dishes that are nut-free, gluten-free, dairy-free and those that can be modified — I wish all restaurants did this. If you’re a noodle lover, don’t miss the drunken noodles with tofu, and for something with a bit of spice, try either the red or green curry!

#10 Forage Kitchen

Two locations in Madison
Forage Kitchen takes a farm-to-table approach, focusing on seasonal, locally sourced ingredients to create delightful vegan dishes. With two locations in Madison, this cozy eatery offers a rotating menu that reflects the best produce available.

From colorful Buddha bowls and hearty soups to imaginative plant-based pizzas, Forage Kitchen is a paradise for food enthusiasts seeking innovative flavors and ethical dining.

#11 Monty’s Blue Plate

2089 Atwood Ave, Madison, WI 53704
For those seeking a nostalgic dining experience, Monty’s Blue Plate Diner is the place to be. This charming retro-style diner embraces veganism wholeheartedly, with an extensive menu that includes traditional veganized American favorites creations. 

Whether it’s 9 AM or 2 PM, breakfast is served all day here — indulge in a thick stack of French toast or a savory potato hash with tofu scramble. For lunch and dinner favorites, you can’t go wrong with their TNT BLT sandwich, falafel wrap, or a crowd-pleasing Fat Elvis vegan milkshake!  

#12 Ian’s Pizza

Multiple locations throughout Madison
When the craving for a slice of cheesy vegan pizza strikes, head here! Each of their locations offers a special vegan pizza menu that is filled with a ton of creative options — no cheese-less pies here!

If you’re looking for something different, check out their Vegan Cheesy Potato and Ranch pizza (mozzarella, cheddar, diced potato, and topped with house-made ranch), but if that’s too wild for you, go traditional with a vegan pepperoni or veggie-packed pie!

Vegan & Vegan-Friendly Bakeries & Ice Cream Shops in Madison

Check out one of these fantastic spots when your sweet tooth needs a treat!

#13 Bloom Bakeshop

Two locations in Madison
Locals love this popular neighborhood bakery; once you see their treats, you’ll know why! Their menu always includes a selection of vegan and gluten-free treats like scones, donuts, cupcakes, cookies, and much more. At their Monroe Street location, you will also find an extensive selection of house-made bread and sometimes vegan and gluten-free biscuits! 

vegan and gluten free lemon blueberry scone next to a slice of coffee cake on a white plate at bloom bakeshop in madison

#14 Level 5 Donuts

Located inside Ledger Coffee Roasters: 3241 Garver Green Suite 140, Madison, WI 53704
Hopefully, this vegan donut shop will get its own spot soon! But, for now, you will have to settle for visiting the specialty coffee shop, Ledger Coffee Roasters, every Thursday-Sunday to get your hands on their incredible donut lineup. The flavor lineup changes every week; you can find Boston cream, Oreo, churro, coconut macaron, and much more. Follow them on Instagram for updates!

vegan chocolate coconut macaron donut from level 5 bakery in madison

#15 Chocolate Shoppe Ice Cream

Multiple locations throughout Madison
This local ice cream shoppe has been delighting the Madison community for over 60 years, and they didn’t forget about their vegan friends! They have over 10 creative, house-made flavors that include ultra-creamy oat milk-based options and sorbets. If you’re a cookie lover, grab a scoop or two of their chocolate chip oatmeal cookie ice cream, and for fruit fans, their seasonal Electric Watermelon is fantastic!

an ice cream cone topped with two scoops on vegan ice cream in front of a colorful graffiti wall in madison

More Vegan Travel Inspiration

Looking for other vegan-friendly destinations? Check out these helpful and tasty articles!

11 Scenic Day Trips from Vancouver
The Best Vegan Restaurants & Bakeries in Tampa & St. Pete
Delicious Brunch & Breakfast Spots in LA
The Best Vegan-Friendly UK Hotels & Retreats
Where to Find Vegan Sweets and Treats in Nashville
Vegan Food Tour of Brooklyn, NYC
The Best Vegan Restaurants to Visit in Denver

About Author

Rebecca is the founder of the vegan travel company Veggies Abroad. In 2021, she bid her 15-year career goodbye and ventured into the world of ethical business with the launch of a vegan travel blog (the one you’re reading!). As the blog flourished, Rebecca expanded her vision to encompass personalized travel planning services and launched Veggies Abroad's inaugural vegan tour to Thailand, marking the beginning of many more eco-conscious, plant-powered adventures to come. Follow her adventures on Instagram or Facebook @veggiesabroad