Embracing a plant-based lifestyle need not mean giving up your morning cuppa. As more people embark on the journey of veganism, several restaurants, including smaller cafés, offer menu items friendly to the lifestyle. Some offer an entirely vegan menu, while others offer options for the carnivorous set. Next time you’re in Pittsburgh, give these coffee houses and cafés a try.

1. Adda Coffee and Tea House

Image: courtesy of Larissa Young 

The word “Adda” comes from the Bengali and translates to indulge in friendly conversation with a group of people or a comfortable place for having discussions. And when it comes to a cozy place for intimate chats, Adda does not disappoint. The various Pittsburgh locations serve as showplaces for local artists, as well as hot gathering spots.

Adda believes in giving back to the community. Every month, they select two charities — one in the Pittsburgh region and the other in a handpicked area of the globe — and donate a percentage of their proceeds to each.

Adda offers a variety of coffees, teas and specialty drinks. If you’ve never enjoyed a traditional English high tea, Adda offers one the second and fourth weekend of every month.

2. The Zenith

Images: top image courtesy of Jerome Damey; bottom image courtesy of Kevin Sousa

If you’re looking for a purely vegetarian menu or catering for your next event, you can’t go wrong with The Zenith. Stop in on a Sunday for an amazing vegan brunch to die for — you’ll love the savory stuffed portobello mushroom.

Have a hankering for something sweet? The Zenith bakes up vegan cake goodness. Plus, you can choose from over a dozen icing flavors.

3. Mixtape

Image: courtesy of Mixtape. 

Whether you want a cuppa or a cocktail, you’re in luck at Mixtape! This eclectic neighborhood eatery often has a waitlist, so check in early on Friday and Saturday nights on their website.

The club stays open until the wee hours, but you can recover with a bit of the hair of the dog with one of their spiked café beverages.

“Please note that Mixtape is not a restaurant, but a cocktail lounge and coffee spot. We have a small snack menu (no full kitchen) with a couple of vegan options. In our cocktails we always substitute aquafaba for eggwhites and default to non-dairy creamers and milks. We also make a house coconut whipped cream and make a rad vegan hot cocoa with toasted vegan mallows. For our most updated menus check out www.mixtapepgh.com/menus.” – Mixtape

4. Corner Mercantile

Images: courtesy of Corner Mercantile.

Four words: blueberry hibiscus herbal tea. The brew is so good, you’ll wake up early to hit this breakfast-and-lunch joint. Offering an eclectic menu, Corner Mercantile offers vegan options from breakfast avocado and grain toast and tofu scramble to lunchtime’s smoky barbecue tempeh sandwich. Hungry for an early dinner? Try their eggplant, spinach and artichoke-stuffed portobello.

5. B52 Cafe

Images: courtesy of B52 Cafe. 

If you’re in Upper Lawrenceville and you’re looking for a fully vegan spot to chill at, head for the B52 Cafe. The restaurant offers a full-service espresso bar where you can get your caffeine groove on to your heart’s content.

The menu features an eclectic blend of American and Middle Eastern cuisine. If you’re hankering for some sweet baked goods, you’ll find plenty of treats to share or keep all to yourself. If you’re in a time crunch, hit the grab-and-go section for a quick, vegan lunch.

6. Kaibur Coffee and Cafe

Images: courtesy of Kaibur.

Do you live for specialty coffee? Ditch the chain restaurants and roll into Kaibur Coffee and Cafe for vegan and vegetarian noms to accompany your morning brew. The menu features a host of breakfast goodies, sandwiches and rice bowls sure to satisfy the heartiest appetite. If you’re dining with friends who have additional dietary restrictions, they’ll appreciate the wide variety of gluten-free items available.

7. Square Café

Images: top image courtesy of Shivan Shah; bottom image courtesy of Nikolas Butko.

If you’ve never dug into vegan chorizo, you’re missing out on a rare Mexican-inspired treat. Rectify this situation with a plant-chero bowl from Square Café in Regent Square. If you don’t feel up to driving, hop on GrubHub and order delivery.

Are you in charge of catering your monthly budget meeting? Square Café offers catering with a wide range of vegan dishes. Opt for the vegan pancakes for breakfast or the veggie wrap for lunch.

8. Fortuitea Café

Images: courtesy of Fortuitea Café. 

Have you heard all the hype about the Impossible Burger? If you thought BK was the epitome of yummy, wait until you see Fortuitea Café’s extensive line of vegan burgers topped with anything from guacamole to jackfruit brisket.

Dream of taking high tea like Meghan Markle? You can reserve a royal afternoon tea with a selection of delectable sandwiches, salads and preserves. You can dig into classic comfort favorites like mac & cheese with cashew-based sauce. Everything on the menu is vegan, so you can order free of guilt.

Getting Your Vegan Coffee Shop Vibe on in Steel City

Next time you visit Pittsburgh, take time to patronize one of the eight restaurants above and enjoy a terrific meal or latte!


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