Peru is a destination for foodies. Popular Peruvian dishes tend to have meat, so it stands to reason that vegetarian travelers may be wary of missing out on the food-loving fun, especially in the remote Andean city of Cusco. Will you be counting your lucky stars to find a place that at least serves salads? The answer is an overwhelming no! Vegetarian-friendly restaurants in Cusco are wonderfully diverse and offer meat-free variations of traditional cuisine along with pizza, filling quinoa burgers, and other comfort foods.
Vegetarian-Friendly Restaurants in Cusco
Being veggie-friendly, most of our selected restaurants featured below serve a delightful spectrum of vegetarian meals as well as meat dishes, so in a group of travelers, no one has to compromise their dietary preferences.
Escape the bustle of Cusco’s San Blas neighborhood at Granja Heidi and enjoy a casual meal with friendly service. Owned by a German couple who has lived there for nearly three decades, everything is prepared fresh, and the blend of European and Peruvian dishes reflects the restaurant’s origin.
The set lunch special makes Granja Heidi a sought out midday spot and even more so for vegetarians when they discover that one – if not both – of the two main courses can be ordered without meat. Influenced by what’s in season, the daily menu includes a starter, main dish, dessert, and drink, and served until 3:30 pm.
Additionally, there’s a section on the menu just for vegetarians. Order the Rocoto Relleno (stuffed with peanuts and vegetables, instead of ground beef) for a taste of Peru’s comida arequipeña, or ask about the French-inspired Ratatouille dish that comes with steamed veggies and rice. Finish with any of the sweet and savory crepes, which have a reputation for being the best in Cusco.
Granja Heidi Overview
- Dining Tip: Bring cash to pay for your meal because bank cards are not accepted.
- Address: Cuesta San Blas 525 (2nd floor), San Blas, Cusco
- Open: Monday to Saturday from 11:30 am to 9:30 pm, Sunday closed
- Granja Heidi Website
Green Point is one-hundred percent vegan. Abiding by the strict vegan practice of using no animal products, cashew nut cheese and almond milk fills in for dairy-based ingredients. Don’t be quick to think these vegan-approved substitutes make Green Point’s healthy food any less tasty.
With main dishes ranging from mushroom lasagna to meat-free ceviche to steamed dumplings served with a ginger seaweed salad, the menu is equal parts delicious and diverse. A person who eats meat may finish their meal and think they could go vegan too – if only the restaurant’s culinary team and their delicious cooking knowledge could go home with them!
Entry to Green Point is along a narrow cobbled street in Cusco’s San Blas neighborhood. Ask for a table out on the tree-shaded patio if the weather is pleasant.
Greens Organic Overview
- Dining Tip: Check out the restaurant’s Kombucha Bar.
- Address: 235 Calle Carmen Bajo, San Blas, Cusco
- Open: Everyday from 8 am to 10 pm
- Green Point Website
The kitchen at Greens honors an organic ethos. Using fresh, organic ingredients that come from farms in the Sacred Valley, the restaurant makes meals for all tastes, including vegetarian and vegan.
Start with an appetizer of fried cheese breaded in quinoa flakes served with mango, chili, and cilantro chimichurri. Any of the vegetarian quinoa dishes, from the quinoa soup to the quinoa and spinach plate of ravioli, come highly recommended. Another suggested main is the beetroot and sweet potato gnocchi. Any of the smoothies made from exotic fruit blends are a perfect meal complement.
Greens Organic is housed on the second story of a fully restored colonial building and decorated with modern touches inside. A table on the restaurant’s balcony gifts views of Cusco’s Plaza de Armas.
- Continue Reading: Check out Greens Organic’s feature in Dining in the Clouds: Top Restaurants in Cusco.
- Address: Santa Catalina Angosta 135 (2nd floor), Historical Center, Cusco
- Open: Everyday from 8 am to 11 pm
- Greens Website
La Bodega 138
This Italian restaurant is the perfect spot to curb a craving for pizza after a long day of Cusco exploration. Wood-fired pizzas are La Bodega’s specialty and made-to-order. Delicious vegetarian pizzas include La Tejedora (topped with parmesan and blue cheese, white onion, and gooseberries) and the Oli (topped with fried garlic along with oregano and olive oil). Another option is to build a veggie pizza with up to five toppings of your liking.
Also, check out the menu’s mouthwatering meat-free pasta varieties, like the Mediterranean Tagliatelle (eggplant, mushrooms, zucchini, and red pepper sautéed with olive oil). All of the restaurant’s salads are made with organic vegetables.
Top off your meal order with a craft beer. La Bodega has an extensive beer list of options from local breweries and around the world.
La Bodega 138 Overview
- Restaurant Tip: Cash payment only. La Bodega does not accept reservations.
- Address: Herrajes 138, Historical Center, Cusco
- Open: Everyday from 12 noon to 10:30 pm; Weekend Brunch (Saturday and Sunday only) served from 10 am to 2 pm
- La Bodega 138 Website
Tips for Being a Vegetarian in Peru
There’s extra incentive to eat vegetarian in Cusco at 11,120 feet (3,400 meters) above sea level, and it has nothing to do with animal welfare. Digestion typically slows down at higher elevations, so a lighter veggie meal of high-protein grains can do your body good, especially as you acclimate to the high altitude during the first 48 hours.
“Yes, I am vegetarian. No, I don’t just eat salad.”
If you can relate to the statement above, then The Vegetarian Guide to Peru edition of Sense Peru is for you! Discover even more recommended vegetarian and vegan restaurants in Cusco and beyond in Lima, Arequipa, Puno, and Paracas. Our complimentary guide even includes a Spanish dictionary for vegetarians.
Click “Go Discover” now and receive a customized itinerary to Peru!
* Article was updated in November of 2019.
Britt is a California native who left her home to explore South America in 2013 and now lives in Peru. She’s just a little obsessed about planning getaways with her family, scuba diving, and trekking.