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  • Writer's pictureAround the World in Vegan Eats

TOP PLACES TO EAT VEGAN IN ANKARA, TÜRKIYE


Please note that due to the current economic situation in Türkiye, prices are very variable and may change rapidly. The prices quotes are those we paid in October 2023 - please check current menus for the most up to date prices.


Welcome to the Turkish capital, Ankara! We really enjoyed exploring this city, which has excellent shopping, beautiful parks, an iconic castle - and an emerging vegan scene too! Ankara is often missed off of tourists' routes around Türkiye, but we'd absolutely advocate a trip to Ankara for a very different experience to the more usual tourist hotspots.


Eating Vegan in Ankara

“Life comes through the food" - Turkish proverb

Though the vegan food scene in Ankara is emerging, so there are slightly fewer options than in cities like Istanbul, we were still really impressed by the restaurants we visited and the plant-based choices on offer. For sure, if you visit Ankara, you won't be stuck for something to eat! We really enjoyed exploring this city and some of the things we tasted here were exceptional! Read on to see what we tried, then watch the video at the end of the page to see for yourself!


1st: Junk Vegan

Remzi Oğuz Arık, Tunus Cd No:49, 06680 Çankaya/Ankara, Türkiye


There is vegan junk food, and then there’s the food at Junk Vegan. As comfort food goes, this was absolutely exceptional. Not only was Junk Vegan a really fun and funky place to eat, the staff were lovely, and the choice of plant based junk food was out of this world!


I chose the Cajun fingers and fries (130₺) and I’ve never eaten something so lip tingling! The Cajun spice wasn’t too hot but it was definitely tingly! I loved how crunchy the coating was, and though the vegan chicken inside was thin it was suitably chewy and delicious. I loved that the fries were crinkle cut and the portion size was great, and the sauces that were served on the side were really delicious too. Yum!


Meanwhile, Mike went for the chicken döner durum (100₺) which was also really nice nice, he enjoyed it very much. Really delicious, the wrap was light and the contents were tasty. The plant based chicken döner meat had some resistance but in a wonderful way and plenty of  flavour too. The tomato sauce inside was indulgent and super flavoursome, but a bit sporadically located! It was packed full of tasty treats: the pickles and tomatoes inside tasted really good too!




2nd: Gabo Kitchen

Yukarı Bahçelievler, Şht. H.Temel Kuğuoğlu Sk No:17/A, 06490 Çankaya/Ankara, Türkiye


If you’ve not already seen our blog and video from when we headed to Gabo for breakfast, this is the place where we tried most iconic of Turkish breakfast dishes: menemen! If you want to read more about the history and ingredients of this most beloved Turkish pastry, check out our blog here!


Gabo Kitchen didn't just serve one kind of menemen... all our plant-based menemen dreams came true here as this usually egg-based dish (here made with chickpea flour and chia seeds) came as standard, with sausage, with tofu, and even with soy mince. We couldn't believe how much choice there was! This was a really lovely and relaxing place to spend time, and they even have a small shop in the corner where you can pick up all your favourite plant-based staples!


After a bit of mouthwatering deliberation, we chose two different kinds of menemen to sample: I went for the standard version, which was really well priced at 90₺ (approx. £2.44, €2.82 or $3.09). Meanwhile, Mike chose the menemen with sausage, which was only a little bit more expensive, at 100₺ (approx. £2.71, €3.13 or $3.43). Both of these were really, really delicious. The Menemen itself was really well flavoured with lots of vegetables inside. The traditional tomatoes and peppers add a nice rich flavour that feels hearty as well as healthy.


I was really impressed with how the combination of chickpea flour and chia seeds replicated this dish so well; though it was a little smoother than scrambled eggs it was far tastier than many of the tofu scrambled eggs I’ve had in the past! If you wanted more of a chunky egg style experience perhaps you could order the Menemen with tofu. Even more special was the menemen with sausage. We loved the basket of warm bread served on the side too!




3rd: Terradan Vegan Pub & Mutfak

Remzi Oğuz Arık, Paris Cd. 49/AA, 06680 Çankaya/Ankara, Türkiye


Ankara was a city of amazing breakfasts for us, as we headed to Terradan Vegan Pub to try börek! While this dish can be served at any time of day, it's a popular way to fuel up in the mornings, so we tucked into these iconic pastries to prepare us for a day of exploring the Turkish capital.


Terradan Vegan Pub is, in itself, an excellent place to hang out in Ankara - with the knowledge that everything served here is cruelty free! They have a huge selection of drinks, and lots of indoor and outdoor seating. If we had more time in Ankara, we definitely would have come back here in the evening for a couple of drinks and to soak up the atmosphere! The rest of the food menu looked amazing too, we wish we could have tried more!


I went simple with the fried börek starter (90₺: approx. £2.44, €2.82 or $3.09), which comprised a basket full of pastry rolls. Though they look like spring rolls, these börek are a lot more bread-like (you can find out why in our full börek blog!) The filling was like a tangy cream cheese with plenty of flavoursome herbs. Though they were tasty and indulgent, a full bowl of them was a bit too much, and the flavours got a little samey after a while! The salad garnish was tasty and well dressed though!


Meanwhile, Mike picked the börek breakfast which wowed us both when it arrived at the table! It was so colourful and neatly presented: with lots of different components, it was perfect for grazing! He really enjoyed the chips (a nice breakfast novelty!) which were seasoned, crunchy, and delicious. While Mike isn't usually a fan of hummus, he actually really liked this one, especially for dunking things in! The salad was well dressed and very flavoursome - all round quite an enjoyable breakfast dish. Though Mike thought the börek themselves were a little bland, he was impressed by how they tasted like bread even though they were actually pastry. Overall, the börek breakfast was the winner here: the börek starter is great for sharing, but if you’re going to Terradan specifically to try their plant-based börek we would recommend spending an extra 10 lira and getting the breakfast for the variety!




4th: Tünel Vegan Pub

Meşrutiyet, Konur Sok. 59/4, 06420 Çankaya/Ankara, Türkiye


You really have to earn your visit to Tünel Vegan Pub by rising to the challenge of finding it! This plant-based pub is on the second floor, so to get to it you have to go up an apartment block stairway which feels a bit uncertain and odd. We felt for sure like we'd made a wrong turn but we hadn’t. Persevere and you'll find it!


When you arrive at the clearly labelled Tünel door you can see through the door, but it’ll be locked so you have to ring the doorbell to be let in. Don’t let these things deter you though because it’s well worth a visit! It's a really cool place to hang out, eat, and drink, and the staff here are really friendly.


Note that if you’re a non smoker or have an aversion to cigarettes this may not be the place for you as smoking is allowed indoors. We’re non smokers and asthmatic, but were lucky in that it was relatively empty when we were there. Our best tip for avoiding the smoke? Head there early. We had the place to ourselves for the most part while we were eating, but more people were arriving as we were leaving at about 8pm.


Tünel have a menu packed full of plant based pub food, and we couldn't wait to try it! I chose the döner wrap, which cost 120₺ (approx. £3.18, €3.67 or $4.06). Now, be prepared for a messy eat if you try this one! The ends of the wrap weren’t closed so stuff kept falling out. The wrap was very heavy which made it quite difficult to eat, in our experience, most döner wraps are much lighter! The plant based meat in this kebab was like ground meat or mock mince, a little different to what we had expected but tasty all the same. The flavours were good: it was well seasoned and enjoyable despite its flaws! Arm yourself with plenty of napkins before you tackle it!


Mike went for a slightly heartier meal with the vegan chicken burger, which also cost 120₺ (approx. £3.18, €3.67 or $4.06). On the side was a generous portion of chips, which were really tasty and well seasoned. They worked really well with the sauce and on their own too. The burger itself was pretty tasty: there was lots of salad in there along with the chunks of vegan chicken which were succulent and tasty. We were impressed with the carefully prepared pepper which was designed to imitate bacon... we just found the whole thing a little wet! With all the sauce and vegetables inside, this burger definitely had the slip! For a hearty vegan pub meal at a great price, in a very vegan-friendly atmosphere too though, Tünel is a unique and fun place to visit.




Where is your favourite place to get plant-based food in Ankara? Are there any new places or old favourites that we've missed? Leave us a comment to let us know (and others who might be visiting too!)



Recommendations

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Where should I stay?

As you might expect from a capital city, there are plenty of places to stay in Ankara, but many of them come at a much higher price than we were able to pay. We stayed at Deeps Hostel, Ankara, which offers private en suite, and dorm rooms too - with a friendly welcome and some nice social areas, we really recommend checking this place out!


Or if a hotel is more your thing, Mithat Hotel offer very cost effective rooms in a good location, with friendly staff and a 24 hour food service available.




Tours & Experiences

There's a lot to see and do in Ankara, and as you might imagine the capital city is quite spreat out. If you have plenty of time you can absolutely explore it yourself, on foot, or using Ankara's excellent public transport.


But if you would prefer to see the sights with a guide, or have the journey around Ankara planned for you, why not try this Private Guided Walking Tour?


Alternatively, if that's not for you, check out one of Viator's most favourite and highly rated tours and experiences on the left!


Please note that the tours displayed on the left are automatically selected for their popularity by Viator, not chosen or recommended by us. Please check whether any food or drink based tours are suitable for your dietary requirements, and any animal-based experiences are ethical, before booking!

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