Which country has the best vegetarian cuisine?

Veggie Travel Guide: These vacation destinations are suitable for vegetarians

Being out and about as a vegetarian can be quite a challenge at times. Especially when you are traveling to distant countries with an unknown cuisine. In big cities it is usually not a problem to eat vegetarian on the street or in restaurants. There is also great diversity in countries with a large proportion of vegetarians. By the way, most of them live in India, Israel and Taiwan. We took a closer look at the kitchens of different countries and found the most vegetarian-friendly.

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Vegetarian cuisine in different countries: this is what awaits you


Although international dishes are available in many countries and especially in large cities, it is worth trying the local specialties as well. In many countries there is a multitude of vegetarian delights. Here is a small excerpt of what you can expect:

Canada: not just the land of maple syrup

Canada is a melting pot of European cultures, which is why many delights are very familiar to you. But there are also typical regional dishes, for which mainly foods are used that come from the large North American country. By the way, the probably best-known specialty is vegetarian: maple syrup. It is traditionally used to sweeten pancakes or pancakes. But the aromatic syrup is also a great way to spice up salads. It also goes well with some types of cheese.

The national dish of the country is poutine. It consists of large, thick french fries and a layer of cheddar cheese. The dish is doused with a gravy, which is also called gravy. Since there are even vegan gravies, it is a national dish, which is also ideal for vegetarians. The hearty dish is available in many restaurants in the country, some of which have been enriched with other ingredients such as mushrooms, onions and sauerkraut. Meat lovers order them with minced meat, beef or pork.
Poutine is undoubtedly not a dish for calorie counters, but in the modern country of immigration there are numerous modern alternatives, especially in the big cities. Many of them have an Asian touch.

Jamaica: Exotic food on the Caribbean island

The cuisine in Jamaica is mainly influenced by the once imported African slaves and the former Spanish and English colonial powers. The national dish is ackee and saltfish and is mostly enjoyed for breakfast. Since the cooked akeefruits are provided with small chunks of stockfish, the dish is only partially suitable for vegetarians. The akeefruit is worth a try, however, as it is very aromatic and is hardly available anywhere other than Jamaica.

As part of a trip to Jamaica, you shouldn't miss out on trying bammy. The flatbread made from cassava root flour, baked in fat, is a delight for vegetarians and meat eaters. The breadfruit is also very popular. Their flesh is firm and yellowish. After the breadfruit is cooked, it is roasted for better flavor. The spinach-like leafy vegetable callaloo is very popular as a side dish. The pear-shaped, soft prickly vegetable Cho Cho is another specialty on the island of Jamaica. The pumpkin soup, which is available in many places without corend beef and only with yams roots, is a good refreshment for exploring the tropical island.

Great Britain: delicious alternatives to fish and chips

Fried sausages for breakfast and fish and chips for in between are not the only typical national dishes you can get in the UK.

The country is so diverse and modern that there are enough dishes to choose from even for vegetarians. These include, above all, sweet temptations such as bread-and-butter pudding. It is based on soaked bread, which is mixed with vanilla pudding and raisins. Then it is baked. Crumbles are also served as dessert. These are fruits that are topped with crumble and baked in the oven. Summer pudding is particularly popular in the warm season. For this type of pudding, a bowl of bread soaked in juice is laid out. This mix is ​​garnished with berries and cream. The hearty, meatless delights include a vegetable variant of the cornish pasty. In large cities like Liverpool and London, creative, vegetarian dishes are on the menu in many restaurants, ranging from beetroot soup to pea soup with garlic.

India: a Mecca for vegetarians

India is probably the country in the world with the highest percentage of vegetarians, which is based on the national religion of Hinduism. If you spend your vacation there, you can expect countless meatless dishes. One of the most famous dishes is dal makhani. These are lentils that are cooked in butter. Rice or bread is served with them. The travel destination is also known worldwide for curry dishes with lots of chilli. Coconut milk and coconut are often added to these dishes, as these ingredients are available everywhere.

Nuts are another popular food in various Indian dishes. Biriyani, for example, is a rice with spices, raisins and nuts. The rice dish pilau contains a wide variety of exotic spices, some of which are also available with meat. There are stalls selling inexpensive samosas on many street corners. These are fried dumplings that are filled with vegetables. If you fancy something sweet, you can try the confectionery-like specialty sandesh or the rice pudding khir, which is seasoned with nutmeg and saffron.

Singapore: Treats from Asia and the rest of the world

In Singapore, culinary specialties from all Asian cuisines as well as Australian and European delights await you. After all, this destination has a particularly high mix of cultures. Vegetarian dishes are standard in almost every restaurant. Only the Japanese inns are often an exception in this regard.

You can start the day with a kaya toast, for example. It is a pudding made from milk and eggs with coconut milk that is served on a piece of toast. A popular snack for in between is Chai Tow Kway. This type of pancake is enriched with spring onions and a black sauce. If you want to order an Indian variant of a pancake, Roti Prata is a great option. The thin dough is mostly filled with vegetables. Croti Prata can be enjoyed for lunch or dinner at many street stalls. These are flat fried noodles with bean sprouts, eggs, and garlic. A black soy sauce makes the dish juicy. Chinese sausages are partially preserved in it. If you are on a vegetarian diet, it is advisable to look very carefully into the wok.

Taiwan: Night markets as a treasure trove for traditional and modern culinary delights

In Taiwan as a travel destination, the range of meat-free dishes is very extensive. This is because over 90% of the population belong to Buddhism, Confucianism or Taoism. In these religions, the vegetarian diet is of particular importance. In all cities there are therefore vegetarian restaurants that offer a wide variety of Buddhist vegetable dishes.
A visit to one of the night markets is a good way to benefit from a large selection of local dishes. In addition to electrical goods, accessories and clothing, classic and modern Taiwanese specialties are available at small stands. Chòu Dòufǔ is one of these. The deep-fried tofu has an intense smell and has a hole in the middle where vegetables and lettuce are placed. Another tofu dish is Daxi, in which the tofu is dried and seasoned. The cold or cold mung bean soup, which contains sugar, is also very nutritious. The fried gelatin rice balls are ideal for dessert. The sun cookies from Taichung City are significantly sweeter. The Àiyùbīng gelatin dessert, which is made from the seeds of a fig-like fruit, is particularly popular in regular restaurants.


Ethiopia: the land of refined sauces

In the case of Ethiopian cuisine, it becomes very clear how much the general population shapes the country's cuisine. Since many locals hardly have access to meat, a large variety of vegetarian dishes has emerged. They are the typical national dishes that pamper your palate due to their exoticism. Injera is the basis of numerous meals. This is a large, soft flatbread made from the local grain teff. It is served with a wide variety of sauces called Wot and mostly vegetarian. They are prepared with great finesse and give the flatbread a delicate taste. The spicy Berber sauce is usually served separately. A nutritious porridge made from lentils is another typical dish of Ethiopian cuisine. A glass of the national drink can be drunk with or after dinner: the sweet Tej mead. If this is too sweet for you, you can order Talla millet beer.



Israel: Go on vacation where meatless cuisine is booming

Israeli cuisine is European and Oriental at the same time, which is why it is very popular and some of its traditional dishes such as shawarma are also prepared with great success in restaurants abroad. The national dish is Shakshuka. The dish consists of poached eggs in a sauce made from chili peppers, tomatoes and onions. They are happy to order it for breakfast. During your vacation in Israel you will find that most restaurants offer a wide range of vegetarian and vegan dishes. This is because these diets are experiencing a real boom in Israel. Around five percent of the locals are vegan. Eight percent describe themselves as vegetarians. The trend is increasing. Creative chefs are therefore always coming up with new dishes in which animal products are largely or completely dispensed with.

In addition, there are traditional country dishes that do without meat. These include the fried humus balls falafel, which are usually served with a salad in a bread bag. The chickpea pulp humus is probably the most typical dip in the country, which is eaten with pittah bread, salad and olives. The tabbouleh salad, which is made from crushed wheat, parsley, mint and lemon juice, is particularly popular on the warm days of the year. Delicious desserts are the pancake blintzes filled with quark and the Konafa pastry. The latter contains honey syrup, almonds, pistachios and nuts.

Vegetarian food on the plane - that's how it works

If you eat a vegetarian diet, you don't want to make an exception on the plane. Fortunately, numerous airlines offer various special menus that allow individual meals above the clouds. If you look at the respective conditions, you will quickly see that passengers should not surprise the airline with their wishes.

Emirates ✔
With the exception of a few short-haul flights, Emirates offers vegetarian and vegan menus. Those fall under the heading "Menus for Members of Different Religions". There are also light food and diet menus as well as other special menus such as baby, children's and raw food. The order must be placed no later than 24 hours before the flight.

Air France ✔
Air France offers special menus on intercontinental flights and some short-haul routes. In addition to dietary dishes (low-salt, low-sugar, low-fat and gluten-free foods), these include various vegetarian meals, but also kosher, Muslim and Hindu dishes. Passengers should have placed their order no later than 48 hours before the flight.

Singapore Airlines ✔
Singapore Airlines has some special meals available. Menus for children, toddlers and babies are also on offer, as are dishes that take religions into account. There are six vegetarian dishes to choose from. Dietary meals are also included. Orders must be made 48 hours before departure.

Lufthansa ✔
Lufthansa’s 16 special meals also include some vegetarian dishes. One of them is even vegan. Orders can be placed up to 24 hours before the scheduled start. Important: In Economy Class the flight time must be at least 185 minutes, in Business Class 75.

US Airways (American Airlines) ✔
American Airlines offers passengers in all service classes vegetarian food. Bread, grain and fruit as well as vegetables, nuts, soy milk and tofu are used. Few restrictions apply to kosher dishes that complement the menu with Muslim, gluten-free and diabetic dishes. The order deadline is 24 hours before departure.

At DELTA, vegetarians can choose between four vegetarian dishes. Regional dishes, meals geared towards babies and children as well as religion-oriented meals are available as well as dietary food. Passengers should have placed their orders up to 24 hours before the flight. Special menus are unfortunately not available on El Paso (ELP), Albuquerque (ABQ) and Tucson (TUS) flights.

Air Canada ✔
Air Canada offers special meals to its passengers on international flights. These include four types of vegetarian menus (for example lacto-ovo and dairy-free). But gluten-free, diabetic or Muslim dishes can also be ordered. Guests must have ordered the special meal at least 24 hours before departure.

Passengers can enjoy special meals on KLM intercontinental flights. Vegetarian dishes are one of them and are available in different forms (lacto-ovo, Asian-vegetarian or strictly vegetarian). KLM also offers special dishes for children and religious people, as well as dietary meals. The deadline for ordering is 24 hours before the start.

Oman Air ✔
Oman Air serves several vegetarian meals to passengers. Those are either completely vegan or lacto-ovo, oriental or suitable for Hindus. As with many other airlines, Oman Air passengers have to express their request for special meals at least 24 hours before departure.

Condor ✔
It is possible to order special meals at Condor. In addition to vegetarian and vegan meals, lactose-free and diabetic dishes are also on offer. Children's menus as well as gluten-free and Muslim dishes are also available. Condor divides the menus into short and long haul flights as well as day and night flights. At Condor, passengers give their request at least 24 hours before departure.

Ryan Air ✖
Ryan Air is one of the few well-known airlines that currently does not offer special meals such as vegetarian dishes. This is because, for example, it is a low-cost airline. However, this is only the current situation. According to its own statement, the airline is examining the possibility of offering special menus in the future.

Germania (✔)
The airline Germania offers a relatively small range of meals compared to other airlines. Vegetarians order appropriate meals as part of a kosher breakfast (from Düsseldorf or Hamburg to Tel Aviv) or choose a vegetarian sandwich. Pre-orders are not necessary.

Sun Express (✔)
Sun Express serves special foods to its passengers, including gluten-free, lactose-free and diabetic meals. Passengers can also enjoy vegetarian dishes. You can order vegetarian meals up to 36 hours before departure. A € 5 surcharge is then due.

Fly Egypt ✖
Fly Egypt is a relatively young low-cost airline that was only founded in 2014. The Egyptian airline does offer warm meals, but nothing is known about vegetarian meals. Similar to Ryan Air, changes in the future are conceivable.

Iberia ✔
Iberia offers several vegetarian dishes (Asian, vegan, lacto-ovo-vegetarian). There are also other special dishes, such as those without gluten or lactose. Condition: the flight must last at least 90 minutes in Business Class and 270 minutes in Economy Class. Passengers should convey their wishes to the airline at least 24 hours before the start of the flight.

At TAP Portugal, passengers also eat vegetarian meals. However, this is not the only category of special meals, as dishes free of salt and gluten, kosher dishes or special children's menus are also offered. Orders can be placed up to 72 hours before departure.

Attention: entry requirements for groceries

If the airline does not offer vegetarian dishes or if you prefer to take home-made snacks with you, it is important to pay attention to the luggage and entry regulations.

In principle, solid foods such as bread or an apple can be carried in hand luggage in the EU. Different rules apply to liquid foods. The total amount must not exceed 1 liter.In addition, all liquid objects must be stowed in a bag and 100 ml per product must not be exceeded. Baby food is an exception here.

It is also important that you carefully look at the import regulations in the destination country. In many countries, for example, the import of or cheese is prohibited. One of the reasons for this is that no epidemics should be brought into the country.

Food and travel bloggers present their favorite vegetarian recipes

Paella de verduras by Laura-Lee / The Travellette

Laura-Lee is 28 years old, is vegan and loves to travel.
It all started with a semester abroad in Barcelona, ​​followed by 4 months in New York. Then she finally got the travel bug. So it's no wonder that her travel blog “The Travellette” has a lot of tips, information and exciting insights about traveling to Barcelona but also the rest of the world. We asked her about her favorite dish - it's the paella de verduras. From Spain, of course.



“Spanish cuisine has a lot of great vegetarian / vegan dishes.
These include one or the other tapas dish, such as pimientos de padrón (small green peppers), pan con tomate (bread with tomato and sea salt) and champiñones al ajillo (mushrooms with garlic fried in olive oil).

The famous paella, national dish from the Valencia region, can also be prepared vegetarian or vegan. The well-known rice pan originally comes from Valencia, but nowadays you can eat it in different variations all over Spain.

The best known are the Paella Valenciana with chicken or rabbit and the Paella Marisco with seafood and prawns.
The vegetarian variant tastes at least as good and can be found in most restaurants under “Paella de verduras” on the menu. With the following recipe you can bring a little piece of Spain home and cook paella for you and your loved ones. ¡Que aproveche! "


Gnocchi mushroom pot by Jassi / greenish

Jassi didn't just lose her heart to Hamburg. She regularly posts vegan recipes, tips for sustainable travel and ideas and thoughts about environmental protection on her blog "grünartig".
Her vegan travel guide through Hamburg, for example, is exciting. It's worth taking a look! 🙂




“For me, sustainability is not just an issue in nutrition. When planning my vacation, I also try to protect the environment by reducing my CO2-Keep footprint as small as possible. This also means that longer air travel is possible at most every three years. In the meantime, our retro caravan is being carried out and we are using it to explore remote areas in Northern and Eastern Europe. A balanced camping kitchen is a particular challenge: I like to combine long-life products from home with fresh regional ingredients that can be prepared on the gas stove or grill. Like the gnocchi and mushroom pot "

Infographic: The Veggie Travel Guide

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