At first glance, the St. Louis food scene may not seem like it has the most wide variety of offerings for anyone that identifies as a vegan or vegetarian in St. Louis. Well-known for its meat-stuffed toasted ravioli and Pappy's Barbecue, this city can seem like a carnivore's dream. However, scattered among the St. Louis classics is a world of unique vegetarian cuisine.

As a vegetarian, I came to St. Louis a little skeptical of how its options would stack up to what I was used to getting at home. I had heard all about the barbecue, the original style of pizza, and the classic Italian dishes, but had no idea that the city was also speckled with veggie-powered, meatless delights.

From the abundance of ethnic restaurants, to the all-vegan cafe's, to vegetarian versions of all the classics, this city has everything necessary to keep vegetarians in St. Louis satisfied.

Meat Free Restaurants

Lulu's Local Eatery

tacos, pork
Emma Lally

This all vegan restaurant proves the huge variety of foods that can be made deliciously meat free. Their famous loaded tater tots and rotating menu featuring tacos, burgers, sushi bowls, and hearty salads makes it impossible to resist coming back.

SweetArt

chili, salad, kale
Kate Donald

This bakery serves up vegetarian breakfast and lunch in an atmosphere of friendliness and creativity. The walls are lined with local art to look at as you wait anxiously for your veggie-powered lunch bowl or freshly baked vegan brownie.

Fridas

This vegetarian eatery has an extensive menu featuring small and large plates, salads, pizzas, and more, making it the perfect dinner spot to please any crowd. They do everything they can to keep us and our planet healthy by providing fresh and locally sourced food and composting everything they can. 

Tree House

This modern vegetarian restaurant serves simple yet irresistible dishes for brunch, lunch, and dinner. Their selection of small and large plates make it possible to try a little of everything. Whether you're craving bibimbap or paella, Tree House has got vegetarians in St. Louis covered

Best of St. Louis:

Salt + Smoke

If you happen to find yourself wandering along the Delmar Loop, consider giving Salt + Smoke a try. This popular barbecue joint may be pretty meat-focused, but the falafel veggie burger was voted best in town.

Zias on the Hill

St. Louis cuisine would be incomplete without the famous Italian Neighborhood, the Hill. Try the Portabella Asparagi or Eggplant Parmesan at Zias to see why everyone is talking about this iconic neighborhood.

Cafe Natasha 

This Persian cafe is one of the many restaurants on South Grand that make it possible for you to explore the globe without leaving STL. The Kuku, a frittata-like herb-filled soufflé of sorts, makes the perfect vegetarian meal when you are sick of veggie burgers and beans. Finish your meal off with freshly-baked baklava for a dining experience you are sure to remember.

Brasserie by Niche

This upscale French restaurant is perfect for a leisurely and indulgent evening out. Located in the Central West End, one of St. Louis' top neighborhoods, this dinner or brunch option is surrounded by eclectic shopping, and a rich history. Try the roasted vegetable tart, which is filled with lentils, caramelized onions and perfectly cooked veggies.

Katie's Pizza and Pasta

You can't say you've been to St. Louis without trying toasted ravioli. This iconic dish can be found at almost any restaurant, and a vegetarian version exists at this popular modern Osteria. You might come for the toasted rav., but you will find it hard not to stay for just about everything else on the menu. The veggie-based small plates, intriguing salads, and tempting pizza options will have you coming back for round two. 

Southern

The words "Hot Fried Chicken Restaurant" may not sound like the most appetizing idea to a vegetarian, but if you look a little closer at the menu, you will find a Hot Fried MOFU Biscuit that is just as delicious and comforting as its meaty alternative. Finally, a southern restaurant where you can eat more than just the sides.

File:Gateway Arch & St. Louis MO Riverfront at Dawn.jpg

Image from WikiCommons

This list only features some of the many vegetarian wonders all around the city, but proves that being a vegetarian in St. Louis is not only easy, it's delicious. From classic Italian food to inventive vegan cuisine, St. Louis is sprinkled with all kinds of worth-while plant-based dishes. Finish it all off with a slice of gooey butter cake (if you have room left) for a full experience of the meat-free meals STL has to offer.