Despite the abundance of vegetarian restaurants that have recently popped up around Sydney, vegos sometimes do it tough when it comes to eating out with meat-eating friends who, you guessed it, love going to meaty restaurants in Sydney! That is why TUL has empathetically gathered this list of amazing vegetarian dishes that tick all your cruelty free-boxes without compromising anything on the taste front. You are welcome.
LP’s Quality Meats
The name may have already deterred you, but hear us out! On the surface, this restaurant/bar in Chippendale is a carnivore galore, but if you dig deep into the menu, you will find solace in their delicious range of vegetarian options. Take the curried cauliflower for instance, made with raisins and radish, or the roasted carrots that deliciously feature Middle Eastern flavours of harissa and yoghurt. We also encourage all carb lovers to indulge in their famous creamy mashed potato and gravy, which pairs perfectly with a classic side of corn on the cob. Finish it all off with a coconut sorbet and pineapple granita, which takes it one step further with its completely vegan ingredients. LP's also boasts a killer cocktail menu that will make you forget all about the meals your friends have ordered across the table.
While this Argentinian restaurant in Surry Hills is famous for its meat, Porteño’s culinary artistry transcends well beyond their carnivore dishes. In fact, this restaurant offers a delectably diverse selection of vegetarian dishes that you will have to fight your meat-eating companions for! Take the ravioli de coliflor y fontina for instance, which isn’t just incredibly fun to say but also features a delicious concoction of roasted cauliflower, ravioli, creamed corn and pine nuts. It would be a culinary crime not to also mention the amazingness of their berenjenas a la brasa (the charcoal roasted eggplant with goat’s fetta, pistachio and chilli) for just $16. There is also an extensive Argentinean wine list to wash all your vegetarian delights with, so next time your friends suggest Porteño, reply with a big yes—we promise you wont leave hungry!
Hidden within the heart of The Rocks in Sydney, Ananas is a Bar and Brassiere offering classic French food with a modern twist. This award-winning restaurant is synonymous with the luxury of Parisian glamour, from the oh-so-French 1920’s inspired décor to the enticing menu. Speaking of which, Ananas boasts an entire menu purely dedicated to you vegetarian, Listers! For the ultimate comfort meal, we can’t go past the cannelloni, which features Provincial-style ratatouille, smoked eggplant purée and chive oil. For a lighter option, try the crown of asparagus, which is a delicious dish of avocado, tomato, sweet basil and chive crème fraiche. In terms of desserts, you are obviously spoilt for choice, but we love the Yves’s Apple Granny Smith sorbet with champagne foam and coconut panna cotta. In order to feel like a true vegetarian in Paris, don't forget to also indulge in a wine (or champagne if you’re feeling fancy).
Rockpool Bar & Grill
When the words ‘Bar & Grill’ are used in the same sentence, the target audience becomes pretty clear. In the case of Sydney’s Rockpool Bar & Grill however, the name by no means mirrors the extensiveness of the menu. Deemed as Australia’s most beautiful dining room due to its location within a 1936 American style art deco skyscraper, the interiors of this restaurant are a feast in itself. In regards to actual food, vegetarians will be pleased to know that Rockpool places emphasis on excellent fresh produce. This is seen through their butter lettuce, avocado, cherry tomato and jalapeno chilli salad or wood fire grilled vegetables with goat’s cheese. If you’re not so much a salad type, then you must try the wood fire grilled eggplant with bulgur, dates, green tahini and yoghurt. There’s also an entire sides list of vegetarian options such as braised winter greens, slow cooked egg and parmesan, which becomes incredibly tempting when enjoying a drink on a cold winter’s night!
The Cut Bar & Grill
The Cut Bar and Grill may be inspired by the classic Steakhouses of New York City, but that doesn't mean vegetarians aren’t invited to indulge in one of Australia’s most iconic culinary destinations! After you have progressed through the impressive 14 page drinks menu, you are likely to be enticed by the pan-fried pumpkin gnocchi, made with fresh spinach, pine nuts sage and parmesan cheese. You and your carnivore friends will also struggle to resist the roast field mushrooms with garlic, feta and rosemary or the delicious Sicilian style broccoli. Who said vegetarians can’t have nice things?!
Pub Life Kitchen
While pub food is usually anything but vegetarian, Sydney’s Pub Life Kitchen in Ultimo is here to help you guys out so you can stop starving at those weekly pub sessions! In terms of burgers, Pub Life offers a Vego Delight, which features a fried cheese patty, cranberry jam, creamy slaw, pickles and a tangy jalapeno mayo. The menu also offers a hearty soup of the week which includes such flavours as pearl barley with roast seasonal vegetables and ricotta. The menu may seem simple but trust us the taste is anything but!
Kingsleys is a steak and crab house in Woolloomooloo sporting iconic Sydney harbour views and some mean steaks to boot. Despite its obvious focus on red meat and seafood, it should also be noted that there is a delicious selection of vegetable based dishes available for all foodies. Our favourite would have to be the burrata mozzarella salad, which comes with heirloom tomato, basil, olives and the most amazingly crusty Tuscan flatbread. In terms of sides, there is an extensive list of non-meat options such as the young greens with walnuts and Shiraz dressing and the pumpkin with quinoa, cos lettuce and Persian fetta. Don’t forget to finish off with their ricotta hazelnut cake or, if a liquid dessert is more your thang, get your hands on an espresso martini.
Ah Chiswick, one of our favourite Sydney restaurants that looks almost as appealing as it tastes. This iconic dining venue in Woollahra is the brainchild of celebrity chefs Matt Moran and Peter Sullivan, so you know it’s going to be delicious. The heart of Chiswick is its kitchen garden, where most of the menu’s produce is grown to reflect the simplicity of the changing season. This, of course, means lots of fresh vegetables and herbs as evident in our favourite vegetarian based dishes such as the ravioli of kale, the pumpkin arancini and the roasted chantey carrots. The menu is designed for sharing but don’t let that discourage you, your carnivore friends will love these dishes just as much as you will!
This cheap and cheerful Chinese restaurant in Sydney’s CBD is surprisingly vegetarian friendly. Order up big on the vego dumplings, share the shallot pancake and request your hand made chopped noodles to be prepared sans meat. At Sea Bay, the best part is that the food is so good that your meat loving brethren will be totally okay to get up in the vegetarian action. Actually no, the real best part is the free BYO. Now that’s something both vegetarians and meat eaters can get behind.