Eating Vegan in Malaga - Easier Than You Think
You know those people who every year travel to same places, live in same hotels, eat only the food that they are used to eat at home ect. Well, I thought Malaga is one of those places these people go to and I was always hesitating to visit the city. Boy, was I wrong! Is it touristic? Hell yes. But it has so much more! Charm, culture, history and… food! And if you come here before or after the high season, there is a high chance you will encounter more locals than tourists on the streets.
While we were staying in Malaga, we took two day trips on our own – Granada and Marbella. But this article is only about the food in Malaga, because the only proper vegan thing we could find in those towns was ice cream. I did try an overpriced veggie sandwich in the old town of Marbella with what seemed to be 4 potato fries and I also had a stone hard pizza (vegetarian without cheese) in the main square of Granada old town that my knife couldn’t handle. Basically, nothing I would like to mention here.
I was surprised to find such a wide vegan scene in Malaga city. In Spain you can usually find some of the tapas options that are vegan. Not everywhere, but touristic spots for sure. But it does get a bit boring because the options for us are pretty same in every restaurant you might choose. How much of patatas bravas can one person eat, right?? So I was very happy to find so many exciting vegan options throughout the city!
Mercado Central de Atarazanas
Calle Atarazanas, 10, 29005 Málaga, Spania
First things first! There is a reason we chose to stay at the rental apartment with access to the kitchen. We wanted to have the freedom of making our own breakfast (and snacks, cause I am always hungry). So, where does one go to buy the finest produce in Malaga? Mercados!
Unfortunately, this one is closed on Sundays and it just happened that our first day in Malaga was a Sunday. But on Monday we headed straight there. Not sure, if anyone else out there feels the same as I do when I am surrounded by fresh local produce. It’s literally – my happiest place! I think I smiled the whole time we were there, because my cheeks hurt when we came out. I can’t help it!
We bought loads of fresh fruit and veggies for our breakfasts ahead, tried some delicious dried fruits and, of course, fresh orange juice. If there is anything you must try in south Spain – it is the oranges. Get that vitamin C stored up in your body.
For all of you, omnivore foodies, there are also endless options for the finest cheeses, traditional meat & fish products.
Plaza de la Merced, 21, 29012 Málaga, Spania
This restaurant probably appears on every vegan food search in Malaga, so, of course we had to try it. It’s a vegetarian restaurant, but the menu is extensively vegan. They have loads of vegan starters, main veggie and seitan meat dishes. If you can believe it, I have never tried seitan before, so I ordered Seitan in a Pepper Sauce. Since the last time I was in Spain I had a mission to find the traditional almond soup “Ajo Blanco” and, lucky me, this place happened to have it! It’s very different from anything I have tasted even though where I am from, we make cold soups a lot! It tasted like garlic infused milk, but the grapes inside the soup balanced the garlic a bit out with its sweetness. Worth trying! However, not sure I would have it again… The food at Cañadú has a bit of a home cooking vibe which I really like, and I recommend this place a lot.
Restaurante La Plaza
Plaza de la Merced, 18, 29102 Málaga, Spania
Not far from the previous restaurant, in the same square there is La Plaza restaurant. These guys are the masters of platter snack boards. (If you follow me long enough, you know my obsession of snack boards).
So many vegan options of different tapas and platters, from mezze to Mexican palates... perfect place if you are travelling with a bigger group of people! They serve everything, meat and sea food so everyone can be happy. Staff is very attentive to your dietary inquiries - they can adjust your order easily. They have glutenfree alternatives as well. We ordered a vegetarian mezze platter, so my friend was in charge of cheese and the rest we shared. You do need to try fried padron peppers as well during your time in Spain – it’s delicious!
Calle Carreteria 46, 29008 Málaga Spania
This place has been recommended by so many vegans and non-vegans on the internet. It is a super nice place for, literally – brunch (lunch too!). A healthier vibe restaurant with loads of smoothie options and lighter meals. However, the only vegan option was this Vegan Gnocchi. I was a bit disappointed, was expecting more choices, but hey, it was a good plate of gnocchi and I left satisfied!
Calle San Juan de Letrán, 13, 29012 Málaga, Spania
I wish we spotted this one earlier and not on our last night! This place is amazing, such good vibes and the guy that runs it was super attentive to us. Their main focus is on the hotdogs here! But not the Ikea type hot dogs that you are used to. They really pimp those up! It is not a vegan place, but they do have meatless options. They have two types of “tofu dogs” to choose from and they can adjust the sauces accordingly if you let them know you are vegan! If we had more time, I would have definitely come back!
They also made a bread-less hot dog for my friend since she cannot have gluten and it looked not any less fancy than mine!
Calle Barroso, 10, 29001 Málaga, Spania
If you are lost in Soho area, this is the place for you. However, brush on your Spanish or sign language skills. Restaurants in this area are more for locals so you won’t find an English menu and the staff usually speaks very little English. This place has “make your own salad” choices, different types of sandwiches and burgers. They have a vegan burger, so I was very pleased.
If you are an ice cream type of person, you are at the right place. There are several places in town you can treat yourself with vegan, cruelty free and healthier ice cream! Most of places we asked, were making it with rice milk and every and each we tried was delicious. Even if you do not see vegan ice cream options on the display, ask! Some of the places keep it in a different fridge!
Somewhere around Calle Casapalma there is a little ice cream place that sells popsicles made from a freshly squeezed juice without any additional sweeteners. I really cannot remember the name of it, but you cannot really miss it when you are wondering through the old town. They really pop out!
Some diverse useful tips:
Hummus can be found in every Carrefour grocery store. (The most important point, of course.)
Castillo de Gibralfaro castle has free entrance on Sundays after 2 pm.
Organize your own day trips. Buses are super comfortable, it’s cheaper and you can explore at your own pace! We didn’t buy any of the tickets in advance, just showed up at the Estación de Autobuses de Málaga and bought tickets before departure.
Sangria is for tourists. Local people drink Trinto de Verano.
Fancy a Flamenco show without a huge tourist group? Book a table at www.elgalloronco.com for 22 EUR. Shows are happening from Thursdays to Saturdays at 8 and 10 pm.
Always check the opening hours of the restaurants before you plan to go. They work really weird hours!