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Durham’s Vegan Options

North East Vegan Restaurant Week was a UK first, it ran 23-29 January with restaurants around the north east taking part in the occasion. This event, along with Veganuary, has raised awareness of veganism and its rising popularity. Many restaurants are getting better at providing for dietary requirements such as vegan, gluten free and lactose intolerance. However, it’s not always straightforward to find somewhere to eat that caters for your dietary needs, in this 2 part blog I’ll show you places to eat around Durham that can cater for special dietary requirements.

flat whiteFlat White Kitchen on Saddlers Street is a favourite amongst students, with queues regularly leading onto the street. They offer a gluten free menu as well as gluten free bread and gluten free cakes. There are vegan options too.

If you happen to visit the market on a Saturday check out The Green Guerrilla, a vegetarian and vegan burger stand. Even if you’re an omnivore, the burgers are delicious and offer a range of toppings and different burger patties, including a little beetroot number. They’re also about during the Full Moon street food market and Farmers’ Markets (third Thursday of the month) so are a great place to grab a bite while you browse.


Durham University’s own Botanic Garden has a cafe with a range of products suitable for vegan, gluten free and lactose intolerant individuals. While most cafe’s will provide semi-skimmed milk as standard, they also have soya milk for anyone wanting an alternative to dairy. Their gluten free dessert options look delicious and they also serve a range of light bites suitable for various dietary requirements.

If you’re on your way to the Cathedral and want a quick bite and a coffee, look no further than Cafedral Durham. They offer a range of gluten free cakes as well as savoury options such as wraps. The hummus and olive platter is perfect for anyone who is vegan or lactose intolerant and fancies something a bit different from your average coffee shop, although there is still a range of other options. The cafe itself is an eclectic mix of quirky furniture and chill vibes!


Jumping Bean Cafe is well known for specialising in vegan and vegetarian food. Great for a light lunch and coffee break between lectures or just an excuse to have hummus in a toastie – it really should be a thing. Their vegetarian sausage sandwiches are fantastic for any veggie veterans. The cafe itself is cosy and welcoming, with board games available as well as work onesquires sale by local artists which is a nice touch.

Caffe Capriccio by Elvet Bridge is a family owned Italian cafe that has been in Durham as long as I can remember. There’s no specific vegan or gluten free menu, however they do offer gluten free bread and other alternatives as well as dishes that don’t contain gluten meat or dairy anyway. It’s in a great little spot for a pit stop between lectures or if you’re out and about in town.

Esquires is a coffee shop by Framwellgate Bridge which is a popular study spot for students. It’s a great place to pop in if you want a light bite while you revise or to meet up with friends. As well as your usual coffees and teas they have a variety of flavoured teas and smoothies suitable for most diets. They also have a range of cakes and light bites, and there is generally at least one gluten free cake available – their gluten free diam bar cake tastes like the real thing!

Look out for part 2 coming soon ……. Dinner!

Sophie Johnson

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