Stories

Eating Vegan in Georgia

 

When one thinks of Georgia, they think peaches, the deep South, and the Braves.

But there is another Georgia that we’ve recently discovered, and it is pretty vegan friendly.

Georgia is a country in the Caucasus region of Europe that used to be a republic of the Soviet Union.

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It is surrounded by beautiful majestic mountains and is one of the oldest wine making countries in the world dating back 6000 years.

I was slightly concerned about finding vegan options while in Georgia, thinking we would be eating our fair share of french fries, and fresh fruit; but we were pleasantly surprised by all the veg friendly dishes (we still ate a lot of french fries), and while Georgia is quite meat and cheese heavy, they also have a gorgeous variety of fresh produce to choose from.

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The fruits and vegetables we ate while in Georgia were some of the tastiest and freshest we’ve have ever had.

Here are our five favourite vegan Georgian dishes.

 

LOBIO

Lobio was one of our favourite dishes from Georgia. It is a simple and delicious dish made with stewed red beans and spices baked in a clay pot.

It was on the cooler side when we visited Georgia, so this dish was a welcome meal after spending a chilly afternoon out. It was always served with a basket of bread. So delicious.

 

Lobio

Lobio is the perfect dish on a cold day in Georgia

BAKED MUSHROOMS

These baked mushrooms are also baked in a clay dish and are traditionally made with butter; we simply requested they be made with oil instead.

 

They were so delicious and full of flavour, we ordered them several times over.

 

Baked Mushrooms

Make sure to ask that they cook them in oil and not butter.

 

AUBERGINES WITH WALNUT PASTE

Aubergine is very poplar in Georgia.

This beautiful food is made by thinly slicing and frying the aubergine and making a paste from walnuts and garlic and a few other spices.

This is primarily a summer dish, but we managed to find it in a few restaurants during the cold season. It was fresh and delicious, and beautifully garnished with pomegranate seeds.

AUBERGINES WITH WALNUT PASTE

One of our favourite dishes we ate while travelling in Georgia

 

KINKALI

I still dream about these delicious jewels.

 

Kinkali is a large dumpling usually made with meat, cheese, or potato, but we scoured Tbilisi looking for a vegan friendly version and we found one!

 

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We were regulars at this restaurant by the time we left Georgia. Our vegan kinkali was stuffed with mushrooms and dill, and served hot.

 

Vegan in Georgia

Vegan Kinkali stuffed with mushrooms and dill

They were amazing every time. Every dumpling was made fresh to order, and at 50 cents per dumpling we stuffed our faces.

 

GEORGIAN PURI

Ok so bread is not exactly a dish, but it was for us while in Georgia. You can find fresh Puri everywhere you turn in Georgia.

 

The bread is lined up on shelves at local bakeries for passers by to choose from. We bought tomatoes from the local market and a few puri’s and that was our simple lunch for the day. It was delicious!

 

Vegan in Georgia

Wine and bread…..This is a meal for sure.

We were pleasantly surprised with the vegan friendly food we found in Georgia.
 

 

It was all so fresh and delicious, and when we were in doubt, there was always a local market near by to pick up some fruit and veggies.

 

Comments To This Entry.
  1. Ligeia and Mindy November 3, 2014 Reply

    Wow, well done at finding all those yummy options while you were there. We’d love to try them all but first on the list would be the lobio and the kinkali. Plus, damn, what a gorgeous place! Love that first picture especially!!!

    • Giselle and Cody November 3, 2014 Reply

      It was such a beautiful country. We didn’t know what to expect when we landed in Tbilisi but we loved it there.
      It’s always so easy to fall in love with a place when the food is just so damn good!! 🙂

  2. Caryl November 3, 2014 Reply

    bread and wine is a meal for sure! 😉
    Great finds there, I love hearing about new vegan foods of the world… I tweeting this post now to spread that vegan love 🙂

    • Giselle and Cody November 9, 2014 Reply

      Thanks so much Caryl!! It is always a relief to visit a country and see they have a lot of Vegan options.
      It’s also great to not have to eat Veg Fried Rice for an entire trip, like we did in Laos 🙂

  3. Lauren November 9, 2014 Reply

    That’s awesome you were able to find vegan food here! I admit that I don’t know much about Georgia, but it looks so beautiful.

    • Giselle and Cody November 9, 2014 Reply

      Lauren, we didn’t know much about Georgia either when we booked our trip. We were suppose to be heading to Iran, but that fell through, so instead we booked flights to Georgia and did little to no research. It was nice to not have anything planned and to just go with the flow. We did the same thing when we jumped over to Armenia as well. If you two get the chance to visit this area we would highly recommend it.

  4. Franca November 13, 2014 Reply

    The food looks delicious indeed, I’ve never had aubergines stuffed with walnut paste , I’d be so curious to try them and these steamed buns would be my second choice, I love them so much!

    • Giselle and Cody November 13, 2014 Reply

      It’s always great to find great Vegan food everywhere you travel.

      The steamed buns were so delicious. You and Dale would love them.
      The four of us could probably go through 20 of them…..well Cody and Dale could 🙂

  5. Natalie Tamara December 4, 2014 Reply

    Wow all of these look incredible, especially the aubergines! I had no idea Georgia had such amazing food let alone vegan-friendly versions. Good to know 🙂

    • Giselle and Cody December 8, 2014 Reply

      Natalie, we were super surprised as well with the amount of Vegan friendly options.

      Definitely a pleasant surprise. 🙂

  6. Alex February 16, 2015 Reply

    You guys have eaten a lot of good looking vegan food in a lot of really great looking countries. Keep on travelling so I can see all the food 🙂

    • Giselle and Cody February 22, 2015 Reply

      Alex, there is delicious Vegan all over this world and sometimes you stumble across a country like Georgia where there is sooooooo much great food. It’s always nice to be able to go somewhere and have a great selection of food.

  7. Monika February 22, 2015 Reply

    That´s great to hear about vegan food in Georgia. I was a bit worried before my summer trip but now I just can´t wait to try the stuffed aubergine and baked mushrooms! 🙂

    • Giselle and Cody February 23, 2015 Reply

      Monika, You will be in heaven with vegan food in Georgia. Before our trip we contacted a few vegans on Facebook who are living in Georgia and asked them what we could eat. They replied back with a huge list of food and places to go. You will have no problem at all. Hope you have a great trip!!!

  8. Dion March 4, 2015 Reply

    Vegan all around the world.

    This may be a silly question, but have you two found it difficult to be vegan while traveling? Has there been any countries where it was difficult?

  9. […] weren’t quite sure what to expect from Georgia, especially in the area of vegan food, so we were thrilled to have found mushroom kinkhali while we were there. Kinkhali is a Georgian […]

  10. […] capital Tbilisi and hopefully its tasty cuisine (I´m really encouraged by Mindful Wanderlust´s post on vegan Georgian delicacies) Did I mention it will be my first trip outside Europe? Georgia, my […]

  11. Georgia has been at the top of my to-visit list for a couple years now, I wish tickets from Berlin weren’t so pricey! It will happen! Thanks for offering specific examples and photos of which traditional dishes can be veganized, super helpful!

    • Giselle and Cody April 22, 2015 Reply

      No problem Nicole. Really hope you get the chance to travel there.
      Are flight tickets expensive from Berlin to Turkey? Cause flight from Istanbul to Tbilisi were pretty cheap.
      Just another option 🙂

  12. […] Georgia? Unfortunately, Georgia doesn’t seem to attract many vegan writers. Here is what the mindful wanderlust guys write about their vegan experience. Here you can find a listing of vegetarian food options. […]

  13. […] I could go on with all of the vegan food, but I’ll leave it up to you to find more vegan eats. (Check out our blog on vegan food in the country of Georgia) […]

  14. […] makes for a delicious, healthy, and visually exciting dish.As long as you know what to ask for, travelling Georgia as a vegan is easy and enjoyable. Oh, and don’t miss out on the wonderful wines of Georgia. Khaketi is one of […]

  15. Sam June 3, 2016 Reply

    This is awesome to hear, as I’m planning a potential trip to Georgia next year, and thought the same thing about all the meat and cheese. Tibilsi now has a fully vegan cafe (opened July 2015) – Kiwi Cafe! Maybe you’ve heard them in the news recently, they were just stormed by neo-Nazis throwing meat around in the restaurant. Some people.

    Anyway, these dumplings look absolutely amazing, can’t wait to try them!

    • Giselle and Cody June 19, 2016 Reply

      Sam, we were really surprised with the amount of vegan food that we ate while in Georgia.
      We never had any issues and ate some delicious food. So glad to hear you are taking a trip there.
      It is in our top 5 destinations we have travelled and would love to go back.

      We did recently hear about Kiwi Cafe being stormed. Uggghhh some pretty disgusting people out there.

  16. Giselle and Cody April 1, 2017 Reply

    Hi there May, unfortunately we don’t know what the restaurant was called. It was on the main road heading the cable car lift.
    It was a stone building and the restaurant was downstairs. Sorry we couldn’t have been more help.

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