Ibiza’s reputation as a gastronomic paradise is no longer a secret fiercely guarded by those in the know. Recent years have seen the local restaurant scene expand exponentially, and in 2020 – particularly with the absence of the island’s famous nightlife scene – eating out has become the main event of every day on the holiday itinerary. That’s all well and good for foodies who want to explore all corners of the island, but for those who follow a plant-based diet, dining out in Ibiza can pose somewhat of a challenge. Sure, almost every restaurant in Ibiza now offers a vegan or vegetarian option or two on their menus, but rather than getting stuck with limited choices (tomato salad or pesto pasta, anyone?), why not seek out the places where creative chefs consciously design menus with vegans and vegetarians in mind? Below, our on-island team of experts share their favourite plant-based dining destinations for breakfast, lunch and dinner alike.
When an Ibiza restaurant is designed to be in complete harmony with the fertile farmland that surrounds it, it’s not surprising to discover that much of its menu caters to vegans and vegetarians – while not 100% plant-based, Aubergine Ibiza has certainly got more than enough variety to keep everyone in your group happy, from all ages to all dietary requirements. Set just off the main road that leads from Santa Gertrudis to San Miguel, in the lush heartlands of the island, Aubergine Ibiza is all about seasonal local produce (much of which is plucked from the onsite garden, or from its sister venue, Atzaro Agroturismo’s spectacular garden), farm-to-table dining, a community of like-minded people, and quintessentially Ibiza surroundings. Dine on rustic, wholesome salads, hearty healthy bowls and delicious dishes like the signature homemade Aubergine Parmigiana beneath lemon trees overlooking the stunning countryside – a beautiful experience both by day and under the starry night skies. Open daily from midday to midnight.
From the outset, one may not expect a fine Italian dining restaurant – complete with its own adjacent pizzeria serving up classic Italian street food – to cater well to vegans. After all, Parmesan, Mozzarella, eggs, butter and cured meats feature so heavily in many of their most popular dishes, however Can Domingo head chef Giuseppe Vivacqua, who passionately tends and harvests the restaurant’s onsite veggie garden himself, has a particular interest in plant-based cuisine. So much so, he spent a recent winter season staging (like an internship) in one of the world’s best vegan eateries in order to learn as much as he could about the craft. And so, Can Domingo’s menu features a vast selection of options for vegans, in addition to a special vegan tasting menu. Think corn chowder with crunchy marinated veggies, almonds, Taggia black olives; a creamy pumpkin risotto with tahini sauce, sautéed mushrooms and deep fried leeks; plus a chickpea polenta with homemade Romesco Sauce which is definitely worth writing home about – as are the desserts.
While many beach restaurants are happy serving up tourist-friendly paellas and burgers, there are a select few that go the extra mile to guarantee their vegan and vegetarian guests have an equally as satisfying experience as their non-veggie friends. El Chiringuito on the beautiful shores of Es Cavallet is one such beach club, and while it does serve up fine rice dishes and burgers, its plant-based options are equally as delicious and popular. This season the popular venue has teamed up with The Meatless Farm for its all-new gourmet veggie burger, the salad menu seems to have gotten even heartier, and the pastas and risottos are to die for. Homemade gazpacho, classic pimientos de padrón and a selection of veggie sides that are almost good enough to order as a main dish (think smoked aubergine with homemade hummus, roasted herbed cauliflower, crispy roast potatoes and sautéed greens) mean there’s plenty of dishes that can be shared, no matter which way your appetite leans.
Getting glammed up and going out for sushi is often a popular holiday activity, but for those who don’t eat fish or seafood, finding a hgh-quality restaurant for your night out can be tough. Here in Ibiza, Nagai – the stylish but laidback Japanese and fusuion dining destination on the San Juan road – is a place vegans and vegetarians can trust, as the owners (including head chef Reina Nagai) put as much love and passion into their plant-based options as they do into the more traditional creations. In addition to incredible veggie sushi rolls and gyoza, there’s also a great selection of noodles, curries, fried rice dishes and more that can be adapted to your dietary requirements. The Agedashi Tofu is a Nagai classic, in addition to the Teppanyaki Vegetables, and you can’t let a Nagai experience go past without trying the homemade wasabi mashed potatoes.
There’s almost no end to the plant-based delicious dining at hip Santa Gertrudis café Numoer 74 L’Atelier, with its menu born from a love of organic, seasonal produce and influenced by the owners’ global travels, everything is also served up in eco-friendly packaging that can be eaten in the stylish garden space or taken away to be enjoyed at home or on the beach. Let us rattle off just a few of the options available: melon with orange blossom water, peach and mint salad, shakshuka, fig and goat cheese cake, cherry tomato and pesto tart, Provençal tart (with eggplant, onions, zucchini and mozzarella), oriental chickpea salad, smashed roasted sweet potatoes – hungry yet? This season the concept store has also introduced a new picnic basket concept, which can be completely customized to suit your taste – read more here.
Every Ibiza loving vegan and vegetarian worth their Las Salinas salt knows that Passion Café is Ibiza’s home of health and happiness. Homes, plural, as over the years the brand expanded to include five locations spanning Marina Ibiza, Playa d’en Bossa, Santa Eulalia, San José and most recently, the buzzing dual squares of Vara de Rey and Plaza del Parque in Ibiza town (the new restaurant features a terrace in each plaza). Founder Lana Love pioneered plant-based, raw and healthy cuisine in Ibiza when she opened her first restaurant 19 years ago, and with every new year the Passion menus grow more and more plentiful – there’s even a dedicated vegan menu on offer so that you don’t need to scour the expansive menus looking for the telltale (V) or ask if something can be made without butter/cheese/eggs et al. Breakfast, lunch, tapas, snacks, smoothies, juices, dinners – no matter what plant-based goodness you’re craving, you’ll always be satisfied at a Passion Café.
The name kind of gives it away with the menu concept at this chic new Santa Eulalia café, part of the hip W Hotel Ibiza complex. The plant-based kitchen at Ve Café is based around local, seasonal produce with international flavours, and the restaurant serves up a selection of healthy, hearty and accessibly priced bowls for breakfast and lunch, complete with a beautiful sea view from its terraced tiled seating area. IN addition to brekkie bowls with chia, fruits and more, there are hot Buddha bowls, spicy Mexican dishes, Indian-inspired creations and Thai-influenced options, plus the classic Ve Burger, a fishless Shriashi and some amazing salads. Everything on the menu at Ve Café is available to takeaway too, so if you prefer to hit the golden sands (or just stock up your fridge at home), you’ve got that option too.
Another pioneer in Ibiza when it comes to plant-based cuisine and health food minus the fads, Wild Beets – a chic contemporary dining space in the buzzing village of Santa Gertrudis – has long been the locals’ favourite vegan and vegetarian eatery of choice. Forget bowls of salad swiftly thrown together to keep you happy – absolutely every dish comes out of this kitchen comes out looking like a work of art, and tasting even better. Everything here is homemade, right down to the ketchup, vegan milks and mayonnaise, so you can rest assured it’s 100% plant-based and ethical. Also home to iPurify – an in-house brand of cold-pressed juices that can be enjoyed individually or in systemised cleanses available for home delivery or pick up – Wild Beets is an Ibiza stalwart that just keeps getting better with age.
A newcomer on the Ibiza beach restaurant scene in 2020, Alma Beach Ibiza is situated on the west coast in Port des Torrent – an area lesser known to tourists that seems to be in the middle of a gentrification. Open daily from 11am until 10pm for food, the ethos behind the chic venue is to promote healthy, avant-garde gastronomy made with top quality ingredients. With an onsite wellness centre run by the locally loved experts from Eat Is Life (an Ibiza town hub), you can feed your vegan and vegetarian soul while enjoying massages, yoga and more. Classic healthy breakfasts like Açai bowls, green omelettes and oat porridge are complemented by hearty all-day dishes such as marinated tofu with glass noodles, pasta with kale and ricotta, an array of fresh salads and snacks such as baba ganoush platters, hummus and more. A welcome addition to the west.
San Antonio area is a hub when it comes to vegan and veggie friendly dining spots – perhaps due to the residential nature of the area. Another local’s favourite is Natural Pau, a restaurant that declares itself 101% natural. Fruits and veggies are the stars of the flexitarian show here – though the vegan pizzas have earned a reputation of their own – and the lush green garden setting makes you feel connected with nature, despite being set in an urban environment. With a cool bar beset with swing chairs, and a laidback ambience, Natural Pau is open from midday to midnight daily (excluding Wednesdays). Super salads, veggie burgers, piadinas, shawarmas, and an array of creative healthy dishes at affordable prices make it the kind of place you can visit again, and again, and again…