Vegetarian-Friendly and Vegetarian Restaurants in Tokyo

By The byFood Team
Updated: May 31, 2024

The Tokyo Vegan Guide has already covered the best vegan restaurants in Tokyo, and we've written about where to try shojin ryori, Japan's vegetarian Buddhist cuisine. Now we're back to show our vegetarian friends some love with this list of vegetarian-friendly and vegetarian restaurants in Tokyo, where you can find the most iconic Japanese foods, from crunchy tempura to that steaming bowl of ramen.

Every year, millions of tourists visit Tokyo, and not all of them are meat-eaters. While many don't have to think twice before tucking into some ramen or Japanese curry, vegetarians in Tokyo have the extra hassle of sussing out those pesky invisible ingredients like katsuobushi fish flakes, which are used to flavor many Japanese-style broths.

Though Japan is abundant with high-quality (and admittedly, expensive) fruits and vegetables, the vegetarian lifestyle is still uncommon here. In the past, vegetarians in Japan have found it difficult to find a diverse range of nourishing, wholesome foods. However, in recent years, vegetarian restaurants have sprouted in every corner of Tokyo, making it easier for vegetarians to get access to veggies and plant proteins in the form of fried tofu, veggie tempura, and even vegetarian ramen.

Vegetarian-Friendly and Vegetarian Restaurants in Tokyo

Here are some fantastic vegetarian restaurants in Tokyo for different classic Japanese foods.

1. Vegetarian Ramen in Tokyo

  • Vegan and Vegetarian: T's Tan Tan
  • Vegan and Vegetarian-friendly: Kyushu Jangara Ramen

2. Vegetarian Tofu in Tokyo

  • Vegetarian: Brown Rice by Neal's Yard Remedies
  • Vegetarian-friendly: Tofu no Futaba

3. Vegetarian Tempura in Tokyo

  • Vegetarian-friendly: Tenya
  • Vegetarian-friendly: Tempura Kondo

4. Vegetarian Sushi in Tokyo

  • Vegetarian-friendly: Itamae Sushi Edo
  • Vegetarian-friendly: Gonpachi
  • Vegetarian-friendly: Udatsu Sushi

5. Vegetarian Curry in Tokyo

  • Vegan and Vegetarian: Nagi Shokudo
  • Vegetarian-friendly: Coco Ichibanya (CoCo Curry)

6. Vegetarian Fusion Food in Tokyo

  • Vegan and Vegetarian: Alternative

1. Vegetarian Ramen in Tokyo

It can be challenging to find a vegetarian ramen restaurant in Tokyo that serves pure plant-based ramen dishes, as ramen soup often contains fish or meat. However, in the past few years, more vegetarian and vegan ramen restaurants in Tokyo have been appearing, making the dish more accessible to plant-based eaters.

Vegan and Vegetarian: T's Tan Tan

T's Tan Tan

A special vegan ramen restaurant in Tokyo called T’s Tan Tan has a 100% vegan ramen menu that has been receiving rave reviews from vegetarians, vegans, and omnivores alike. A fan favorite, their Golden Sesame Ramen has a savory, umami miso-based broth made with peanut butter and sesame. T's Tan Tan is located inside Tokyo Station, so hungry passengers can drop by and enjoy a delicious bowl of ramen before speeding off on the train to their next destination.

Vegan and Vegetarian-friendly: Kyushu Jangara Ramen

Another vegan-friendly ramen option is Kyushu Jangara Ramen, with locations in Akihabara, Nihonbashi, Omotesando, and Ginza. They serve two types of vegan ramen: a shoyu soy sauce-based broth, and a shio salt-based broth with fresh and light toppings like tofu, nori (seaweed paper), menma (seasoned bamboo shoots), and green onions. They also have meat options if you are bringing some omnivore friends, and vegetarians can top their ramen off with an egg for more protein if desired.

2. Vegetarian Tofu in Tokyo

Tofu is a versatile ingredient that can be prepared fried, stir-fried, steamed, or in soup. You can easily add it to other dishes and it easily absorb the flavors of whatever sauce it is coated in. This protein-rich bean curd is also the perfect plant-based meat substitute.

Vegetarian: Brown Rice by Neal's Yard Remedies

For homemade tofu ice cream, check out Brown Rice by Neal's Yard Remedies. This vegetarian restaurant in Tokyo dreams up dishes that are complementary to Japan's stunning four seasons, comprised of simple and wholesome foods like brown rice, miso soup, and a variety of seasonal local vegetables.

Vegetarian-friendly: Tofu no Futaba

With over 100 years of history, Tofu no Futaba is a homey little vegetarian-friendly restaurant in Tokyo, serving up hearty portions of tofu prepared in different styles alongside fresh vegetable dishes. While Tofu no Futaba is not a completely vegetarian restaurant, they offer options for those who do not consume meat. If you're craving a little protein-packed sweet treat, they even offer tofu donuts, which are freshly made and light on the stomach.

3. Vegetarian Tempura in Tokyo

Tempura is a versatile dish, usually consisting of battered and deep-fried seafood and vegetables, with a light, crisp, and crunchy outer coating. It is easy to make all-veggie tempura and incorporate different vegetables, bringing attention to the natural sweetness of produce such as sweet potato. Tasty tempura is fantastic alongside soba noodles or served in a tendon (tempura donburi or "rice bowl").

Vegetarian-friendly: Tenya

vegetable tempura

A popular chain restaurant in Japan called Tenya, approved by pop music royalty like Justin Bieber and Lady Gaga, serves an affordable vegetable tempura donburi (rice bowl) consisting of maitake mushrooms, sweet potato, lotus root, baby corn, pumpkin, and okra atop a bed of rice. But unless you're pescatarian, ask for sōsu nashi (ソースなし) or "no sauce," as Tenya's sauce contains fish. Their vegetable tempura rice bowls are consistently cheap and delicious, and there's an English menu available, making it a very accessible restaurant, with locations all over Tokyo, such as Ginza, Akasaka, and Shinjuku.

Vegetarian-friendly: Tempura Kondo

If you fancy a more upscale vegetarian-friendly restaurant, try Tempura Kondo in Ginza, a modern Japanese restaurant boasting two Michelin stars, with an open kitchen where you can watch the chefs at work. Tempura Kondo is a gem of the Tokyo restaurant scene, using only carefully selected vegetables and seafood. And while they aren't exclusively a vegetarian restaurant, pescatarians will find themselves very at home here, and vegetarians still can still enjoy some high-quality, crispy vegetable tempura.

4. Vegetarian Sushi in Tokyo

Though searching for a vegetarian sushi restaurant in Tokyo can be challenging, it’s not impossible to find one. At most sushi restaurants, you can ask for vegetarian alternatives, but a few staple vegetable-based sushi dishes are kappa-maki (seaweed sushi roll with fresh cucumber) and takuan-maki (pickled daikon roll). 

Vegetarian-friendly: Itamae Sushi Edo

Itamae Sushi Edo is a vegetarian-friendly restaurant in Akasaka, where you can indulge yourself in some vegetarian sushi, such as shiitake mushroom sushi and avocado sushi, and they have vegan options as well. Their sushi rice is perfectly seasoned and fragrant with sushi vinegar, and in between bites of delicious vegetarian sushi you can take sips of their warm and comforting miso soup. The decor is minimalist, with a long wooden counter from which you can watch the sushi chefs at work, as well as tables in the main floor space where you can provide your full attention to your family or friends.

Vegetarian-friendly: Gonpachi

soba from Gonpachi

At Gonpachi, a vegan and vegetarian-friendly restaurant with locations in Shibuya and Nishiazabu, you'll be in good hands. While they serve meat, they are very accommodating and offer vegan sushi like avocado sushi. Just be sure to ask for a vegetarian sauce, as their soy sauce contains fish. They have a vegetarian set lunch menu and a vegan dinner course for 5000 yen. This establishment also serves some fantastic vegan tempura.

Vegetarian-friendly: Udatsu Sushi

You may already know Udatsu Sushi as the innovative sushi restaurant with dishes so picturesque that you’ve been tempted to take a swim on the pescetarian side of life, but now you don’t have to. Chef Udatsu has now put his passion and precision into an 18-course omakase vegetarian sushi menu, featuring sensational vegetarian sushi and small plates.

Note: If you’re visiting the restaurant to witness the wonders of Chef Udatsu’s craft, avoid Wednesdays, Sundays and public holidays. He also only personally makes the sushi at the first-floor counter.

5. Vegetarian Curry in Tokyo

Vegan and Vegetarian: Nagi Shokudo

If you want to support a vegan establishment, check out Nagi Shokudo in Shibuya. This vegan restaurant in Tokyo offers an entirely plant-based menu, which also includes vegan curry! They serve affordable lunch set meals including dishes like soy meat karaage (fried "chicken") and miso soup.

Vegetarian-friendly: Coco Ichibanya (CoCo Curry)

Coco Ichibanya

Many Japanese restaurants offer vegetable curry, but don't be fooled, it may not be vegetarian. Like katsuobushi fish flakes, another invisible non-vegetarian ingredient could be concealed in the curry roux, which is often made with meat. Thankfully, Japan’s largest and most popular curry chain, Coco Ichibanya (also known as CoCo Curry), serves vegetarian curry at select stores. The branches of Coco Ichibanya offering a vegetarian menu include Kichijoji, Shinjuku Waseda, and Shimokitazawa, to name a few.

6. Vegetarian-friendly fusion food in Tokyo

When it comes to fusion food, Japan has some of the most exquisite, innovative cuisines on the culinary scene, blending traditional Japanese ingredients, dishes and expertise with flavors from around the world.

Vegetarian and vegan: Alternative

A dish at Alternative is delicately designed, incorporating herbs and flowers in a tantalizing small plate.

With a name like Alternative, you won’t be surprised to hear that this restaurant isn’t afraid to offer dishes you won’t find anywhere else. Chef Saito Takayuki is famous for his creative French-Japanese cuisine, as much a feast for the eyes as it is for the taste buds, including a wide range of vegetarian and vegan dishes.

With only the finest seasonal ingredients selected for his menu, Chef Saito creates mouthwatering masterpieces that place vegetables in the spotlight — music to the ears of any vegetarians traveling in Japan.

For a few more hints of where to find vegetarian and vegan food in Tokyo, check out our Ultimate Vegan Guide, browse Tokyo's best vegan restaurants, and brush up on your Japanese for ordering food!

We strive to be as accurate as possible and keep up with the changing landscape of Japan's food and travel industries. If you spot any inaccuracies, please send a report.
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The byFood Team
Sharing our love of Japanese cuisine and culture, with the mission of spreading happiness through food.
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