Ho Chi Minh City earned itself a spot among the 10 most vegan-friendly Asian cities, according to a list published by the American animal rights group PETA.
According to the group, the city’s bustling vegan scene supplies hungry diners with everything from meat-free banh mi to vegan eggs braised in soya gravy, making it prime contender for PETA’s Top 10 Vegan-Friendly Cities in Asia.
"Saigon's vegan cuisine covers every craving, from bo la lot (grilled beef rolled in betel leaves) and sweet-and-sour pork to wok-fried chicken and prawns – all 100 per cent meat-free", said PETA Vice President of International Campaigns Jason Baker.
"PETA applauds the city's thriving vegan culture, which satisfies appetites, preserves the environment, and saves animals from suffering.”
A woman checks out a vegan foods counter at a supermarket in Ho Chi Minh City - Photo: Tuoi Tre
According to the group, pigs, cows, chickens and other animals are individuals with feelings – they experience love, happiness, loneliness, and fear, just as humans do.
Most animals raised for food are confined to filthy warehouses, where they're deprived of everything that's natural and important to their well-being, says PETA.
The group also recommended many restaurants throughout the cities that cater to the vegetarian crowd, including Thanh Tinh, whose menu features meat substitutes like tofu and seitan, and Kay Vegan Bistro, which serves tempeh with barbecue sauce, pho, and desserts made from red beans and mango.
Diners can also enjoy an extensive vegan menu at Loving Hut, whre barbecue chicken, banh xeo (Vietnamese pancake), goi cuon (fresh spring rolls) are served and packaged vegan meats and cheeses are available for purchase.
Other vegan standouts in Saigon included Ngoc Tho, which prepares roasted "pork" and fried spring rolls, along with a variety of Mexican dishes, and Li Bai, which offers wok-fried "prawns" and braised sliced "beef".
At Sen Quan Chay, diners can try a veganised version of an egg.
Other Asian vegan-friendly cities in PETA’s list also include Taipei, Taiwan; Singapore; Changmai and Bangkok, Thailand; Makati, Philippines; Bangalore, India; Hong Kong; Bali, Indonesia; and Shanghai, China.