The first American diner opened way back in the late 1800s (fun fact: it was based out of a horse-drawn wagon!), but to this day, these eateries—which specialize in quick, inexpensive food—are still symbolic of the US. They may have hit peak popularity in the ’50s, but you can still find diners across the country, and some of them are totally vegan.

If you’re in the mood for diner food, check out the list below for some of the best vegan and vegan-friendly diners across the US.

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Is diner food vegan-friendly?

When you think of a stereotypical all-American diner meal, you likely think of three things: beef burgers, fries, and a shake. These are, without a doubt, staple diner menu items. But these days, it is possible to find animal-free options at diners across the US. And that’s not totally surprising when you consider that the general plant-based restaurant scene is growing. In fact, some research suggests the US vegan and vegetarian restaurant industry is now worth more than $33 billion.

As long as you know where to look, next time a craving hits, you can treat yourself to veganized versions of diner classics and much more. 

The best diners for vegan food in the US

These diners are serving up classic dishes made without animal ingredients.  

VegNews.vegandiner.thechicagodinerThe Chicago Diner

1 The Chicago Diner

Chicago, IL

The Chicago Diner has been serving up American comfort food—made sans meat—since the 1980s. A vegetarian diner, this Chicago mainstay has a vast array of vegan options. Treat yourself to the Titanic BLT Burger, which features a housemade patty with bacon-style seitan, or the Special Recipe Wings with spicy buffalo sauce. If you’re keeping things fresh and healthy, there’s also a selection of salads, a veggie-packed Thai Basil Stir Fry, or The Soul Bowl, which is loaded with flash-cooked greens, mashed sweet potato, and seasoned quinoa.
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VegNews.vegandiner.spiraldinerSpiral Diner

2 Spiral Diner & Bakery

Denton & Fort Worth, TX

Since 2002, Texans have been able to get their hands on delicious, filling, vegan diner food from Spiral Diner & Bakery. The menu offers a wide range of nachos and build-your-own burgers, which you can make meaty (thanks to the Beyond Burger and Beyond Chicken options) or whole food-based, depending on your individual preference.
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VegNews.VeganDiners.VivaVeganDinerViva Vegan Diner

3 Viva Vegan Diner

Upland, CA

If barbecue mac and cheese, hamburgers with all the extras, birria tacos, and other Mexican dishes made vegan sound like your dinner dream, you need to get yourself to Viva Vegan Diner. The popular eatery has a seemingly endless menu, so you’ll always be spoiled for choice. Just make sure your wallet is ready because it might become your new addiction.
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VegNews.vegandiner.verticaldinerVertical Diner

4 Vertical Diner

Salt Lake City, UT & Portland, OR

Sometimes, you just need breakfast (even if it’s technically dinner time). Luckily, all-day breakfast is another diner staple, and you can find veganized versions at both of Vertical Diner’s locations. Opt for menu items like The Avalanche, which features two pancakes, country potatoes, and tofu scramble, or if you’re extra hungry, add tempeh bacon and sausage to the Daybreaker Burrito.
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VegNews.vegandiner.swingersSwingers Diner

5 Swingers Diner

Los Angeles, CA

While not entirely vegan, Swingers deserves a shout-out on this list for its tasty range of plant-based options. Try the Soyrizo Scramble, for example, with black beans and fresh salsa, or the Vegan Burrito, which is packed with sautéed tofu and veggies.
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VegNews.vegandiner.rosdinerRo’s Diner

6 Ro’s Diner

Brooklyn, NY

Whether you’re after breakfast foods, burgers, or curly fries (or a combination of all four), Ro’s Diner in Brooklyn has you covered. It also has a refreshing range of mocktails, including mimosas (ideal for those Sunday brunch dates).
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VegNews.vegandiner.stickyfingersSticky Fingers

7 Sticky Fingers Diner

Washington, DC

This woman-owned and -operated, plant-based diner and bakery is a must-visit if you’re heading to Washington, DC anytime soon. As well as delectable baked treats, you can treat yourself to comforting diner-style dishes, including hot reubens with seitan pastrami, barbecue sandwiches, and classic burgers.
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Screenshot 2023-09-18 at 3.59.58 PMThe Tasty

8 The Tasty

Philadelphia, PA

There’s a reason this laid-back South Philadelphia diner was voted the Best Vegan Diner in America by VegNews readers. This mainstay is all about the old-school vibes—apart from the fact that it’s totally animal-free. Expect to find options like chik’n and waffles, tofu egg sandwiches, and thick-cut French toast available with lashings of syrup, berries, and whipped cream.
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VegNews.vegandiner.angelheartsAngelhearts Diner

9 Angelhearts Diner

Ithaca, NY

There’s no doubt New York City is a great destination for vegan food. But it’s not the only city in New York where you can find great animal-free options. In Ithaca on Gayuga Lake, you can find tasty vegan comfort food at Angelhearts Diner. There’s an all-day breakfast, loaded burritos, plenty of waffles, and much more. Note: the diner is currently undergoing renovations and is closed to the public, but keep an eye on their Instagram for updates.
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VegNews.vegandiner.silverdinerSilver Diner

10 Silver Diner

Cherry Hill, NJ

This New Jersey diner doesn’t have a dedicated vegan menu. Instead, you’ll find a flexitarian section on the menu, which is for plant-based eaters and people looking to cut down on their meat intake. Indulge in vegan options like the Meatless Tacos, the Oat Milk Protein Pancakes, and the Just Egg Breakfast Tacos (which also feature BBQ Beyond Meat, pickled ginger, black bean salsa, guacamole, roasted corn, and more).
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VegNews.vegandiner.offthegriddleOff the Griddle

11 Off the Griddle

Portland, OR

Portland’s Off the Griddle is dedicated to providing you with “vegan & vegetarian awesomeness.” And here’s the proof: the menu is packed with options like jackfruit brisket, vegan sausages, and vegan drumsticks, as well as waffles, brunch dishes, and sandwiches. While eggs and cheese are served at Off The Griddle, these must be requested as extra, as all items are vegan by default.
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VegNews.vegandiner.waywardveganThe Wayward Vegan

12 The Wayward Vegan

Seattle, WA

In Seattle’s Roosevelt neighborhood, you’ll find The Wayward Vegan. It’s cozy, it’s friendly, and the food is freshly made, and most importantly, delicious. Try options like the Hillbilly Omelet, which comes with hash browns, soyrizo, and country gravy, or indulge in Chiggen & Waffles with butter, maple syrup, and berries.
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VegNews.4thandstateburgers.4thandstate4th & State

13 4th & State

Columbus, OH

Situated in downtown Columbus, 4th and State really embraced the traditional diner vibes, so expect an all-American experience when you rock up to indulge in its delicious, and totally vegan, menu. Options include the Americana burger, loaded shoestring fries, and the Statehouse Breakfast (which comes with a choice of pancakes or French toast and two “brunchy sides”).
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VegNews.dinerfood.greenewamericanGreen New American Diner

14 Green New American Diner

Tempe & Phoenix, AZ

Arizona’s Green New American has one key mission: to make vegan comfort food for the masses. And we have to say, it has definitely succeeded. Choose from tasty bites like the Big Easy Cheezy Nachos, Chick’n Nuggs, the Chicago Cheesesteak, and so much more.
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VegNews.nachos.sealevelcitySealevel City

15 Sealevel City Vegan Diner

Wilmington, NC

This totally vegan diner is a must-visit if you’re in the port city of Wilmington. The menu is extensive (and mouthwatering), but staff and customer favorites include dishes like the Baja Shrimp Tacos, kale nachos with cashew queso, and simple chips and queso with chilies and spices.
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