Indulge in the vibrant flavors of the Middle East while staying committed to plant-based eating! Orlando is home to a variety of innovative Middle Eastern food spots serving vegan options that are sure to satisfy your cravings. From falafel to hummus
and everything in between, we’ve rounded up the best of the best in The City Beautiful!
Winter Springs & Lake Nona
Started by an Arab American military veteran longing for authentic food “from home,” owner Hussein Abukhdeir launched Heart of Jerusalem to serve his family and the broader Middle Eastern community. Enjoy familiar favorites such as fresh Tabouleh, Hummus, and Za’atar Pita at Heart of Jerusalem, which boasts Central Florida locations in both Winter Springs and Lake Nona.
Photo by Bite Me Nutrition
Lebanese spot Cedars Restaurant was founded by Charbel Saab in an effort to bring familiar flavors, sounds, and entertainment from Lebanon to the US. The Cedars’ menu clearly labels vegan offerings making it easy to order Middle Eastern favorites such as Warak Inab (grape leaves stuffed with vegetables and rice), Fattouch (lettuce, fresh vegetables, toasted bread, sumac, tossed in a house lemon vinaigrette), and Falafel (chickpeas and fava beans fried and served with tahini sauce).
Photo by Steve A.
Winter Park favorite Hummus House is an Arab-owned, made-to-order restaurant offering patrons a chance to assemble pitas, salads, and rice bowls to their liking! Fill up with vegan proteins (including falafel and fresh-cut veggies) and dressings (such as tahini, hot sauce, and Greek vinaigrette). All six hummus flavors at Hummus House are vegan, meaning you can enjoy roasted garlic, chipotle, and guacamole
hummus without worry!
Photo by Wanderlusthipster H.
On the lookout for Mediterranean fine dining
? Look no further than Meza Mediterranean Grill, an Arab-owned culinary experience by Nazih Sebaali. Warm up with a bowl of their plant-based Lentil Soup with a side of pita. Or enjoy a filling plate of Foul Medamas (creamy fava beans with cumin and a zippy lemon garlic sauce) bursting with flavor. End the night with a short stroll to Harbor Park to enjoy views of Lake Baldwin.
Photo by Jason G.
Mejana Mediterranean Grille is an Arab-owned, Levantine all-day restaurant specializing in Levantine fare, using the best of ingredients. Vegan dishes are very clearly listed on their menu, making ordering a breeze. Stop by for their signature Mejana’s Special Falafel Pita, a vegan-by-default handheld featuring hummus, lettuce, pickles, parsley, onion, falafel, and spicy tahini sauce! Pair with Vegetarian Grape Leaves and Fattoush salad with housemade pita croutons.
Photo by Joe S.
Alafaya & Lake Mary
What began as an Egyptian-owned Halal cart on the streets of New York City
in 1990 has grown into a national venture with two locations in Orlando! Order a platter or sandwich with falafel and all the fixins: rice, lettuce, tomato, jalapenos, hummus, baba ghanoush, and more! Enjoy pita bread with their various vegan sauces, including tahini. This is an excellent option for those looking for food that is both vegan and halal-certified!
Courtesy of The Halal Guys
Persian-owned restaurant Alibaba House of Kabob has been a Middle Eastern mainstay of Orlando
for nearly 30 years! Vegan offerings include classics such as Hummus, Babaganoosh, and Tabouleh, with Persian-specific classics such as Shirazi (cucumber, tomato, onion mixed with lemon juice, olive oil, mint, salt, and pepper) woven throughout.
Photo by Allison van Tilborgh
Winter Park, Winter Garden, Dr. Phillips, & Lake Nona
Enjoy al fresco seating options in Florida’s beautiful weather accented with authentic Mediterranean pottery, silk carpets, and handmade glassware. “Polished casual” Turkish-owned Bosphorus Turkish Cuisine focuses on Anatolian cuisine with plenty of vegan offerings. Dip Lavas (their signature, baked-to-order bread) into their various plant-based dips such as Ezme (a spicy blend of chopped tomatoes, red and green bell peppers, red onion, walnuts, garlic, parsley, dill pickle, jalapeño pepper, and lemon juice), Muhammara (puree of red peppers, walnuts, garlic, olive oil, and pomegranate) and Soslu Patlican (sauteed eggplant in a rich tomato sauce with red and green bell peppers, onion, and garlic) for the full plant-based Turkish experience.
Courtesy of Bosphorus Turkish Cuisine
For vegans looking for a fully kosher-certified selection, Kosher Grill is an excellent choice. Kosher Grill serves traditional Israeli fare with several vegan options. Enjoy their classic Israeli salad (diced tomatoes and onion with an oil-based sauce and parsley flakes), Hummus, Falafel, and Eggplant Baladi for a filling meal. Kosher Grill has a full-time mashgiach onsite during all hours of operation, to ensure the highest level of kashrus possible!
Photo by Laura H.
Born to a Venezuelan mother and Palestinian father, The Mexican Camel owner, Sam Katbeh, grew up with various culinary influences in his life, which he then melded together in Orlando’s first fast-casual Mexican-Mediterranean food concept. Enjoy build-your-own salad, bowls, and pitas loaded with vegan shawarma, falafel, and over 30 fresh Mexican and Mediterranean toppings and sauces. The Mexican Camel also has a vegan menu with pre-made configurations such as their Beyond Vegan Taco Bowl, Falafel Vegan Pita, and Vegandilla (grilled tortilla, vegan cheese, Beyond taco meat, grilled fajitas, roasted corn, and fresh pineapples, served with cilantro-lime-garlic and mango-chipotle sauces). If you’re looking for new flavor combinations, this is a great spot to add to your list!
Photo by Chantal Aybar
Voted by Orlando Weekly as Orlando’s Best Parking Lot Diner, Turkish-owned Mediterranean Street Food is a local favorite serving up quick, halal, and vegan favorites such as falafel pitas, bowls, and salads. Mediterranean Street Food is a cute kiosk with limited seating located in a strip mall parking lot, near the Enzian Theater.
Courtesy of Mediterranean Street Food