According to a report published back in April, seven percent of British people currently live a vegan lifestyle. And sure, seven percent doesn't seem like a massive number, but that roughly equates to 3.5 million people!

This is where supply and demand comes in: as more people head towards veganism, more vegan restaurants will start to appear. Or, at the very least, menus at existing restaurants will start to cater to this growing market. Ten years ago, your typical vegan option could've been a slab of tofu and some cauliflower - which is fine, but not exactly exciting. Fast forward to today, and specifically to Cardiff, the options are are bountiful.

From Anna-Loka's Rodeo Burger to Atma's Supersoul Special, Cardiff is inundated with vegan meals glistening with flavour, created by restaurants looking to do more than just shove a slice of cheese between two pieces of cardboard and call it a day. And would you look at that? We've gone and picked out ten of them for you. You can thank us later.

This Albany-road establishment only opened in 2015, but it’s quickly become a favourite of vegans in Cardiff - mainly due to Director Adam El Tagoury’s passion for bold food without any of the compromises (no cross contamination in this place!). From the soul-enriching Cali Breakfast - which seems to get bigger every time we visit - to the aforementioned Rodeo Burger (make sure you pair it with the sweet potato fries), Anna-Loka has everything a vegan could ever dream of. Seriously, head down there and throw a dart at the menu. We guarantee you’ll like whatever item you hit.

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Milgi serves up everyday plant based eating with style. The 100% vegetarian lounge uses seasonal ingredients to make pretty platefuls of nourishing food including soups, salads and superfood smoothies. For the less virtuous, there are burritos and beer-battered halloumi and chips, and an eye-watering selection of vegan cake. At night-time, Cardiff’s cool cats hang out and sip cocktails but don't be put off by the hipster vibe; grab a drink and join in – or just people-watch to your heart’s content. The menu pairs flavours with flair and creations include mozzarella on toast with pink grapefruit and watermelon margaritas. It’s not cheap but the quality speaks for itself and a study of the menu will give you lots of ideas to spice up your own cooking. Do try this at home.

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“Fresh, delicious, and nutritionally balanced,” is the three-step mission statement of the Bee & Honey, and let’s be honest, what more could you possibly need? This Canton-based Cafe & Deli - which also helps raise money for the dwindling bee population - serves sublime salads (the Spiced Tofu Superfood Deli Bowl is a real ‘Come To Jesus’ moment if you’re on the cusp of becoming a vegan), beautiful bakes, and wholesome wraps. Perfect for breakfast, lunch, and dinner (just load up on some takeaway before they close).

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Going against the grain of “nutritionally balanced” or “food for the soul” - unless your soul has a one-way ticket to the dark side - is the Greasy Vegan. Breaking the shackles of Cardiff’s pop-up scene, the Greazy Vegan is now the proud owner of some brick and mortar in the Castle Quarter Arcades. Expect hot dogs, hot wings, kebabs and burgers, all 100% unapologetically filthy and probably not great for you - which is exactly what you’d want from Cardiff’s first-ever vegan junk food restaurant. Typically the arcades shut at 5pm, but this restaurant is so good they’ve decided to let them stay open until 9pm - which is great news for people looking to line their stomachs before heading out into the night.

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There are many methods by which to judge a new acquaintance. Typically it falls on the big stuff like politics or religion, other times it’s the slightly less heated stuff, such as entertainment (“You mean to tell me your favourite band is Nickelback? Good day, sir.”). For us, it comes down to the humble falafel - at least from a tie-breaker situation. Thankfully, we’ve yet to come across someone that finds deep-fried chickpea balls a downer, but if you do happen to be that person, this just isn’t a love-connection I’m afraid. For those of you still in shock that people like that actually exist, snap out of it! We need you to concentrate on what we’re about to say: Falafel Kitchen on Crwys Rd serves a dish called ‘Roni’s Falafel’ and it’s an essential eat. So head down there right now, and give Roni a massive hug for us. We’re not sure if Roni is a real person or not, but I’m sure they’d appreciate the gesture all the same.

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We’re huge fans of puns here at Wriggle, so how could we miss out on a place that sells a burger called the Beet Master General? Besides their wit, the fine folks over at Lazy Leek in Kings Road Yard, Pontcanna are also pretty good at the whole food thing too - with juicy plant-based burgers and mouth-wateringly delicious sides being the order of the day. If you’re a newbie, you really can’t go wrong with the Nacho Libre burger, which features a homemade bean patty drenched in hot sauce, pico de gallo, chillies, the chunkiest guacamole in Cardiff, and of course, nachos. And did we mention they sell vegan cakes too?

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The multi-award winning vegetarian restaurant has a ridiculous amount of vegan options on its celebrated menu, and at prices so low you’ll wonder how they make a profit. If you’re into dry curries, the Bhinda Bateta Nu Saak is our top pick - just make sure you pair it with mango-flavoured Vegan Lassi! Other nods go to the Channa Masala, and the Bombay Wada Pav. But look, it’s like picking your favourite kid, ultimately you like them all in equal measure (pretty sure that’s how it works).

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If you’re looking for the best vegan flapjack in Cardiff, then Steen the Chef’s cafe on Windsor Place should be programmed into your phone as soon as possible. Steen’s origin story is really fascinating, but it’s his continued work with young people and community groups that really makes us feel invested in his success. We want him to win, it’s as simple as that. In terms of his food though - outside of those heavenly flapjacks we mentioned above - it’s his approach to fresh and healthy produce that really shines through. It’s a great place to grab some tapas, too.

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Chapter Arts Centre is a Cardiff institution, especially for creatives, but for some reason it flies under the radar when it comes to foodie destinations. So let’s change that. Can we talk about the Potato gnocchi with roasted vegetables in an Arrabiata sauce for just two seconds? It’s the sort of dish you order, scoff down in five minutes, feel 20 pounds heavier, but wanna do all over again. And can we talk about their vegan breakfast for a second too? It features a sautéed spinach laver bread oatcake, which tastes even better than it sounds. Throw in the incredible atmosphere and you’ve got yourself a winner.

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You’d be forgiven for forgetting about Atma, given its location. Situated in the white elephant we all know as the Capitol Shopping Centre (aka, future apartment fodder), Atma deserves far more love than it currently receives. Like Anna-Loka and many other vegan establishments in Cardiff, Atma is run by the Hare Krishna movement - with the ethos ‘you are what you eat’ being part of the fabric that holds everything together. Satisfying your mind and soul is incredibly important to Atma (Sanskrit for the ‘self’ or ‘soul’) - but with dishes such as the Maha Mexican and the Sublime Chilli Paneer, your belly does pretty well too if you ask us.

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Published -22nd August 2018