Best Vegan Food in Truckee (Lake Tahoe)
Visiting Truckee/North Lake Tahoe soon and hoping to find some delicious plant-based grub while you’re there? Or perhaps you’re a local looking to eat more vegan dishes when dining out. Look no further…HERE the best vegan food in Truckee!
Residing in the Bay Area, I am lucky enough to visit Tahoe regularly. And while plant-based food is not ubiquitous around Lake Tahoe, there are plenty of delicious dishes to seek out!
Truckee is a small, thriving town just northwest of Lake Tahoe. Home to Donner Lake, Truckee also boasts gorgeous trails, ski mountains, and an adorable downtown full of shops & restaurants. It is certainly one of the best places to stay (and eat!) in Lake Tahoe.
Best Vegan Food in Truckee, CA
One of the tastiest dishes in downtown Truckee is the CAULIFLOWER AL PASTOR STREET TACOS from Como. Crispy, spicy, sweet, and flavorful, they are perfection.
The guacamole and salsas are killer too. Burritos can be made vegan as well, either with the aforementioned cauliflower, or mushrooms.
Como has outdoor seating and take out on weekdays only.
For dynamite Italian food with a hip, modern ambiance, Great Gold is the place. From the folks behind San Francisco’s Flour and Water, Great Gold arrived in Truckee a few years back. Located on Pioneer Trail, its a bit off the beaten path (for tourists at least).
And while the menu is not obviously vegan, just ask your server for current options. They make a dynamite vegan pasta with bucatini, garlic, tomatoes, and breadcrumbs. The tomato focaccia bread with fried garlic is another must-try.
Unfortunately, their pizzas have egg in the dough….but you will still leave full and happy!
This eclectic restaurant blends Middle Eastern, Mediterranean, and Mexican cuisines with ingredients sourced primarily from local farmers and the result is DELICIOUS!
The seasonal menu features plenty of plant-based items. For starters, the make wonderful dips like hummus and baba ghanoush as well as falafel and lentil soup. But the MUST-TRY appetizer is the wood fired cauliflower with garlic cashew cream and chile poblano sauce!
Entrees include the seasonal salad loaded with goodness and the veggie tacos (braised tofu or mushroom).
In addition to indoor dining, Stella also has outdoor seating on the garden patio.
Mountain Lotus Provisions is a mobile kitchen with a “plant slant”;). The menu includes tasty dishes like the Hawaiian Loco Moco (a Beyond patty over coconut rice with a handful of accoutrements), Avocado Toast, Bun Mi Burger, the fresh veggie roll, and a soup of the day. All dishes can be make vegan if they aren’t already.
In addition, the restaurant celebrates Meatless Mondays “Supper Club” with a rotating menu. Each week, chef picks a new Pacific Rim cuisine and offers a 3 course meal. Order deadline is Thursday for pick up Monday between 5-7. Menu is posted online.
This food truck is located at 10124 E. Street in historic downtown Truckee and is currently open Thursday-Sunday from 12-6.
Mountain Lotus also offers catering services.
For a relatively small town, the local sushi joint has an impressive selection of vegan choices! Maki Ali offers an impressive tofu poke bowl with marinated tofu, edamame, seaweed salad, pickled veggies, rice, and greens. They also have some tasty vegan rolls like the Spicy Ben Franklin with tempura tofu, veggies, and macadamia nuts with a sweet chili sauce, the Secret Garden with tempura zucchini and marinated tofu, and the Sunflower roll with soy paper, avocado, and veggies. Plus some basic plant-based starters like gyoza, cucumber salad, and seaweed salad. Finally, they make a veggie gyoza soup…the perfect ending to a chilly day.
Vegan pastries are hard to find in general, so finding them in a little mountain town has made our lazy mornings! Zuri is an adorable and always bustling coffee shop with a gorgeous assortment of pastries, including a handful that are labeled vegan. Personally, I am a savory kinda pastry gal, so the vegan pot pies are my go-to (I love to heat them up). Kids love the vegan turnovers and chocolate cupcakes. And we all can’t resist the power balls: little chocolate bites with peanut butter or coconut. A perfect quick start to the Truckee morning.
This unassuming cafe located in the Truckee airport is an awesome spot for a casual lunch. Order at the counter and enjoy your meal at an outdoor picnic bench on the lawn while watching the planes take off and land. And yes, you can visit the cafe even if you’re not catching a flight!
Vegan entrees at Red Truck include the bowl or burrito. Both come with dal, quinoa, fattoush (bread salad), and cabbage. Just hold the yogurt tahini sauce if you are sticking to plant-based. The vegan protein is falafel (which is DELICIOUS!), or you can opt for seasonal vegetables (I order both!).
Warning: the planes can make it a wee bit loud;).
For the best brunch in Truckee, head to Squeeze In, located in the historic downtown.
The huge, FUN menu features dozens of plant-based options like the sweet potato breakfast bowl, the southwest bowl, avocado toast, breakfast tacos, and breakfast burritos.
This joint is open daily from 7 am to 2 pm. Outdoor seating is only available in the summer.
Little Truckee Ice Creamery is a favorite for adults and kids alike. By far the best ice cream around, they always offer two plant-based flavors: typically a sorbet and a coconut milk-based flavor.
The creamery has two locations, on the North shore of Donner Lake and a truck in historic downtown Truckee (truck not open in winter).
During winter months, operating hours vary. Check their site or give a call to confirm.
New Moon Natural Foods (+ The Crescent Cafe)
New Moon Natural Foods is an independent, local grocery store on the commercial end of Donner Pass Road in Truckee. In addition to beautiful produce and healthy groceries, New Moon also has coolers with fresh, pre-made vegan meals and snacks to grab…like spicy tofu salad, Indian-inspired potato salad, spicy cauliflower salad, and raw carrot cake cookies.
In addition, The Crescent Cafe inside New Moon offers four plant-based sandwiches, plus smoothies and fresh juices. The Holla Back Girl Vegan Reuben is LEGIT, with grilled marbled rye bread, grilled marinated tempeh, vegan provolone, kraut, and thousand island. The tempeh “chicken salad” is another solid choice, made with celery, red onion, and dried cranberries.
New Moon is the perfect stop to stock your cooler before an epic day of outdoor Tahoe adventure.
Believe it or not, Truckee boasts an impressive fine dining restaurant, Trokay. And while I am not pushing anyone to rush there (as it is quite pricey), they do make a gorgeous 4-course vegan tasting menu that is worth checking out if fine dining is your kinda thing!
Menu changes seasonally: highlights in summer 2023 include cauliflower and potato bisque soup, house made silken tofu, and wild ramp, morels, and roasted heirloom baby carrots.
If you’re celebrating a special occasion, Trokay could be the spot to enjoy a culinary experience you will not soon forget.
Best Vegan Food on the Way to North Lake Tahoe
Nectar Cafe in Auburn
I would be remiss if I didn’t tell y’all about a gem of pit stop on the way to Tahoe…Nectar Cafe in Auburn! This vegetarian cafe has tons of plant-based choices. In fact, I can never pick just one so I often order 2-3 and either share with my husband or pack up leftovers.
Highlights include the tempeh reuben, buffalo cauliflower salad with vegan ranch, shepherd’s pie, and the taco salad with house made vegan chorizo.
Nectar Cafe is open for indoor dining again, and has outdoor tables as well. Take out is super easy; simply call when you’re about 30 minutes away.
Hopefully this list of the best vegan food in Truckee is helpful as you plan your mountain meals! And please, let me know if I am missing your favorite vegan dish in Truckee by commenting in post below. I plan to keep it updated regularly so check back next time you visit!
For more delicious plant-based food finds, check out:
- East Bay Vegan Food Not to Miss
- Must-Try Vegan Asian Food in Oakland
- Can’t Miss Walnut Creek Vegan Dishes
- Eating Vegan in Mexico City w/ Omnivores
- Eating Vegan in Portugal with Omnivores and Kids!