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Perth's Best Meat-free Eateries

Home > Perth > Gluten Free | Raw Food | Restaurants | Vegan | Vegetarian | Lists
by Carolyn Hopping (subscribe)
I'm a freelance writer based in Perth, Western Australia, who enjoys writing about the things I love: travel, nature-based activities, the arts, spirituality and creative, fun activities for children.
Published June 24th 2016
Eating Compassionately Has Never Tasted So Good
When I first embraced a vegetarian diet way back in the 1980s, meat-free eating was still considered a little suss in Australia, and people who chose such a diet were deemed hippies, non-conformist art-farties, or just plain weird. Fortunately times have changed and these days vegetarianism has become much more socially acceptable, with meat-free living having morphed into various other forms such as veganism and raw food diets. People of all ages and walks of life now profess to follow a cruelty-free diet – some simply for health reasons, while many others are motivated by spiritual, environmental or ethical considerations.

Image courtesy of Vegan Feast Catering / Wikimedia Commons
Image courtesy of Vegan Feast Catering / Wikimedia Commons

While most people who follow a vegetarian diet would never live any other way, there are a few challenges that all vegos experience from time to time – especially those who enjoy eating out. Being a relatively small city, Perth doesn't possess the huge choice of meat-free eateries that large foodie meccas such as Melbourne have, and this can pose a challenge for the discerning diner. While some are quite comfortable to choose the vegetarian options at an eateries that serve meat, many others feel a bit squeamish at such places and prefer to only eat at places which are strictly free from animal products.

Image courtesy of Vegan Feast Catering / Wikimedia Commons
Image courtesy of Vegan Feast Catering / Wikimedia Commons

The following paragraphs provide a list of some of Perth's best vegetarian eateries. Ranging from vegan and raw food cafes to classy Asian restaurants and hearty Hare Krishna buffets, there is sure to be an option that everyone will enjoy.

Please note, the following is a list of the only meat-free eateries I've personally visited. Please feel free to mention any that have been overlooked in the comment box at the end of the article.

Image courtesy of Ailin Parsa / Wikimedia Commons
Image courtesy of Ailin Parsa / Wikimedia Commons

For over thirty years the Hare Krishna people have been serving up hearty, healthy and affordable vegetarian meals at their Govinda's Restaurant – possibly Perth's most iconic vegetarian eatery. Although the restaurant has moved to a few different addresses over the years, it's invariably offered great value food and a unique ambiance that have made it firm favourite with everyone from students and backpackers to local families and office workers.

Image courtesy of the Govinda's Vegetarian Restaurant Facebook page
Image courtesy of the Govinda's Vegetarian Restaurant Facebook page

Govinda's buffet menu varies daily, with a good variety of meal choices. The lunch menu offers a standard buffet consisting of rice, dal, a couple of lightly spiced vegetable curries and pappadams, as well as lassi (a delicious yoghurt smoothie), halava (a rich semolina pudding) and custard. Best of all, it's an 'as much as you can eat' deal, so you can keep coming back for seconds – or thirds – if you're really hungry. For a few dollars extra there are also yummy samosas (vegetable pasties) and pakoras (deep-fried vegie fritters) for those just wanting a quick snack. If you're vegan be sure to enquire what dishes are suitable for you, as some contain dairy products. However, the rice, dal, samosas and pakoras are always vegan-friendly.

Image courtesy of the Govinda's Vegetarian Restaurant Facebook page
Image courtesy of the Govinda's Vegetarian Restaurant Facebook page

Govinda's Vegetarian Restaurant is located at 194 William Street in Northbridge and opens at 11.30am from Monday to Saturday. Beginning from 3.30pm, Monday to Friday, it also offers great half-price takeaway meals.

Genesis In The Hills
This beautiful restaurant and cafe is located in the suburb of Roleystone in the Perth Hills. Surrounded by natural bushland, the restaurant offers a tasty range of contemporary vegetarian and vegan dishes as well as gluten-free and raw options. As far as possible, Genesis tries to accommodate guests with other food intolerances and allergies. Providing meals that are healthy and wholesome is a priority. According to their website, the chef has a background in nutritional health and strives, through her cooking, endevours to prepare food that is creative, flavoursome and energising.

Image courtesy of the Genesis in the Hills Facebook page
Image courtesy of the Genesis in the Hills Facebook page

Genesis in the Hills is much more than just somewhere to grab a bite. Supporting the local community is a priority, and the restaurant frequently hosts exhibitions by local artists as well as jazz nights. There is also a little shop where guests can buy local honey, flowers, bread, books, art and crafts.

Image courtesy of the Genesis in the Hills Facebook page
Image courtesy of the Genesis in the Hills Facebook page

Genesis in the Hills is situated at 124 Croyden Road in Roleystone and is open on Thursdays, from 10.30am until 5.00pm, and from Friday to Sunday, 8.30am until 5.00pm. To learn more, visit the Genesis in the Hills website.

Swan Valley Cafe
Another delightful vegetarian eatery, far away from the city rat-race, is the Swan Valley Cafe in Millendon. Surrounded by the spectacular scenery of the Swan Valley, the restaurant serves up a classic beautifully-presented international menu, with special meals available for those who are gluten intolerant, vegans or raw-food enthusiasts. As well as serving up a wonderful variety of treats, the cafe hosts fabulous high teas and is one of the few places in Perth that can provide high tea packages for people with special dietary needs. So, if you're a vegetarian or vegan who has always wanted to enjoy a high tea with friends but thought it would never be possible, this could be your big chance.

Image courtesy of the Swan Valley Cafe Facebook page
Image courtesy of the Swan Valley Cafe Facebook page

Right next to the cafe is Valley Tea, where guests can purchase delicious herbal tea blends, specially formulated by a qualified and experienced naturopath. If you enjoyed the teas in the cafe, a visit to Valley Tea will enable you to stock up on all your favourites. Also in the cafe grounds is the Mayflower Orchids Garden Centre.

Swan Valley Cafe is located at 990 Great Northern Highway in Millendon, and is open seven days a week. For more details, including opening hours, visit their website or call them on 08 9296 6320.

Vegie Mama
Located in the heart of vibrant cosmopolitan Mount Lawley, Vegie Mama has long been a popular destination for Perth's vegetarian and vegan foodies. If you love salads, and crave a diverse variety to mix and match, this is definitely the place for you. There are also plenty of hearty and wholesome warm dishes, with a great selection of sumptuous pastries, samosas, rolls, patties and other savouries that will fill you up without weighing you down. Those who have special dietary requirements will also be pleasantly surprised at what's available, and there are usually several gluten-free and dairy-free dishes to choose from.

Image courtesy if the Vegie Mama Facebook page
Image courtesy if the Vegie Mama Facebook page

Vegie Mama is a bright, friendly and unassuming little cafe that's centrally located in one of Perth's most lively and creative neighbourhoods. Their food is beautifully presented, very appetising and extremely well-priced.

Image courtesy if the Vegie Mama Facebook page
Image courtesy if the Vegie Mama Facebook page

You can find Vegie Mama at Unit 5, 567 Beaufort Street in Mount Lawley. To find out more and see some photos of their sumptuous culinary creations, check out their Facebook page.

The Lotus
Tucked away at the far end of James Street in Northbridge, the Lotus Vegetarian Restaurant (also called Sri Melaka) specialises in the traditional Nyonya cuisine of Malaysia. While Nyonya food generally isn't vegetarian, the experienced chefs at the restaurant utilise tofu, soya products and mock meat to recreate sumptuous veg versions of much-loved recipes that have been passed down through families over generations. While vegans and vegetarians who've chosen to eschew animal flesh for spiritual or ethical reasons may find it disconcerting to peruse a menu full of dishes such as beef sezchuen, chicken rending and pork satay, they can rest assured that this place is cent-percent cruelty-free.

Seating arrangements at the restaurant vary, ranging from small tables for two up to large ones perfect for large families and groups of friends. The decor is simple and tasteful, with beautiful Chinese figurines and oriental paintings adorning the restaurant's interior, making it a great spot for a wide variety of functions.

The Lotus Vegetarian Restaurant is situated at 1 / 220 James Street in Northbridge and is open for lunch and dinner from Tuesday to Sunday. If you enjoy meat-free cooking, be sure to take a look at the Vegetarian Market next door where you can purchase many kinds of Asian groceries, mock meats and other vegetarian supplies.

To find out more, call 08 9228 2882.

The Raw Kitchen
This large slick establishment on Fremantle's High Street has become a favourite eatery amongst the local yoga fraternity. As its name indicates, The Raw Kitchen specialises in vegan and raw cuisine, with an awesome juice bar and good selection of herbal teas.

Image courtesy of The Raw Kitchen Facebook page
Image courtesy of The Raw Kitchen Facebook page

Not just a place to eat, The Raw Kitchen also promotes healthy natural living through yoga classes and raw food courses held upstairs from the restaurant. At the time I wrote this article there were four yoga classes held weekly, generally in the early evenings during the week, but also in the morning on Saturdays. If you're a bit strapped for cash, on Wednesdays from 12 noon until 1pm there is a seva class, yoga by donation. All proceeds from the seva classes goes back into the community, either to community charities or for yoga scholarships.

Image courtesy of The Raw Kitchen Facebook page
Image courtesy of The Raw Kitchen Facebook page

If you've been impressed with the restaurant's yummy raw delicacies and want to try making them at home, Intro to Raw workshops are also held regularly.

Image courtesy of The Raw Kitchen Facebook page
Image courtesy of The Raw Kitchen Facebook page

The Raw Kitchen is situated at 181A High Street in Fremantle. To learn more about the restaurant, the yoga classes or the raw food workshops, check out The Raw Kitchen's website.

The Juicy Beetroot Cafe
This sweet little cafe is laden with atmosphere and situated in a side alley (with the quaint name of Tum Tum Tree Lane) in Fremantle – just off High Street. It purveys a great selection of meals including wholesome curries, rice, and mouth-watering sweets – many of which are vegan. Apart from hearty full meals, the Juicy Beetroot also has a tasty selection of savouries such as tofu wraps, vegie burgers, pies and tempeh sandwiches, which are perfect for a quick bite. The selection of salads is impressive, too – another major drawcard for diners. There are also freshly squeezed juices, smoothies and herb teas.

The cafe's popularity is confirmed by the fact that, despite its secluded position, it's almost always busy. Obviously it's garnered a very loyal following over the years – one that is fully justified.

The Juicy Beetroot Cafe is located at 132 High Street in Fremantle, in Tum Tum Tree Lane, and is open from Monday to Friday, 10.00am – 4.00pm. To learn more, take a peek at their Facebook page.

Lord of the Fries
Health food enthusiasts, beware. Although this new fast-food establishment is totally meat-free and the food is undoubtedly delicious, it definitely isn't particularly healthy. However, if you're a hungry vegetarian or vegan who just wants a quick bite on the run, it will probably suffice. Part of an Australia-wide chain of takeaways, Lord of the Fries is, in essence, a vegetarian version of McDonalds, selling a large range of vegie burgers, hot-dogs, fries, nuggets and shakes, along with a mind-boggling range of yummy sauces, quite a few of which are vegan.

Lord of the Fries is situated at 110 William Street in Perth City. For more information about them, go to the Lord of the Fries website.

Heaven Raw Cafe
This lovely little vegan and raw food cafe at Fremantle Environment Resource Network (FERN) is definitely one of the Port City's best-kept secrets. Open from 8.30am until 8.00pm, you can grab a table out in the FERN gardens, or eat inside in the cafe's rustic interior. The delicious menu encompasses both raw and cooked food, including pizzas, enchiladas, raw zucchini pastas, falafels, wraps, salads and even special kids' meals. There is also a comprehensive selection of juices, smoothies and teas – not to mention a wickedly indulgent assortment of deserts. If you love the food so much you'd like to try to make some at home, the cafe also holds raw food cooking classes every Sunday from 9.00am until 10.30am.

Last but not least, the Fremantle Environment Resource Network holds its legendary Soupi (donation-based vegan community dinner) every evening, from 6 - 8pm on Mondays, and 5 – 7pm on every other day. If you love vegan food, this friendly down-to-earth gathering is an event you definitely won't want to miss. Those who are a bit short on cash may like to contribute instead by volunteering a few hours of their time to help prepare the meal.

Fremantle Community Resource Centre is located at 26 Montreal Street, at the corner of High Street. Go to the FERN website to find out more.

Situated close to the Barrack Street jetty, Analakshmi is another Perth icon, offering pure Indian vegetarian food in a sumptuously decorated dining room, with views over the Swan River. More than just another restaurant, Analakshmi offers a complete cultural experience where diners regularly enjoy performances of traditional Indian music and dance as they eat. The menu varies, but typically includes exquisite traditional fare from both north and south India. If you enjoy cooking, Analakshmi also holds regular cooking classes in the restaurant's kitchen.

Rather than charging a set price for meal, Analakshmi operates on a 'pay as you feel' system. Based on the ancient tradition of 'athiti devo bhava', the respectful service of unknown guests, the restaurant strives to create an environment of loving reciprocation where diners will feel inspired to cultivate the heartfelt mood of service and giving.

Analakshmi Restaurant is situated at Jetty 4, Barrack Street Square. To learn more, visit their website or call 02 9221 3003.

Formosa Vegetarian Eating House
Specialising in contemporary Asian cuisine, Perth's two Formosa Restaurants offer a comprehensive menu of tasty vegetarian and vegan meals, served in a relaxed casual setting. Like the Lotus, the Formosa uses mock meat, derived from soya and textured vegetable protein, in the food they prepare – a bit off-putting for some vegetarians, but offering a convincing substitute to the traditional ingredients in many Asian recipes. There's a coding system on the menu to let diners know which items are totally free of animal products but if you have any doubts, check with the staff. Unfortunately, most of the sweets that are sold at the restaurant contain egg.

There are two Formosa Vegetarian restaurants in Perth – one in the heart of Northbridge (109 James Street) and the other in Kardinya (Shop 7 / 23 South Street). To find out more, call the Northbridge restaurant on 08 9227 0238.

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Why? To connect local vegetarians and vegans with some of the best cruelty-free food in Perth
Where: Throughout the Perth metro area
Cost: It varies
Your Comment
The High St Dispensary in the West End of Fremantle has recently opened and they are awesome
by pam.f (score: 0|4) 2522 days ago
Thank you- very useful!
by rache (score: 0|6) 2526 days ago
Utopia - Northbridge
by Morro (score: 0|2) 2526 days ago
CityFarm cafe at the East end of the free yellow CAT bus route is very good, although not totally vegetarian, and has seating in their garden as well as under cover.
by parso (score: 0|4) 2524 days ago
The Raw Kitchen now serves cooked ( curries, soups, pizza ) as well as raw dishes ( there is raw as well as cooked pizza ) - all incredibly delicious!
by Keryn (score: 0|6) 2523 days ago
Loved your article I am a vegan and always interested to hear of places to eat, as I usually cook all my own food 😄
by janje (score: 0|4) 2521 days ago
Authentic India in Darch and Canning Vale serves up very tasty Gujarati Indian cuisine and snacks to eat in and take away.
by Dushy (score: 0|4) 2508 days ago
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