Plant Based Eating in Tokyo, Japan: a Culinary Adventure in the Far East


Okay, now it’s time to bring out the big boss.

Jackie was a delight to have as a guide, showing us some vegan hot spots in Tokyo.

If you’re ever in Japan, I highly recommend her tour. Her tour would be great to book at the very start of your trip because not only will you eat yummy food, you will also get a ton of tips about navigating plant based ingredients in a country where English is sparse.

Jackie, take it away!

Veganism in Japan is growing more and more everyday. It still has roadblocks to overcome, and I think the main problem for travelers is the language barrier.

Most non-vegan restaurants do not carry vegan options so you can’t pop into any random place and order something without fish, egg, meat, dairy, or honey. Definitely utilize Happy Cow and the Japanese version of Happy Cow, Vegewel (it actually has more listings than Happy Cow).

Japanese people love fish flavoring and they put it in nearly everything so it’s hard to avoid unless you’re eating at a specifically vegan or vegetarian restaurant.

Contrary to popular belief, there are many vegan / vegetarian restaurants in Tokyo. Just make sure you plan ahead and figure out where you’re going to eat before you go out for the day. It’s something even I do after three years of living here. I pretty much plan my days around the food I want to eat. Some of the places I list below are not in the most convenient location, but they’re so worth a short detour! I use Google Maps a lot to mark the spots I want to go to, then map my day around that area.

Lastly, convenience stores other than Natural Lawson’s (different than regular Lawson’s) do not have many vegan options, so it’s not great to use as a back up. Is it Vegan Japan is a very useful tool.

Japan has some of the best vegan food I’ve ever had, it’s just a matter of finding it. Here are my favorite spots. Happy eating!

Saido (Jiyugaoka)

Fully vegan. Saido is a beautiful vegan restaurant set inside the backstreets of trendy Jiyugaoka. It’s located in a little garden area, and the interior flows perfectly with this garden theme. Each and every dish is created with so much care and thought, it is impossible not to feel the love radiate from the dishes. They are all inspired and delicious. All of the creations are veganized versions of traditional Japanese food. Make sure to try the vegan eel, it is incredible!

Cori Vegan Restaurant (Komazawa-daigaku)

Fully vegan. Cori has a wonderful menu ranging from crispy falafel and hummus to the soy chicken namban burger (my personal favorite) to jambalaya. Any dish you order from this cute hipster cafe will be delicious.

T’s Restaurant / T’s Tan Tan (Jiyugaoka, Tokyo Station, Ueno Station)

Fully vegan. T’s Restaurant is also located in Jiyugaoka and is the flagship restaurant of the T’s franchise. It has more selection of dishes than T’s Tan Tan, which only sells ramen. I recommend T’s Restaurant for their “karaage” (fried chicken) doria which is kind of like a lasagna. T’s Tan Tan is awesome for their golden sesame ramen. They only carry one ramen on the T’s Restaurant menu.

Hemp Cafe (Ebisu)

Fully vegan. Hemp Cafe is your go to if you’re feeling weighed down by all the rice you’ve been eating in Japan. It is absolutely wonderful and all the dishes are so fresh and light. I recommend the nachos and the tacos.

Loving Hut (Jinbocho)

Fully vegan. Loving Hut is a staple in the vegan world because you can find them in many countries. The one in Tokyo is the most tasty that I’ve ever tried. However, it is only open on Saturdays. Saturday afternoon is a ¥2000 (around $20 USD) buffet style offering and dinner is a regular a la carte menu. Both are pretty phenomenal but the dinner allows you to try the dumplings and their vegan ramen, both of which are amazing.

Nadeshiko Sushi (Akihabara)

Omni with vegan options. Nadeshiko is one of the few places in Tokyo that has nailed vegan sushi. Not only is it the cutest and most delicious sushi you’re going to find, but it is the only female owned and operated sushi restaurant in Japan! I recommend making a reservation as sometimes they are closed randomly.

Alaska Zwei (Nakameguro)

Fully vegan. This is the cutest cafe! They have the fluffiest focaccia and amazing karaage. Enough said! This is one of my go-to’s in Tokyo. It has a wonderful vibe and everything on the menu is cooked with such love and care. I recommend the karaage and any of the sandwiches because their focaccia is a must try.

Ain Soph Ripple (Shinjuku)

Fully vegan. Google “vegan Tokyo” and Ain Soph will definitely pop up first. While they have many locations and all of them provide wonderful food, the Ripple burger shop is my favorite. This is your classic vegan junk food: Mac n cheese, chicken burger, French fries. All of it. Just get all of it.

Thank you Jackie! I wish I would have had this list before my trip! I will use it the next time, for sure.

Have you ever been to Tokyo and had yummy vegan food? Talk to us in the comments below, we would love to hear from you!

Wishing you a happy week. May it be filled with exploring the globe.


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Our Sweary Saturday Love Letters are written by our ex-boozer, ex-smoker, plant-loving co-founder, Molly Patrick.


  1. Susan D on August 31, 2019 at 10:14 am

    Wonderful!!!! Sounds like you had a delightful time, and damn girls! You both are tenacious!!!!!

  2. Karen on August 31, 2019 at 10:26 am

    Loved reading this article. Thank you. My condolences to your dad❤???❤???
    Much love, karen

  3. Cisa on August 31, 2019 at 10:43 am

    Having lost my Daddy 5 years ago and watching and caring for older members of my family as they, frankly, decline, my heart goes out to you both. When we were younger, we
    seemed to be sailing in smooth, pleasant waters. As we get older, with those folks in our family declining and dying, it can so often seem that we have now lowered our sails and are simply attempting to adjust to the storm…
    I have learned that you never truly recover from the loss of a beloved. All that bullshit that people throw at you saying: “Oh, it will just take time” is actual fuckery. Instead, this becomes your new “normal”.
    It sucks and hurts.
    But, one thing that gives comfort to me is to share the stories and memories of those I have lost with my children who have never met most of these now dead folks. To share not only keeps the memory of those who died alive, but it establishes in my children who they are and where they come from.
    Even if there are no kids, I believe this type of recollection, to anyone with whom you want to share, in a weird way, I suppose, keeps those beloved lost persons alive…
    As for your dad’s stroke, I, again, am so sorry. This unexpected shit just falls upon us, and it sucks. Just remember to take care of yourself, and your mom should do so as well. (I know you are not in the same state as your parents.) Caregiving is exhausting but must be done…
    Warm thoughts of love to both of you.

  4. Sue on August 31, 2019 at 3:42 pm

    What a great experience your trip was. Thanks for making me feel apart of it.
    So sorry to hear about Luann’s father passing. Never easy to loose a parent. Also sorry to hear about your father, hope he is on the mend.

  5. Danie Goodrich on August 31, 2019 at 4:05 pm

    Im sorry to hear about your dads. Fast healing for your dad Molly and condolences to Luann. Can you clarify the prices of the melons? It looked like $70.00 and $250.00 which seems highly unlikely. Love your weekly posts!

    • Luanne Teoh on August 31, 2019 at 11:39 pm

      The price of the melons are from around $250 for the rock melon to $700 USD. Yes hundreds 🙂

  6. Connie Winstead on August 31, 2019 at 4:34 pm

    I love going on these travel journeys with you guys. I’ve never been out of the USA so it is a real treat. We are currently going thru the ageing parent thing and it’s really hard. My wife’s Mom is in TX and we are in CA. Jenny was there for two months this summer finally moving her Mom to assisted living. So sorry to hear about both of your Dads. It so hard but nevertheless we persist. Thank you for your time and photos. You are so wonderful and real. Love Connie & Jenny

  7. Lesley Nicol on August 31, 2019 at 4:36 pm

    I have really enjoyed reading your experiences in Japan and love the photos. Very surprised to see the graffiti on the roller door in one of the small side street photos. I had to laugh because it seems the graffiti tag all looks the same in any language. Your writing really makes me want to go and visit.
    May you and Luanne and your loved ones concerned find all the support and strength needed as you go through this pain that life throws at us all.

  8. Marie Roberts on August 31, 2019 at 6:18 pm

    Thanks for taking the time to write this detailed blog – it’s fascinating!! I love your new jumpsuit!! Haha 🙂

  9. Cheryl on August 31, 2019 at 7:37 pm

    Your post rings true again for me. Lost my cousin yesterday. She’s only about 6 or 8 years older than me (I am almost 68) so I am feeling mortal. Thanks for the tips on traveling to Japan. It’s our next trip to plan.

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