Whether you’re from Malta, live here or just travelling, here’s a guide to vegan living on the Maltese islands. If you use these guidelines alongside the Vegan Malta Map you are sure to find it easier to go vegan and stay vegan while living in Malta!
Shopping for food:
Vegan staples can now be found in most supermarkets and grocery stores all over the island. Plant milks, pasta, rice and other ingredients on most vegans’ shopping lists can be obtained from any grocery store close to your home. On the other hand, for more specific ingredients like tofu, seitan, vegan cheese, ice-cream, pizza, mayonnaise, mock meats, yoghurt, etc.; a supermarket or a health shop is more likely to stock these ingredients. For vegan friendly supermarkets and health shops refer to the red shopping cart (health shops) and yellow trolley (supermarkets) on the Vegan Malta Map.
When shopping for fresh fruits and vegetables one is sure to find the best prices and freshest produce at the Farmer’s Market in Ta’Qali. The market is set-up twice a week on Saturday and Tuesday between around 7 am and 12 pm but it is advisable to go early for a greater selection. The Farmer’s Market is marked on the Vegan Malta map with a red shopping cart, first in the section.
If the Farmer’s Market is out of your way, it is advisable to get your fruit and veggies from a street truck for cheaper prices. Although many supermarkets have a wide variety of fresh produce, prices will be higher. Despite this, this may be the only place where you could get hold of more difficult to find, tropical vegetables and fruit.
Sadly Malta doesn’t have any vegan restaurants but an increasing number of vegan friendly restaurants and cafés are spouting all over the islands. From vegan friendly vegetarian cafés to clearly marked vegan options in meat serving restaurants to salad bars, you are sure to not go hungry. Look out for the pasta plate (restaurants) and salad bowl (cafés, takeaways and salad bars) on the Vegan Malta Map to navigate between the vegan friendly locations while satisfying your taste buds.
If you’re dining out with a group of non-vegans and have no say in the choice of restaurant we suggest you look up the menu online prior to going to the restaurant (most restaurants have their menu available on their Facebook page or website). If you see that they don’t have any vegan options, which unfortunately is sometimes the case, we suggest calling the restaurant and ask them whether they would be able to prepare something special. Many good quality restaurants are willing to accommodate.
A sweet tooth?
Several shops and cafés are now serving vegan desserts, many of them raw. Although not all coffee shops have plant milks, it is advisable to ask if you’re craving a cappuccino or a soy latte. Vegan milk serving coffee shops are marked on the Vegan Malta Map with a mug while vegan sweet shops are marked with a dessert icon.
Are there any traditional Maltese foods that are vegan?
Two of the most delicious Maltese foods, pastizzi and imqaret are often not vegan. Lard, butter or non-vegan margarine could be used to make the pastry of both of them, while pea pastizzi may contain meat in the mix. (Go to the Recipes section to make your own imqaret and pastizzi). Asking whether they’re vegan does not always give you the right answers (been there, done that…).
On the other hand, traditional Maltese bread, ħobża tal-Malti is vegan and it’s delicious paired up with Maltese tic bean paste bigilla, fresh tomatoes and olive oil.
Personal and Home care:
Cruelty free personal care and home cleaning products can be found in virtually all health shops in Malta. The only physical shop specialising in these products, Soap Café is marked on the map with a make-up box. Blends of Nature is an online personal care shop based in Malta.
Vegan Accommodation in Malta:
The sister island of Gozo boasts the only vegan/vegetarian bed and breakfast in the Maltese islands, called Pane e Marmellata. Many hotels offer buffet dining options hence a variety of vegan options are always available. Despite this it is advisable to contact hotel prior to booking to ensure vegan eating options will be available.