Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Pennsylvania >
Jun 12, 2008 11:49 AM

Favorite Vegetarian Restaurant in Philadelphia

So, I'm an omnivore looking for a really good vegetarian restaurant in Philly, not Indian Cuisine as I've been to most of them in Philly.

I’m specifically looking for restaurants that serve “meat-like” dishes. I know that there are a number of vegetarian Chinese Restaurants in C-town but never been (Harmony, Shanghai Vegetarian)…

I have eaten “Chicken” nuggets and Orange “Beef” (Whole Foods prepared food counter). The texture was ok, semi-convincing, flavor bland to OK… Texture and flavor are the criteria

Will take all recommendations, non-vegetarian recommendation a plus as they would best describe what I’m looking for a convincing meat-like meal…OK, that sounds strange….but you know what I mean???!!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Horizons, 7th and Bainbridge, is the best vegetarian (vegan, actually) restaurant in the city without question.

    In Chinatown, try the dim sum at Kingdom of Vegetarians. If you get out to the northern burbs at all, the Blue Sage in Southampton is fantastic and vegetarian.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Buckethead

      Seconding Horizon's. I have a friend from out of town who I swear only visits me for access to their 'spare rib' appetizers.

      I am not a fan of any of the veg'n Chinese spots in town, but have had better luck at Su Xing, which is not in Chinatown, than the others. (It's a few blocks over from Chinatown on Sansom.)

      Tamarind (South St. & 2nd) has a mock duck dish that I like...

      I'm also a fan of Gianna's for a quick bite. (I like their 'sausage' and 'chicken' better than their 'cheesesteak', though -- the fighting dog is my go-to sandwich from them, and you can feed two people with it.)

    2. Gianna's Grill is more of a takeout place with a few tables, but they have yummy vegan (and meat too) cheesesteaks.

      1. I'm partial to Singapore for my fake meat, though I haven't honestly gotten to Kingdom of Vegetarians or Cherry Street (two other vegi-centric places in Chinatown) so I can't compare them to Singapore. I will say, though, that my dining partners at Singapore have pretty much all been meat eaters, and all have enjoyed the food there. I even have one who considers Singapore to be the best Chinese he has ever had. The menu is huge, and it is really cheap, so you can feel free to try lots of different kinds of meat without breaking the bank. Sorry I don't have any non-Chinatown suggestions, though I will say that if you find yourself at Citizen's Bank Park the fake meat cheesesteak at Rick's is pretty good. The veggie cheesesteaks at Abbaye and Copa Banana are pretty good too, though I'm not sure I would consider them to be fake meat/meat-like.

        4 Replies
        1. re: Laura D.

          Sad to report (like, really, really, really sad) that Cherry Street has been closed for awhile now. Used to be my go-to place for veg-kosher / fake meat Chinese (even had a very accurate-looking shrimp dish that kind of weirded me out), but no more... Now I travel out to Malvern for Su Tao for their buffet, which has a lot of meat analogues.

          1. re: spyturtle008

            Guess I should have tried it before, huh? Now I'll definitely make it a point to get to Kingdom of Vegetarians, lest they go out of business too!

            I tried Su Tao once while living out in Paoli and it was very good for that neck of the woods, but I did find it to be a bit pricey when ordering off of the menu (I never got a chance to try the buffet which I think I probably would have enjoyed and would have found to be a better value).

            1. re: Laura D.

              don't bother with kingdom if you already like singapore. i am very unimpressed with kingdom. singapore on the other hand i love! their chicken 'drumstick' appetizer had a wooden dowel in it, which i find hysterical. the tofu dishes at susanna foo's and morimoto are also excellent, though not 'meaty' in the way that you want.

              dag, i know that there are more places to recommend, but i am totally blanking. i keep dwelling on one of the few good things about boston, a restaurant called grasshopper that was awesome for the fake meat. yes, i am very helpful, i know. ;)

              fyi, i am a full on omnivore.

          2. re: Laura D.

            CORRECTION: I meant Singapore Vegetarian not Shanghai! Sorry!

            I would like to check out Singapore Vegetarian, I've heard really good things about this place. Wow, didn't know that Ricks served a fake meat Cheesesteak. that's great to know!

          3. All of the places listed above serve fake meat. If it really frightens you but you still want the best, order of the menu at Horizons. Some of their dishes are not mock meat and all will blow you away.

            2 Replies
            1. re: saturninus

              How about that Soy Cafe place (never been, though.) Tria does have a lot of non-meat items on their menu, albeit not in the faux-meat vein.

              1. re: bluehensfan

                Haven't been to Soy Cafe but love Tria.

            2. This is great all, thanks for your recommendations! I'll try my best to check them out!