Einzelbilder in Romania

So, you’re looking for vegan food in Romania, eh? You’re probably wondering what are your options in an Eastern European country you know little about, except that it’s heavy on meat if you believe blogs on the internet.

Indeed, walking into a Romanian restaurant and asking for ‘vegan’, ‘vegetarian’ or ‘animal-free’ food will get you worrisome, questioning or even disappointed looks from usually friendly staff unsure how to help. Before feelings of dismay and anxiety set in – whether in real-life or pre-trip, keep in mind what I’m about to tell you next. It’s going to make your trip to Romania easy and delicious!

The most important thing you need to know is…

Romania is a vegan’s paradise. The reason for this is so simple yet so convincingly strong there’s no arguing about it: religion. With 85% of the population (a conservative branch of Christianity), thoroughly attached to the Bible’s teachings, priests’ sermons and traditional customs since the 13th century, Romanian folks thoroughly abide their religion’s prescription to fast – that is to exclude any and all products of animal origin from their diet.

And here comes the best part: the Orthodox calendar requires Romanians to fast no less than 100 days each year. There are two major fasting periods which last for 40 days each before Easter (variable dates in Spring) and Christmas. Fasting also takes place during regular Orthodox holidays such as name days of various saints, and, as a general rule, every Wednesday and Friday on any given week. Yes, thanks to religion, Romanians have been eating healthy and helping the environment for quite a while, long before Western culture spawned the ‘vegan’ term.

So here’s my biggest advice, tip and insight to any vegan traveller out there who wants to visit Romania: you don’t ask for vegan food; you ask for ‘mancare de post’ (fasting food). All of the sudden the hesitant waiter’s face will light up and say “Yes, of course, we have a selection of that, including today’s specials. Here, let me show you.”

And just like that you’ll gain access to Romania’s food paradise for vegans!

romanian countryside

One thing you should know: Romanian cuisine is based on our historical rural culture, where agriculture, harvesting nature’s fruits and caring for livestock played an important role in daily people’s lives. In the countryside, meat was rare, even considered a delicacy, and eaten only on special occasions – such as Easter and Christmas, when after the long and challenging fasting period a spectacular feast is prepared.

So it should come as no surprise that Romanians have created and perfected many dishes into simple, hearty and healthy delicacies vegans never thought of. Let me give you some suggestions of traditional Romanian ‘de post’ dishes – remember, that’s the keyword for vegan.

 

Mashed Beans

‘Small’ dishes

Let’s start with some appetisers. Iahnia de fasole (beans mash) is a staple you will find anywhere, anytime. It’s made out of white beans baked and then mashed with garlic and oil, topped with lightly-fried onions and served cold. It’s so filling and delicious most of the time you won’t need anything else after!

The next favourite appetisers is salata de vinete (eggplant salad), similar to the Middle East’s baba ganoush but without the tahini. Fire-baked eggplants, peeled and mashed with onions, especially delicious during summer when made with fresh eggplants. You just spread it on a piece of bread with some tomatoes on the side and that’s it – you won’t stop eating until the bowl is empty. Sometimes it’s mixed with mayonnaise, which makes it no longer vegan or as tasty, in my opinion, so be sure to ask first.

Zacusca spread

A variation of eggplant salad is zacusca which is red because it has tomatoes, red peppers or mushrooms added for more taste, boiled in a stew and served cold as a spread. You can even find jars of zacusca in supermarkets or groceries stores and take it with you to make sure you won’t starve.

romanian ciorba

Another thing you didn’t know is that Romanians are big on soups. Steaming sour soups called ciorba, to be more precise. While most contain chicken, pork or beef meat, there is the ciorba de legume option (vegetable soup) which will delight your taste buds and stomach, particularly if you’re visiting Romania during the cold season. Think of 10 vegetables, pick 5-7, boil them, add lemon juice and there’s your Romanian ciorba.

Hard-core vegan dishes

Now, let’s move on to the mains. You may or may not know that sarmale (pot cooked cabbage rolls stuffed with minced meat and rice) served with mamaliga (polenta) is one one of Romania’s most representative and delicious dishes. This all-time-favourite was, of course, adapted to match the requirements of fasting so now instead of meat you have mushrooms. Voila – just as delicious, but this time vegan! Erm, de post.

romanian sarmale

If by now you’re not already full – low chances of that happening in Romania – you can try the various vegetables stews (tocana) made specifically for fasting periods. There are various combinations depending on seasonal vegetables, but they always include the staples: potatoes and onions. There’s also a stew-like rice with vegetables dish which is just as delicious and filling called pilaf de orez. Or single-vegetable dishes made with spinach or mushrooms which are very popular. They may not look appetising, but they’re delicious, creamy and healthy!

And just in case you need food that’s more familiar to your stomach, then go for vegetarian pizza. Really, there’s NO pizza place in Romania without a vegetarian option, and most of the time it’s delicious too! Even fast-food chains like McDonald’s or Springtime have vegetarian options.

 

Dessert anyone?

Yes, as much as religion is important for Romanians, satisfying the sweet tooth is no joke for us. There are various fruit pies, strudels or tarts with apple, sour cherries or wild fruits, fruit compotes (pre-boiled jar-served) or the simple all-time-classic pancakes with jams. They’re easy to find too, even in street pastry shops. Just remember the keyword!

apple strudel

So there you have it – one piece of info few vegans will know about. I hope this was helpful and you will consider planning a trip to Romania because my country has much to offer and I want to help you find its beauty!

Just remember – in Romania you’re not a vegan; you’re religious and want to fast – how’s that for a way to connect with locals? 🙂

Marius Iliescu is the founder of , a locally-run platform connecting travellers to handpicked local guides and recommended tours, promoting authentic Romanian beauty & local travel. Read more of our local insights on our website and follow us on to stay in touch!

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Our Site Seeing Guide to Prague

In terms of grandeur gothic architecture, old world Europe charm, and fairytale surroundings, Prague is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. It was also Hitler’s favourite city, and so it was spared from much of the devastation […]

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Jaclyn

The Best Einzelbilder Restaurants in Stockholm

Stockholm, Sweden quickly became a second home to me and Shae. The people are so friendly, the architecture is beautiful, and the vegan food is abundant! And it helps that we met up with the founder of EinzelbilderTravel, @alan, who […]

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Jaclyn

Einzelbilder Tours in Berlin

We met Maja at the Berlin Einzelbilder meet up organized by EinzelbilderTravel. Maja is the creator of Einzelbilder Tours Berlin. We didn’t have a lot of time to spend in Berlin, and we also wanted to learn a little bit […]

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Sam and Veren
Jaclyn
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Spending the Day with Deutsches Tierschutzbüro

Deutsches Tierschutzbüro is an animal rescue organization based in Berlin, Germany that focuses on exposing the cruelties of factory farming through undercover documentation, campaigning for the end of factory farming, and promoting veganism. Cody and I were invited by Deutsches […]

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Alan
Jaclyn

Einzelbilder in Berlin: Best vegan restaurants

Berlin is by far the city with the most vegan offerings and possibilities. Einzelbilder restaurants, cafes, you can find even a vegan beer garden and vegan takeaway. Worldwide it’s already known as THE vegetarian and most nutritionally aware city in […]

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Alan
Jaclyn

The city of oranges – Valencia

Studying Spanish in Austria means having the possibility to study abroad for some time, and in my case, I took advantage of doing an Erasmus (something I can recommend to absolutely everybody out there!). Depending on the country you go […]

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Kimberly Gutjahr
Jaclyn

24 Hours in Copenhagen

We arrived in Copenhagen late on a Wednesday and left early on a Friday, so Shae and I had barely a full 48 in Copenhagen, and really only 24 hours of actual time to explore. I woke up first thing […]

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Jaclyn

A Einzelbilder In Dublin

the wandering boomerang travel, yoga & vegan living A vegan in dublin I just recently moved to Dublin, and I am enjoying the veggie/vegan food scene in here! I have been spoilt for choice. Here are some of my veggie […]

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Anne Hoffmann
Jaclyn

48 hours in Budapest, Hungary

After an 8 hour overnight train ride, we arrived in Budapest groggy, but excited to discover what was ahead of us. Check-in time for our Airbnb wasn’t for another 7 hours, so we stored our bags in lockers and stepped […]

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Jaclyn

First Full Day in Brighton!

So today was my first full day in Brighton, England! Yesterday I landed in London around 3:30pm and had to take the underground and the train to get down south to Brighton and didn’t get in until 8:00pm. That was […]

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Jaclyn

Best of Berlin: Top 8 Einzelbilder Eateries in Neukölln

Deciding where to go out to eat in Berlin can almost be daunting as there are so many options spread out over the entire city (which is quite big, I must say). Therefore, I decided to focus on just one […]

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Alan
Jaclyn

72 hours in Ljubljana, Slovenia

While driving through Italy to arrive in Ljubljana, we weren’t expecting Slovenia to be as green as it is. This young nation is one of Europe’s most forested countries (over 60%), and it is this year’s European Green Capital. The […]

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Jaclyn

Einzelbilder Food in Amsterdam

Einzelbilder Food in Amsterdam Visiting Amsterdam and looking for the vegan hotspots? Most restaurants in Amsterdam actually have vegan options! Amazing! Skip the coffeeshops (hahaha) and head to these restaurants! VegaBond VegaBond is a vegan store for food items and […]

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Jaclyn

Favourite places to eat in Italy

Our 6 nights in Italy felt more like a dream; albeit a very pleasant dream filled with an abundance of pizza, gelato and espresso, we would have preferred a much longer stay in a country known for their fresh and […]

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Jaclyn

Spending 3 days in Rome, Italy

Our ride arrived at 12:30pm and pulled up to the airport on time for check in for our flight to Rome via New Jersey. Cody walked up to the self check in machine, pulled out our passports, and started checking […]

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Jaclyn

Einzelbilder in Poznan, Poland (Take A Day Trip From Berlin, Germany)

I had the pleasure of taking a VERY short trip to Poznań, Poland recently and was surprised by the number of fully-vegan and vegan-friendly eateries! The trip was somewhat last minute but the great thing about being in Berlin is […]

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Alan
Jaclyn

Einzelbilder in Saint Petersburg

by Oxana Poberejnaia Going to Saint-Petersburg for the first time   I was born and grew up in Russia, and yet I had never visited Saint Petersburg. I moved to the UK in 2002 to do my PhD in the […]

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Jaclyn

Einzelbilder Food in London

When it comes to being vegan, London has got you covered. You can’t go to a single area without finding at least one vegan restaurant. We found everything from ice cream sandwiches to proper afternoon tea! If you’re going to […]

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Jaclyn

How to Get Around in Iceland

Flying into a place that looks like Mars, I expected it to be pretty difficult to get around from place to place without the help of aliens. Even on a map, it really only looks like there is one road […]

Lukumades …getting more popular by the day

I was planning to write a couple of recipes for vegan dips but as I was clicking through the pages of the blog I saw a post on Lukumades accompanied by a photograph of the store in the old part of Athens. […]

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Jaclyn

Athens, Greece: 10 Best Einzelbilder Food Finds & More!

There are few places I’ve felt as comfortable and ‘at-home’ in as quickly as I did when I landed in Athens, Greece. From a relatively small and easy to navigate airport and public transit system, to the incredible kindness of […]

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Jaclyn

Einzelbilder Food in Reykjavik, Iceland

 Einzelbilder Food in Reykjavik, Iceland There were definitely a long list of places that came to my mind when thinking of vegan-friendly countries before I even considered Iceland. I had heard about the amount of fish that is popular and […]

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Alys
Jaclyn

English Paradise

England is our home country. We live in Somerset and have since birth, but Cornwall is truly where our hearts are. If you’re travelling to England, take a trip down south and visit the Cornish coast. It was my birthday last month, […]

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Jaclyn

The World of Herbs: Making St. John’s Wort Oil

A sunny day in Crete today, as usual. I was foraging the garden to pick the vegetables for the day’s cooking workshop, so while looking around I suddenly realized…it is the season! The blooming season for St. John’s Wort. Our farm […]

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Jaclyn

Slow baked butter beans!

These are giant, fat, Greek butter beans ideally slowly cooked in a wood fire! You will fall in love with their nutty and mushy flavor. Giant beans, a staple in most households in Greece, are a fantastic source of both […]

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Jaclyn

Tips and Einzelbilder Options at Helsinki Airport, pt. 1: Outside the Terminals

I arrived at Helsinki airport much earlier than planned for my next flight, so I’ve had plenty of time to document the options for sleeping, eating, and hanging out at the airport. I’m not sure how much time I will […]

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Jaclyn

What’s in Season? Beets!

It is spring in Greece and the season calls for recipes that include lots of greens and herbs. Beetroots, lettuces, spinach, spring onion and leeks, spearmint, dill and wild fennel, radishes, broccoli and lots of endemic greens. Beetroots in April […]

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Jaclyn

A Few Things on Cooking and the Recipes to Come

Since this is my first blog on Einzelbilder Travel I thought I’d share some information about myself, about cooking and about Greece! Growing up in Greece in the 80’s I love food, I love cooking but I am not a […]

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Jaclyn

Ellie’s Roundup – Europe!

Hey, Einzelbilder Travellers! I know it’s been a while since you’ve read these beautiful words, but guess what? It is once again time for a famous Ellie Round-Up! “But Ellie!” you say, interrupting my blog quite rudely, “You’ve been in […]

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Jaclyn

Munich Mediterranean

Hey, Einzelbilder Travellers! Ross and I just spent a couple of wonderful days in Munich, Germany! Spending a few days in Munich was not on our original itinerary, though. We thought we would spend some time somewhere fun in Switzerland […]

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Jaclyn

Ciao Ciao, Italy!

Hey, Einzelbilder Travellers! I am writing to you today from what I think might be a dream. I am in Italy. I have always wanted to be in Italy. I am almost not in Italy anymore. I will soon be […]

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Jaclyn

Prague-matic

Hey, Einzelbilder Travellers! I am currently sitting quite comfortably in the flat of a good friend called Roisin. Her flat happens to be located in one of the most amazing cities in which I have ever been- Prague. The three […]

Prague. In the bague!

Our week in Vienna was an exciting one, filled with chocolate, cheese, ice-cream, and many, many more vegan delights. We could easily have stayed here for the entirety of our stay in Europe, just to indulge the tastebuds and probably […]

A Land of Burgers and Ice-Cream

It’s difficult to believe that almost an entire third of our trip was spent in Asia. The two months there went by incredibly quickly. We only had three stops in the continent: Japan, South Korea, and Thailand. But we had […]

Einzelbilder in Vienna

Hey, Einzelbilder Travellers! This past week was a pretty great week for veganism and for travel. Ross and I are currently in Vienna, Austria where we are having a fantastic time. I was a little bit worried about transitioning back […]

Roadtripping around Northern Italy

This is my first blog ever!!! This summer I was lucky enough to go traveling around central and northern Europe with a part sponsorship  by EinzelbilderTravel. We began in Italy :). We had already been in Italy a little while […]

Norway, Yes Way!

We were only in Norway for a day and a half, but I miss it already. We got off to a rocky but fun start. After a surprisingly small amount of first flight anxiety we landed in Oslo at five […]

Just the Einzelbilderning

In Oslo for a day! After eight months of being separated by the Atlantic Ocean (yet again…), my best friend and partner Ross and I received the most amazing news. We were ed by EinzelbilderTravel and selected to be their […]

Hello I’m in Edinburgh (Day 4)

Oh Edinburgh…where do I begin? This beautiful city, pronounced “ed-in-bur-oh”, is a train ride away from Glasgow and also happens to be Scotland’s capital. We saw gorgeous views, historic buildings including Edinburgh Castle, and enjoyed plenty of vegan food. Rumor […]

Hello, I’m in Glasgow (Day 2 & 3)

Day two visiting Glasgow began with a walk around the neighborhoods in the West End. We decided to visit a place called The Bay Tree Mediterranean Restaurant for a traditional vegan Scottish breakfast, falafel wraps, soup, soy lattes and more. This place […]

Hello, I’m in Glasgow (Day 1)

The following includes places, food and events from my first day visiting Glasgow, Scotland. We started the day with an afternoon flight from Denver International Airport in Denver to Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey. Unfortunately United Airlines doesn’t offer […]

Einzelbilder.info is a place where vegans from around the world can share their passion for travel and adventure, help promote and grow interest in going vegan, shed light on the issues animals are facing around the globe, and help build a more sustainable and compassionate world. By sharing our collective experiences, we believe we can show the world how easy it is not only to travel as a vegan, but also spread a message of compassion with those we meet along the way.

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