Thailand is best known for its diversity of foods suited for all taste buds and tingling tongues alike. From exquisite delicacies from northern Thailand to down all the way to the Gulf of Thailand, the Land of Smiles will always serve up dishes for curious tourists to taste. In contrast, Thailand does offer amazing vegetarian loving dishes as well. Vegetarianism is rising in Thailand and can be found in all 77 provinces in Thailand, each dish is adapted appropriately to its meaty counterpart. Although a lot of Thai people aren’t strictly vegetarian, there are times where sometimes, you need that extra pinch of vegetables into your diet!
One of the top and most recommended restaurants is called May Kaidees, serving the best vegetarian food in Bangkok. The restaurant serves authentic Thai classic dishes that are adapted to have that vegetarian taste, taking out the meat and replacing it with good ol’ vegetables. Have you heard of Issan noodle salad and seaweed tempura? For just 120 Baht per person, the restaurant offers a plethora of delicious items up for grabs during their buffet time: Vegetarian curries, rice, sushi, humus plus a variety of delicious spring rolls. The best time is to come during Saturdays where there’s a bigger selection of vegetarian foods, all available at the tip of your fingers!
Issaya Siamese Club is a restaurant which makes a bold, fashion statement. Typically, many restaurants depend on the décor of the location to pull in customers but with Issaya, it goes beyond than making a statement with bold colors and prints. Issaya is best known for its homegrown vegetables and an organic vegetarian menu. With menus ranging from appetizers to entrees, Issaya’s menu is accompanied by exquisite artful representation that balances out flavors of the dish. Taking Thai cooking to a new level, Issaya shouldn’t be missed thanks to the creative thinking of Ian Kittichai, Issaya’s main patron.
One of the newest restaurants to open in Bangkok with homegrown flair is Simple. As simple as it sounds (no pun intended), Simple advertises homegrown organic foods which is soon translates into simple to eat dishes designed to shift the focus to healthy eating. Simple, as the name implies makes things simpler for you to choose from and eat. Alcohol is not served here but instead, you can enjoy a fresh array of daily blended juices. One of the ultimate favorites is the mango and pineapple blend, prepared by the owner’s mother.
Don’t think that only local restaurants are adapting to the shift in vegetarianism; many restaurants across Bangkok hotels are now adapting their menus to promote using local ingredients into their amazing dishes. One such restaurant is The Mistral, a restaurant featuring drool-worthy Eastern and Western cuisine prepared by star-quality chefs.
If you happen to be looking for great vegetarian food that is accompanied by a casual and friendly environment, it’s highly recommended to check out these places. Not only will you get healthy backyard grown food, you’re also helping with promoting the local economy by eating local foods.
John Simmons is a casual restaurant hopper, traveling the world in search of each city’s best vegetarian restaurants and recipes. Currently he is in Bangkok and guestblogs for food websites and communities.