As plant-based eating trends continue to sprout up across the country, more and more restaurants are offering enticing vegan alternatives to their conventional counterparts — and with its signature wellness draw, it’s no surprise that Malibu is ahead of the curve.
From the mouthwatering options at Malibu Beach Inn to the veg-friendly establishments in its vicinity, vegan eaters won’t go hungry at these five must-visit spots in Malibu.
Carbon Beach Club
Whether you favor the comfort of room service or prefer to dine on a breathtaking seaside terrace, jumpstart your culinary tour of the town at Malibu Beach Inn’s Carbon Beach Club Restaurant.
Start your meal off with the Brussels Sprouts with Calabrian chili, preserved lemon, and pistachio, or the raved-about Grilled Avocado, which comes out still sizzling and sprinkled with sweet and tangy Tunisian relish, toasted pistachios, and currants.
As for entrées, CBC’s adaption of the ultra-popular Beyond Burger sets itself apart from other versions thanks to its special attention to fine culinary details. Expertly cooked and thoughtfully presented, this just-like-the-real-thing patty is augmented with lettuce, tomato, red onion, and Hass avocado spread, all sourced from the local farm One Gun Ranch. Substitute the Pain de Mie bread for toasted sourdough and the cheddar for house-made cashew cheese to partake in an indulgent gourmet vegan burger experience.
Malibu Farm Café
Just a short walk north from Carbon Beach, the storied Malibu Pier is an essential stop for photographers, historians, and foodies alike. Vegans who find themselves here during lunchtime should head to Malibu Farm Café on the pier’s northwest corner for a memorable meal over the Pacific.
For a lively and refreshing take on Thai curry, try the Vegan Coconut Dish with tofu and veggies. It’s a vibrant medley of broccoli, mushrooms, asparagus, green beans, carrots, and bell peppers served over black and white rice, covered in coconut cream sauce, and topped with peppery arugula. Or, go for the fan-favorite Vegan Chop Salad, a colorful blend of kale, romaine, butternut squash, beets, sliced avocado, garbanzo beans, and a light, lemony vinaigrette.
As an added bonus, all of Malibu Farm Café’s organic vegetables are harvested from local providers like Larry Thorne Family Farm, Maggie’s Farm, One Gun Ranch, and of course, its namesake, Malibu Farm. After ordering at the counter, take a number and grab a seat in the beach house-style dining room, or climb the stairs to the rooftop patio to savor the sea breeze and sweeping views of Surfrider Beach.
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Hidden in plain sight on the western edge of Malibu Country Mart, this stylish hangout for lovers of Cuban food is a celebrated SoCal implant, bringing authentic Havana vibes from its flagship location in New York City’s Nolita neighborhood. Enjoy the cozy ambiance in the softly lit interior or outside under the covered patio, which is peacefully screened with trees.
Here, many menu offerings can be made vegan with some simple omissions; just make sure to ask your server to hold any sour cream and cheese, and swap out the yellow rice for brown. Order the Grilled Habana Burrito with vegetables, black beans, pico de gallo, and guacamole, or opt for the Veggie Tacos, which are topped with sliced avocado and roasted corn salsa and served with a side of rice and beans.
A healthy hub for beach-ready smoothies, bowls, and energizing tonics, Sunlife Organics features an abundant selection of carefully sourced superfoods, antioxidant-rich supplements, protein powders, nut butters, MCT oils, and hemp-derived CBDs. But this is no ordinary juice bar; it’s a community-inspired place where nutrition and mindfulness meet. Their WiFi-free space in Malibu Country Mart is designed to promote organic interactions between guests (in favor of diving into their smartphones).
Apart from Sunlife’s three recommended smoothies for summertime, its encyclopedic menu lets customers craft their own nutrient-packed concoction. But if a custom drink seems overwhelming, plant-based patrons can’t go wrong with signature shakes like the Green Man, a deliciously sip-able fusion of strawberries, bananas, kale, apple juice, and assortment of green superfoods.
OLLO Restaurant & Bar
Kick things off with a cup of Caffe Luxxe Montenero House Blend coffee or an invigorating Turmeric Tea, concocted with lemon, apple, black pepper, and cayenne. Fans of oatmeal will rejoice in the establishment’s unique renditions, like the Quinoa Bowl with farina, almond milk, and mixed seasonal berries, the Chia Seed Bowl with house-made strawberry preserve, blueberries, and coconut milk, or McCann’s Irish Oatmeal, whipped up with roasted hemp, goji berries, banana, and almond milk.
Plant-based diners also fare well à la carte. Combine the Rosemary Focaccia Bread with the Avocado with Olive Oil and Sea Salt to enjoy some of the tastiest avo toast on this side of the Santa Monica Mountains. Pair it with roasted fingerling potatoes for a satisfyingly savory breakfast spread.
Featured Photo: Malibu Country Mart