Lisa’s Vegetarian Restaurant Roundup — Kansas City Style


vegetarian restaurantsAs a certified veg-a-holic, let me direct you to the best beets, roots and vegetarian restaurants in Kansas City.

I know Kansas City is better known for its barbecue and steaks the size of hubcaps. If that’s what you’re craving, read this and call your cardiologist in the morning.

Eating too much red meat is a bit of a health risk. According to the World Population Review, Kansas and Missouri rank 12th and 13th, respectively, as the nation’s most obese states.

Draw your own conclusion, but we’re eating a lot of charred flesh in this city, and it might just be going to our hips.

Do you have to gasp…turn vegan? No! But if you want to whittle your waist, spare a few poor piggies and help save Mother Earth all at the same time, eat more veg!

Take it from this mostly plant-based eater, Kansas City is overflowing with delicious restaurants, coffee shops, cafes and farmers markets to supply you with all the veg you could want. Here are a few of my favorites, starting at the root of the matter, pun intended.

Get Vegetables from Local Farmers

Whenever possible, go directly to the source. In this case, that means get to know your farmer. One of Kansas City’s most prolific and popular local farms is URBAVORE, a farm located within Kansas City’s city limits. URBAVORE farmers Brooke Salvaggio & Daniel Heryer grow some mean fruit and veg, which can be purchased directly from their farm as well as in their CSA Program. 

Another hard-working family farmer is Craig Howard. On his farm in the Pendleton Heights neighborhood, Chef Craig grows an amazing variety of fresh produce,cut flowers and ridiculously delicious and healthy microgreens. (Fact: broccoli sprouts, which are in Craig’s repertoire, are a nutritional powerhouse, containing loads of ​​sulforaphane, which is a cancer-slayer.) 


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Craig’s broccoli sprouts and other homegrown offerings are available through his subscription service and delivered to your door.

At over 150 years old, The City Market is perhaps KC’s most adored farmer’s market. Farmers come from all over the area to sell the fruits of their labor. You can buy all kinds of exotic fruit and veg from the many market stalls. Bitter melon anyone?

Check out other terrific Kansas City farmer’s markets on our Get Your Bearings page. 


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While you’re there, be sure and check out a few of veggie-friendly restaurants surrounding the market such or The Farmhouse or Happy Gillis Cafe and Hangout in the neighborhood to the east, Columbus Park.

City Market Coffee House – Grab an oat milk latte and a vegan breakfast burrito—filled with chickpea scramble, potatoes, soyrizo, spinach and salsa—and you’re well on your way to meeting your daily veggie quota.

Habashi House – This hole in the wall sells the most authentic hummus in town. They also serve up killer falafel, bright green tabouli and manoush—a flatbread topped with olive oil and a spice blend called za’atar.


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Vegetarian Restaurants in the Crossroads 

This Kansas City ‘hood is home to some of KC’s finest plant-forward food.

Farina is incredibly veggie-friendly (and fancy.) Their dried pastas—think spaghetti—are made without eggs, and they happily put together a pasta dish without meat or cheese. The contorni make a very tasty meal, and this ain’t no lame pile of steamed veggies, rather creamy saffron risotto, garlicky spinach, sautéed mushrooms and grilled broccolini—veggie heaven! Refreshing house-made sorbet for dessert.

Farina is an Italian concept restaurant by James Beard Award-winning Chef Michael Smith.


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Next door at Extra Virgin, order at least one cucumber peanut salad while you pursue the menu which includes: whole roasted cauliflower; Moroccan zaalouk – a thick spread made of roasted tomatoes, red peppers, eggplant and herbs; and their addictive chickpea fries. You can’t go wrong with the artistically prepared small plates.

Vegetarian Restaurants in Brookside

Mistress of Kansas City’s beautiful and healthy eating scene, Robin Krauss, runs two very popular veggie-friendly spots. Unbakery, her coffee shop in Brookside, serves clever lattes featuring seductive ingredients like charcoal and ashwagandha steamed with house-made nut milks. The goddess mocha, infused with superfoods cacao, reishi and mesquite is a favorite of mine.

Next time you do your Costco buy-up, skip the greasy pizza and check out Billie’s Grocery, Ms. Krauss’ newest venture, just around the corner. Think you can’t face one more boring piece of avocado toast? Billie’s neon-hued beet hummus version is a refreshing take on the vegetarian standby. 

NKC Vegetarian Restaurants

Dead Beat Eats – The former food cart now offers up the best vegan junk food in town from their new home in Cultivar KC. Vegan hot dogs, burgers and fries, all served up with a smile. Check out Ms. Kat’s Netflix and chili dog, a vegan dog smothered with vegan chili, creamy garlic sauce and chives.

Trust me, you won’t miss the emulsified meat trimmings. 

Other Places to Veg Out in KC

For even more vegetarian or vegan restaurant options in Kansas City check out:

Happy Cow :  a comprehensive online directory of vegan and vegetarian restaurants in Kansas City.

Chuck Eats KC:  A Comprehensive List of Vegan Restaurants in KC

Kara Lust’s Vegan Restaurant Favorites: As seen in Made In Kansas City’s blog

Veg on!


Lisa Murphy
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