A Vegetarian’s Guide to Paris’ Hot and Healthy Cafés and Restaurants
I just spent two weeks in Paris, hanging out and working at different cafés and restaurants while trying to maintain a healthy, plant-based lifestyle. I now know this is possible, but not without having a banana bread once in a while. These are my top 10 spots in the city.
I’m a picky guest, and my rider not only has great ambiance on it, but a high speed wifi, power outlet, filter coffee and a clean toilet. I also expect a contemporary menu with vegetarian – and preferably gluten free – offerings. I honestly didn’t expect Paris to deliver on all these bullets, but was surprised to find my expectations exceeded in all regards, except maybe when it comes to power plugins. Oh well, I guess you can’t have it all.
I mostly spent my time in the trendy cafés and restaurants around Place de la République, Canal Saint-Martin and Marais, and below are just some of the many great places you can visit there. Enjoy!
Wild & The Moon
This place definitely deserves a top ranking on my list, as I’ve made visiting there a part of my daily routine. Wild & The Moon is the ultimate destination for people who, like me, prefer organic, plant-based food without additives or gluten. They’ve even replaced anything that is normally plastic – bottles, straws, packaging – with biodegradable alternatives (yay!). Hanging out here every day is not good for the economy, let me tell you, but it’s perfect in every other way. I prefer the newly opened local at rue Amelot to the small and crowded shop in Marais, as it’s an ideal working space weather you’re alone or with friends. And, their Acai Bowl With House Granola is the best I’ve had, ever.
Wild & the Moon
138 rue Amelot, 75011 Paris
Newly opened Echo Deli is a piece of sunshine and happiness brought to you straight from California. The owner used to work at my absolute favorite restaurants Gjelina and Gjusta in Venice, Los Angeles, and you can tell that they operate within the same field of ‘truly joyful soul-food’. If I lived in Paris, I would probably go here every weekend.
Except for drip coffee and all the standard orders, they also serve matcha, golden latte and dirty chai, and the food offering is a mix of sweet and savory dishes. There is actually a lot of bread on the menu, but some gluten-free things too – like the crazy-good Blueberry Multi-Grain Pancakes that threw me into a severe but blissful food coma.
95 rue d’Aboukir, 75002 Paris
République of Coffee
A short stone’s throw from lively Place de la République, I was surprised to find what has quickly become one of my favorite places for working in the company of a casual filter coffee or golden latte. They also have some truly mouthwatering breakfast and brunch options, and a super nice vegetarian ‘California bowl’, which is my go-to for lunch. It’s all in the ‘healthy L.A. spirit’, but with a French touch, of coarse. Oh, and if you feel like treating yourself to something sweet, I can recommend their banana bread, which is served with chocolate frosting on top. Imagine.
République of Coffee
2 boulevard Saint-Martin, 75010 Paris
Located on a calm side street – which is nice if you want some peace and quiet in this noisy city (I definitely do) – you’ll find the light and lovely Café Méricourt. It’s absolutely ideal for working, if you can do without a power outlet, and offer a small but well thought-out all-day-brunch menu with several vegetarian and gluten free options. Their Granola serving is heavenly, and I’d love to get a chance to try their Bircher Muesli and Green Eggs & Feta. Next time.
22 rue de la Folie Méricourt, 75011 Paris
Right by Canal Saint-Martin, this small, casual canteen offers one of the best vegetarian lunches in the area. You order either a small or large serving of salads – usually three and made different every day – served in a bowl with some pita bread and a veggie dip. If you’re really hungry there are also some very appetizing side pairings available.
I’ll admit to sneaking by sometimes for a generous slice of their banana bread, which is definitely not gluten free but totally divine, or a large cup of filter coffee (‘café allongé’ just isn’t for me). They don’t allow computers around lunch as it’s too busy, but it’s nice to sit there and work other times of the day.
39 Quai de Valmy, 75010 Paris
This trendy restaurant in Marais is hugely popular among the area’s young health-nuts, and offer a great all-day menu of acai bowls, gluten free avocado toast and pancakes, as well as lots of yummy vegetarian bowls and dishes for lunch and dinner. The brunch menu is superb too, but you won’t have a quiet, private sit-down there at that time on a weekend. I’d say it’s worth some shoving and standing in line though, if you’re in a good mood. Last time I had the Sweetcorn Fritters for dinner, very yummy, and a standard order of ginger kombucha.
1 rue Dupuis, 75003 Paris
In a sense, this is my favorite place. The Tel Avivian restaurant has branched out with a local by Canal Saint-Martin, and it’s usually overflowing for lunch and dinner. Trust me when I say you get to fight for a terrace table. I love to share the simple yet heavenly servings of fire cooked veggies – whole baked cauliflower and sweet potatoes, cartons with smoked aubergine or fresh heirloom tomatoes, ratatouille, and artichoke with a garlic dip – served with pita bread and white tahini. Unbelievably cheap and completely addictive – a paradise for plant lovers like myself.
37 Quai de Valmy, 75010 Paris
Big Love Café
As part of the Big Mamma group, this place is all-the-way Italian (that’s how they greet you too), and great for cozy dinners or weekend brunches. I went there with my bestie on a Friday night friend date, and we got in line just in time to get a table when they opened at 7 PM (the small locale fills up super quick). The reason we went there, except for the great ambiance, is their gluten free and completely amazing vegetarian pizza napoletana (they even have a vegan version!). Let me tell you: this is a must-go if you’re in Marais.
Big Love Café
30 Rue Debelleyme, 75003 Paris
The Broken Arm
The Broken Arm café is located next door to the luxe multibrand fashion store with the same name that draws a conscious and affluent clientele (me, I just look and pine). This is where I’d go for a spontaneous vine lunch with a friend after seeing an exhibition. The menu is small but delicious and they only offer two vines – one white, one red. I had the most amazing ‘meal of the day’ there, which was a salad with potatoes, fresh green figs, herbs and grilled mozzarella. Olives and almonds on the side, standard.
The Broken Arm
12 Rue Perrée, 75003 Paris
The Paris concept store offers all of three spots for lunch or coffee at the same address, and they’re all great. I love to sit and work at the Used Book Café where it’s usually quiet, and somehow always end up ordering their gluten-free chocolate cake, which is delicious but comes with a numbing sugar hangover. La Cantine downstairs is super busy at lunchtime. They have a fresh menu with lots of veggies, and you’ll have a great view over both the garden and the store’s kitchen assortment (I couldn’t resist a pretty lemon squeezer and vinegar cruet last time I visited). At the Cinéma Café, I usually order their two-salads-plate and a freshly squeezed juice for lunch, and sit on the boulevard terrace for a great view of people passing.
111 Boulevard Beaumarchais, 75003 Paris
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