If you chat with the locals, youʼll find out that Sapporo prides itself on it’s grilled lamb, ice-cream, and seafood bowls. This can be quite the disappointing news for an eager traveling vegan, but donʼt panic yet! After living in this charismatic city for two years, Iʼve found that Sapporo offers a fantastic variety of plant-based options that will allow you to try numerous Japanese dishes cruelty-free.
1. Holistic Bio Café Veggy Way
This sun-lit restaurant is a breath of fresh air in Sapporo. The menu is 100% vegan (even the ice-cream!) so you can turn off your hyper-alert meat radar, relax and enjoy. Located near Maruyama Park, itʼs a place to try all the popular Japanese favorites like miso and salt ramen or even a “meat” rice bowl, and just in case you are not in the mood for Japanese food, they also have delicious veggie-burgers. Be warned, though, theyʼre super juicy and have a tendency to drip all over your clothes. Donʼt forget to try a “guilt-free” vegan parfait for dessert!
2. Aoi Sora Organic Café
In this quaint restaurant, the owner prepares select homemade dishes and takes the presentation just as seriously as the for quality. The meals are based on authentic Japanese cuisine without the use of meat or dairy, paired with an organic beer to make a lasting impression. You can choose between the daily lunch special or a seasonal set-menu item which are both wholesome and filling. If you are simply in the mood for a coffee and a cake, they have that too! There’s a whole glass case full of mouth-watering options to relieve your dessert craving.
3. Petit Caco
Sweet-toothed vegans, there is a place for you, too. This adorable café is a true gem to behold. Caco Mizukoshi is the kind owner of this special shop and she makes it her mission to not use white sugar, dairy products, wheat flour, or eggs in her sweets! She takes careful consideration to ensure none of the desserts are baked above 48 degrees Celsius so as not to lose any of the healthy enzymes and vitamins contained within. For when you’re in the mood for cake, tarts, or chocolate.
*The following places are not 100% vegan, but have vegan options available*
4. Raw Food Café Lohas
Located on the far west side of Tanukikoji, Raw Food Lohas is a good option if you are in the mood for something delicious and lightly-portioned. From detox smoothies to vegan sushi rolls, you wonʼt leave here unsatisfied. They have a variety of set meals to comfort a hungry stomach, and the atmosphere is serene and unrushed so you can easily pull out a book or a computer to reset and recharge. English menus are available and most of the food is vegan and clearly marked, but do keep an eye out as some things sold here contain fish broth.
5. Beyond Age Soup Curry
If youʼve made it all the way up to Hokkaido, it would be a shame to leave without trying the notorious soup curry. You can find shops that serve soup curry all over Sapporo, but unfortunately for us plant-lovers, most of the soups are made using a chicken bone stock. Luckily, Beyond Age offers a special vegan soup with a delicious blend of spices, topped with a rainbow of local vegetables served with white rice on the side, so vegans can experience the cuisine of the north, too!
6. TERRA Farm to Table
If you are seeking an incredible atmosphere that feels like youʼve wandered into a magazine photoshoot, then this is the place for you. Located on the first floor of Hotel MYSTAYS, Farm to Table has a nicely labeled menu for vegans, vegetarian, and halal eaters. They offer an all-you-can-eat salad bar and drink bar (non-alcoholic only, Iʼm afraid) included with the set-lunch meal. The two vegan entrées, a soy-burger or soup curry, are both quite delicious and you can choose from three yummy vegan side dishes. I recommend making a quick reservation online before you go because sometimes they get a little busy!
7. Agt Café Hibino
Founded on the concept of healthy fast-food, Agt sells uniquely handcrafted rice sandwiches varying in taste and ingredients. From a savory selection of Hawaiian, Mexican, Mediterranean, and Japanese, theyʼve definitely got your taste buds covered. The café is meat, dairy, and egg free, but some items do contain fish so make sure and pay attention to their handy vegan labels. And if Sapporoʼs frozen winters are getting to you, then try warming up with one of their three vegan-miso soup options.
8. Indian Food Dining JYOTI
Also located in Tanukikoji, this Indian restaurant has a menu that makes the vegan-life too simple. If you donʼt go for the easy-to-read menu alone, then I recommend going for one of the five delicious vegan curries or seven types of bread that are available. Most of the staff speak English, so you communicate freely and fill your eyes with more choices than vegans can usually dream of.
The following nationwide chain-restaurants have recently added vegan options to their menus, so if you are in a bit of a rush and are looking for an easy on-the-go bite, make a pit stop at one of these establishments located all over the city of Sapporo.
Go for the minced soy meat cutlet and spinach curry.
Try their new Plant-Based Green Burger!