True life- the reason I came to the University of Colorado, Boulder was for the food. When I toured the school my sophomore year of high school, all I wanted to do was try out every restaurant in the town! Well, after a semester and a half here, I’ve narrowed down the 10 best vegan and vegetarian restaurants in Boulder, aka the greatest town for all things healthy food.


Tangerine is number one on my list for so many reasons. While they do offer meat lovers dishes, you can make almost anything vegan or vegetarian, so it's a must. For starters, they have DREAMY sweet brunch options, like their lemon ricotta blueberry pancakes and brioche french toast. When it comes to their vegan options, “the vegan” house specialty, with tempeh (cooked to perfection!), avocado, arugula, sautéed spinach, eggplant caponata, pinto beans, and a homemade almond romesco sauce is too die for. Oh, and any dishes with polenta is a must. It’s a little more far out, but it’s only a mile from the Boulder Campus.


Zeal is like Instagram came to life and turned into a restaurant. Their menu is unique and filled with plant based, vegan or vegetarian options. It is on the pricier side, but all their ingredients are high quality, non GMO, and as close to home as possible. The wait isn’t long either, so it’s a great quick, healthy bite. I cannot recommend the Conscious Kale salad (with the tahini dressing!) and the Conscious Garden Wrap enough- absolutely delicious! Zeal is in the heart of Boulder, so you won’t have a problem finding it.

Modern Market

Modern Market is my GO-TO for healthy, quick vegan or vegetarian meals. If you’re flown into the Denver Airport in the Southwest terminal, then I’m sure you’ve seen their pop-up stand. Their full menu is to die for, and they have a variety of options. If you’re feeling like pizza, their Crimini Kale pizza (vegan!) is a must. For sandwiches, you cannot go wrong with the Eggplant Goat or Blueberry Pesto (life changing). It’s in the middle of a giant shopping plaza, surrounded by a Verizon store and shoe store, so like Zeal, it’ll be easy to find.

Alpine Modern Cafe

I’m pretty sure all Boulder students know this one. Your friends have probably snapchatted their aesthetically pleasing avocado toast or their delicious latté’s, so I won’t spend too much time on this place. Alpine Modern Cafe is a petite cafe located near Chautauqua, with the most delicious toast (homemade, rustic and hearty bread!) and decadent pastries. Take your friends here, order some good food, and have an Instagram photoshoot while you’re at it.

The Corner

Guys, this place is a MUST if you go to CU Boulder, live on the Hill, and/or just want a healthy meal. All of The Corner's bowls are hearty and filled with flavor (my favorite being the thai peanut with brown rice and tofu), and everything is a very reasonable price. Most of their options are vegan or vegetarian friendly, so it’s customizable to any diet. It’s right on the hill near the CVS and across from the Starbucks, so it’s not hard to find. Plus, if you’re a CU student, it’s included on the Flatiron meal plan!

The Kitchen

If you want a fancier, more spruced up meal, then The Kitchen is the place for you. It’s right on Pearl Street in-between a handful of restaurants, but it’s really not that hard to spot. There is usually a waiting list, so I recommend calling ahead, but I cannot recommend this place enough! All their food is farm to table and made with local, unique ingredients. Plus, their menu changes seasonally. I love the Cure Farm Delicata Squash & Burrata right now from their dinner menu, as well as the Little Gem salad.


Guys, Leaf is the REAL DEAL. Like the Kitchen, you will need to call ahead for a reservation, but it’s 200% worth it. All their food is unique, made with love, and delicious. It’s similar to Zeal, but fancier and more spruced up. I love the jackfruit enchilada’s (YUP) or the Udon Noodles- you can’t go wrong with anything on their menu.

Ado’s Kitchen

Sorry vegans, but this place isn’t really for you. BUT, if you’re vegetarian and looking for some delicious, unique options, then Ado’s Kitchen is perfect for you. Don’t go into here expecting a light meal- everything is fried, batter, and coated, but it’s to perfection and necessary. I love coming here when I want some straight up comfort food, and I always leave extremely satisfied. I get their pad thai (without chicken), or their stuffed Chayote squash- UNREAL.

Taco Junky

We’re coming back to the hill with this one, because we all need some tacos in our life! Taco Junky is perfect for those who want to try out a variety of tacos, and don’t mind spending a bit. It’s right next to Boss Lady Pizza (the best pizza EVER) on the hill, and is usually packed, so I recommend calling ahead. But, their menu is filled with unique options like the Maddie 2.0 ( tempura avocado, dill yoghurt, pickled grape, fennel, candied walnut). You can get a handful of tacos that you can easily customize to be vegan or vegetarian, and leave satisfied with a happy belly.

Foolish Craig’s

We’re rounding out the list with a quality brunch place, just like we started. Foolish Craig’s is perfect for anyone craving a hearty, homestyle brunch, but they’re very vegan and vegetarian friendly! Featuring a variety of crepes (my favorite- the Whole Thing Crepe), tofu scrambles, decident eggs benedict, and a delicious black bean burger, there are plenty of options for everyone.

Finding vegan and vegetarian in Boulder is easier than pie, and these are the ten best restaurants for that. Spoiler: it’s Boulder, so you can get vegan food almost anywhere, BUT these are the best. Also, most of these places are pretty budget friendly, so they’re perfect for all the college kids (*cough* me *cough).