9 Vegan-Friendly Black-Owned Restaurants in L.A.
February is Black History Month and we’re celebrating with 10 African-American owned vegan-friendly restaurants, pop-ups, food trucks, and more! Stop by one these amazing spots to enjoy some of LA’s best local, ethnic, and downright delicious plant-based foods.
This new food truck quickly caught attention by parking on Melrose Ave. and serving up a simple yet satisfying menu of vegan burgers, fries, and tacos. Their Beyond Meat based Vurgers also received high respect from our very own team member, Ameen, who undeniably claims it as the best burger he’s ever had. In a city with hundreds of vegan-friendly fast food joints, that’s not an easy conclusion to come to. Follow them on Instagram at @vurgerguyz to stay up to date with locations, festivals, celebrity appearances, and more!
Rahel Ethiopian Vegan Cuisine
1047 S Fairfax Ave, Los Angeles
If you’ve never tried Ethiopian food, Rahel’s in Little Ethiopia is the go-to spot to experience this vast, flavorful, & exciting cuisine. Started in 2000 by Rahel Woldmedhin, this restaurant focuses on giving diners the experience of a traditional Ethiopian meal, beginning with a cleanse of the hands in warm water, followed by large portions of food meant to be shared, and most excitingly, the opportunity to eat using hands in place of utensils. To do it like a pro, grab a piece of injera (Ethiopian teff bread), scoop up a dish you have your eye on, and enjoy a bite full of texture, flavorful, and fragrance. A zero waste technique that’s as pleasurable as it is resourceful? Now that’s a movement we can get behind.
Earle’s on Crenshaw
3864 Crenshaw Blvd, Los Angeles
While not entirely vegan, Earle’s boasts a vegan option for almost everything on their menu, from hot dogs, burgers, chili cheese fries, chocolate cake, and more. Their food is affordable, comforting, and fast. We’re ecstatic that vegans can now grab a bite from this iconic family-owned restaurant!
This food truck explores all the culinary possibilities of the bizzare, massive, & spiky tropical delicacy that is jackfruit. From sweet smoothies made with ripe jackfruit, plantains, and coconut milk to melt-in-your-mouth barbecue sandwiches to cheesy stacked nachos, you can experience the full range of this fruit’s true potential here. While they’re frequent visitors to Sunday’s Hollywood Farmers Market, check the full schedule online.
Stuff I Eat
114 N Market St, Inglewood
Perhaps the only entirely vegan establishment in Inglewood, Stuff I Eat specializes in lending soul food a 2019, whole grain facelift. Stop by to get your fix of yams, barbecue tofu, black-eyed peas, and other Southern-inspired eats!
You know the name, you love their food, and you’ve probably waited in line for an hour to get your hands on one of their massive fried chicken sandwiches. In their early 20s, Eva & Willie began experimenting with a plant-based diet when they began to share their recipes online. Just six months later, they published a cookbook by the name of Lettuce Feast, which reeled in so many profound reviews that Eva & Willie began doing vegan pop-ups later that year. Fast forward a few months and they own their very own food truck—now a staple at Vegan Sunday and other vegan events around LA. In case you didn’t catch all the details, that’s a successful blog, hit cookbook, and critically acclaimed food truck before the ages of 25—you go guys!
Fluffy cornbread, savory jackfruit ribs, saucy mac ‘n cheese, and comforting baked beans by Compton’s very own Lemel Durrah. Need we say more? Get a bite of this hometown soul food via online orders, personal catering, or at one of their pop-ups! Follow them on Instagram at @comptonvegan for the current schedule.
3655 S Grand Ave, Los Angeles
Located in the Mercado La Paloma food hall near USC lies Azla Vegan, a quick-service Ethiopian restaurant that’s bursting with exciting flavors, spices, and textures. This mother & daughter business featured on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, lets you choose from injera (Ethiopian flatbread), a variety of hot stews known as wot, and house-made drinks including a traditional hibiscus, cinnamon, and ginger beverage called sorrel! Swing by Azla Vegan next time you find yourself stuck nearby Exposition Park, because if there’s ever been a better way to pass time while traffic dies down, we don’t know what it is.
4508 W Slauson Ave, Los Angeles
Since 1981, Simply Wholesome has been making healthy food readily accessible to the communities of Inglewood, Culver City, and Leimert Park. With neighborhood grocery stores like Simply Wholesome, anyone can get organic, plant-based, and fresh food into their homes. On top of that, they have in an in-store restaurant that serves up a plethora of vegan options—a few highlights include their Caribbean Tofu Sandwich, Caribbean Tofu Enchiladas, and Two Egg Breakfast, which can be made with scrambled tofu, seasoned potatoes, and veggie sausage or bacon.
For bringing Southern cuisine to life in SoCal, providing healthy food to low income neighborhoods, and revamping city legends to boast plant-friendly menus, we show thanks to these black-owned businesses.
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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