This Is the Best American City for Vegetarians

Source: marilyna / iStock via Getty Images

Often people get the terms vegan and vegetarian mixed up. A vegetarian is defined as “a person who does not eat meat : someone whose diet consists wholly of vegetables, fruits, grains, nuts, and sometimes eggs or dairy products,” according to Merriam-Webster. A vegan is described as “a strict vegetarian who consumes no food (such as meat, eggs, or dairy products) that comes from animals.” It is a distinction that many people who eat meat as a matter of course do not understand.


The Vegetarian Resource Group sponsored a survey in 2019, in conjunction with the Harris Poll, of 2,000 U.S. adults age 18 or older and found that 4% identified as vegetarian and 2% as vegan.

To determine the best city for vegans and vegetarians, 24/7 Tempo reviewed data from WalletHub, which evaluated the 100 largest cities in the country using 16 relevant metrics in three key categories:

  • Affordability of groceries and restaurant meals
  • A combination of diversity, accessibility and quality (including share of restaurants serving vegan and vegetarian options and per capita numbers of salad shops, community gardens and vegetarian cooking classes)
  • Vegetarian lifestyle (including number of vegan and vegetarian meetups per capita)


In compiling the data, WalletHub drew on 11 sources, including the U.S. Census Bureau, USDA Organic IndianaTEGRITY Database, the Council for Community and Economic Research, Grubhub, Meetup and Yelp.

The West Coast is strongly represented on the list of finalists, with Portland, Los Angeles and San Francisco in the top five. Orlando and, in somewhat of a surprise, Boise, round out the top quintet. But in any city here, you can find a delicious plant-based meal when you want to go meatless, even for a day.

The best city for vegans and vegetarians is Portland, Oregon. On affordability, it ranked 29th best out of the 100 cities. For diversity, accessibility and quality, it came in third best.


Sponsored: Tips for Investing

A financial advisor can help you understand the advantages and disadvantages of investment properties. Finding a qualified financial advisor doesn’t have to be hard. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with up to three financial advisors who serve your area, and you can interview your advisor matches at no cost to decide which one is right for you. If you’re ready to find an advisor who can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.

Investing in real estate can diversify your portfolio. But expanding your horizons may add additional costs. If you’re an investor looking to minimize expenses, consider checking out online brokerages. They often offer low investment fees, helping you maximize your profit.