Where to Find the Best Vegan Mexican Food in New York City
New York City is a true melting pot of cultures and cuisines. If you're looking for Mexican food, there is no shortage of spots to visit in the city, with over 900 restaurants serving Mexican fare. If you're vegan or vegetarian, fear not: There are many restaurants that offer vegan dishes from around the globe, and you can find vegan Mexican food almost anywhere in the city.
Here are the six best places to eat vegan Mexican food in NYC, from Manhattan to Brooklyn.
Calling All: For a fully-vegan menu with many Mexican street food favorites visit one of the three Jajaja (meaning Hahaha in Spanish) outposts in New York City with locations in Hudson Yards, Lower East Side, West Village, and the newest in Williamsburg.
Plant Yourself: The fast-casual restaurant has a darling interior so snag a table inside to get the full Jajaja experience.
Order to Share: There’s no better way to kick off a plant-based Mexican meal than with a towering stack of nachos loaded with vegan chorizo, cheese, and sour cream. The heart of palm ceviche is a light starter to split.
Don’t Miss: If you grew up loving the cheesy gordita crunch at Taco Bell you’ll be astonished by how excellent the vegan gordita is at Jajaja. The mushroom quesadilla is also a must with some of the best vegan cheese that is gooey and stringy.
Leave Room For: The churros are an absolute must and come with enough pieces to share with the table. The coconut dulce de leche dipping sauce is otherworldly.
Address: 162 E Broadway, New York, NY and 119 Kent Avenue, Brooklyn, NY
Calling All: If you want to eat delicious vegan food and shop for plants — this is the spot.
Plant Yourself: There’s very limited seating but if you can manage it, sit inside the super-Instagrammable pink café. Otherwise, this is a great spot for takeaway.
Order to Share: Indulge in at least one of the vegan donuts in traditional Latinx flavors such as dulce de leche or guava cream cheese. They’re big enough to share.
Don’t Miss: The chilaquiles are a delicious breakfast item and include Just Egg. If you’re there for lunch, get the posole, a traditional Mexican soup.
Leave Room For: Conchas — the beloved shell-shaped Mexican bread that’s best enjoyed with a cafecito.
Address: 39 Clifton Place, Brooklyn, NY
Calling All: Oaxaca is one of the most celebrated states in Mexico for its culinary traditions. Here you can enjoy plant-based renditions of some famous Oaxacan dishes. The vegetarian restaurant has some dishes that contain cheese and eggs.
Plant Yourself: Seating is limited so arrive early to snag a table. Someone from your party can sit down to hold the table when you enter the restaurant since orders are taken at the counter.
Order to Share: Get the table two vegan Tetelas to share. One is made with black beans and epazote and the other with hibiscus flower and chipotle salsa.
Don’t Miss: Mole is the star of Oaxacan cuisine. Order the mole amarillo memela and hold the cheese if you’re vegan.
Leave Room For: Take home some of the handmade tortillas made of blue, yellow, and red corn.
Address: 343 Franklin Ave Brooklyn, NY
Calling All: Michelin lovers — this plant-based Mexican spot in Greenpoint has been included in the Michelin Guide.
Plant Yourself: There’s no wrong place to sit in this cozy restaurant with Mexican decor details throughout such as woven tapestries, bright paintings, and lots of plants.
Order to Share: When ordering, keep in mind the menu is approximately almost fully vegan but some dishes contain eggs or cheese. Start with the avocado tostada and the leek and potato flautas to share.
Don’t Miss: Birria is a traditional Mexican dish prepared in the ground and can be challenging to find vegan. Luckily, Xilonen makes delicious birria tacos with mushrooms.
Leave Room For: Flan is a traditional dessert in Latin America that can be hard to find vegan but Xilonen serves a vegan and gluten-free version made from coconut.
Address: 905 Lorimer St, Brooklyn, NY
Calling All: Gluten-free vegans craving Mexican food in Manhattan. Food allergens such as soy and nuts are clearly marked on the menu.
Plant Yourself: Grab one of the booth tables and enjoy the cozy plush red sofa-like seating.
Order to Share: You can never go wrong with ordering elote and finding one with vegan cheese is a huge treat. The corn ribs elote is doused in cilantro aioli and pickled red onion.
Don’t Miss: Tamales are a Mexican staple. Here they’re served filled with mushrooms and jackfruit.
Leave Room For: A decadent slice of Dulce de Leche Cake is topped with rosemary-infused whipped cream and gluten-free cinnamon crumble.
Address: 511 E 5th St
Calling All: The fully vegan Tejano national chain is beloved across the country and can be enjoyed in NYC in the Flatiron district.
Plant Yourself: Order takeaway and enjoy your lunch in Madison Square Park.
Order to Share: When you spend at least $10 you’ll get complimentary chips and salsa.
Don’t Miss: The menu consist of four styles from which to choose (tacos, burritos, bowls, nachos) and five plant-based fillings (beef, carnitas, tinga, mushroom asada, baja-style fish)
Leave Room For: Order a side of rice and beans for a hearty and satiating meal.
Address: 12 W 23rd St, New York, NY