Life, Travel

From Jerusalem To Tel Aviv, Israel Is Bar None Most Vegan-Friendly Country

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Vegan Israel

Israel has the highest number of vegans per capita. It’s not a secret anymore, as more and more Israelis adopt the plant-based lifestyle and choose ethical veganism. Israel has been called the world’s first vegan country, with 5% of the population identifying as vegan.

Vegan Israel

Not only did popular chains in Israel, including Domino’s, add vegan items to their menu, but Israel is also known as one of the forerunners of cultured meat. SuperMeat, a lab-grown, vegan chicken company, was in the news recently for their revolutionary progress in the field.

On the ground, it’s easy to be vegan–most restaurants and hotels keep kosher for religious reasons–which means that a place that serves dairy won’t serve meat, and a place that serves meat won’t serve dairy. And that makes it easy to navigate menus and buffets, as there are fewer animal products to look out for. Additionally, Israel has a colorful and vibrant Mediterranean diet that is very plant-forward–think fresh veggies, ripe fruit, grains, hummus–and so much tahini-drizzled goodness. Traditional Israeli food is often naturally vegan. One of my favorites is the roasted cauliflower with fresh tahini sauce–and sometimes raisins–topped with herbs.

Vegan Israel

Hummus galore!

Vegan Israel

Roasted cauliflower drizzled with tahini sauce…mmm!

While Jerusalem has more of a traditional food scene, and lots of hip Westernized restaurants, there are solid options to be found. Figs serves fresh and delicious fare that mixes Israeli and European flavors. Their baba ganoush is divine. Another tasty option is to find a hummus bar and go for a spread of hummus, roasted eggplant, and traditional tomato cucumber salad, all with a side of freshly roasted pita.

Vegan Israel

Hello, hummus bar!

Vegan Israel

Tel Aviv takes vegan living to the next level, and this city can truly compete with NYC. Tattooed waiters will serve you delicious dishes, such as vibrant salads with all kinds of nuts and seeds, or a divine mushroom stir fry like that served at Anastasia. While you’re there, don’t forget to get some raw cake for dessert. The chocolate pistachio is my favorite.

You can find dried nuts and fruit–and all sizes and grades of dates–on Levinsky Street. Stop by Levinsky Café for a fresh kombucha. Jaffa is a great place to get fresh smoothies and acai bowls. Jaffa marché serves delicious halva and organic fruit–binge on persimmon, they are divine!

Vegan Israel

So many fresh fruits and veggies to enjoy!

Vegan Israel

Essential item: gourmet vegan chocolate bars!

Vegan Israel

Finally, The Carlton Hotel has the most amazing breakfast buffet in town–the vegan shakshuka is on point and so is the Müsli bar. I’m obsessed with the carrot jam.

Israeli is truly a plant-based paradise, with a vibrant culinary scene that is based on fresh ingredients, delicious spices, and lots of compassion.

Have you been to Israel? Where were your favorite vegan spots?

Also by Isabelle: 9 Delicious Proofs Berlin Is The Vegan Capital Of Europe (No Shade, Copenhagen)

Related: Glam Girls’ Trips to Nashville Is a Thing Now. Here’s How To Make It Ecofriendly

Smurf Lattes & Other Eats That Prove Melbourne Vegan Scene Is Bananas

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Photo: Adam Jang via Unsplash, Rob Bye via Unsplash, Isabelle Steichen

Isabelle Steichen

Isabelle Steichen

Founder at The Plantiful
​Isabelle grew up in Luxembourg and transitioned from an omnivore, cheese loving life to a plant-based diet after she finished her master's in urban studies in Paris and moved to NYC in January 2013. Her decision was triggered by environmental, ethical as well as health reasons. She is passionate about veganism and health and has a plant-based nutrition certificate from e-Cornell. The Plantiful is her blog and creative outlet that she uses to share her love for all things plant-based. Isabelle is also a health coach and a certified yoga teacher with focus on restorative. Visit Buddhalicious, her new online vegan meal program!
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