Budapest is a Vegan Hotspot
I didn’t have high hopes for an abundance of plant-based options when jetting off to Hungary’s capital but I found Budapest coming hot on the heels of Berlin - one of the most vegan-friendly cities in the World. Apart from showing love to vegans, Budapest also has the advantage of being one of the least expensive destinations in Europe. Combine that with its beautiful cityscape and culture, and you have a perfect getaway trip.
Here’s our list of the best plant-based food joints in both Buda & Pest side of town.
Compared to Pest, Buda does not have as many exclusively vegan spots but there is one you should make time for if you like a hearty and filling meal. Édeni Vegán is only a 10min walk away from the Fisherman’s Bastion and it offers buffet-style meals with a homemade feel. The portions are fairly big, especially for the price.
Mixed plate with burger & drink - HUF 2990 ~ £8.50
Tökmag Vegan Street Food offers yummy sandwiches and burgers.
And right next door to it, you can get delicious coffee and pastries at Fill Good Vegan Artisan Bakery.
Both of these are basically at the feet of the Margaret Bridge (Margit híd) which takes you to Margaret Island so they’re a great choice to grab a picnic takeaway.
Budapest has as a whole vegan street food market, Vegan Garden, located in the Jewish District. There are several amazing food trucks to choose from but appealing to my complete cheeseball nature, I was drawn to Las Vegans heart-shaped pizzas. They were indeed very cheesy and topped with delicious veggies.
Pizza at Las Vegans - HUF1590 ~ £4.35
Langos is a Hungarian speciality. It’s a deep-fried dough, most commonly topped with sour cream and cheese. And Retró Lángos Büfé has the most variations I have seen including a (most possibly) vegan one! It’s not exactly displayed as such but you can ask for the filled vegetable langos without the cheese and cream.
It’s obviously not the most authentic langos experience but I had a mix of pickles, olives, mushrooms, onions but you can pick and choose whatever veggies you prefer.
I can’t say much about the actual dough though. When I got it, I knew that the traditional and most basic recipe only has flour, yeast and salt however I later found out that some variations also include milk or sour cream.
Langos - HUF 950 ~ £2.60
Veganeria Vegán Bisztró proves that you can have a plant-based version of almost anything and the way they prepare seitan has the potential to fool a meat eater. It has a modern setting, friendly staff and a big menu so you can go from pizzas to seitan roasts and soup.
Roasted seitan grilled with vegan cheese, potatoes and roasted veggies + water + a shot of Unicum (Hungarian national drink) - HUF 3430 ~ £9.45
For dessert, why not have some fresh nitrogen ice cream made right in front of your eyes. You’ll find the Rocket Ice stand at Karaván food-truck court on Kazinczy Street, next to the ruin bar Szimpla Kert.
They simply blend all of the ingredients and add some liquid nitrogen which quickly freezes the mix, whilst looking like a science lab experiment, and turns it into a creamy dessert. And they can whip up a few vegan combinations!
Banana, coconut & choc chip ice-cream HUF 990 ~ £2.70
If you want to try local produce and support small manufacturers, get up early on a Sunday and head to Budapest’s most famed ruin bar Szimpla Kert for their weekly farmers market.
They have all kinds of goodies - veggies, fruit, jams and spices - all chemical free and home-made. It’s also a great place to buy the spice most associated with Hungary - paprika. Here it’s much cheaper than tourist shops or airport and this way you are supporting the local farmers.
* The prices are an approximate conversion/as of September 2018*