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Bangkok is one of the world’s leading tourist destinations with over 20 million international tourists arriving every year. Not only is Bangkok a fascinating destination, but Thai food is also recognised throughout the world for its vibrant and aromatic flavours. This means that almost any foodie (including those who are vegan and vegetarian) can find plenty to enjoy when they visit Bangkok.

Whilst the food is certainly delicious, like many Asian countries, Thailand can be tough for people who follow a plant-based diet. Many Thai favourites are prepared with fish sauce or meat-based broth. However, as a capital city, Bangkok has more vegetarian and vegan options available than you might find in other locations in the country. Plant-based foodies can still enjoy tasty wine and food experiences that help them to dive deeper into Thai culture.

Is Bangkok vegan and vegetarian friendly?

As you stroll the streets of Bangkok it might seem like meat is available on every corner. If you dig a little deeper you can find an array of vegan and vegetarian-friendly options. The city is home to a small number of dedicated vegan restaurants that include both Thai meals and western favourites on the menus. If you’re looking for wider access to both Thai and western plant-based food, the Khaosan neighbourhood is a great place to go. As well as Thai food, you can try delicious vegan and vegetarian dishes from India, Israel, and Mexico.

Bangkok is home to one of the world’s most diverse and interesting street food scenes, forming a significant part of Thai food culture. Whilst you see a myriad of dishes and snacks being sold on the streets of Bangkok, the majority of options cater to meat-eaters. However, vegans and vegetarians can still sample tasty Thai street food. Some commonly available plant-based street foods are boiled corn, fresh fruit, pancakes, and pad thai.

Vegan and vegetarian food to sample in Bangkok

Thai cuisine includes a variety of flavoursome options to suit vegetarians and vegans. Many of these tasty dishes can be enjoyed at any time of the day – for breakfast, you’ll typically see locals and ex-pats in Bangkok eating the same type of food you might expect for lunch. Try some of these authentic options when you’re travelling in Bangkok:

  • Pomelo salad - a light and refreshing choice that’s enjoyed by vegetarians, vegans, and meat-eaters. It’s made of pomelo, a citrus fruit, mixed with garlic, sugar, and lime juice.
  • Green papaya salad – an explosion of flavours made from papaya, tomatoes, Thai chillies, and carrots served with sweet sticky rice. Be aware it’s sometimes served with fish sauce and dried shrimp so be sure to tell your server that you’re plant-based.
  • Thai vegetable soup – often made with prawns you can usually request tofu instead. This fragrant soup combines a mix of vegetables including corn and pumpkin with basil, spices, and lime.
  • Pad see ew – often available in Thai restaurants in the west, these are stir-fried flat rice noodles seasoned with garlic and soy sauce.
  • Curry – Thai cuisine is renowned for its coconut milk-based curries and all of them can be prepared without meat. Try tofu or mushroom for a plant-based substitution.
  • Mango with sticky rice – Thailand’s best-known dessert is a sweet plant-based treat made from sticky rice and sweet mango, finished off with coconut milk and palm sugar.
  • Spring rolls – deep-fried spring rolls filled with crisp vegetables are cheap and widely available in Bangkok. They’re ideal as an appetiser or snack.

Vegetarian and vegan food experiences in Bangkok

Following a plant-based diet doesn’t mean you can’t participate in exciting food experiences and tours in Bangkok. A food tour is a great way to understand Thai culture and the city’s thriving food scene better. Whether you want to enjoy a relaxing plant-based dinner, find out more about Thai cooking, or explore the busy city, Bangkok has a great food experience for you.

Dinner cruise

A dinner cruise allows you to view Bangkok’s dazzling waterfront as you sail along the Chao Phraya river on a Thai boat. Take in the glorious views in a relaxing atmosphere with traditional entertainment and hospitality, as well as delicious food and a choice of set menus. You can choose a dinner cruise that offers a vegetarian set menu so you can sample delicious plant-based Thai food whilst experiencing a spectacular view of Bangkok. If you want a food experience that immerses you in Thai culture, a dinner cruise is one great way of doing it.

Cooking class

If you want to get to grips with Thai cuisine, attending a cooking class in Bangkok can be a fantastic food experience. The city boasts several different cooking schools that tourists can attend, with some offering vegetarian options. Thai cooking classes can teach you useful culinary skills like how to make your curry paste from scratch, and classes are available for all levels of expertise. If you want to understand the fundamentals of Thai cooking and take the knowledge home to make your Thai-inspired plant-based food, joining a half-day cooking class might be ideal for you.

Take a market tour

Bangkok has plenty of markets to explore, including the well-known Damnern Saduak floating market just southwest of the city. A typical Bangkok market usually includes a vast array of vendors including fruit and vegetable sellers and street food merchants. There are a wide variety of market food tour providers in Bangkok who can cater your tour to your interests, including focusing on plant-based street food and snacks. These types of tours are a great way to experience the vibrancy and bustle of Bangkok for yourself.

Find your Bangkok food experience

tabl. offers plenty of food and drink experiences in Bangkok suitable for vegans and vegetarians. Browse our collection of experiences now to find your next food or wine tour in Bangkok and other destinations throughout the world.

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