This post was contributed by Cecilia Secher.
Hey folks, I am Cecilia, and as well as you all, a big passion of mine is travels. I am vegetarian (vegan-ish), and a bit of a foodie and chocolate enthusiast. As other foodies surely will know, a big part of experiencing another country and culture is through eating. Being a veggie doesn’t have to be hard when travelling, though I will admit, it can take a tiny bit more effort. But really, no problem. As writing this I am in Sao Paulo, just fresh out of the marvelous city that is Rio de Janeiro. I encountered quite a few non-veggie-people in Rio who told me, “oh, it is really hard being a vegetarian here” and to that I must say: No. No, it’s not.
First of all, I experienced the Brazilians as being pretty big on buffets. Actual good buffets, that offer delicious tasty options (btw I am Danish, and in Denmark most buffets, in my experience, are pretty crappy). But here, it’s a thing, and it works. The buffets offer loads of veggie options, então, no problem. While staying here, I ate at 3 especially amazing veggie/vegan restaurants.
R. Lopes Quintas, 37 – Jardim Botânico, Rio de Janeiro
I took my foodie friend with me to Prana (and the others ones as well – hehehe).
She is not veggie per se, but she appreciates good food. Prana was her favorite, and it was absolutely great. I told my friend that when I live here one day, I’m basically going to come back every week. That’s how good it is.
The food was prepared so well, and the vegetables were – oh so tasty. Oh, and look at that sauce… damn!
Rua Gustavo Sampaio 323 lj A, Rio de Janeiro
As I stayed in Leme for seven weeks, Gaia was a quite convenient option. It just so happened that they started renovating the space within a few weeks of my stay, so I always thank God that I went three times before they started the renovation.
As for the food, I had the veggie burger after a night out, and it was just perfectly greasy. The falafel is very good too, and the space was very comfortable. It was the perfect place to bring a notebook and to chill before the renovation, so I can ONLY imagine that it’s going to look so sexy after the renovation.
Once in a while a fancy restaurant is great, but more often than not, I’ll choose the chill café that serves great food. If you’re looking for that chill café with amazing food, Gaia is your friend!
Funny side note: one of my favorite cafés in my hometown is also called “Gaya” – it’s like it was meant to be, no?
Av. Henrique Dumont, 110 – Loja B – Ipanema, Rio de Janeiro
Teva was probably my favorite veggie place to eat at. It’s right in Ipanema area, so I’d say it’s also a little on the expensive side.
We visited on a rainy Sunday, and the streets were pretty much empty. Despite the empty streets, this little cozy but classic restaurant was full. We had to wait 15 minutes or so for a table. Although it’s annoying when you are hungry, it’s a good sign that they have a lot of customers – one must assume: great food! And it was.
They had a great variety of options as well as desserts. I had a corn soup, and then my friend and I shared a cheesy, cashew dip with tasty bread. I just wanted everything on the menu cart.
P.S. ( Teva is in Sao Paulo too)
One last note about vegan food in Brazil: brownies
One thing I found (or lack of) was good brownies.
Every time I came across brownies, I was so curious and tempted to try them! But every time I did, I was a little bit disappointed. I found Brazilian brownies to be more of a chocolate cake. What defines a brownie is a real heavy chocolate denseness – am I right? And I think they only (or mostly) use cocoa powder for the “brownies” here. Maybe it’s because chocolate is so incredibly expensive in Brazil?
But if you’re carioca or just happen to know where I can get a good brownie in Rio, please let me know!
Meet Cecilia: Danish gal currently living and studying in my hometown, Aarhus, DK. Studying Brazilian Studies, which means I’ll be living in Brazil next year and also learning Portuguese (French is a language I want to conquer in the future.) Being vegetarian and a foodie, one of my main ways of travelling is in food, coffee and cakes! I am a Scorpio and writer, and deeply grateful for being alive in these magnificent and crazy times. See ya out there. Keep up with me on IG.