Last updated on July 11th, 2024 at 11:23 am

Our list of the best vegetarian dishes in Greece proves that Greek cuisine is among the world’s finest and can be enjoyed by everyone, vegans and vegetarians included.

At the crossroads of Europe, Asia and Africa, Greece boasts one of the most diverse cuisines. Featuring recipes that sometimes date back to Ancient Greece and influenced by herb-scented Mediterranean flavours and the mesmerising spices of Asia Minor, Greek food is a fascinating blend, with a special touch of its own.

Most importantly, unlike other European countries, vegans and vegetarians won’t have a hard time enjoying a delicious plant-based meal in Greece. With many traditionally vegetarian recipes and several veggie versions of popular meat-based dishes now added to restaurant menus, there’s a wide variety of vegetarian dishes in Greece to choose from.

If you’re already feeling hungry, it’ll only get worse after you read this list of the best vegetarian Greek dishes. So, grab a snack and keep reading.

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Top 31 Vegetarian Dishes in Greece

Salads

1. Greek Salad (Choriatiki)

Greek Salad, or Choriatiki as we Greeks call it, needs no special introduction. Undoubtedly, it’s the queen of Greek cuisine, seldom missing from any Greek table.

Throughout our travels abroad, we have seen many versions of Greek Salad, including some weird ones. But nothing can beat the original Choriatiki that you can only try in Greece and is made with feta cheese, tomatoes, red onions, cucumbers, green bell peppers, olives, extra virgin olive oil and oregano.

Where to try Choriatiki: Pretty much everywhere. From a Greek taverna to a kafenio (an old-fashioned Greek café that serves cold and hot meze dishes) to a fancy restaurant, a Greek Salad is easy to find.

Is Choriatiki suitable for vegans? The only non-vegan ingredient in Greek Salad is feta cheese. You can either skip it or try Greek Salad with vegan feta cheese, available only at plant-based restaurants.

A Greek salad with tomatoes, cucumber, olives, peppers, onions, feta cheese, oregano and olive oil.
One of the healthiest and most delicious vegetarian dishes in Greece

2. Cretan Salad (Dakos)

Dakos (or Ntakos) is the Cretan take on Greek Salad, with fewer main ingredients but all the flavour. What to expect? Grated tomatoes with plenty of feta cheese, capers and oregano piled on top of a crunchy barley rusk and doused in extra virgin olive oil.

Where to try Dakos: Dakos is a typical Cretan dish. However, nowadays, you can find it in most Greek restaurants all over the country. Also, a kafenio is a great place to devour a delicious dish of Dakos.

Is Dakos suitable for vegans? It can be vegan if you ask your dakos to be served without the feta cheese.

A ntakos salad with barley rusk, grated tomatoes and feta cheese, capers, oregano and olive oil.
Dakos Salad is always on our table when we eat out in Greece

3. Boiled Greens (Chorta)

Boiled Greens or Chorta is one of the simplest salads you could ever try. Depending on the season, the types of Boiled Greens differ but they are all delicious. Plenty of lemon juice and high-quality extra virgin olive oil are the simple ingredients that render Chorta the perfect salad.

Where to try Chorta: Usually in a traditional Greek taverna.

Is Chorta suitable for vegans? Absolutely.

A boiled greens salad with half a lemon in a white bowl, one of the best vegan dishes in Greece.
Make sure you squeeze a lot of lemon juice into your Chorta

Veggie Mains

4. Green Bean Stew (Fasolakia)

A green bean and potato stew cooked in a rich tomato sauce, Fasolakia is one of our favourite Ladera dishes. Ladera dishes are vegetables cooked in olive oil. Try the Green Bean Stew with fresh crusty bread and feta cheese on the side.

Where to try Fasolakia: Like most Ladera dishes, you can find Fasolakia in a magirio, a no-frills Greek eatery serving homemade traditional dishes. Remember these two words, Ladera and magirio, as you’ll stumble upon them many times in this guide to the best vegetarian dishes in Greece.

Is Fasolakia suitable for vegans? Oh yes, and it’s one of the best vegan dishes in Greece.

A portion of green bean stew with carrots and potatoes.
Fasolakia is a delicious meat-free Greek dish

5. Greek Pea & Potato Stew (Arakas Me Patates)

Cooked almost in the same way as the green bean stew but with peas instead of green beans and usually topped with fresh dill, this stew is equally mouthwatering. Don’t forget to dip bread into the delicious tomato sauce.

Where to try Arakas Me Patates: A magirio is the perfect place to try it.

Is Arakas Me Patates suitable for vegans? Yes, it’s a typical example of vegan Greek food.

6. Roasted Summer Vegetables (Briam)

Similar to the French ratatouille, Briam is a simple dish of baked fresh vegetables. Roasted tomatoes, onions, eggplant, zucchini and potatoes mixed with herbs and olive oil are the essence of Greek summer.

Where to try Briam: Briam is a seasonal dish and, usually, it’s easier to find it on the Greek Islands in the summer.

Is Briam suitable for vegans? Yes, it’s one of the best vegan Greek recipes. To be on the safe side though, ask if there’s cheese mixed in the vegetables.

A portion of briam with roasted vegetables and herbs, one of the best vegan Greek dishes.
Vegan food at its best, Greek Briam smells like summer

7. Okra Stew (Bamies)

Okra Stew or Bamies is perhaps the most controversial dish in our country. Greeks either love or hate it. In our opinion, it depends on how this dish is cooked. It’s best when cooked in the oven, whereas, in the pot, it can turn a little bit slimy.

Where to try Bamies: In a magirio.

Is Bamies suitable for vegans? Yes. However, Bamies is often cooked with chicken so make sure it’s served as a main meal rather than as a side.

A blue plate with a portion of Bamies, one of the best vegetarian dishes in Greece. They are cooked in tomato sauce with carrots and onions.
We often cook Bamies at home

8. Stuffed Tomatoes & Bell Peppers (Gemista)

Gemista, the Greek word for stuffed, is another popular dish influenced by Middle Eastern cuisine. The vegan Greek take includes tomatoes and green bell peppers stuffed with rice and fresh herbs. Aside from tomatoes and peppers, sometimes you can find stuffed eggplant or zucchini. Gemista is cooked in the oven, accompanied by delicious roasted potatoes.

Where to try Gemista: In a Greek Island’s taverna on a hot summer day after the beach.

Is Gemista suitable for vegans? When they are stuffed only with rice, yes. However, it’s very common to find them stuffed with rice and minced meat. Other versions include feta cheese in the mix, so make sure any Gemista version is vegan before ordering.

A plate of Gemista, a tomato and green bell pepper stuffed with rice.
Gemista is a favourite among Greeks of all ages

9. Stuffed Vine Leaves With Rice (Dolmadakia)

As opposed to Stuffed Tomatoes & Peppers, Stuffed Grape Leaves are cooked in a pot and go perfectly with lemon and Greek yoghurt. The vegan version of Dolmadakia, as this dish is called in Greece, is usually served as a cold side. That said, you can order it as a main dish if you wish.

Where to try Dolmadakia: Almost everywhere, a taverna, a restaurant or a kafenio.

Is Dolmadakia suitable for vegans? Yes, when they are stuffed only with rice. However, sometimes they are cooked with minced meat and served as a hot dish with egg-lemon sauce, so double-check before you order.

A plate with seven vine leaves stuffed with rice and a dip with tzatziki in the middle.
Dolmadakia is a Greek meze dish you can’t miss

10. Eggplant in Tomato Sauce (Imam Bayildi)

A staple of Ottoman cuisine, Imam is one of many dishes the Greeks of Istanbul brought back home with them when they were forced to return to Greece.

The dish’s name translates to The imam passed out and there are many interesting stories about its origin, all related to an imam fainting over this scrumptious dish of eggplant stuffed with onions, garlic and herbs. Imam is cooked with lots of olive oil and it’s accompanied with white rice.

Where to try Imam Bayildi: Mostly in restaurants and tavernas.

Is Imam Bayildi suitable for vegans? Yes, it is. But make sure it’s not sprinkled with feta cheese before it’s served.

A portion of imam bayildi, eggplant in tomato sauce, stuffed with onions and herbs.
Imam Bayildi is delicious

Legume Mains

11. Yellow Split Pea Puree (Fava)

Typically served with plenty of extra virgin olive oil, onions, capers and oregano on top, Greek-style Puree of Yellow Split Peas or Fava is a popular dish, especially on the Greek islands. Among the many reasons to visit Santorini is the island’s special cuisine. The latter includes the most renowned Fava in Greece.

Keep in mind that, no matter what its name suggests, Greek Fava isn’t made of fava beans but yellow split peas instead.

Where to try Fava: Almost everywhere. When in Santorini or other Cyclades Islands, always order Fava in a taverna. It’s usually on the appetisers menu.

Is Fava suitable for vegans? Yes.

This image is a closeup of fava, a traditional Greek dish.
The traditional dish of Fava is a staple of Greek cuisine

12. Giant Beans (Gigantes)

Cooked in the oven with tomato paste, carrots and herbs, Giant Beans or Gigantes Plaki is one of the best vegan dishes of traditional Greek cuisine. Pair Gigantes with lots of freshly baked bread for the ultimate enjoyment.

Where to try Gigantes: In a taverna, restaurant or kafenio.

Is Gigantes suitable for vegans? Yes. If you happen to be in a village in mainland Greece, just make sure they’re not cooked with sausage.

A plate with giant beans with tomato sauce and parsley.
Gigantes is one of the best vegetarian Greek dishes

13. Greek Bean Soup (Fasolada)

Bean Soup or Fasolada is a classic of Greek cuisine. Fasolada warms you up, especially in the winter months, and is best paired with olives and bread.

Where to try Fasolada: Fasolada is traditional Greek cooking at its best, especially in mainland Greece villages. We tried a delicious one in Milies on Pelion Mountain during our 3-day trip to Volos.

Is Fasolada suitable for vegans? Yes. However, sometimes it’s mixed with meat pieces, so always double-check before you order.

A portion of bean stew, one of the most vegetarian dishes in Greece.
Nothing better than a bowl of warm Fasolada on a cold day

14. Greek Lentil Soup (Fakes)

One of the most nutritious vegetarian dishes in Greece, Lentil Soup or Fakes is very popular during Sarakosti, one of the main Greek fasting periods. Therefore, Fakes is one of the best vegan dishes in Greece. It’s served with extra virgin olive oil and vinegar on top.

Where to try Fakes: As Fakes is a typical homemade dish, normally you’ll find it in a magirio.

Is Fakes suitable for vegans? Yes.

A light green bowl with a portion of lentil soup.
A bowl of Greek Lentil Soup is comfort food at its best

15. Chickpea Soup (Revithada)

Greek Chickpea Soup or Revithada or Revithia Soupa is one of those hearty meals that will fill your soul with warmth and comfort. The chickpeas are slow-cooked with vegetables and go perfectly with plenty of lemon juice.

Where to try Revithada: As it’s a time-consuming dish, you’ll rarely find Revithada on the menus. However, we had the most mouthwatering Revithada in Sifnos. Chickpea soup, the island’s signature dish, is one of the main reasons to visit Sifnos Island.

Is Revithada suitable for vegans? Yes.

This is a close up of revithada served in a small clay dish.
Sifnos is the best place to try Revithada

Vegetarian Meze Dishes

16. Spinach Pie (Spanakopita)

Ideal for any time of the day, Greek Spinach Pie or Spanakopita is the most flexible Greek snack. Devoured in every possible way either for breakfast or lunch or as a side dish, Spanakopita is made of phyllo dough layers filled with spinach, feta cheese and fresh herbs.

Where to try Spanakopita: Literally everywhere you go in Greece. Spanakopita is made in many different ways, so don’t miss the chance to try several versions. The Epirus region boasts delicious pies with traditional phyllo. We had some great ones during our trip to Ioannina. Apart from restaurants, you can also find Spanakopita at bakeries.

Is Spanakopita suitable for vegans? It’s vegan when it’s made without feta cheese.

A triangular piece of spanakopita served on a white plate.
Spanakopita comes in many shapes and sizes but it’s always mouthwatering

17. Cheese Pie (Tiropita)

Alongside Spanakopita, Greek Cheese Pie or Tiropita is very high on our list of must-try foods in Greece. One of the best vegetarian Greek recipes, Tiropita is filled with feta cheese or any other kind of cheese, such as Greek cottage cheese, Graviera or Kaseri. Also, the dough can be anything from phyllo pastry to kourou dough, with or without sesame seeds on top.

Where to try Tiropita: Everywhere, from bakeries to traditional restaurants.

Is Tiropita suitable for vegans? No. However, lately, you can find Tiropita with vegan cheese at some bakeries or snack bars in Athens.

Katerina holds a cheese pie and she is ready to eat it.
Find someone to look at you like Katerina looks at her Tiropita from Krisilias in Andros, one of our favourite Greek Islands

18. Vegetarian Fritters (Kolokithokeftedes, Tomatokeftedes, Revithokeftedes, Tirokroketes)

A great alternative to the traditional Greek meatballs or Keftedes, Kolokithokeftedes, Tomatokeftedes, Revithokeftedes and Tirokroketes are vegetarian fritters made of zucchini, tomatoes, chickpeas and cheese respectively and they’re the perfect meze dishes.

Where to try Kolokithokeftedes, Tomatokeftedes, Revithokeftedes and Tirokroketes: In any taverna, restaurant or kafenio.

Are Kolokithokeftedes, Tomatokeftedes, Revithokeftedes and Tirokroketes suitable for vegans? No, as they usually include eggs and/or cheese. However, there are vegan options, so make sure you ask in advance.

Five zucchini balls with tomato slices and tzatziki dip in the middle.
Kolokithokeftedes paired with Tzatziki sauce

19. Yoghurt & Garlic Dip (Tzatziki)

Tzatziki is hands down the most popular Greek dip. Top-quality Greek yoghurt is the main ingredient for the perfect Tzatziki. Garlic, cucumber, mint and olive oil complete this delicious dip that’s quintessentially Greek.

Where to try Tzatziki? Anywhere from a souvlaki eatery to a restaurant.

Is Tzatziki suitable for vegans? No, unless it’s clear that Tzatziki is made of plant-based yoghurt, which can be found only in a vegan restaurant.

20. Roasted Potatoes (Patates Fournou)

Seasoned with oregano and thyme and drenched in olive oil and lemon juice, a dish of Roasted Potatoes smells like warm Sunday family get-togethers to all of us Greeks. Although it’s the perfect side dish on the table, we’d often stick with the Roasted Potatoes, ignoring the main course.

Where to try Patates Fournou? Mainly in a magirio or kafeneio.

Is Patates Fournou suitable for vegans? Yes. However, sometimes they are cooked in the same pan as chicken, beef patties or other meat pieces. So, always ask if they are cooked with the meat.

A portion of roasted potatoes seasoned with herbs.
We could live on Patates Fournou alone

21. Fried Cheese (Saganaki)

The word Saganaki means both a small pan and the cheese fried in said pan. Saganaki is usually made with Kefalotyri or Graviera cheese, but it can be any other type of local cheese, such as Mastelo from Chios Island or Halloumi from Cyprus. Squeeze plenty of lemon on top and dive into Saganaki while it’s still hot.

Where to try Saganaki? In a traditional taverna, a kafenio or even a souvlaki place.

Is Saganaki suitable for vegans? No.

Saganaki fried cheese in bites.
Bites of cheese paradise

22. Baked Feta Cheese (Bouyiourdi)

Originating in Thessaloniki, Bouyiourdi is a spicy appetiser cooked in a clay pot in the oven. It’s Feta Cheese baked with chilli peppers, red pepper flakes and other spices, the ideal meze to enjoy with a litre of house wine in a taverna.

Where to try Bouyiourdi? At most Greek tavernas.

Is Bouyiourdi suitable for vegans? No.

A clay pot with baked feta and red pepper on top.
One of the best vegetarian dishes in Greece to share over a bottle of wine

23. Olives (Elies)

Greece is renowned for its top-quality olives, with Kalamata Olives being the most popular among them – and for good reason. Everywhere you go, you can try delicious black olives, mainly from the Kalamon variety, which is actually a bit different than the PDO Kalamata Olives.

Where to try Elies? Greek Olives often come as a side to your wine or tsipouro in a kafenio. Moreover, sampling Kalamata Olives and extra virgin olive oil, the Liquid Gold of Ancient Greeks that guarantees a healthy diet, is among the best things to do in Kalamata.

Are Elies suitable for vegans? Yes.

A bowl full of Kalamata olives. Kalamata olives are of deep brown colour, big and almond-shaped.
Kalamata Olives or Elies are just divine

Vegetarian Versions of Popular Greek Dishes

24. Vegetarian Moussakas

Moussakas has always been one of the most popular traditional Greek dishes. Layers of eggplant and potatoes are doused in ground meat and tomato sauce, then topped with a thick béchamel sauce. This oven-baked meat-based dish now has plenty of vegetarian versions that replace the béchamel sauce and ground meat with plant-based alternatives.

Where to try Vegetarian Moussakas: At plant-based restaurants, such as Mama Tierra in Athens.

Is Vegetarian Moussakas suitable for vegans? Yes, as long as all the ingredients are plant-based, so make sure you double-check before ordering.

25. Vegetarian Pastitsio

Pastitsio is the Greek take on Italian Lasagna. It’s made of minced meat in a scrumptious tomato sauce, pasta, cheese and béchamel sauce. Thankfully, this mouthwatering dish now comes in several vegetarian versions.

Where to try Vegetarian Pastitsio: Lately, it’s easy to find vegan Pastitsio in vegan restaurants, such as Veganaki.

Is Vegetarian Pastitsio suitable for vegans? The vegan version, yes. But if it’s a vegetarian version, no, so always ask before ordering.

A slice of vegetarian pastitsio served on a grey plate.
It’s impossible to stop at one piece of Pastitsio

26. Vegetarian Souvlaki

Souvlaki is the indisputable queen of Greek street food. Back in the day, the only option for vegetarians and vegans was a pita bread filled with nothing but tomatoes and fries. Thankfully, this has now changed and plenty of meatless souvlaki options exist. Souvlaki restaurants in Greece get creative and replace meat with Dolmadakia, vegetable patties or other plant-based substitutes.

Where to try Vegetarian Souvlaki? Souvlaki eateries include vegetarian options almost everywhere in Athens and big cities. In smaller towns and villages though, you’ll probably only find the pita bread-tomato-fries one.

Is Vegetarian Souvlaki suitable for vegans? Yes, as long as you make it clear that you don’t want any animal products or dairy products in your souvlaki, like Tzatziki, for example.

A vegetarian souvlaki with pita bread, tomatoes, dolmadakia and tzatziki, cut in two pieces.
Vegetarian versions of souvlaki are omnipresent nowadays, especially in Athens

Vegetarian Greek Sweets

27. Greek Custard Pie With Syrup (Galaktoboureko)

Soaked in syrup and filled with a soft custard cream squeezed between crunchy phyllo layers, Galaktoboureko is love at first bite. Some people prefer a fragrant piece right out of the oven. Some like it at room temperature, while others enjoy it straight from the fridge. We haven’t made up our minds as to which tastes better yet.

Where to try Galaktoboureko: Every place in Greece has its old-fashioned pastry shop. Step inside and ask for a piece – or three – of Galaktoboureko. We tried one of the best during our trip to Naxos.

Is Galaktoboureko suitable for vegans? Most of the time, no, because the custard is made of eggs. However, there are vegan versions that use semolina instead of eggs, so always ask in advance.

This image shows the galaktoboureko at kafenio Galani in Chalki, Naxos.
In Naxos, we tried one of the best Galaktoboureko pies

28. Greek Phyllo & Custard Pie (Bougatsa)

Widely popular in Northern Greece, Bougatsa is very similar to Galaktoboureko but without the syrup. It’s a pastry filled with custard cream and sprinkled with cinnamon and sugar. In Northern Greece, there are also savoury variations with cheese, meat or spinach. In Southern Greece, there’s only the sweet Bougatsa and, sometimes, the cheese-filled one.

Where to try Bougatsa: At any bakery throughout Greece. Thessaloniki and Serres are two cities that are famous for their Bougatsa.

Is Bougatsa suitable for vegans? Yes, the custard is made of semolina and no milk or eggs are added.

29. Spoon Sweets (Glyko Tou Koutaliou)

Spoon Sweets are fruit preserves that are intertwined with Greek culture. They’re served to guests on a small plate with a teaspoon. The main ingredient can be anything from grapes to oranges to figs or even cherry tomatoes, rose petals or walnuts. Spoon Sweets are also offered as dessert in traditional tavernas, sometimes paired with Greek yoghurt.

Where to try Glyko Tou Koutaliou: Spoon sweets are usually homemade. However, you can buy a jar from shops with local Greek products or a cooperative in the villages or islands.

Is Glyko Tou Koutaliou suitable for vegans? When served without Greek yoghurt, yes.

A bowl with Greek yoghurt and quince spoon sweet on top.
Glyko Tou Koutaliou is the healthiest dessert you could ever ask for

30. Halva (Halvas)

Halva has its origins in the Middle East. In Greece, there are three main variations. Tahini Halva (Sisamenios Halvas), Semolina Halva (Simigdalenios Halvas) and Farsala Halva, a variation that tastes like Greek delight (Loukoumi). By far our favourite, Tahini Halva comes in many flavours, such as cocoa or nuts.

Where to try Halvas: Tahini Halva is very popular during the Lent before Orthodox Easter. Therefore, around this period, it’s easy to find at any supermarket. Semolina Halva is sometimes served as dessert at traditional restaurants. You can find Farsala Halva at festivals across the country.

Is Halvas suitable for vegans? Yes.

Three pieces of semolina halva with cinnamon on top on a small plate with two small spoons on the side.
Semolina Halva is usually on the house at traditional restaurants

31. Greek Doughnuts (Loukoumades)

Another sweet coming from the Middle East, Loukoumades are Fried Doughnuts traditionally topped with honey and cinnamon. Nowadays, there are variations served with chocolate or ice cream to satisfy even the most demanding sweet tooth.

Where to try Loukoumades? For the best Loukoumades, include Krinos, a historic sweet shop in the heart of the Greek capital, in your Athens itinerary. You can also try Loukoumades from street vendors at festivals.

Are Loukoumades suitable for vegans? The doughnuts themselves are vegan, but honey isn’t.

A portion of loukoumades with honey and cinnamon.
Loukoumades with honey and cinnamon is what our childhood tastes like in Greece

Finding the best vegetarian food wherever it is we’re travelling is very important to us and this is why we wanted to help fellow vegetarian and vegan travellers enjoy a unique culinary trip in our home country, as part of a sustainable way to travel in Greece.

We hope our guide to the best vegetarian dishes in Greece helps you savour an unparalleled gastronomic journey into the tastes of Greece, one that your tastebuds will cherish for life.

WORDS & IMAGES: Katerina
EDITING: Maria

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