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Vegetarian Amsterdam: It’s a “Thing”

It’s a trend: eating more plant-based foods, and leaving the animal-based diet behind.

But ask a Dutch vegetarian what restaurants they like, and they’ll tell you about a tiny place in their out-of-the-way neighborhood.
That’s why we choose these three food joints: they’re all centrally located, so you won’t have to go far to fulfil your foodie wishes.

When it comes to vegetarian and vegan cooking, there’s old-skool and new-skool. De Bolhoed (Prinsengracht 60-62) is definitely old-skool. One reviewer called their dishes “robust.” And it’s true. At their best, De Bolhoed’s burritos, for example, are starchy and filling—eating them is not unlike swallowing a hot stove. (We know; we’ve done it twice.)  The same is true of De Bolhoed’s desserts—our banana-cream pie was certainly satisfying, if a little gloppy, unrefined.

Next up: The Golden Temple (Utrechtsestraat 126), an Amsterdam stand-by for meat-free food. While rooted in Indian cuisine, the restaurant currently serves international food. Think Italian, as in their Tuscan risotto with wild mushrooms and truffles. There’s a Mexican vibe, too, with their Green Enchiladas and Spicy-Black-Bean Corn Tortillas. And, of course, there is Indian. Our favorite is the Pakora: vegetables in chickpea batter, deep-fried and served with mouth-watering mint chutney.  

A relative newcomer is the Vegan Junk Food Bar (Marie Heinekenplein 9-10 and Staringplein 22). They’re bent on re-creating meat-eaters’ favorites, and pride themselves most on their plant-based burgers. If you’re a carnivore, usually, then it’s best to ask questions about what’s on the menu. The Weed Burger, for example, refers to (ahem) seaweed, and ordering Shawarma in the “kapsalon” version means it’ll be smothered in French fries!

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