Veganism, while always growing in popularity, hasn’t quite made its way into Oman just yet.
There are no purely-vegan restaurants in the capital Muscat, and you might struggle to explain what you’re after in many places.
But don’t despair – with our guide you won’t have to spend your trip cooped up in your hotel, living off oreos.
If you want to dine like a king, read on for twelve spots for meat-free dishes in Muscat.
Bait Al Luban
Walking through Muscat often feels as though you’ve been transported back in time, and so many of the buildings have a fascinating history. Bait Al Luban is no exception – the restaurant hosted a guesthouse more than 140 years ago. Inside you’ll be greeted with proper Omani hospitality and some fantastic food. Plant-based dishes include several stews and curries.
Daily noon-11pm. Muttrah Corniche (2471 1842).
Vegans won’t struggle to find something to eat at this Zanzibari spot, as many of the dishes are cooked in coconut milk, and there are plenty of vegetable side dishes, too. Ugali, a traditional porridge dish, is naturally vegan too.
Sat-Thu 11am-11pm; Fri 10am-12.15pm, 1pm-10pm. Coconut House, Seeb (9818 8220).
You can kill two birds with one stone by visiting Dukanah Café, which serves plenty of traditional Omani food that just happens to be vegan too. There are lots of bean-based dishes, and if you’re vegetarian rather than vegan, there are meat-free egg options as well. The interior is very traditional, and you won’t be able to stop yourself from snapping a few pictures for Instagram.
Daily 8am-11pm. Dukanah Cafe, Al Ghubrah South (9900 0204).
The brothers behind Hayat’s wanted to bring healthy food options they had seen abroad to Muscat, which meant replacing butter and ghee with oils, and replacing unhealthy red meats with vegetables such as cauliflower. Now they have an entirely vegan menu, which includes wings, burgers and steaks, as well as salads and falafel.
Sat-Thu 11.30am-11.30pm; Fri 11.30am-midnight. Hayat’s, Qurum (9399 6536).
If in doubt, Indian food is always a good shout for vegans and vegetarians. Head to Kamat Restaurant and you’ll be able to pick up dishes like dosas, samosas and coconut-based curries. Plus, they also have a Chinese menu with a great vegetarian section if you want something a little different.
Sun-Thu 10.30am-3pm, 6.30pm-11.30pm; Fri 8am-11.30am, 1pm-3pm, 6.30pm-11.30pm; Sat 8am-3pm, 6.30pm-11.30pm. Kamat Restaurant, Ruwi (2479 3355).
This isn’t a purely vegetarian restaurant, but all of the meat-free dishes are clearly labelled and staff will have no issues taking ghee and butter out to make things vegan. There’s plenty of dals and curries for you to choose from. Plus, it’s in Muttrah Corniche so you can head here after exploring the souq and other tourist spots.
Daily 11.30am-10.30pm. Kurkum Restaurant, Muttrah Corniche (2471 1143).
This Turkish spot is very vegetarian friendly, and there are plenty of traditional dishes on offer such as stuffed eggplant or bean stew. Lots of dishes can be customised, and you can even try a vegan version of Turkish pide bread.
24 hours. Lokanta, Qurum (2200 9598).
There are plenty of accidentally vegan side dishes in Mexican cuisine, but Loko also has a number of mains such as the vegan bowl or taco. There’s vegetarian options too if you can’t give up cheese just yet.
Sat-Wed 11am-11pm; Thu 11am-midnight; Fri noon-midnight. Loko, Qurum (2457 7700).
Italian cuisine is admittedly very dairy-heavy, but that doesn’t mean you should avoid it entirely. There are plenty of dishes where you can take away the mozzarella and enjoy the vegetables just as much, you’ll just have to check with your waiter first. And if you’re vegetarian, there’s thankfully more than just the classic margherita for you to dig into.
Sun-Thu noon-11pm; Fri-Sat noon-11.30pm. Melenzane, Qurum (9126 3340).
Muscat Hills Resort
Every Tuesday, Muscat Hills Resort puts on a special vegan menu. It changes regularly, but it’s never basic and it’s served by a certified vegan chef. No need to double-check every item – it’s definitely all plant based!
Tue 7pm-10pm. Muscat Hills Resort, Bandar Jissah (9121 6645).
This restaurant is part of the largest South Indian vegetarian restaurant chain in the world, and we can see why they’ve had so much success. The dosas are incredible and you’ll be able to change dishes to make them vegan with ease too.
Sat-Thu 8am-11pm; Fri 8am-3pm. Saravana Bhavan, Al Khuwair (2448 7873).
Pan Asian restaurant Wagamama created its purely vegan menu two years ago in the UK, and has been launching it all over the globe since then. There are loads of dishes to choose from, like katsu curry or ramen, and you won’t have to spend ages pouring over the menu trying to work out what you can eat.
Sun-Wed 11am-11pm; Thu-Sat 11am-midnight. Qurum (9358 5351).