Here’s my list of where to get the best vegan breakfasts in Edinburgh to help you through Veganuary (updated 2023) …
So you’re trying Veganuary and already you’re missing those big fry ups/Sunday brunch pancake stacks/ simple fruit and yoghurt! Switching to a vegan diet can be tough … think of it the same way as being on a weight loss diet, you are trying to change habits of a lifetime. Breakfast out of the house used to be a pretty boring affair for vegans; beans on toast (no margarine, of course) was a tiresome staple. However, times are changing.
Black Rabbit – Vegan Deli and Coffee Shop
It’s takeaway only for those visiting sweet and savoury baked goods specialist, Black Rabbit. But when the food is THIS good, who cares? I don’t think I was quite ready for the number of options that Black Rabbit provide each day; their window is a delectable dream of cake stands bursting with cruffins (croissant/muffins), sweet pastries, and savoury snacks (I’ve recently tucked into 3 cheese and chutney pasties and ‘nae egg’ rolls).
The Black Rabbit menu also has a daily selection of hot toasties (good god, try the cheese and bacon one!), lunchtime baguettes, and vegan sandwiches.
Finally, if the supermarket offering of plastic-like vegan cheeses have you teetering on self-destruction, take a moment to purchase a few of Black Rabbit’s deli cheeses. My favourite – The Gorgonzola and spreadable ‘Cheddar’.
Is there anything better than vegan donuts? How about vegan donuts jammed full of plant-based bacon and sausages, smothered in lashings of sauce?
You’d be a fool to think I head all the way up to Considerat in Newington for only one donut. As well as their savoury offerings, this all-vegan donut house mixes up its flavour selection every week – so there’s always an excuse to go back for more.
Plant Bae is a vegan and vegetarian cafe located in Edinburgh’s East End on Easter Rd (near to the Hibernian FC football stadium). Their vegan-friendly lemon curd and granola waffles have fast become one of my favourite breakfast go-to’s in the city (they also have a chocolate ganache and Biscoff option). On my last visit, I discovered that their team had been out on an intensive pastry course, and they’re now the first location in Edinburgh to offer a vegan pastel de nata!
If you’re not in the mood for something sweet, their range of thick vegan cheese toasties come in at a respectable £8 price point, and pair beautifully with a locally-sourced coffee.
Holy Cow Lounge, Fountain Bridge
The pancakes that Edinburgh has waited an eternity for! It’s not often I can finish off an entire stack, but Holy Cow’s Biscoff light and fluffy pancakes are absolutely delicious. Plated up with plant-based skooshy cream and lashings of Biscoff sauce, they’ve fast become my favourite pancakes in the city.
Hata Canon Mills
Not exclusively vegan, but Hata always has a variety of imaginative plant-based cakes, alongside their most notable breakfast staple – enormous veggie-friendly porridge bowls. The porridge batches are made with plant-based milk as standard so that nobody is left behind, and they regularly change up the topping options to keep things interesting.
On the day I captured this photo, they had ladened mine with sweet stewed apples, cocoa nibs, mint and sugary crumble biscuit.
Loudons vegan pancakes
Loudons used to be one of my favourite places for vegan breakfast in Edinburgh city! With 2 venues (one between Tollcross and Fountain Bridge, and one just down from Waverley Train Station), they had both east and west Edinburgh covered. When I first worked on this post back in 2019, their menu was bursting with vegan options. However, they’ve cut back their offering a lot and their days of vegan eggs are long gone, replaced by a standard breakfast and vegan bramble pancakes. Sad times. Check out Loudon’s vegan menu offering.
This luxury dessert restaurant is located right in the centre of Fountain Park, Edinburgh’s West End entertainment and food hub. Their pastel palette booths are the perfect place to nurse a hangover or meet your squad for a sweet Sunday brunch. If you need an excuse to pause the calorie count, this is it! They offer up a strong vegan menu of Biscoff waffles, tarts, milkshakes, puddings, and cocktails and I’m always impressed by how creative their menu team are with flavours – I love the iced rose and lychee latte! And don’t forget to pack your camera – the Instagram game is strong in this one.
Bross Bagels – Vegan breakfast in Leith and beyond
Not the largest if you’re looking for a big vegan breakfast/brunch, but ideal for a filling start to the day (especially when you’re on the go). Since my original post, Bross has opened multiple new units across Edinburgh, including a larger deli in the long-awaited St James Shopping Center.
There was a time when getting a vegan breakfast in Leith (now a lively hub for Edinburgh foodies) was a challenge. For some time, the area clung to its fishing port roots. However, times have changed and Bross Bagels are just one of many local businesses expanding their vegan selections. Their larger ‘Born Again Vegan’ sandwich includes ‘facon’, ‘cheese’ sauerkraut, crispy onions, and lashing of 1000 island dressing. Check out the Bross bagel menu.
OQO Elm Row Coffee shop with creative vegan options
Nestled neatly in the blocks of Elm row, bridging the gap between Leith and Edinburgh city centre, is pretty little coffee shop OQO. Whilst their vegan offering isn’t huge, I appreciate their Chef’s recent attempt to introduce a lot more dairy (and egg) free cakes into the mix. On well-stocked days, they’ve had 3-4 cake options, alongside plump breakfast muffins.
Piece Box – vegan breakfast in Polwarth
An oldie, but a goody! Probably one of the largest plates on the list, it’s also one of the most creative. In their updated vegan breakfast plate, they serve up crispy fried potato skins, pulled and marinated oyster mushrooms, sausage, beans, spinach, and fried chilli tomatoes.
And, that’s not all! Their vegan menu now also includes dairy-free milkshakes, porridge, and granola.
Hungry for more vegan-friendly places to visit in Edinburgh? Have a read of my Vegan Food in Edinburgh post.