A Vegan Eating Guide to Nusa Penida: The Best Restaurants & CafésEverything you need to know about finding the most delicious vegan and vegetarian places on Nusa Penida
The vegan food scene on Nusa Penida
We spent four nights on Nusa Penida and really enjoyed our time exploring the island.
Thankfully, we also had some pretty tasty vegan food.
The amount of restaurants on Nusa Penida isn’t overwhelming, and the options for food other than Indonesian fare are quite limited.
Being vegan or vegetarian on Nusa Penida isn’t too difficult, though, as there are a few good options scattered around – and many Indonesian dishes can easily be veganized.
Just be aware that the food scene on Nusa Penida is nothing like Bali. But that’s also a part of the charm of visiting Nusa Penida.
In this vegan eating guide, we’ll tell you all about the places we visited on the island so you can get some inspiration for where to eat yourself.
Find all of the mentioned restaurants & cafés on a map at the bottom of the article.
Table of contents
Best tips for vegan eating on Nusa Penida
Most eateries on Nusa Penida are concentrated around the towns on the west and north parts of Nusa Penida.
Food prices are generally low compared to Bali. Taxes and service charge are usually not included in the bill.
Not sure why you should be going vegan? Check out 50 reasons to be vegan from our friend Andrea right here.
How to say “I am vegan” on Nusa Penida
Most people on Nusa Penida speak English rather well (especially those working with tourists), but knowing how to speak a bit of Indonesian can still be of some help if you want to sample the local delicacies on Nusa Penida.
“Saya adalah vegan” means “I am vegan” in Indonesian. There is no direct translation of neither “vegan” nor “vegetarian”.
Here’s the longer version:
“Saya seorang vegan. Saya tidak makan daging, haiwan ternakan, ikan atau makanan laut serta sebarang produk haiwan termasuk semua jenis produk tenusu, telur dan madu.”
Which is Indonesian for:
“I am a vegan. I do not eat any meat, poultry, fish or seafood or any animal products including all dairy products, eggs and honey.”
(Thanks Agogo Eats!)
Showing this written on your phone is probably better than trying to pronounce it, but kudos to you if you go for it!
“Vegetarian” seems more well-known than “vegan”, so if you want to veganize something, try explaining that you’re a strict vegetarian who doesn’t eat eggs, milk or honey.
Though veganism might be unfamiliar to whomever you’re speaking to, the people we interacted with generally seemed to grasp the concept quickly.
Vegan Indonesian dishes
Thankfully, many Indonesian dishes are actually vegan or at least close to vegan by default.
And the Balinese (also including people on Nusa Penida) seem to really love their tofu and tempeh… Which is just a dream come true for the vegan traveller.
If tempeh is new to you (as it was to us before visiting Indonesia), do yourself a favour and give it a chance while visiting.
After two months in Bali, we searched out tempeh everywhere and can’t seem to get enough of the stuff.
Milk, cheese and butter are very rarely used in traditional cooking but is more prevalent in desserts.
Here are a few Indonesian dishes which are easily veganized:
- Gado gado is a real crowd-pleaser consisting of steamed vegetables with crackers and peanut sauce. Opting out of the egg on top usually makes it all vegan.
- Cap cay is just mixed vegetables, often vegan by default. Make sure oyster sauce hasn’t been used.
- Nasi goreng (fried rice) is a true Indonesian staple and easy to veganize by going for a vegetable-only version without a fried egg. Make sure that the crackers aren’t shrimp crackers (many are made from rice, cassava or similar).
- Mie goreng (fried noodles) – same as nasi goreng. Some noodles might contain egg and/or palm oil. While noodles made with palm oil are technically still vegan, eating the dirty stuff right beside the burning home of the orangutans seems cruel.
- Urap is a mix of green veggies often seasoned with lots of spices and grated coconut. More of a side dish but still very delicious.
- Coconut curry (sometimes called sayur lodeh) is usually vegan and consists of veggies simmered in coconut milk with spices, served with rice and sometimes tofu and/or tempeh. Yum!
Vegan restaurants and cafés on Nusa Penida
Vegan Soul Kitchen
To get to Vegan Soul Kitchen, you’ll have to endure a few more minutes of steep-ish gravel roads away from the main road – but the reward is so worth the journey.
Vegan Soul Kitchen is – as the name suggests – 100% vegan, and the views from the restaurant’s patio over the surrounding jungle are spectacular.
We visited twice and had great food at really low prices both times.
If you’ve grown accustomed to Bali’s vegan kitchen standards, you won’t be blown away by the quality, but everything was tasty and arrived quickly.
Vegan Soul Kitchen is the best vegan place to eat on Nusa Penida.
It’s possible to stay here at Echo Alam Nusa Lodge – Vegan Soul Kitchen is the accommodation’s on-site restaurant.
What we had at Vegan Soul Kitchen
Their take on Gado Gado (steamed vegetables with peanut sauce) was refreshing with kale-wrapped veggie rolls, fried tempeh and tofu, rice, more veggies and a delicious peanut sauce.
Likewise, the Tempeh Satay was delicious, served with rice and even more peanut sauce.
The Vegan Burger was good and was served with big chunky fries and ketchup.
We tried two of their granola topped Smoothie Bowls; a purple one with dragon fruit and a yellow/orange one with mango, banana; topped with oranges.
- Gado Gado: IDR 45k ~ 3.2 USD / 2.8 EUR
- Smoothie Bowl: IDR 45k ~ 3.2 USD / 2.8 EUR
- Vegan Burger: IDR 50k ~ 3.5 USD / 3.1 EUR
- Fresh Fruit Juice: IDR 25k ~ 1.8 USD / 1.5 EUR
Vegan Soul Kitchen is 100% vegan.
Open every day from 08.00 to 21.00.
Echo Alam Nusa Lodge, Sakti, Nusa Penida.
Warung Tu Pandeh
Warung Tu Pandeh is a local restaurant catering mainly to tourists.
We had the Eggplant Curry with rice and thought it to be tasty. Service was quick, prices low and all of the portions looked quite big.
The following morning we had a smoothie bowl (not really good) and a serving of Nasi Goreng with extra vegetables (always good).
There’s wifi and you can refill water bottles at Warung Tu Pandeh.
- Eggplant Curry: IDR 45k ~ 3.2 USD / 2.8 EUR
- Nasi Goreng Vegetables: IDR 25k ~ 1.8 USD / 1.5 EUR
There’s a whole page of vegetarian options in Warung Tu Pandeh’s menu, and removing the egg from some of the dishes make many of them fully vegan.
Open every day from 07.30 to 21.30.
Sakti, Nusa Penida.
Just a few minutes of scooter riding away from the harbour, you’ll find Penida Espresso on the side of the road.
Here you can get a shot of caffeine (including options for soy or coconut milk), juices, smoothie bowls and a few simple dishes.
The Avocado Toast was pretty much just that – mashed avocado on white toast bread – but it was good.
We visited twice Penida Espresso twice and got to taste three different Smoothie Bowls.
They were all on the runny side of things, but the taste of fresh fruit was intact, the size was satisfying and they were topped with banana, dragon fruit and granola.
The Mixed Fresh Fruit Juices are easy to recommend for that daily shot of vitamins.
- Smoothie Bowl: IDR 59k ~ 4.2 USD / 3.7 EUR
- Espresso: IDR 25k ~ 1.8 USD / 1.5 EUR
- Mixed Fresh Fruit Juices: IDR 30k ~ 2.1 USD / 1.9 EUR
Penida Espresso has a few unmarked vegan options.
Open every day from 07.30 to 17.00.
Jl. Ped – Buyuk, Ped, Nusa Penida.
The Gallery is just next door from Penida Espresso, and as the sign outside says “vegan options”, of course, we had to give it a try.
On a separate occasion – don’t worry!
Victoria thought the soy milk in the caffe latte to be overly sweet, but the Vegan Banana Pancake was quite nice.
We also had the Vegan Tempeh Burger in a ciabatta bun. It was more like a sandwich; with eggplant, bell pepper and tempeh, but the taste was good and the bun surprisingly soft, served with salad.
- Vegan Tempeh Burger: IDR 40k ~ 2.8 USD / 2.5 EUR
- Vegan Banana Pancake: IDR 20k ~ 1.4 USD / 1.2 EUR
- Vegan Pasta Pesto Vegetables: IDR 35k ~ 2.5 USD / 2.2 EUR
The Gallery has a few marked vegan options.
Open every day from 07.00 to 21.00.
Jl. Ped – Buyuk, Ped, Nusa Penida.
Unfortunately, we didn’t get the chance to visit Secret Penida, but from the looks of it, this cute café is a great vegan find on Nusa Penida.
Many of the dishes are either vegan by default or can be veganized. Secret Penida serves smoothie bowls, avocado toasts, healthy salads and more.
Warung Salt & Pepper
We didn’t visit Warung Salt & Pepper, but as the warung touted vegetarian options in an area otherwise seemingly not-too-vegetarian-friendly, we think they deserve a mention.
Here’s our Nusa Penida map with all of the restaurants and cafés mentioned in the vegan eating guide.
They’re all marked with a light green icon.
Click the icon in the top left corner of the map to navigate using a list.
Ready for a delicious vegan meal?
We hope this guide has helped you get an overview of the vegan and vegetarian food on Nusa Penida.
For even more vegan food options, check out the Nusa Penida map on Happycow for an updated overview of all the animal-friendly places to eat on the island.
For more vegan food inspiration on Nusa Penida, also check out Martha’s stylish guide Eating Vegan in Nusa Penida.
Have you tried any of the above-mentioned places? Or do you know of any restaurants or cafés on Nusa Penida that we should visit next time we’re around?
Please do let us know in the comments.