Delicious, creamy broth. Chewy noodles with just the right texture. I loved ramen as soon as I got to Tokyo. Vegetable ramen without the chashu (braised pork) was perfect. I innocently enjoyed this naughty bowl after late night hangouts, occasionally for lunch. After a month or so, though, the bubble burst, as it turned out to be broth made from the bones of dead animals. Mortified, I went on a hunt for ramen all around Tokyo, trying all the vegan ramen possible. Ramen with avocado on top, aburi (flame seared) ramen, noodles with wheat gluten in place of chashu, chain stores offerings like Ippudo, to tiny tatami-clad back rooms. After much experimentation, trekking around back alleys, train stations and department stores, I decided to come up with this subjective list of Tokyo’s best vegan ramen.

Uzu Ramen

Eat your vegan ramen inside a TeamLab exhibit at Uzu Ramen. Listed in the Michelin Guide, this is vegan ramen done properly. I went when the shop's soy sauce ramen topped with tomato and miso ramen with onion was on offer and was blown away by the depth of flavor and attention to detail. The vegetables also shine, gloriously. Slurp your ramen while sitting in a TeamLab installation. Even mirrored tables reflect the swirling art moving around every surface. There are two options on offer: Soy Sauce and Miso. They change with the seasons. The restaurant is located in the plaza of TeamLab Planets.

T's Tantan

Seminal vegan ramen shop located inside the barriers of Tokyo Station, serving flavorsome vegan ramen in a variety of styles. As the name suggests, it specializes in tantanmen, a nutty, spicy ramen adapted from a similar Chinese Sichuan dish. The main difference between tantanmen and other types of Japanese ramen, such as soy and miso, is the spiciness and toppings. Instead of chashu, tantanmen has ground meat on top, which is replaced with ground soy meat, while the soup itself contains peanuts and soy milk for an intensely creamy flavor. For those with allergies, other varieties such as Japanese-style yuzu ramen are on offer. Sets are also available, with classics including gyoza (vegan, of course) and Japanese fried “chicken.” The shop has a delicious instant ramen range, so you can enjoy T’s Tantan at home, too.

ippudo vegan ramen

Ippudo Plant Based Studio

Shinjuku's vegan version of the popular chain store can be found in Lumine department store. The Ippudo vegan ramen is Hakata tonkostu (pork) style, which means it is thick and creamy. Using special oil, shiitake mushroom, konbu (edible kelp) stock and soy milk, the Ippudo team creates luscious vegan ramen soup. There is also the option of salt ramen, which has a lighter, more delicate flavor, as well as vegan gyoza, so it's close to a classic ramen experience. The cheapest bowl on this list is under ¥1,000.

bassanova vegan ramen

Bassa Nova Harajuku

A ramen shop serving both vegan and non-vegan options, Bassa Nova is hidden down an alleyway of Takeshita Street in Harajuku, slightly away from the throngs of people. You can order from the vending machine. There are two vegan options: pink beetroot soup and green curry soup. With the former, you can opt for either hot or cold. The beetroot is there simply for color. Topped with flavored soy chicken, mitsuba (Japanese parsley), red onions and homemade fried onions, as well as thick chewy noodles, this ramen will leave you satisfied. The shop also provides  a ramen bib for those who want one. This can come in handy, especially if you’re wearing white. There's a Bassa Nova near Shimokitazawa, but beware, it’s only pork-bone broth. The Harajuku one is the shop to visit.

chabuzen vegan ramen


Vegan food therapy restaurant, Chabuzen, is a rickety shop serving health-conscious vegan dishes, mainly ramen. Owner, Daiji Takada, visited India many years back and was inspired by herbal medicine so much that he opened his own eatery to spread the practice. The shop's special is Dragon Ramen. The broth of this Kyushu-style dish is made from a combination of konbu dashi and fermented rice. It has a deep flavor. Chat to Takada as you dine, then wash the ramen down with a fermented natto tea, surprisingly delicious and, when combined with the fermented ramen, does wonders for your digestion.