10 Spots for Cheesy Vegan Eats in Los Angeles
Even vegans like to be cheesy sometimes. Heck, vegans may even be more of cheese enthusiasts than omnivores (we always want what we can’t have). For that reason, we’ve compiled this list of 10 special places where you can indulge in gooey, melty, salty, and sharp bliss.
Arts District and Boyle Heights
Vegan pizza isn’t rare to come by in LA, but really good vegan pizza is another story. Despite the devilish name, Purgatory Pizza is vegan pizza heaven, offering a variety of vegan-friendly pies with different vegan meats, cheeses, and sauces. For the cheesiest, gooiest, and most indulgent pizza in LA, order their vegan deep dish, which is just as comforting, saucy, and savory as you remember it from a kid.
Just like with pizza, vegan mac ’n cheese isn’t hard to come by in LA, but finding one that’s the perfect balance of sharp, creamy, savory, and saucy is a bit like finding a rare Pokemon. Thankfully, we have Avocadamama, a pop-up whose menu is 100% focused on vegan mac ’n cheese, to save the day! With four different signature macs, homemade cheese sauce, and the option to add avocado to any dish, you’re going to want to track down Avocadamama’s next pop-up to fulfill your cheesiest desires. Catch them at Smorgasburg, Vegan Sundays, Block Party Highland Park, or find their full schedule on Instagram @avocadamama.
Sage Vegan Bistro
Pasadena, Echo Park, and Culver City
Sage is somewhat of a vegan mecca, and they have the cheesy options to prove it: one, their Mac ’N Cheese is one of the best in the city. Two, mac ’n cheese on top of pizza? Yeah, they have that too. Three, they even have chili cheese fries. And four, they serve up loaded nachos with gooey cashew cheese sauce. We think we’ve said enough.
Doomie’s Home Cookin’
Doomie’s has the hold down on the junkiest vegan food around, but in the best way possible. For your most indulgent cravings, order their Mac Melt, where mac ’n cheese and a burger patty meet in holy matrimony. Or, try their Philly Cheesesteak, which is drenched in homemade vegan “whiz.” Or why not get their Bacon Cheese Fries because who doesn’t want bacon and cheese on french fries?
The Wild Chive
Long Beach Pop-Up
This Long Beach pop-up quickly grabbed attention online, and for good reason: The Wild Chive offers vegan soul food at its finest. While their menu changes frequently, here are some of their cheesiest highlights: Their grilled cheese sandwich is filled with bourbon-whiskey bbq jackfruit, mac n cheese, and of course, melted cheese slices. Their Beer Battered Mac ’n Cheez Balls are made with with vegan parmesan and marinara sauce. And their Monte Cristo Sandwich has vegan ham and cheese grilled between two thick, fluffy, and moist french toast slices. We could go on, but all of their menu items are worthy of a highlight! And keep an on The Wild Chive in 2019 too, as they’ll be opening up a brick and mortar location!
Monty’s Good Burger
Koreatown & Riverside
This may be our 100th time talking about Monty’s Good Burger, but what can we say, they earn it! Plus, they’ve got you on your childhood favorite drive-thru meal: a cheeseburger and fries. For their cheesiest endeavor, order their “dog pile,” which is a pile of tots and/or fries topped with two Impossible Burger patties, grilled onions, melted Follow Your Heart cheese, and all of their sauces. Need we say more?
The Vegan Hooligans
The Vegan Hooligans is kind of like your favorite New York-style diner. You know, the one with stacked sandwiches, milkshakes, burgers, and hot dogs? And no New York diner would be complete without tons of cheese, which is why The Vegan Hooligans has chili cheeseburgers, mac ’n cheese hot dogs, and beefy mac ’n cheese quesadillas. Pop in to their diner take-over on Monday nights in Eagle Rock or follow them on Instagram @wearetheveganhooligans for all their pop-up locations!
So far, we’ve covered plenty of savory bites, but we can’t forget about the densest, richest, and creamiest dessert of them all: cheesecake. No doubt, O’cado offers a killer vegan mac ’n cheese complete with bacon and panko bread crumbs, but what makes them stand out from the rest is their vegan cheesecake, which is total dessert bliss, complete with berry and chocolate sauce on top.
Arts District & Long Beach
Is it a coincidence that two of LA’s best spots for vegan pizza are in the Arts District? Maybe, but we’re not complaining about it. Pizzanista is one of those grungy, New York-style, skater spots, just a little bit more LA friendly with enough options to warm any vegan’s heart. While their vegan cheese and pepperoni pies are classic, visit them on Sunday to be able to order all-out decadence in the form of a mac ’n cheese pizza slice that consists of pizza crust, red sauce, a thick layer of vegan mac ’n cheese, and even more cheese on top!
Word of Mouth
With a list like this, it’s hard to say “we’ve saved the best for last,” so we’re not going to say that. Instead, we’re going to say we saved the crispiest, gooiest, and most comforting dish for last. Word of Mouth’s Mac and Cheese Bites are made by deep-frying balls of homemade mac ’n cheese until they’re golden, brown, and delicious, and then tossing them with vegan parmesan, and serving them alongside creamy ranch dressing. If you need to forget about your ex, move on from a bad day, or achieve nirvana, this is your next move.
With this list, you can explore LA’s most righteous vegan cheese delights.
Ryan is a cook, writer, and musician born and raised in Tampa, FL. With years of recipe testing for his Asian-American food blog, No Eggs or Ham, behind him, he strives to sharpen the image of vegan food by highlighting chefs who push the boundaries of plant-based cuisine. Unlike the advice your mom lent you, he encourages you to play with your food every chance you get!
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