Vegan Restaurants Pittsburgh

I started researching for this article looking for the best vegan restaurants in Pittsburgh.

The research didn’t take long….there are only 4. But why not go ahead and rank these 4 restaurnats according to our unique grading system?

Vegan Restaurants in Other Cities

Pittsburgh Vegan History

The history and culture of veganism in Pittsburgh reflects a vibrant and growing community that champions plant-based living for ethical, environmental, and health reasons.

Pittsburgh’s vegan culture, while relatively recent in the city’s long industrial history, has blossomed significantly over the past few decades.

Initially, veganism in Pittsburgh was a fringe movement, with few restaurants and community spaces catering to vegan lifestyles.

However, as awareness about the benefits of veganism grew, so did the number of vegan-friendly eateries, cafes, and stores throughout the city. Most of them now are not entirely vegan but the movement is going in the right direction.

This shift was partly driven by broader national and global trends toward sustainability and animal rights, which resonated with Pittsburgh’s evolving identity from a steel town to a tech and health-conscious city.

Community events such as Pittsburgh’s annual VegFest, which started in 2015, highlight the city’s commitment to veganism.

This festival celebrates vegan cuisine, ethical products, and advocacy, drawing thousands of attendees each year.

Additionally, the presence of vegan advocacy groups and meetups supports individuals in their transition to a vegan lifestyle, emphasizing education, community, and shared experiences.

Pittsburgh vegan restaurants is the focus of this article but the vegan scene in Pittsburgh is not just about food but is also intertwined with the city’s cultural fabric.

Art events, pop-up markets, and community gardens focusing on veganism and sustainability contribute to a holistic approach to plant-based living.

These initiatives reflect Pittsburgh’s broader cultural shift towards inclusiveness, environmental stewardship, and health consciousness, making the city a welcoming place for vegans and those curious about veganism.

Now, with that background let’s get to our list.

Best Vegan Restaurants Pittsburgh

馃弳 Apteka 馃弳

Apteka serves a variety of menu items that emphasize Eastern European flavors, offering a unique menu that features a range of creative vegan dishes inspired by Eastern European cuisine.

Menu highlights include items like pierogies with unique fillings, flavorful spreads, and creative salads. They also offer inventive desserts and their dishes are known for their inventive use of ingredients to reimagine traditional cuisine.

Apteka is not only a place for dining but also operates as a natural wine bottle shop on selected days. The establishment welcomes walk-ins and is open for dine-in from Friday to Sunday.


ShadoBeni, located in Pittsburgh’s North Side, brings a refreshing wave of Trinidadian vegan cuisine.

Founded by Ulric Joseph, a Trinidadian artist and cook who transitioned from academia to the culinary world, ShadoBeni offers a vibrant menu inspired by Joseph’s heritage and family recipes.

The restaurant’s name itself is a nod to Trinidad, deriving from “chadon beni” (also known as culantro), a popular Caribbean herb known for its potent flavor.

The menu features a delightful array of dishes, including Dhal Puri Roti with various fillings such as curry stewed soya, channa and potato, and pumpkin choka, as well as options for bowls filled with coconut rice or mixed greens topped with homemade sauces like mango chutney and tamarind.

Weekend brunch brings Impossible Meat hand pies, Zaboca Salad, and the iconic Doubles – a street food staple of curried chickpeas sandwiched between fried flatbread.

The restaurant also offers traditional sides like plantains and spicy slaw, along with Trinidadian soft drinks and local coffee.

Beyond the food, ShadoBeni is committed to community and sustainability, sourcing ingredients locally when possible and using biodegradable to-go containers.

The atmosphere is enhanced by decor and Caribbean music, aiming to create a welcoming space for enjoying flavourful, affordable vegan food. For those unable to visit, ShadoBeni continues to serve at local farmers’ markets, ensuring their delicious offerings reach a wider audience.

Allegro Hearth Bakery

Allegro Hearth Bakery in Pittsburgh is a unique spot that re-opened in December 2020 as a 100% plant-based bakery and sandwich shop.

If you have read some of my other posts, I love sandwiches, and employing traditional techniques, they make all their breads and pastries from scratch using organic flour and their own sourdough starter, ensuring everything is free from artificial preservatives, colors, and flavors.

Located at 2034 Murray Ave, the bakery is known for its dedication to quality and sustainability, offering a variety of vegan breads, pastries, sandwiches, and salads.

Essence Vegan and Vegetarian

Essence Vegan and Vegetarian in Pittsburgh is located in the South Side. Established in 2023, it initially offered a menu rich in diversity, drawing from West African, Korean, Middle Eastern, and Indian cuisines, all fused with modern American vegan fare.

By February 2024, it fully transitioned to a vegan establishment, opening its doors from Thursday to Sunday each week.

The restaurant offers unique dishes like Double Dip options featuring Dama, Hummus, Guacamole, or Salsa with tortilla chips, Tofu Spinach Dumplings, Pakora “Bhajias” with a mix of onions, potatoes, and carrots, and savory Sambosa pastries filled with spinach.

Their goal is to create a memorable culinary journey for guests, promising inventive and innovative techniques, ingredients, and presentation that exceed expectations.

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