Nashville’s food scene has exploded in the last few years, and with it has come the opening of many new vegetarian restaurants. From simple fare to gourmet delights to international fusions, the flavorful presentations found at the following restaurants often begin as organic produce from local area farms. The restaurants are located around the city, making at least one of them close to every major Nashville hot spot for shopping, entertainment, or a dash of local history. Next time you’re around, make sure to check out a few of the best vegan and vegetarian restaurants in Nashville.
Address: 2834 Azalea Place Nashville, TN 37204
Phone: 615-457- 2568
Hours: Mon-Thu 11am-9pm, Fri-Sat 11am-10pm
Tucked away behind an office building just off I-65 near 100 Oaks Shopping Center, Sunflower Café is located in a quaint yellow house in the Melrose. You’ll quickly recognize the big screened in porch looking out over ancient ponderosa pine trees and a small garden.
Served cafeteria style, the Café offers an assortment of killer veggie burgers, vegan BBQ, sandwiches, bowls, salads, and daily specials including vegan crab cakes. Everything is organic and locally sourced. It is the best vegetarian restaurant in the city. The laid-back, family-friendly atmosphere under the trees is a great respite from a busy day touring the city.
Address: 2421 Vanderbilt Plaza Nashville, TN 37212
Phone: 615-322- 8571
Hours: Mon-Thu 7:30am-9pm, Fri 7:30am-3pm
Kosher and vegetarian, Grins is located on the Vanderbilt University campus off West End Boulevard in the ultra modern Schulman Center for Jewish Studies. Open only when the university is in session, the cafe offers great food to students, locals, and tourist alike. While many don’t even know of its existence, it’s not to be missed.
Grins offers sandwiches, soups, salads, and specials with an international twist like Chili Rellenos and Vegetarian Curry. The vegan cookies are hard to resist. While on campus, check out some of the many cultural offerings available. The Blakemore Trio, made up of professors, is world class. Other music venues are not far away.
Address: 303 Demonbreun Street Nashville, TN 37201
Phone: 615-522- 0685
Home: Mon-Thu 11am-2pm and 5pm-10pm, Fri 11am-2pm and 5pm-10:30pm, Sat 5pm-10pm
Gourmet dining at its finest, Etch is the creation of Chef Deb Paquette, who has a history of exquisite restaurants in Nashville. The prestigious establishment is located in the Encore Tower, right next door to the Schermerhorn Symphony Center or a few blocks from the famous Ryman Auditorium. This is the place to go before attending a concert.
Not strictly vegetarian, the menu offers many vegetarian-friendly options with no sacrifice to flavor. The signature appetizer is Roasted Cauliflower with truffled pea pesto and feta dip, which is happiness dancing on the tongue. Come early to happy hour and sit at the bar. Their bartenders are top notch and know the food, the drinks, and the pairings perfectly.
Address: OneC1TY #200 3000 Charlotte Avenue Nashville, TN 37209
Phone: 615-329- 2377
Hours: Mon-Sat 11am-9pm
AVO is located in Midtown, in a shipping container, next to a cross-fit gym, overlooking a sand volleyball court. Its décor is a minimalist blend of industrial and repurposed with a living wall growing over the bar. The food is all raw plant-based and never heated above 118 degrees to preserve the nutrients, vitamins, and enzymes. Yet, it looks like what you would see at the trendiest gourmet café.
They offer small plates, salads, large plates, sandwiches, and dreamy desserts. They are currently experimenting with a new menu that will include some cooked items. When you are done, head to Marathon Village where Corsair Artisan LLC has their tasting room, and the guys from American Pickers has their shop called Antique Archeology.
Address: 1888 Eastland Avenue Nashville, TN 37206
Phone: 615-686- 2060
Hours: Tue-Fri 4pm-11pm, Sat-Sun 9am-11pm
Best described as a vegan bistro, Graze’s green walls and dark furnishings hint at the elegant concoctions made at the juice bar and the artistry that comes out of the kitchen. Interested in trying a bit of the taste of Nashville’s famous hot chicken, but want to remain vegetarian? Graze has the answer for you – a hot Tempeh Sandwich made with hot chicken seasoning. For those non-daring souls, there is a mild version.
On Saturday and Sunday from 10:00 am until 3:00 pm they serve brunch. Not far from The District in downtown Nashville, it is filled with shops, the Country Music Hall of Fame, and the new African American Music Museum to open in 2018.
The Wild Cow Vegetarian Restaurant
Address: 1896 Eastland Avenue Nashville, TN 37206
Phone: 615-262- 2717
Hours: Mon, Wed-Sun 11am-9pm
East Nashville is the hot place to be with its unique shops, art, music, and lots of creative places to eat. Wild Cow was one of the first vegetarian restaurants in Nashville. The food is delightfully inventive and fresh, fresh, and fresh – being purchased mostly from White Squirrel Farms just outside the city. The Carrot Dawg is a must try with a side of house-made hummus. Or taste all three varieties of tacos – Sweet Potato & Black Bean, Chipotle Seitan, Peanut Tempeh – with a sampler platter.
Address: 212 Louise Avenue Nashville, TN 37203
Phone: 615-321- 4040
Hours: Mon-Sat 8am-8pm, Sun Noon to 6pm
Part spa and wellness facility, part café, Coco Greens is located near Elliston Place, a hop, skip, and jump to the historic Parthenon and Centennial Park. It is located in a 1920’s bungalow that oozes charm and calm, in the middle of the hubbub of the city. Diners can eat in, or grab a roller sandwich and a juice to take to the park.
But don’t forget the desserts! They are healthy, vegan, tasty, pleasing to the eye, and make the stomach happy. The café’s central location puts it right next to Centennial Park, the Belle Meade Mansion, the Tennessee Performing Arts Center, and the new Tennessee State Museum opening in 2018.
I Love Juice Bar
Address: 128 Pewitt Drive Brentwood, TN 37027
Hours: Mon-Fri 7am-5:30pm, Sat 8:30am-4:30pm, Sun 10am-4:30pm
More juice and smoothie bar than restaurant, I Love Juice Bar offers spring rolls, sandwiches, salads, and soups along with the smoothies, juices, and shots. I Love Juice Bar began at the location on Pewitt Drive by John and Vui Hunt in 2013, it has since become a franchise and locations can be found all over town. Each location caters to the area of town where it is located, so each has a slightly different vibe.
And although it is now a franchise, quality remains consistent and everything is pretty much vegan, gluten-free, and organic. If you are interested in a civil war battlefield, head to the I Love Juice Bar in Murfreesboro. It is close to Stones River National Battlefield historic site.
Address: 1812 21 st Avenue South Nashville, TN 37212
Phone: 615-777- 3436
Hours: Mon-Sun 7am-11pm
Hillsboro Village is the home to Fido, which is a funky restaurant and coffee shop located in what was once a pet store. While not strictly vegetarian, they are very friendly to vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free eaters. Within walking distance of Vanderbilt University, you will often find students studying or hanging out at one of the tables, though the location is also frequented by music professionals, doctors, and politicians.
They serve breakfast all day, and the veggie sausage is the best in town. After a bite, head out to the shops in the area or one of the latest art films at the Belcourt Theater.
Address: 1200 Villa Place Nashville, TN 37212
Phone: 615-730- 8552
Hours: Mon-Fri 11am-10pm, Sat 10am-11pm, Sun 10am-10pm
While Taco Mamacita is a mini-chain, it feels more like a neighborhood hangout. Located in the Edgehill area, it’s not too far from the heart of the city and Music Row. Sit back and relax on the great patio with a beer and watch the people walk by from the local neighborhood.
Taco Mamacita offers a wonderful menu just for the vegetarian and vegan guest. Their own menu of international designer tacos, enchiladas, and fabulous Mexican Street Corn is excellent. They also make their own salsa and guacamole.