Header image courtesy of Kailash Parbat (via Facebook)
Originally published by Inés Fung. Last updated by Beverly Ngai.
We love a good chicken tikka masala and lamb rogan josh as much as the next person, but the beauty of Indian cuisine truly shines through in its meatless dishes. India has the world’s largest vegetarian population and the major religions (Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism, and Islam) practised in India all have dietary restrictions pertaining to not hurting life forms, with modern Jainism advocating for vegan diets. Regardless of your ethnicity or dietary choices, eating less meat is always beneficial to your health and the environment. Here’s where you can find the best Indian vegetarian restaurants in Hong Kong.
What started as a small street-food venture in Mumbai nearly 70 years ago has grown to become a globally-renowned restaurant franchise, bringing authentic Indian flavours to over 60 locations across the world. Nestled in Tsim Sha Tsui, Kailash Parbat’s Hong Kong branch sports a casually upbeat atmosphere with spacious interiors and colourful décor, making it a prime location for relaxed get-togethers with friends or family.
Expect to be spoiled for choice with their endless selection of hearty rice and noodles dishes, traditional street food, homemade soups, Indian bread, desserts, and more. With so many options, your best bet is to share a scrumptious KP chaat platter ($138) and try a bit of everything; but if you're ordering just for one, our go-to is the paneer tikka lababdar ($94)—and don’t forget to pair the luscious curry with a side of garlic naan ($33)!
Kailash Parbat, Unit 302, 3/F, Multifield Plaza, 3 Prat Ave, Tsim Sha Tsui | (+852) 3428 5545
If you’re looking for homestyle comfort food at cheap and cheerful prices, look no further than Smrat Pure Veg. You will immediately be charmed by the restaurant’s homely atmosphere the moment you step into the cosy red-brick-lined space, and it only gets better once you start tucking in. For just $40, you can get a lunch set that comes with a main dish paired with rice or Indian naan and a hot beverage. All of their curries have outstanding flavour, but the potato and cashew variety really hits the spot when you’re craving something warm and ultra-cosy. Tack on $8 for a crispy samosa or $16 for a refreshing mango lassi.
This hole-in-the-wall tucked away in Chungking Mansions may not look like much from the outside, but it serves up some of the best vegetarian curries around. They keep their menu pretty simple, specialising in dosas, veggie curries and stews, and biryani rice dishes, but you're always guaranteed fresh ingredients and rich, aromatic flavours that capture the best of North and South Indian cuisine. Opt for either the pav bhaji (vegetable curry with soft bread roll) or the aloo gobi ($68) (potatoes and cauliflower curry) and wash down your meal with a warming Indian masala tea ($15).
Sarvana, Shop 105, Chungking Mansions, 36–44 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui | (+852) 2739 7633
Branto is well known amongst the Indian community in Hong Kong for its authentic vegetarian South Indian cuisine. Offering an extensive menu of favourites like mysore masala dosa ($69), dahi puri ($49), and dal fry ($49), its dishes are Jain-friendly and not overwhelmingly spicy. You will also find variations of Indian style pizza here (the paneer pizza ($99) is to die for) as Branto was the first restaurant to introduce vegetarian pizza to its hometown in Gurjarat, India. Don’t judge a restaurant by its entrance—you’ll feel right at home once you’re inside and chowing down on their signature thali (set meals).
Branto, 1/F, 9–11 Lock Road, Tsim Sha Tsui | (+852) 2366 8171
Sangeetha is the Hong Kong location of a Chennai-based vegetarian chain serving up fresh, authentic, and sustainable South Indian food. The friendly service here is a definite plus compared to some other—ahem—less attentive restaurants. There’s a kids menu, heaps of dessert options, and ample seating too, and you’ll often find Sangeetha filled with local families having a get-together.
Sangeetha, UG 1–5 & 31, Wing On Plaza, 62 Mody Road, East Tsim Sha Tsui | (+852) 2640 2123
Woodlands has long been a foodie favourite and a plant-based staple in the city. It holds the title of Hong Kong’s oldest Indian vegetarian restaurant, and its quality has held up even after nearly 40 years. It has also recently added non-alcoholic beer and halal-certified alcohol-free wine to the menu, as well as a dedicated vegan menu featuring curries that retain all the lush flavours of say, a makhani, without the use of any cream or dairy products.
Woodlands, UG 16 & 17, Wing On Plaza, 62 Mody Road, Tsim Sha Tsui East | (+852) 2369 3718