Exploring Toronto’s Vegan District

We were told that Toronto has plenty of vegan options, but until we started looking into it and asking for suggestions, we had no idea how many there were!  Our Facebook post alone blew up with people offering up their favorites and must-eats that we had to narrow it down to a select few.  We probably could have spent a week in Toronto and still wouldn’t have eaten at all the places we wanted to.  

Where we ate

We decided that we would walk in between restaurants and started off in the northern part of our route at Hogtown Vegan.  Knowing that we had to eat at each one of our stops, we settled on ordering just one option at each of the restaurants and splitting it.  Even though we did that, we still almost didn’t make it through the entire route and there were several more dishes we wanted to try.

The Hogtown Vegan

Vegan Chicken and Waffles with a side of Mac and Cheese- Overall it was delicious, but we could have used more syrup with the food.  The syrup added a nice sweetness to the dish and when coupled with the cinnamon, it created a great flavor.  There was a backend residual heat that lingered on each bite, but not nearly as much as the ones we had at Terrace Pointe Cafe in Las Vegas.  The mac and cheese was extremely creamy and delicious.  There was a good amount of heat to the dish but not enough to be off-putting.  This could easily be in our top 5 mac and cheese dishes.

Doomies

It’s damn near impossible for us to be near Doomies and not stop in.  We split the Big Mac and upgraded to “fun fries”- bacon cheese fries.  As usual, the Big Mac was on point and always one of our favorite things to eat.  We didn’t end up eating many of the fries until we got home, but they were just as good heated up as they were in the restaurant.

While we were waiting for our table at Doomies, we went across the street to swing into The Imperative, which is an all vegan shop and we ran into Roz and her husband from Snackrilege based out in Portland, OR.  It is always cool to run into people we know randomly like that, especially when outside of the country! They were in town for the Toronto Vegan Food & Drink Festival, which we had just missed (what a bummer) 

Yamchops

Yamchops was the knockout punch of the Toronto food tour and delivered on each and every one of the dishes that we tried.  We strayed a little bit outside of our one dish per restaurant routine because we were sitting down to interview one of the owners, Toni Abramson, and she brought us several options to try.  You can find out more about what we ate and check out the entire interview in our full write-up of Yamchops.

Grasshopper

After stuffing our gullets at Yamchops, we almost decided to call it quits but with some determination, continued on!  Our next stop was Grasshopper where we ordered the quinoa mac and cheese.  The dish had a very creamy cheese sauce and there was a familiar flavor that we just couldn’t identify, but the pasta appeared to be undercooked which gave it more of a crunchy texture to it.  We ended up bringing it home and reheating it and the pasta was a much better texture.

Bunners

We ended up missing the next stop we were going to visit because it was closed so we decided to walk between Grasshopper and Poutini’s which put us in the Kensington Market neighborhood. It’s described on Google as “a walkable bohemian neighborhood that draws artists and tourists to its indie shops, vintage boutiques and art spaces.”   It seemed like every other shop that we passed was some sort of vegan restaurant or cafe and we could have easily spent a day just along this street.  It had a very Portland-like vibe to it.  We ended up passing by a vegan and gluten-free bakery and decided to swing in to grab some dessert.  We picked up a cinnamon bun which was extremely sweet and delicious.  There were so many other options that were available, but we were so stuffed at this point and knew we had one more stop.

Poutini’s House of Poutine

Our final stop of the tour was Poutini’s House of Poutine to get, expectedly, poutine.  The only other vegan poutine we’ve ever had was from The Chicago Diner and that was incredible so we were excited to try this one.  While it was good as a whole, everything was crammed into a to-go cup and so there would be bites with no cheese, too much cheese, not enough sauce, etc… Had it been spread out over a plate, we think this dish would have been much better.

We would love to go back and visit all of the other vegan options that Toronto has to offer, but we know that we would definitely have to visit Yamchops and Doomie’s again.

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