Guide to Vegetarian Food in Shanghai

How prevalent is vegetarian food in Shanghai?

There are many choices for vegetarians in Shanghai. The Chinese for vegetarian food is Sù shí 素食.

We have a list of vegetarian restaurants in Shanghai, as well as useful resources and related news items below.

Buddhist Vegetarian Food in Shanghai

China has a long tradition of vegetarian food connected to its own indigenous Taoist religion, as well as the imported Buddhist religion. Buddhist vegetarian-style food in Chinese is called Chī zhāi吃斋.

Although not all sects of Buddhism are vegetarians, and in fact Buddha himself ate meat occasionally, the sect most popular in China is predominantly vegetarian and strictly requires its monks to be vegetarians.

The Tibetan and Japanese Zen sects of Buddhism, however, are much less strict towards vegetarianism.

Some Western vegetarians might not like traditional Chinese vegetarian foods due to the predominance of mock meat dishes made with Seitan (pronounced "say-tahn"), (miàn jīn 面筋) or Soybean Tofu (Dòufu 豆腐).

Seitan is actually wheat gluten, so people with celiac disease or gluten intolerance need to be careful when eating vegetarian food in Shanghai.

Vegetarian Food in ShanghaiDashu Wujie Vegetarian Restaurant

Western Style Vegetarian Food in Shanghai

Fortunately, there are more and more Western-style vegetarian restaurants in Shanghai as well as Chinese vegetarian restaurants with more focus on vegetable dishes than mock meat dishes.

One of the most popular western style Shanghai vegetarian restaurants is Pure and Whole which was established by expats and has several branches around the city.

Many other Western restaurants and chains in Shanghai, such as Element Fresh, Wagas and Sproutworks offer a wide choice of vegetarian food on their menus.

Shanghai Stores Selling Vegetarian Food

You can find vegetarian food at many stores in Shanghai such as Sprout Lifestyle and Hunter Gatherer which also have small restaurants on some of their branches.

You can also order vegetarian and vegan food from many online stores such as Kate and Kimi.

Vegetarians in Shanghai will also be happy to know that organic vegetables are widely available here. You can find organic produce at many supermarkets including Carrefour, as well as order online directly from many organic vegetable delivery services in Shanghai.

Western Style Vegetarian Restaurants in Shanghai
(Some purely vegetarian, others with good selection of vegetarian food)

Pure & Whole Shanghai 
1. Jingan District: 98 Yanping Rd., near Xinzha Rd.
2. Pudong Century Park: Kerry Parkside B111
3. Jingan Shanghai Center (Next to Portman)
1376 West Nanjing Rd.
1376 南京西路

Happy Buddha
1. XuHui district
388 Shaanxi Nan Lu near Fuxing Zhong Lu
2. PuTuo district
280 Aomen Lu near Changhua Lu

Sprout Lifestyle
Xuhui District
388 Shaanxi Nan Lu, cross Fuxing lu

Green Vege Café
Xuhui District: 3/F, Touch Mall, 679 Zhongshan Nan Er Lu, 

Anna Maya 
Xuhui District: 3 Taojiang Lu, near Hengshan Lu 
桃江路3号, 徐汇区桃江路3号(近衡山路)

Xintian Di, Pudong, Hongqiao, Changshu branches

Hunter Gatherer
1. JingAn district
135 Yanping Rd., Shanghai (Near Wuding Rd.)
2. HuangPu district
150 Hubin Road

Taoist Vegetarian Food

Five Taoist Temple Vegetarian (Wu Guan Tang)
Changning District: 349 XinHua Rd., near Dingxi Rd.
长宁区新华路349号, 近定西路

Buddhist Vegetarian Food in Shanghai

Jade Buddha Temple Restaurant
Putuo District: No 999 Jiangning Road, near Anyuan Rd.

Godly Vegetarian Restaurant
1. Jingan District: Nanjing Xi Lu 445, near Chengdu Bei Rd.
静安区南京西路445号, 近成都北路
2. Xuhui District: 97 Wukang Lu, near Wuyuan Lu,
徐汇区武康路97号, 近五原路

Lucky Zen & Veg Restaurant
Luwan district: 428, Madang Road, near Hefei Rd.
卢湾区  马当路428号, 近合肥路

Modern Chinese Vegetarian Restaurants

Dashu Wujie Vegetarian Restaurant
1. Xujiahui: 392 Tianping Lu, near Zhaojiabang Rd.
2. The Bund: 22 Zhongshan Dong Er Lu, 4/F

New Age Veggie

Veg Inn (Sichuan style)
Xuhui district: 1585 Huashan Lu, near Taian Lu,
徐汇区华山路1585号, 近泰安路

Vegetarian Lifestyle
1. Jingan, Jiangning Rd. Store
No.258 Fengxian Rd.
2. Luwan, Huaihai Rd. Location
1F.No.77 Songshan Rd.
3. Gubei Location
NO.848 Huangjincheng Rd.
4. Pudong Location
3/F,Star Fitness Club,Yuanshen Sports Centre, NO.1458 ZhangYang Rd.

Green & Safe
Xuhui district
6 Dongping Lu, near Hengshan Rd.
徐汇区东平路6号, 近衡山路

Gongdelin restaurant
NO.445 Nanjing West Road
Branches in Huangpu, Luwan, Minhang, Pudong, Changning etc.

Taiwan Jen Dow:
Jingan District: 151 Yuyuan Lu near Wanhangdu Lu
静安区愚园路151号, 近万航渡路

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