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Five fab places to eat as a vegan in Exeter which aren’t explicitly vegan

Making sure you don’t just eat pesto pasta during Veganuary

I’ve been vegan for over five years now and it’s honestly been the best thing I’ve done for my mental and physical health. My journey to veganism wasn’t straightforward, as I struggled with anorexia and had to navigate how I could transition to a fully plant based diet safely. However, since going vegan, I took up running, my skin cleared up, and opened up my eyes to the environmental benefits. It’s now Veganuary, and I’ve been organising some events with the Students’ Guild (including a subsidised trip to a vegan café) and prepping some blogs to share with the Exeter student population some of my favourite places to eat at uni and in the city that won’t break the bank.

I’ve rounded up my five favourite ‘not explicitly vegan’ places in Exeter to eat. Although it feels like you often have to eat at places that are 100 per cent plant based to make sure there’s something you can actually eat, lots of places have some great vegan-friendly options whether you’re a die-hard meat eater or plant based queen.

1. Dinosaur Café

image of food, assortment of salad and falafels

I love this place and not just because it has a great name. I’ve had some lovely memories here, and it was where I had my (first) graduation meal. There really is something for everyone here with traditional home cooked Turkish, Mediterranean and English food. My go-to combo is a vegan version of the dinosaur salad, with some falafels and hummus. It’s a great place to bring some friends and get a couple of smaller dishes to share, and the staff are so lovely too! Plus: their peppermint tea is elite. 

2. Jasmine Thai

VEgetable stir fry with rice

I went here for the first time recently and absolutely loved it. For me, the main pull factor if I’m having a meal out is the vibe so Jasmine Thai hit the spot (and not just because it’s an independent). Not only were the vibes immaculate, the waiters were incredibly welcoming and my tempura and vegan stir fry was wonderful. And while catering for carnivores and herbivores, a plus is that the restaurant manager is a life-long vegan and there’s a dedicated vegan menu. What’s not to love?!

3. Boatyard Bakery

image of bakery with three shelves, bottom shelf has different types of bread

image of bakery with three shelves, bottom shelf has different types of bread

image of mushroom and avocado on toast with balsamic glaze, small salad on the side

In winter it’s a really cosy place with generously sized hot drinks, and in summer it’s a great place to have a smoothie outside with friends with a picturesque view of the quay. The mushroom on toast and their porridge is also elite so really you can’t ever go wrong.


5. The £2 meal on campus

image of tagine, sweetcorn and salad side

My pride and joy: I recently led a campaign as part of my role as VP Liberation and Equality for the University to offer a £2 hot meal on campus, which has been running successfully for a couple of months. And I’m very happy to say that the Devonshire House outlet it open for term two. You can get a “dish of the day” for £2 and it’s always vegan, or a jacket potato and topping for £2.99 (the coleslaw is actually lush too).  The campaign is ongoing and you can keep up with it via our Instagram and check out the menus here.

If you want to stay updated with my how to be vegan as an Exeter student this blog might come in handy.

Related articles recommended by this writer:

If you eat 9/10 of these foods you’re officially an Exe-tah student

The best vegan food spots in Exeter for all the plant based queens