Whether you’re vegan, vegetarian, or simply trying to incorporate more plant-based foods into your diet, Columbus has lots of options to meet your needs. This article will highlight a variety of vegan restaurants in the area that you can check out.
5 Vegan Restaurant Highlights in Columbus
Willowbeez SoulVeg | 59 Spruce Street (located in the North Market)
- Willowbeez SoulVeg is a family-owned vegan restaurant located in The North Market that specializes in vegan soul food. Willowbeez SoulVeg also offers catering services. Menu items include starters, entrees, soups, sides, and desserts. Willowbeez SoulVeg features a range of options including their Curry Bella, BBJerk Bella, No Fish Fry, So’Lasagna, Doc’s Cajun Pasta, Mac and Plz, Cornbread, and much more! Prices range from around $10-$14 for most entrees.
- Willowbeez SoulVeg’s location in the North Market is a quick car or bus ride from campus. You can take the COTA bus for free with your BuckID to reach the North Market in about 20 minutes. If you have a car, it’s only about a 10-minute drive.
- As students, you can purchase gift certificates to the North Market that are worth $20 for a discounted price of $10 through the D-Tix Program at the Ohio Union!
Portia’s Café | 4428 Indianola Ave.
- Portia’s Café only serves food that is vegan, organic, local, gluten-free, and GMO-free.
- Portia’s Café offers a wide variety of menu items featuring breakfast, lunch and dinner entrees, dips, appetizers, soups, and salad, as well as desserts, coffee, and drinks.
- Portia’s Café is located in Clintonville. The restaurant is only a 10-15 minute drive from campus or about a 30-45 minute bus ride.
Eden Burger | 1437 N. High Street
- Eden Burger is a local fast-casual 100% vegan restaurant. Menu items include vegan burgers and sandwiches that range in price from $8.00 to $13.00. For an additional cost, burgers and sandwiches can be made a double. Burgers are made with lentils, sunflower seeds, rice, mushrooms, gluten free oats, beets, liquid aminos, and spices. Eden Burger’s sandwiches also feature breaded tempeh, chick’n patties, and vegan bacon.
- Eden Burger’s sides and drinks feature loaded fries, onion rings, and vegan milkshakes.
- Eden Burger is conveniently located near campus. The restaurant is just about a 10-minute walk from the Ohio Union. You can also easily hop on the COTA Bus on either the 1 or 2 line on High Street to reach Eden Burger. The restaurant is located directly next to the Northside Branch of the Columbus Metropolitan Library.
Pattycake Bakery | 3870 N. High Street
- Pattycake Bakery is a Worker Owned Cooperative located in Clintonville that specializes in organic, vegan baked goods. Their menu features vegan cookies, muffins, cakes and cupcakes, as well as other treats like whoopie pies and a variety of gluten-free items.
- Located on North High Street in Clintonville, Pattycake Bakery is a 10-minute drive or 25-minute bus ride from campus!
The Nile Vegan | 1479 Worthington Street (South Campus) and 1223 Goodale Boulevard, Grandview Heights
- The Nile Vegan is a vegan Ethiopian restaurant with a location right by South Campus on Worthington Street, as well as another in Grandview Heights. You can order appetizers, lunch and dinner specials, and combination platters at The Nile Vegan with dishes like lentils, curried vegetable medley, chickpea sauce combo, and more! Entrees and Combination platters range from around $7.99-$12.99.
Looking for more options than these five quick highlights? Columbus has many different vegan restaurants with a variety of cuisines. Be sure to check out other spots such as Lifestyle Café, Seitan’s Realm, Vida’s Plant Based Butcher, Can’t Believe It’s Vegan, Roots Natural Kitchen, and 4th and State. For more recommendations, check out the following articles:
Finally, if you want to learn more about plant-based diets or nutrition in general, you can schedule a free one-on-one nutrition coaching appointment through the Student Life Student Wellness Center for support and education.
Eating Plant-Based on Campus
Did you know that Student Life Dining Services has over 30 dining locations on the Columbus campus? These locations incorporate many different styles of dining and types of food. Even if you don’t have a meal plan, you can still eat at most of the locations on campus by paying with cash or card.
Eating plant-based has become increasingly popular, and options are continuing to become more accessible. Although not everyone can become vegan or vegetarian – or even wants to – there are ways to incorporate different plant-based options into your diet while maintaining healthy, well-balanced meals. Plant-based meals also tend to be more sustainable, which can enhance and promote environmental wellness. Check out this list featuring several different plant-based options you can grab right here on campus!
Plant-Based Meal Highlights on the Columbus Campus
Woody’s Tavern | Located in the Ohio Union | 1759 North High Street
- Woody’s Tavern is a casual spot that’s great for gatherings. If you’re looking to hang out with friends, check out an OUAB Open Mic Night, or just stop by and grab a quick meal, you can order ½ pound of Vegetarian Wings for $5.00, or an entire pound for $8.00 at Woody’s Tavern.
Union Market | Located in the Ohio Union | 1759 North High Street
- At the Fired Up! Grill station in the Union Market you can buy a Veggie Burger Box for $7.95. The Veggie Burger Box is served with french fries and your choice of toppings.
- For more plant-based options in Union Market, check out the Buckeye Passports Station. You can order a Vegetarian Rice Bowl with Ginger Rice, Shiitake Mushrooms, Pickled Daikon, Edamame & Teriyaki Sauce for $8.00, as well as a Vegetable Roll with cucumber, carrot, and avocado for $6.00.
- The Mirror Lake Eatery specializes in chicken tenders and milkshakes, but they haven’t forgotten about plant-based eaters on campus. If you are vegan or vegetarian, there are options available for you! Check out their $8.00 Vegetarian Combo which includes 3 plant-based tenders, fries, an iced King’s Hawaiian roll, and a drink. For $4.00 more, you can purchase the Vegetarian Combo with a milkshake instead of a drink. For vegan students, Mirror Lake Eatery offers a Plant-Based Combo for $7.50 which comes with 3 plant-based tenders, fries, and a drink.
Courtside Café | Located in the RPAC | 337 Annie and John Glenn Avenue
- Courtside Café in the RPAC features lots of plant-based items. If you are vegetarian, check out their Vegetable Lo Mein ($7.50), Vegetable Stir Fry ($7.00), Tofu Lo Mein ($7.50), and Pasta bowls. They even have specialty dishes such as Sauteed Garden Vegetables with asparagus, squash, zucchini, broccoli, and red onion with garlic, as well as Chia Pudding ($4.75) with coconut, pineapple, strawberries, almonds, and honey. Additionally, Courtside Café has vegan meals like their Tofu Stir Fry ($7.00) with seared tofu, mixed vegetables, jasmine rice, and stir fry sauce. Whether you’re taking a break between classes, squeezing in a quick workout, or just looking for a spot to grab dinner, Courtside Café has many options to meet your needs.
- Located on South Campus, the 12th Avenue Bread Company has both vegan and vegetarian sandwich options. Their vegetarian Green Goddess Sandwich ($8.00) includes white cheddar, avocado, lettuce, cucumbers, sprouts, and house-made green goddess dressing on whole grain bread. For vegan eaters, check out the Ultimate Veggie Club ($7.00) with avocado, alfalfa sprouts, cucumber, roasted peppers, spinach, pickled red onions, and red pepper hummus on multi-grain bread.
Curl Market | 80 W. Woodruff Avenue
- Curl Market is another location that features quick, marketplace style dining with multiple stations. There are a lot of ways you can eat plant-based at Curl Market. For example, you can build your own burrito for $7.00 with veggies, plant-based chicken, or plant-based chorizo for protein. Curl Market’s pasta station also offers a build-your-own option with plant-based meatballs and plant-based cheese sauce on the menu.
- In addition to build-your-own options, you can grab a Plant-Based Meatball Sub Sandwich or a Veggie Sandwich for $6.50 each at the sandwich station in Curl Market. At the sushi station, plant-based options include a $6.00 Vegetable Spring Roll with Green Leaf Lettuce, Cucumber, Avocado, and Carrot rolled in Rice Paper.
Marketplace on Neil | 1578 Neil Avenue
- Similar to Curl Market, Marketplace on Neil has many build-your-own meals that you can customize to be plant-based. For example, you can build your own pizza ($7.50) with plant-based sausage and vegan cheese or build your own deli sub ($6.95) with plant-based shredded chick’n and Daiya vegan cheese. Marketplace on Neil also offers a General Tso Bowl ($7.50) that you can customize to include plant-based chick’n nuggets or roasted tofu for your protein. You can also build your own pasta meal!
Sloopy’s Diner | Located in the Ohio Union | 1759 North High Street
- Sloopy’s Diner is a unique feature on the Columbus campus as the only sit-down restaurant operated by Dining Services. Carry-out is also available at Sloopy’s Diner. In addition to its special atmosphere, Sloopy’s Diner offers unique dishes, including many plant-based meals.
- For breakfast, Sloopy’s Diner offers a vegan Plant-Based Breakfast Burrito ($7.95) which consists of a flour tortilla filled with scrambled tofu, mushrooms, spinach, grape tomatoes, onions and black bean salsa with vegan chorizo, vegan cheese, and guacamole. The Plant-Based Breakfast Burrito is served with hashbrowns on the side. Another plant-based breakfast option is Sloopy’s vegan Tofu Veggie Scrambler ($7.95), made up of scrambled tofu with mushroom, grape tomatoes, spinach and onions. Sloopy’s Diner also serves Vegan Pancakes ($2.75 for two, $3.75 for four, and $4.75 for six) and Overnight Oatmeal ($4.95) made with almond milk and coconut yogurt and served with chia seeds, as well as your choice of brown sugar or raisins.
- For lunch or dinner, try Sloopy’s Beyond Burger ($8.95). A variety of toppings can be added to your burger for an additional cost so you can customize your meal to your tastes. Sloopy’s menu also includes a vegan Pasta and Plant-Based Meatball Dinner ($10.00). This pasta dish includes 4 plant-based meatballs served with fettuccini pasta and marinara sauce topped with Daiya plant-based cheese.
Thyme & Change Food Truck 1.0 | Located at 136 W. Woodruff Ave.
- Another unique and exciting feature of dining on Ohio State’s campus includes three Thyme & Change Food Trucks.
- On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, you can purchase plant-based burgers at the Thyme & Change Food Truck 1.0. Options include the traditional Beyond Burger ($8.00) which is a plant-based cheddar burger on a toasted brioche bun with lettuce, tomato, onion, and Dijonnaise. For a different type of burger, check out the Mushroom & Mozzarella Beyond Burger ($8.00). This item is a plant-based mozzarella burger on a toasted brioche bun with griddled mushrooms, lettuce, tomato, and onion.
- Korean BBQ is also available at the Food Truck on Wednesdays. Check out their vegetarian Spicy Tofu Tacos for $3.50 each.
- Finally, on Tuesdays and Thursdays the theme is Thyme in India. Depending on your preference, you can get either a vegan Basmati Rice Wrap or Basmati Rice Bowl for $8.00 from the food truck. Vegan Vegetable Tikkis, otherwise known as potato and vegetable croquettes served with cilantro or tomato chutney, are also available for $6.00.
This list is just a starting point for all of the plant-based options available on campus! Many other locations have plant-based meals, and there are a variety of vegan or vegetarian sides, baked goods, build-your-own meals, and grab-and-go items available across campus. If you are interested in learning more about eating plant-based, schedule a free one-on-one nutrition coaching appointment through the Student Life Student Wellness Center. For more information about dining on campus, menu items, or nutritional facts, please visit the Student Life Dining Services website.
-Lucy Hennon, Graduate Student Assistant